LISD School Board Talks Transportation, SRO Contracts

Levelland ISD School Board had their regular meeting in the admin building Thursday to cover a few updates from various departments, as well as revise meeting schedules for the coming new year. Transportation Director Randi Bullard was also present to give her report on how things are shaping up for her department this year. Earlier this year transportation agreements were sent home with students to go over with their parents or guardians. The agreement lines out the proper behavior when on school-provided transportation, and what behavior will not be tolerated. This puts parents, students and faculty all on the same page moving forward. Being one of the busiest departments, as they service every single campus on a daily basis, some statistics were given to show just how much work gets done. There are 12 regular routes, and 5 specialized routes the busses take to get students to and from school daily. The district currently has 18 certified CDL drivers and 8 aides. Since August this year, the Transportation dept. has taken students on 202 field trips spanning more than 50K miles. 88K miles were navigated on regular routes and more than 112K miles on specialized routes with 519 regular students transported, and 107 special students transported. Bus evacuation drills were also held this year, to prepare the district in the event of an emergency, and will be held annually going forward.

The board also took a look at their School Resource Officer (SRO) Contract with the City of Levelland at this meeting. The last time this contract was updated was back in 2013, and there was one specific change the district was looking to make. Currently LISD has a contract with the City for 2 SRO’s. In a City Council meeting earlier this month, the police dept. asked for approval in amending this contract to add space for a 3rd SRO, which council approved. Now this contract made it way to the LISD board for their approval as well. When asked the impact of their current SRO’s campuses stated that when called for assistance the officers performed admirably, and were well loved by all the admin. The board saw fit to expand the contract to include a 3rd officer, should LPD find the right candidate for the job.

For campus updates, most went over the recent testing data and where their students are in terms of comprehension. The intervention system the school has moved towards, which identifies student who may be struggling in a subject to give them more personal instruction, has shown great promise. Additionally the district had lots to brag about in terms of involvement as well. For ABC their “Watch Dog” program, which brings in fathers of students as volunteers, has been wildly popular, with a volunteer being on campus every single day since its inception. These volunteers arrive at campus at 7:30a, and assist with everything from instruction to lunches, and pickup/drop off routines. At the Levelland Middle School had several things to be excited about as Mrs. Cogdill and Mrs. Splawn each won $750 in grants to attend the Science Teachers Association of Texas Conference from Nov 10-12. Dyslexia specialist for the campus Annie Davis is also preparing to purchase the “Rite Flight Program” for all LISD dyslexia specialists to give our campuses better alternative education programs.

Adam Olivas, the new Maintenance Director for LISD was present to give his first address and report to the board. He began by going over some of the projects the dept. has completed since October which include Carver’s cafeteria floor and sewer line repairs, intermediates roof and gas line repairs, as well as several potholes throughout the district. He then gave his detailed analysis of how things are going, and where he’d like to see the department. Currently there’s a significant amount of contracted work being done for the district, which has its pro’s and con’s. Contractors, according to Olivas, have more knowledge and skills than the dept, as well as more equipment and resources, however they also are quite costly and offer no training or development to his workers. In the short term, urgent needs will be assessed, and a plan will be developed t tackle them. In the long term, the dept. will be developing a 10 year plan for facilities, as well as implementing an energy efficiency plan. A reduction of contracted services, an increase of staffing and growing the over all skills and knowledge of the department are a top priority for Olivas as they move on.

With a slight change to the established schedule, the board moved their regular meetings to the second Wednesday of each month, so as not to be in conflict with school functions and sports. This will be the normal meeting time starting in January. The board closed the meeting by retiring to executive session with no action to follow.

About Drew Dunn

News Director for KLVT AM 1230 in Levelland. We provide local and regional news updates 5 times a day on KLVT AM 1230 and online at www.klvtradio.com
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