The Longview ISD Board of Trustees unanimously approved salary increases for district teachers and staff during their May 9 regular meeting.
Included in the pay bump is a signing bonus of $1,550 to returning employees on the teacher scale, which will be paid out in the September and December pay periods.
Recommended to the board by Dr. James Hockenberry, Assistant Superintendent of District Services, the 2022-23 Employee Compensation Structure includes normal step increases for teachers, counselors, librarians, and nurses, with a 3 percent from the midpoint raise for other staff.
Dr. Hockenberry said, prior to the measure, the district's pay scale was "already among the highest in our region, and this new compensation structure ensures that Longview ISD remains a 'destination district' for the best of the best in East Texas."
Please click here to download the resolution and related documentation.
Board members approved a Grant Application for the Federal Magnet Schools Assistance Program (MSAP).
Dr. Craig Coleman, LISD Chief Innovation Officer, explained that in order to obtain a no-cost extension year for 2017-22 MSAP grant funding during the 2022-23 school year, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR) requires that the local Board of Trustees adopt a resolution to continue implementation of the current Voluntary Desegregation Plan that applies to the LISD magnet campuses receiving grant funds.
The purpose of this plan is to provide all students served in Longview Independent School District the opportunity to learn in a desegregated environment. This plan proposes to:
- Provide instruction and experiences that foster understanding and that integrate students of different backgrounds together;
- Remedy the separation of African-American students in one or more schools within the district;
- Prevent, reduce or eliminate social, racial, ethnic, or economic isolation;
- Reverse a trend of declining enrollment that leads to minority isolation;
- Ensure equal educational opportunity and access for all students; and
- Foster student integration and diversity.
Dr. Coleman said the district will annually monitor and assess the effectiveness of its efforts to balance diversity at all sites and efforts to avoid minority group isolation. This will include an analysis of the percentage of socio-economically disadvantaged students at each school, the number of new applications to the magnet schools each year, the percentage of minority/non-minority students at each school, the percentage of English Language Learners at each school, the effectiveness of the district's choice programs, and the effectiveness of LISD's magnet schools.
"We'll continue to collect and maintain data necessary for such analysis and will take any necessary corrective action through race-neutral outreach and recruitment," he said.
For more information download the documentation here:
Voluntary Desegregation Plan for MSAP
Resolution for MSAP application
The board later approved using $100,000 of local and charter school grant funding for Montessori staff training. Grant-funded training will cover the 2020-21 school year.
Dr. Coleman said the Southwestern Montessori Training Center (SMTC), uses a mobile training center to provide on-site training “offering a deep and comprehensive exploration of the Montessori approach for children 3-11 years of age.”
“The Southwest Montessori Training Center Teacher Certification program is a unique blend of distance learning with a low-residency requirement,” he said. “The full certification program is a nationally accredited and recognized program for public as well as private Montessori schools around the world.”
Currently, all LISD prekindergarten and kindergarten classes use the Montessori style of learning. Ware East Texas Montessori Academy also offers Montessori classes for first- through third-graders, with plans to eventually expand through fifth grade. South Ward Elementary includes elements of Montessori education in their curriculum as well, with plans to eventually expand them campus-wide.
The Montessori Method of education is a child-centered educational approach based on scientific observations of children from birth to adulthood. It is a view of the child as one who is naturally eager for knowledge and capable of initiating learning in a supportive, thoughtfully prepared learning environment. Montessori values the human spirit and the development of the whole child-physical, social, emotional, and cognitive.
Teacher education programs affiliated with the American Montessori Society provide comprehensive courses of study that prepare highly skilled, highly qualified Montessori teachers and leaders. The programs include both an academic phase and a practicum/intern experience guided by dedicated professionals.
Dr. Jacqueline Burnett, LISD Director of Montessori Programs, said students complete a variety of meaningful assignments "which relate directly to their classroom experience and provide opportunities for practical application of the course material."
"Weekly face-to-face interactions with instructors and fellow students build a rich and supportive learning community and provide additional opportunities for integration of course topics," she added.
Please click here to download the resolution and related documentation.
Course Selection Guide
Board members approved the 2022-23 Course Selection Guide for Longview High School.
Each year the LHS Course Selection Guide is updated by campus staff and presented for approval. In preparation for scheduling for the upcoming year, courses are added or deleted as student needs are considered.
"Change is constant," said LHS Principal Mr. James Brewer, "And various programs are added in an attempt to benefit students, in addition to regular changes reflected in the Course Selection Guide."
"Other considerations, such as a need for dual credit courses and other college credit opportunities, have been studied," he said. "We want to prepare students for the future whether it is higher education or the workforce. The Course Selection Guide offers a myriad of courses to meet the needs of students and provide them with choices in their fields of interest."
You can download the 2022-23 Longview High School Course Selection Guide here.
During the Superintendent's Report portion of the meeting, Dr. James Wilcox recognized the district's High School UIL Academic winners, presented updates on estimated local property values, as well as a comparison of STAAR simulation testing between Spring 2021 and 2022.
Board members also approved: a donation of $944 from the Lobo Swim Booster Club for supplies and equipment, a donation of $250 from Longview Eastman for Lobo Tennis travel expenses, a donation of $220 from SAAB Mughal of Longview to sponsor student activities at Bailey Elementary, a donation of $100 from Gary Krueger to the CATE Automotive program to purchase parts and material for equipment repairs, a donation of $100 from Gary Krueger to the LHS Welding Club to purchase parts for the trailer, and a donation of $50 from Mary Cobb to cover entrance fees for drill team competition.
In other business...
During the course of the meeting, the LISD Board of Trustees also:
- APPROVED a resolution from the School Health Advisory Committee (SHAC) the committee to review and select a new human sexuality instruction materials that comply with the instructional content requirements in law, are suitable for the subject and grade level for which the materials are intended, and are reviewed by academic experts in the subject and grade level for which the materials are intended. SHAC will also host two public meetings to review the curriculum before proposing a provider to the school board at a later meeting.
- APPROVED the purchase of a truck totaling $58,245 from Chevyland of Shreveport for the CATE program at Longview High School. This would replace a current vehicle that is no longer adequate for use.
- APPROVED a Letter of engagement with Lufkin-based accounting firm Alexander, Lankford & Hiers, Inc. to conduct a financial audit for the 2022 fiscal year;
- APPROVED a request from Grapevine, Texas-based Flagstar Bank to refund $3,113.05 erroneously collected property taxes;
- APPROVED an easement request from Upshur Rural Electric Cooperative on FM 1844, west of Judson Road;
- RECEIVED updates from the Office of Innovation and Public School Charter Partners;
- APPROVED Minutes and Board Time Use Tracker for the April 11 Regular Meeting;
- RECEIVED the financial report for April 2022; and
- APPROVED Budget Amendment No. 8.
For more info
Trustees usually meet in the boardroom of the LISD Education Support Center (1301 E. Young Street), but often set special-called meetings at various locations around the district. The next regular meeting is tentatively scheduled for 6 p.m. June 6, 2022.