Board OKs $1,000 vaccine incentive for employees

The Longview ISD Board of Trustees approved a one-time stipend of $1,000 for fully-vaccinated district employees during their regular meeting Sept. 13th.

Board OKs $1,000 vaccine stipend for employees

Mon Sep 13, 2021

The Longview ISD Board of Trustees approved a one-time stipend of $1,000 for fully-vaccinated district employees during their regular meeting Sept. 13th.

LISD Superintendent Dr. James Wilcox said for employees to receive the $1,000 stipend, "they must complete the COVID-19 vaccination stipend form, and submit proof of vaccination by the Nov. 1st deadline."

"Of course, participation is totally voluntary," he said. "That said, we do want to offer this stipend for any employees who are currently vaccinated or planning to be so in the very near future. If someone is on the fence about it, perhaps this might help encourage them to do so."

The forms will be sent to LISD employees this week, and posted to the district website. Any employee who does not receive the vaccine stipend form this week is encouraged to call the Administrative & Pupil Services department at 903-381-2342

Dr. Wilcox explained that the purpose behind this stipend, "is to do everything and anything we can do, as a district, to ensure the safety of our community and the continuity of in-class instruction."

"We understand there may be strong feelings about this, but our priority is to provide the absolute best quality instruction in a safe, healthy environment for our students and staff," he said. "We feel a responsibility to encourage every possible preventative measure to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in our community."

Dr. Wayne Guidry, LISD Assistant Superintendent of Finance, said "funds from the federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund — emergency COVID-19 relief money — will be utilized to pay for the stipend."

Please click here to download the resolution and related documentation.
 

'LIFT' for Career Tech

The board also approved a Longview stipend for Teachers (LIFT) Pay for Performance Program payment schedule for Career and Technical Education teachers in the district.

08092021-board-meeting-4"For the 28 teachers that fall under this proposal, this stipend is in addition to the distinction designation opportunity," said Dr. James Hockenberry, Assistant Superintendent of District Services. "However, the earning potential is equivalent to that of distinction designations."

Dr. Hockenberry explained that the percentages will be based on the previous year’s graduating class.

"For example, the 2022-23 LIFT payment will be based on the graduating class of 2022 and the number of students receiving an industry-based certification approved by the Texas Education Agency," he added.

The program is 100 percent funded through local funds from the fund balance, as approved by the LISD Board of Trustees. The amount of stipend pay for Longview ISD teachers has increased dramatically since the $350,000 awarded in 2014-15.

Longview ISD was ahead of the curve in December 2012, when trustees first voted to implement a performance pay system for middle school reading and math teachers. Designed to help close the achievement gap between low socio-economic and middle-income students, today the LIFT program includes three award models, and has proven instrumental in retaining high-quality educators.

Please click here to download the resolution and related documentation.
 

District Vax Clinics

Later, Dr. Wilcox informed board members that the district will continue to host multiple vaccination clinics throughout the school year, including at varsity home football & volleyball games this season.

READ THE FULL STORY HERE!

The vaccination clinics are set for Friday, Sept. 17th from 7:15 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the cafeteria of Longview High School. Once vaccinated at one of our clinics, participants will receive a Lobo Football or volleyball general admission ticket.

These vaccination clinics are not limited to Longview ISD students or staff but are open to the entire community. However, those under the age of 18 must provide a parental consent form and be accompanied by a legal guardian. There is NO COST for these vaccinations and insurance is NOT required to receive a vaccination.

For more information about these events please contact LISD Lead Nurse Ms. Kimberly Dans at 903-663-7191.
 

Legislative Summit

Mike-Morath-headshotDr. Wilcox also gave an update to board members about the upcoming Texas Public Schools Post-87th Legislative Summit set for Sept. 20-21 at the Hilton Garden Inn of Longview. Attendees will include Mr. Mike Morath, TEA Commissioner, as well as superintendents, school administrators, and elected officials from throughout the region.

Organized by Longview ISD in partnership with local businesses and civic groups, the summit is part of an ongoing effort by the district to raise awareness for education issues that impact all Texans and the entire nation.

First started by state Reps. Jay Dean and Gary VanDeaver in 2016, the summit focuses on looking at how elected officials can support and represent schools.

Dr. Wilcox said the details for this year's summit are still in progress, but "every possible preventative measure will be recommended to provide a safe and healthy dialogue for all who attend." 

For more information about this event please contact the LISD COmmunity Relations department at ask@lisd.org or call 903-381-2235.  
 

