Claycomb Associates, Architects

The Conroe ISD board of trustees approved a resolution authorizing compensation to district employees for days missed due to emergency closures, including the Sept. 14 emergency closure for Tropical Storm Nicholas. The resolution was approved by the board during a Sept. 20 regular meeting. view article arw

BOYS RANCH, Texas (KVII) — Shawn Read, principal of Boys Ranch High School in Boys Ranch Independent School District has been selected to represent the Texas Association of Secondary School Principals as a Region 16 Outstanding Principal of the Year. As a Region 16 winner, Read is eligible to compete for the state title of Texas Principal of the Year. TASSP recognizes outstanding principals and assistant principals from the 20 Education Service Centers in the state. School administrators are nominated and chosen by their peers within their regions. view article arw

The Comal ISD board of trustees unanimously approved a release agreement for the former head football coach and athletic director of Canyon High School on Tuesday night in the wake of a grievance he had filed with the district. After about two hours behind closed doors Tuesday, the board emerged and voted 7-0 to approve the release agreement for Joe Lepsis. “We truly appreciate the board of trustees listening to concerns and working to help resolve the problem,” Lepsis’ attorney Tiger Hanner said. In February, the district said Lepsis informed CHS administrators and his team that he would be resigning his positions to seek new opportunities elsewhere. Lepsis, who spent nine years at Wylie East School prior to his move to Canyon, helped guide the Cougars to an 11-2 record during the 2020 season. Canyon also finished 2020 as the co-District 12-5A-I champions along with Dripping Springs and Seguin. view article arw

Melissa Williams, who was killed outside Vernon Elementary, had been with the district in various roles for 14 years, the superintendent says. The motorist who hit her may have been having a medical issue, police say.  Royse City ISD is mourning the death of an employee who was fatally struck by a car this week while she was working as a crossing guard.  The Fate Department of Public Safety said a motorist hit the crossing guard — identified by the district as Melissa Williams — around 7:30 a.m. Monday near Miss May Vernon Elementary School in the 100 block of Miss May Drive. The school is in Fate but is part of Royse City ISD.  The motorist, whose identity has not been disclosed, may have been experiencing a medical problem at the time of the crash, the department said. The motorist also hit a vehicle, it said. view article arw

Royse City ISD is mourning the death of an employee who was fatally struck by a car this week while she was working as a crossing guard. The Fate Department of Public Safety said a motorist hit the crossing guard — identified by the district as Melissa Williams — around 7:30 a.m. Monday near Miss May Vernon Elementary School in the 100 block of Miss May Drive. The school is in Fate but is part of Royse City ISD. view article arw

A Crowley ISD teacher was placed on administrative leave after a video showing him forcefully pinning down a student circulated on social media. Calling the video “disturbing and unacceptable,” the school district said in a statement Wednesday that it was investigating the use of excessive force at the Crowley Ninth Grade Campus. view article arw

IRVING, Texas — Hundreds of students walked out of MacArthur High School on Wednesday in protest after teachers were allegedly forced to take down "safe space" stickers on their classroom doors. The students could be seen walking onto the school's football field and around the building during the afternoon. Students told WFAA that two teachers who sponsor the school's Gay-Straight Alliance Club handed out "safe space" stickers to all teachers for them to put on their doors if they were comfortable having discussions with students who identified as LGBTQIA+. view article arw

Abilene ISD announced Wednesday that all AISD faculty and staff members who are currently fully vaccinated or who will be fully vaccinated will soon receive stipend payments in the amount of $1,000. Those that wish to participate in the voluntary program must be fully vaccinated and enroll on or before November 8. view article arw

ROUND ROCK, Texas (KXAN) — Crossing guards keep our kids safe as they walk on busy streets to get to and from school, but they’re just aren’t enough in the Round Rock Independent School District.  Prior to the pandemic, the district had 105 crossing guards, but now there are only 60.  The RRISD Police Department has helped fill those vacant positions along with volunteers, but they need help and are hoping more people will sign up.  “We are constantly going around our district looking for areas and listening to the community when they send information about crossing street concerns,” said Jeffrey Yarbrough, RRISD chief of police. “We are responsive to those (concerns) and make sure we have an officer or staff available to ensure our kids are making it to school safely.” view article arw

The Caddo Mills Independent School District said it has been made aware of the recent arrest of one its school teachers on a theft charge, but is not intending to take action at the present time. Superintendent Luke Allison issued a letter to parents Tuesday afternoon concerning the arrest of middle school teacher Jessica Kreais. “Ms. Kreais has been with the district for the past two years and she is a wonderful educator and is in good standing with Caddo Mills ISD,” Allison said. view article arw

