2017-10-06 / Front Page

School board approves purchase of buses

BY DEREK MOY
DISPATCH RECORD

The Lampasas Independent School District Board of Trustees held a short meeting Monday, quickly approving consent-agenda matters including the purchase of three school buses and two technology-related items.

Trustees unanimously approved the purchase of three buses for a total of $309,351. The purchase is through the Texas Association of School Boards BuyBoard from Longhorn Bus Sales.

The three buses will replace aging, worn-out buses. Two of the new buses are 77-passenger vehicles, and the other is a 59-passenger bus that will be used to transport special-needs students.

For technology, the board approved the purchase of six network domain controllers for a total of $53,375. The PowerEdge servers are needed to keep up with the district’s ever-expanding storage and security needs, Chief Financial Officer Shane Jones said.

Trustees also agreed to a contract with IT Network Professionals for support and consulting on servers, storage, management, repair, firewalls and other items. The agreement will cost $5,000 per month – a yearly cost of $60,000 – and provides unlimited support.

Also in the consent agenda, a maximum class size exception waiver was approved. The waiver allows for class sizes over the 22-to-1 student-to-teacher ratio.

Hanna Springs Elementary School has a kindergarten classroom over the ratio, and Kline Whitis Elementary School has one fourth-grade class over the set limit. Both elementary schools met standard on accountability ratings, so the trustees approved the waiver.

A budget amendment of $2,005 was made to the 2017-2018 General Operating Fund. The money will be used for rolling backdrop equipment for the Lampasas High School Badger Band to use during halftime shows.

Also Monday, trustees nominated candidates for the Lampasas Central Appraisal District Board of Directors. Because David Hamilton announced he would not serve another term, the trustees nominated Mike Kriegel, Paul Wilborn, Tom Casbeer, Ross Oliver and Marshal Brewer.

Trustees will vote on appraisal district board members in December.

Although the school board meeting was short, the board’s agenda packet was full with the 2017-2018 district improvement plan.

Assistant Superintendent Dr. Kevin Bott said the district will continue striving for success and distinctions. In the plan, there are items that address 14 areas in which LISD missed earning distinctions by 4 percentage points or less.

LISD has restructured the curriculum department to support teachers more directly, and it has moved to “Daily Five” reading initiatives to help increase the number of students who are proficient in reading by the end of third grade.

District and campus improvement plans will be posted soon at https://www.lisdtx.org/Page/173.

Career and Technical Education Director Randy Brady spoke about the high school’s successful implementation of CTE programs, which include a much more diverse class offering and more funding than in the past.

In the course of a year, funding is expected to grow more than $600,000 to $1.69 million.

Brady said the number of students enrolled in CTE courses is impressive, and he expects the program to grow.

The CTE director also suggested moving the high school to an eight-period day, although trustees did not discuss that topic at Monday's meeting. Nearby districts, including Burnet and Marble Falls, have eight-period schedules, which expand the options of students taking CTE or dual-credit courses.

In another matter, Superintendent Dr. Chane Rascoe reported that as of Sept. 22, attendance was 96.3 percent, and 3,346 students were enrolled.

After administrative reports, the trustees went into executive session for close to an hour to discuss real estate.

The agenda item listed as "consultation with attorney regarding petition for detachment and annexation" was not held.

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