National Merit Scholars

Board members also recognized Longview High School's latest National Merit Semifinalists, and National Merit Recognition Award winners: Iniabasi Ekpenyong, Itoro Ekpenyong, Joseph Egbe, Joshua Romero, Micah Howard, Otibhor Ihionkhan, Rylee Hunter, and Trentyn Reid (National African-American Recognition); Josue Chavez, Mason LaMaster, Matthew Guck, Sofia Massare, and Victor Aguilar (National Hispanic Recognition); Isabella Hough, Mason LaMaster, Matthew Guck, Victor Aguilar, and William Blair (National Indigenous Recognition). 

Dr. Wilcox explained that Longview High School has a long tradition of students receiving these honors, "and these students are an excellent demonstration of what a high caliber of students, families, and teachers we have in this district."

Mrs. Linda Buie, a longtime educator and current International Baccalaureate director at Longview High explained that the National Merit Scholarship Program "is an academic competition for recognition and scholarships that began in 1955."

"These semifinalists represent an elite group that makes up less than one percent of high school seniors nationally, and includes the highest-scoring Preliminary SAT test-takers in each state," she said.
 

Financial Donations

Board members also approved a donation of $20,370.88 from Ron Hutchison of Inline Networks to purchase intervention materials for struggling readers; a donation of $5,000 from the law firm of Sorey, Gilliland & Hull for an advertising sponsorship at Judson STEAM Academy; a donation of $2,900 from the Judson Lions Club to purchase a new public address system for Judson STEAM Academy; a donation of $1,500 from Southside Bank to sponsor the LISD New Employee Orientation; a donation of $1,500 from FBMC Benefits Management Inc. and $1,000 from Schneider Electric to help sponsor the Post-87th Legislative Summit; a donation of $700 from The R. Leon and Mary Gibson Foundation for Clarence W. Bailey Elementary; and a donation of $250 from Bethel Baptist Church of Longview to help purchase items for Meet The Teacher nights.

Please click here to download the resolution and related documentation.
 

STAAR, Accountability Results

Latitia-Wilson-headshotBoard members also received the 2020-21 State Accountability and STAAR Results presented by Mrs. Latitia Wilson, LISD Director of Planning & Analysis.

Mrs. Wilson explained that this report provides the results of the spring 2021 assessments of STAAR and the accountability data. The accountability system examines performance in three domains: student achievement, school progress (relative performance), and closing the gaps.

09132021-STAAR-results-1"The percentage of LISD students scoring at or above Meets Grade Level was higher than students at the State level across all grades and subjects except third grade reading and biology," she said. "The participation rate across all grades and subjects ranged from 92 percent to 100 percent.

Mrs. Wilson said performance at the "Meets Grade Level" standard in grades 3-5 ranged from 23 percent to 82 percent in reading, 29 percent to 85 percent in math, 12 percent to 59 percent in writing, and 10 percent to 95 percent in science.

"Performance at the Meets Grade Level standard in grades 6-8 ranged from 41 percent to 54 percent in reading, 44 percent to 48 percent in math, 27 percent to 49 percent in writing, 47 percent to 51 percent in science, and 25 percent to 40 percent in social studies," she said.

Citing the unprecedented challenges of educating students during the COVID-19 pandemic, Mrs. Wilson praised the work of Longview ISD students, staff, and families, "to nevertheless continue to excel in the face of incredible adversity."

“Our teachers and campus leaders continue to set very high goals for themselves, their campuses, and their students, and they continue to work hard to meet those goals,” she said. "The LISD Department of Innovation will also continue to provide every support and assistance we can in order to help our students be the best they can be."

Please click here to download the complete report.
 

In other business...

During the course of the meeting, the LISD Board of Trustees also:

  • DISCUSSED a possible contract extension for custodial services with Southeast Services Corporation (SSC), but no formal action was taken. The Dallas-based company currently handles janitorial services throughout the district;

  • APPROVED permission for the LHS LoboView Film Club to travel out of state in order to participate in the 2021 All American High School Film Festival Oct. 8-11 in New York City;

  • RECEIVED an update on COVID-19 cases, the district Safety Report, and Facilities Update from Mr. Dennis Williams, Assistant Superintendent of Administrative & Pupil Services;

  • DISCUSSED the establishment of a Remote Learning Plan for LISD students unable to attend in-person instruction, but no formal action was taken;

  • APPROVED 2021-22 contract with the Region 11 Technology Resources Education Consortium (TREC);

  • RECEIVED updates from Dr. Craig Coleman on the district's Office of Innovation and Bond Capacity;

  • APPROVED a resolution from Lone Star Investment Pool to add a representative;

  • APPROVED Minutes from the Aug. 25th Special Meeting and Public Hearing;

  • RECEIVED the Aug. 2021 Financial Statement; and

  • APPROVED Budget Amendment No. 1.
     

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. Oct. 11th.

For more information about the Longview ISD Board of Trustees please click here