A public hearing on the Academic Excellence Indicator System reports will be held in January, but its findings are positive for the Brownwood Independent School District.
“The good news is that academic performance is above state average everywhere, and significantly above in many grade levels,” Dr. Sue Jones, superintendent, told board members Monday night. Trustees reviewed the report briefly at their meeting.
“There’s been significant improvement in a lot of areas compared to last year,” board member Dr. Justin Murphy said. “The 10-point jump in the seventh grade stands out, and there’s a 13-point jump in the 10th grade. That’s good.”
The Academic Excellence Indicator System (AEIS) pulls together a wide range of information on the performance of students in each school and district in Texas every year. This information is put into the annual AEIS reports. Results from the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills is one factor included in the report.
According to the Texas Education Agency, the Accountability Rating System for Texas Public Schools and School Districts uses a subset of the performance measures computed for AEIS to assign a rating to each public school and district. Jones noted that Northwest Elementary and Woodland Heights Elementary schools are exemplary campuses, and Coggin, East, Brownwood Intermediate and Brownwood Middle schools are recognized.
In other business Monday, trustees:
Heard an overview of school security measures in place for the district, and discussed the possibility of requiring high school students to display identification. The installation of video surveillance systems, especially at the high school and middle school campuses, was also addressed.
“I’m not in favor of spending money foolishly, but I don’t think there’s anything more important than the safety of our students,” trustee John Nickols said.
During the discussion, trustees were told that police have issued seven tickets on the high school campus this semester — six for fighting and one for assault. Several tickets a week are issued to either students or parents for truancy.
Approved the audit report for the 2006-2007 fiscal year as presented by Denise Manske of Davis, Kinard and Co., P.C., of Abilene. Manske said the report was an unqualified or clean opinion.
Jones pointed out that the district has improved its fund balance over the years to $7.5 million, with about $3 million designated for construction, after it had dipped to $900,000 at one point in the last decade.
“This is the result of the efforts of the business office, Mr. (Assistant Superintendent Kevin) Garabee and the principals,” Jones said. “We are being as conservative as we can and still provide what is needed in the classroom. We appreciate that. I’m sure the teachers don’t have everything they wanted, but we’re not trying to build a fund balance at the expense of the classroom.”
Received a first draft of a proposed calendar for the 2008-2009 school year.
“There’s just not a lot of options,” Jones said. The state mandates that school can’t start before the fourth Friday in August, and the district wants to close the spring semester by the last Friday in May in order to reserve the Brownwood Coliseum for graduation exercises. Another annual event has a standing reservation for the first Friday in June.
Jones said work on the calendar is under way in an effort to coordinate holidays — especially spring break — with Howard Payne University.