The Comal ISD board of trustees on Sept. 21 approved an employee sick leave resolution to provide five additional days of leave to ensure required quarantine due to a positive COVID-19 test. The board voted unanimously to pass the measure that will extend through the end of the 2021-22 school year. Previously, the Federal Family and Medical Leave Act extensions that covered employees in 2020 during the first few months of the pandemic covered district employees that had to quarantine or isolate through Dec. 31. As of Jan. 1 of this year, sick leave reverted back to normal. view article arw

GRAPEVINE, Texas — Parents and students bizarrely found themselves changing, covering up, or turning their T-shirts inside out Monday night at a Grapevine-Colleyville ISD board meeting to stand up for a beloved high school principal.   The chaos is attributed to new school board decorum rules adopted in August after meetings started getting out of hand when the community rushed to defend Dr. James Whitfield.  view article arw

GRAPEVINE, Texas — The Grapevine-Colleyville ISD school board voted unanimously 7-0 Monday night to not renew the contract of Dr. James Whitfield, a principal at Colleyville Heritage High School. The district will allow Whitfield to appeal his termination, and the board will have to re-vote regarding his termination after that hearing. view article arw

GRAPEVINE (CBSDFW.COM) — The Grapevine Colleyville Independent School District school board has unanimously voted to propose non-renewal of Dr. James Whitfield’s contract. The Colleyville Heritage High School principal has been on paid administrative leave since late August. The district said their decision has nothing to do with allegations that he was teaching Critical Race Theory or the social media photos of him and his wife that officials found to be questionable. view article arw

A former Brenham High School coach has been sentenced to 10 years in prison. Ian Calandra, who was an assistant basketball and volleyball coach between 2017 and 2019, was sentenced on the charge of Improper Relationship between Educator and Student, a third degree felony with punishment range of 2-10 years in prison. He was sentenced by Judge Carson Campbell on September 9th after being accused of engaging in inappropriate conduct with a student in early 2019. view article arw

James Whitfield was put on paid leave about a month after being accused of teaching critical race theory. His future could soon be decided after an evidentiary hearing where he can argue his case to the school board.    (21) view article arw

The Grapevine-Colleyville ISD school board approved a proposal Monday not to renew the contract of suspended Heritage High School principal James Whitfield. Board members voted 7-0 on a recommendation from Superintendent Robin Ryan and repeatedly said the vote was a "procedural" step that would allow Whitfield to make his case. view article arw

Community Profile: Dennis Womack

September 2008:30 AM

During a Special Board Meeting on July 7, Coppell ISD Trustees approved Dennis Womack as the district’s new Chief Operations Officer. Womack came from Lovejoy ISD where he was serving as the Assistant Superintendent for Operations. He brings more than 25 years of education experience to the district, including 22 years in administration serving in McKinney ISD and Lovejoy ISD. Womack has served the students, staff and families of Lovejoy ISD for the past 16 years overseeing facilities, construction, maintenance, the bond program, grounds, food service, technology, transportation, security and more. view article arw

United Independent School District Board of Trustees and Superintendent David H. Gonzalez are pleased to announce Monica Yolanda Zepeda as the new principal of Ruiz Elementary.  Monica Yolanda Zepeda is a 17-year veteran educator of United ISD with an extensive background in education. She is a graduate of Texas A & M International University, where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education with a Spanish/Bilingual specialization and a Master of Science in Education Administration. Ms. Zepeda holds certifications in Early Childhood-4 Bilingual Generalist, Early Childhood-6 Generalist, and Principal Early Childhood-12. view article arw

The Copperas Cove Independent School District unanimously voted to increase pay for teachers and bus drivers on Tuesday. For substitute teachers, the pay increases are retroactive back to September 13 – and for bus drivers, the start of the school year. view article arw

Plano ISD is encountering bus route delays amid a staffing shortage for district transportation workers, a spokesperson confirmed. “It is no coincidence that the “late bus” page also has a link to job postings,” said Plano ISD assistant director for communications Rosemary Gladden in an email. “As is stated on that same page … school districts state- and nationwide are experiencing a critical shortage of bus drivers.” view article arw

The Teacher Retirement System of Texas will deliver a supplemental pension payment—a 13th check—to retirees in January after the budget bill funding is signed by the governor. read more arw

Northwest ISD assistant superintendent speaks about how hard it is to find workers Northwest ISD says it si seeing labor shortages in many job positions, specifically bus drivers, custodians and kitchen staff. view article arw

