Levelland ISD Board of Trustees met for their regular meeting on Thursday night.
Trustees reviewed the monthly financial report. It was noted that property tax collections are coming in a little above last years collections. They also reviewed the Levelland ISD Bond Project fund, it was noted that engineers and architects have been paid for projects up to the Cactus project and demolition of the old Lobo Stadium. It was noted that any money left at the end, if any, can go toward other capital projects including parking lot repairs which the district is planning.
Trustees also approved the Instructional Materials Allotment and TEKS Certification for 2018-2019 as mandated by the Texas Education Agency. Doing this makes funds available to purchase instructional materials for next year.
Trustees also approved a budget amendment to facilitate moving an employee from one part of the budget to another.
Trustees also received more information on the A-F Grading System for school districts. The third component covers closing the gaps which measures achievement differentials among students, including differentials among students from different racial and ethnic groups. The components include Academic Achievement, Growth in reading and math, Four Year Graduation Rate, STAAR component for Elementary and Middle Schools and College, Career and Military Readiness Performance for High Schools, K-12 and Districts. The Closing the Gaps domain was designed to meet the federal requirements of the Every Student Succeeds Act. Trustees will continue to receive updates each month and will also be required to attend a three year training by the state. All school board trustees across the state are required to attend the training.
Trustees also received a budget report for the Chief Financial Officer. Lance Terrell, CFO said that in a perfect world, property values could come in substantially higher which could allow for salary increases, Funding from the state would be lower though if tax values are higer. The likely scenario is that values could come in equal to this year. It was noted that trustees could call an election to move debt fund tax pennies to the maintenance and operations side and the money generated could be used for salary increases. The worst case scenario would be property values going down or equal to could mean a $500,000 loss and their would be no raises and a defecit in the budget and could even have to call an election to raise the tax rate. It was noted that the district is going to need to purchase some buses for student transportation as they have put off purchasing buses due to tight funding. It was noted that the election would probably be held in August if trustees order it by June or July.
Staff contracts were reviewed. A question was asked how many times a teacher can attempt to pass their certification exam. By state law they are allowed five times. In Levelland ISD if they do not pass it by an April 1st deadline then they could stand a chance of not having their contract renewed. It is handled on a case by case basis with administration and principals. Trustees approved on a unanimous vote the recommended list for renewals as presented by administration.