January 2016
Board Briefs
News from the Spring Branch ISD Board of Trustees

Summary of Meeting

Board Briefs January 25, 2016

Board of Trustees Regular Meeting Agenda

Board Agenda >>
Board meeting videos now available online >>

The Power of Children

Trustee Chris Gonzalez (left) visits with Mrs. Lucille Bridges before the Board meeting.

Trustees recognized Mrs. Lucille Bridges, whose family endured death threats and racial hatred as Ruby Bridges, her daughter, was the first black child to attend an all-white school in 1960 New Orleans. Ruby’s story will be part of the “The Power of Children” traveling exhibit at the Altharetta Yeargin Art Museum through February. AYAM co-curator Kathy Goss introduced Mrs. Bridges to a standing ovation following a short video where Mrs. Bridges talked about that time in New Orleans, where she and her family lived under the protection of U.S. Marshals for a year, enduring death threats, racial epithets, thrown objects and job losses. She also talked about growing up a sharecropper in Mississippi without access to a quality education, and the importance of education for all children.
View My Story:  Mrs. Lucille Bridges >>
Exhibit information >>


Thornwood Elementary Principal Lynn Austin (fourth from right) and several of her staff with Board President Chris Vierra (center, white jacket) and Superintendent Dr. Scott Muri. Austin and staff are recognized as IAMSBISD for Collective Greatness.

Recipients of the first IAMSBISD medallions – Principal Lynn Austin and her staff at Thornwood Elementary, and the Spring Branch Education Foundation – were recognized. Associate Superintendent of Teaching and Learning Patti Pace awarded the medallion to Austin for the district core value of Collective Greatness for her work with literacy at Thornwood. Pace particularly noted that a team from Hobbs, N.M., visited Thornwood to observe their work with literacy and were incredibly impressed with what they saw and learned.

Dr. Scott Muri (right) recognized the Spring Branch Education Foundation (SBEF) as IAMSBISD for Collective Greatness. From left are Board President Chris Vierra, SBEF Executive Director Cece Thompson, SBEF Chair Lisa Schwartz and SBEF Treasurer J. Carter Breed.

Superintendent Dr. Scott Muri awarded a medallion to the Spring Branch Education Foundation for its continuing passion for and commitment to the children of Spring Branch ISD. Muri said he realized early on the passion of Executive Director Cece Thompson and the SBEF board, also noting that SBEF was recently recognized as one of the 25 top educational foundations in the nation. Muri called that Collective Greatness.

Dr. Muri and senior staff started with 10 medallions to be awarded at their discretion to individuals, teams or groups who exemplify one or more of the district’s core values of Every Child, Collaborative Spirit, Collective Greatness, Limitless Curiosity and Moral Compass. The moment of award is captured and posted immediately to social media channels such as Twitter and Facebook, and the awardee is invited to be further recognized at the next regular Board of Trustees meeting.

School Board Appreciation Month

District staff showed its appreciation for Trustees through messages attached to a paper tree on a boardroom wall. Community Relations Officer Linda Buchman said that a tree was a system of different parts, much like the school system, and that trustees nurture the school system in the same way a tree must be nurtured. A red oak was planted in front of the Wayne F. Schaper Sr. Leadership Center in the board’s honor. Board members were also given copies of Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree, including one with a bookplate for donation to a school library.

First Reading of Policy

Trustees gave first reading to a large number of revised policies received as a packet from the Texas Association of School Board’s (TASB) policy services division. Board members will review 90 revised legal policies included in the packet but give special attention to TASB’s suggested revisions to 12 local policies. At the February Board Workshop, the Board will conduct a second reading of the revised local policies and consider further amendments. Final reading and possible adoption will occur at the February Regular Board Meeting.
Agenda Item Information >>

Public Comment

Cody Holder from Pct. 4 County Commissioner Jack Cagle’s office expressed, on Cagle’s behalf, appreciation for the Board of Trustees and the work they do. He handed each a certificate of appreciation from Cagle.

Several Memorial High School parents, who represented a larger number of Memorial parents in attendance, spoke about the district’s Program of Studies and the elimination of courses that in rigor fall between academic and Advanced Placement.  (See CONSENT AGENDA below.)

Public Hearing: Texas Assessment of Academic Performance (TAPR)

Trustees heard a required public hearing on district academic performance as part of the Texas Assessment of Academic Performance (TAPR). This was a joint public hearing with the District Improvement Team. End-of-Course passing rates exceeded Region IV and the state in every subject and overall performance at College Readiness and Advanced levels exceed Region IV and the state. But gaps among student groups and low performance from English language learners persist. Still, all SBISD student groups outscore peers across the region and state on the SAT and ACT. Trustees also heard from each of the district’s subject area curriculum directors and what they’re doing to improve student performance.
TAPR 2014-15 >>

Targeted Improvement Plans for Landrum, Northbrook Middle Schools

Trustees unanimously approved the Targeted Improvement Plans for Landrum Middle School and Northbrook Middle School, both of which were formerly rated Improvement Required (IR) in the State Accountability System. Trustees heard the plans during public hearings at their December meeting.
Improvement Plans for Formerly Improvement Required (FIR) Rated Schools >>

Consent Agenda

Items on the consent agenda are approved with a single vote, unless a trustee requests an item be removed for separate consideration. Trustee Karen Peck asked that item 8(d), “Request for Approval of 2016-2017 Program of Studies Guides for Middle and High School” be removed from the consent agenda, and Trustee Pam Goodson asked that item 8(e), “Request for Approval of Request to the Texas Education Agency for the Maximum Class Size Exception” be removed.

Trustees then unanimously approved the consent agenda with the exception of those two items.

On a motion by Peck, the board unanimously tabled item 8(d) “Request for Approval of 2016-2017 Program of Studies Guides for Middle and High School” for more study and brought back to the board. Trustees acknowledged some urgency since the Program of Studies is needed as students plan future coursework.

Trustees then unanimously approved the class size exemptions after Goodson sought clarification on why a few classrooms, largely in the primary grades, were oversized.
Consent Agenda >>

This publication is distributed by the SBISD Communications Office.
If you have questions or input, please contact Steve Brunsman, Spring Branch ISD Communications Director.
Visit the SBISD Board of Trustees website