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Fort Worth ISD has confirmed two of their staff members have passed away this week due to COVID-19. It’s not clear if either of the staff members caught COVID-19 on campus or if either had underlying health conditions. According to a Facebook post from Southwest High School, it appears one of the two deaths happened on Monday, Sept. 13. Richard Zarza was an engineering and robotics teacher, who the school district said passed away from COVID-19 after four years teaching at Southwest High. view article arw

Lewisville ISD announced this week that Christie Liles, associate director of athletics since 2012, has been appointed the district’s next athletic director, effective January 2022. Liles becomes LISD’s first female athletic director, replacing Tim Ford, who announced last month that he is retiring at the end of the year. view article arw

PHARR - As part of the efforts to retain and recruit highly qualified substitute teachers, the Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD School Board of Trustees unanimously approved a pay increase for the next two academic school years during a School Board Meeting held Monday, Sept. 13, 2021. The following is a breakdown of the approved rates for the 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 academic school years:    read more arw

SHERMAN, Texas (KXII) - A Sherman ISD employee bonded out of jail today after getting arrested for having inappropriate relations with a student. Police said the woman is 40-year-old Katherine Morris, and she’s a Sherman ISD employee. Police said she engaged in sexual intercourse with one student and his friend, who is not a SISD student. According to a complaint document from Grayson County, a student and two of his friends went to a local family entertainment place on Thursday when they ran into Morris. view article arw

With Tim Ford set to retire at the end of the year, Lewisville ISD is promoting from within for its next athletic director. On Tuesday, the school district announced Cristie Liles – the current LISD associate athletic director – will take over for Ford, effective January 2022. “I am incredibly grateful and certainly humbled for the opportunity to serve LISD families as athletic director of this exceptional district,” Liles said via press release. “I have spent many years of my career in LISD, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to lead our coaches and student-athletes to more accomplishments.” view article arw

PLANO, Texas — Kids across North Texas are well into their school routines, but some Plano ISD students were late to class Monday morning as the district is one of many across the country facing a shortage of bus drivers.  At Plano ISD, the heavy delays were due to staffing, a district spokesperson said. The district is working to hire and train more bus drivers and bus assistants. view article arw

The National Institute for Excellence in Teaching (NIET) featured a new report that highlighted the Alice Independent School District (AISD), for a level of excellence in implementing strategies for states and school districts to strengthen mentoring programs for new teachers. Teacher mentorship programs, where new teachers are paired with veterans, are a research-based practice, but they often lack clarity and can turn into more of a “buddy system” than a true learning opportunity. In the new report, NIET shares research and experience that point to greater success when mentorship programs center on instructional improvement and provide deeper support for mentors. view article arw

AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – While the Amarillo area’s two largest school districts continue to look for substitute teachers amid an ongoing shortage of educators, Amarillo ISD released details on its pay scale and schedule Monday morning. view article arw

Updated at 8:20 p.m. on Sept. 13  -The Cy-Fair ISD board of trustees unanimously approved an additional 10 paid COVID-19 leave days retroactively effective July 1 through the end of June 2022 at its Sept. 13 meeting.  Originally posted at 8:54 p.m. on Sept. 9 - Employees of Cy-Fair ISD could have an additional 10 paid COVID-19 leave days retroactively effective July 1 through the end of June 2022. The board of trustees will vote on the proposed policy Monday, Sept. 13.  Those who test positive for COVID-19 or are required to care for an immediate family member who has tested positive for COVID-19 would be able to take advantage of these designated days. The same policy was in place last school year, and district officials said they processed about 8,500 COVID-19 leave requests among 6,500 employees throughout the year. view article arw

Midland ISD is seeking personnel to be a part of its new remote conferencing program, according to a news release provided Friday.  Remote conferencing will offer virtual learning for students who are unable to attend school on campus due to quarantine guidelines, according to the district. This may include a temporary medical condition as defined by a doctor or having had close contact with an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19. view article arw

Austin Independent School District leaders say they are standing behind the decision to hire as general counsel a former Texas state government official who resigned in 2017 amid allegations of ethics violations. The district hired Stuart Bowen, an Austin lawyer and former Texas Health and Human Services inspector general, as its general counsel in August. Bowen began working for the district on Aug. 18. His offer letter for the position, obtained by the American-Statesman via a public records request, sets his annual salary at $198,000, which averages out to $876 a day. view article arw

The Lewisville Independent School District board of trustees voted unanimously during its Sept. 13 meeting to contract with Stepping Stones Contracted Services for the 2021-22 school year to address an existing staffing shortage. The contract permits Stepping Stones, a staffing services organization, to provide four teachers and 10 paraprofessionals to fill high-need vacancies within the district. According to meeting notes, the cost for a teacher will be $480 per day while paraprofessionals will cost the district $225 each per day. view article arw