2011-03-03 / School

From the Superintendent of Schools

Dr. Frances M. McArthur, PhD Lexington ISD

Last week our LISD Board of Trustees unanimously voted to approve the elementary and secondary calendars recommended by myself and our District Education Improvement Committee. Please see the newly adopted 2011-2012 school calendars on our LISD website at www.lexington.isd.tenet.edu.

Despite the state budget shortfall, we cannot slow down our momentum towards college and career readiness for our students. We are continually looking for opportunities to expand our students horizons. Our LISD counselors are encouraging LISD students to take advantage of a wonderful, free opportunity provided by the University of Texas. Explore UT is a day when the doors of The University of Texas open to help children get excited about learning, seeking to motivate the children of Texas to aspire to higher education. This amazing opportunity takes place at UT Austin on Saturday, March 5, 2011. Mrs. Brockenbush, our middle school counselor, is so eager to see every one of our students that want to attend be able to take advantage of this experience that she will be riding on a school bus along with students and parents who need transportation to this exciting event. Interested parents should contact Mrs. Brockenbush at (979) 773 2254 ext 256 or email her at brockenbushb@lexingtonisd.net.

I want to take a moment to congratulate Madison Stefek who is a first place winners for the Daughters of the Republic of Texas 6th grade essay contest and Kasey Smith who is a first place winner for the eighth grade. Karsen Ross who is a seventh grade student at Lexington Middle School also participated in a similar contest as a seventh grader. The seventh grade contest winner has the opportunity to continue to compete at a higher level. Since Karsen is the individual essay winner for this area, she is now one of the semi-finalists in the division, from there if her essay wins, it will go to the state level. Congratulations to all of our middle school students who participated and certainly we are so very proud of Madison, Kasey, and Karsen.

Much of the discussion in committee meetings in Austin these past few weeks has been on how we can cut schools, how public education has too many people employed, and how school districts should be more efficient. I understand the need for everyone across the state to cut back, but much of what we do and how we spend our funds has been dictated by legislative action and programs. Of grave concern to me at this time, is SB 946, that was filed late Thursday afternoon by Senator Dan Patrick of Houston. Briefly the bill lowers the factors in the small school adjustments that take into account the increase cost of doing business in small school districts. If passed this bill would impact school districts whose geographical area is under three hundred square miles and under 1,600 students. Unfortunately, Lexington ISD is comprised of 298 square miles only two miles short of the area exempted by this bill.

Some of you have asked me for phone numbers of our legislators so that you can call and ask them to vote for using part of the State’s rainy day fund to minimize the cuts to public education.

Our state representative is Tim Klienshmidt (512) 463-0682 and our Senator is Steve Ogden (512) 463-0105.

Thank you for your continued support of Lexington ISD and please keep informing others about the effect that the state budget reductions will have on your school. I am confident that our legislators will look carefully at the rainy day fund and make education a priority.

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