FISD approves lower tax rate, gives Legacy Award

During its regular July 29, 2019 meeting, the Forney Independent School District Board met to recognize Cheryl Mason and Skeet & Leah Phillips, approve lower tax rate, lease land to the county, accept property for a school site, hire more staff.

  • Held a 50 minute workshop about student achievement and State Accountability rating system: Dr. Terry said the information becomes public on Aug. 15.   Ms. Webber went over the way the State calculates the score.   70% is the higher of: STAAR test scores and CCMR (college/career/military ready), or school progress (student growth, and comparison to similar schools).   More emphasis is now given to sub-populations: it is 30% of the total grade.   A large chunk of data has a one-year lag in reporting.   Estimates are a 2-3 point improvement over last year's score.   There is a linear relation between STAAR scores and low SES population.   New / high-mobility students tend to reduce scores during their first year or two.   10% of new students on some campuses don't speak English.   They have Collaborative Learning Committees (CLC), where teachers meet several times per week to discuss achievement issues.   Restructuring the campuses will help w/ CLCs, but make next year's scores difficult to predict.   Dr. Terry pointed out the (state rating) system changes almost daily, and students can't be measured by a single metric.   STAAR tests don't measure creative thinking or future ready skills.   Being a top fine-arts district in the state is huge, and athletic and leadership programs are a focus.   There was a discussion about the high mobility / new students and how they affect scores at some campuses.   Some students may not have attended school for months before coming here.
  • Forney Family Legacy Award - Ms. Zastoupol said the award is given to persons or groups exhibiting servant leadership to FISD; tonight presenting to Skeet and Leah Phillips and Cheryl Mason for their work with the Angel League.   A video was shown about the Angel League.  
  • Public Comment - none
  • Monthly Financial Report -
        Mr. John Chase, Chief Financial Officer, said FY ends on June 30 so this is almost final.   $14.4 million for the month: get to recognize state aid payments in June, some proceeds for chromebook lease.   YTD revenue is 100% estimated; expenses 94%: several projects won't be spent until next FY, listed in amendments tonight.   Large debt service payment in Feb.   Revenue 102% budget, expenses 100%.   Capital project # high due to bonds for the 4 schools just worked on.
  • Quarterly Investment Report - Mr. Chase - $66.8 million on deposit, interest income $366k.
  • 4th Quarter Tax Collection Report - total levy $62 million, 98% collected.   Had large amount of delinquent, had many AG rollbacks.   $1.9 million outstanding, much of which is AG rollbacks.
  • Forney Focus Update - Ms. Judy Webber, Chief of Learner Services, presented a video: starting teacher pay has increased almost $7k.   Tax rate expected to be lowered.   Facility committee recommended bond package election.   Demographers expect 70% growth over 10 years, to 18,500 students.   Had same tax rate since 2012; scheduled to lower by 7 cents.   Mobile app is availabe for download.   Sales of ad spaces have begun.   Synergy and esports are growing; Colleges offer scholarships in esports.   200 teachers have been trained in Capturing Kids Hearts.   Safety programs have been developed, with first responders.   All coaches will receive training, including PCA (Positive Coaching Alliance).
  • Master Planning Update - Ms. Kim Morisak, Chief of Information, Innovative and Technology Services, called Mr. Von Gallagher up to provided status- this week, everything will be punched, all ready by next week.   He showed pictures of the progress.   Mr. Carroll asked about return to school - Von said should be business as usual.   Ms. Morisak said will get furniture in for teachers a little quicker.   Dr. Terry thanks Von and his team for working 7 days a week for months.   Mr. Pharris also thanks him.
  • Approved as one consent item:
    • T-TESS Appraisal Calendar and T-TESS Appraisers for the 2019-2020 School Year
    • Budget Amendment
    • Contract with Donahoe Pizza LLC, DBA CiCi's Pizza To Provide Delivered Pizzas to Secondary Campuses for the 2019-2020 School Year
    • the Adoption of the 2019-2020 Student Code of Conduct
    • the Adoption of the 2019-2020 Extracurricular Code of Conduct
    • PCAT Property & Casualty Insurance Renewal
    • the Innovative Courses for 2019-2020
    • the Resolution for the 2019-2020 Cafeteria Benefit Plan
    • the Instructional Material Adoption of 5-8 ELAR and SLAR
    • School Bus Purchase

  • Approved the Certified Tax Roll
        Mr. Chase said county sent the values today: evaluation of $4.6 Billion, 13.1% increase.   $227 million is under protest; assuming 10% decrease will be 18.1%, budgeted 18.7%, not enough to cause problems.
  • Approved the 2019-2020 Proposed Tax Rate of 1.47, 7 cents lower than last year.
        Mr. Chase said budget assumed rate of 1.47, I&S has been same several years at 50 cents.   Public notice listed preliminary rate, new notice will be listed.   Last 3 years excess funds used to repay callable debts, still a prudent thing to do.   Tax rate will be same regardless of outcome of bond election.   Outstanding bonds $287 million.   Will get $580 more per student, primarily due to legislation, a 6% increase in revenue.   Average market value last year was $207k, will be $233k, with new tax rate = $96 increase.   Public Hearing on new rate will be Sep. 9.   Dr. Terry said if the bond election succeeds, the tax rate will not change.
  • Approved a resolution declaring certain unimproved real property consisting of fifteen acres, more or less, located adjacent to North Forney High School at 6170 Falcon Way, Forney, Texas, 75126, surplus and authorizing lease of said real property to Kaufman County with the option to donate at the end of the lease term to carry out a purpose that benefits Forney ISD. Texas local government code 272.000(I)
        Ms. Morisak said huge amounts of the FISD are served by the county - proposing 25 year lease for a 15 acres adjacent to NFHS, to support a substation, a place for sheriff and constable officers to go.   It will have a sub-courthouse, and classrooms for students.   County Judge Richards said Kaufman County is 3rd fastest growing county, by percentage, in US; rapidly becoming urban, highest priority is safety.   Partnerships are good common sense - there are many possibilities for this location.   He will present this to County Commissioners.   Sheriff Beavers already partners with FISD with SRO's.   Ms. Morisak said at end of lease, can be renewed or donated.   Lease is $1 / year.   The lease states there will be no holding cells or detention at this facility.   Mr. Carroll asked Judge Richards what timeline is - this may be part of November bond election.   This will be more of an office building, so about 2-3 years.   Dr. Terry said need partnerships, thanked the county for working with FISD.
  • Approved authorizing Superintendent to negotiate the donation of real property to Forney ISD consisting of approximately 12 acres located in Overland Grove
        Ms. Morisak said have been offered this land, it's a really nice site for the district.   Dr. Terry agreed, stating Wynne-Jackson has been a great partner.
  • Discussed TASB policy local update 113, as a first reading.
        Mr. Rick Geer, Chief of Student Services said this update wasn't too bad, next one likely to be longer.   3 could have an impact: BJCD deleted some items, gave district more flexibility.   EFD was deleted, might put some of it back in procedural sections.   FNF was most drastic: search and drug testing.   Searches policy clarify results from case law.   Random drug testing was deleted; will likely be put in administrative reg's.   Mr. Carroll asks if will bounce adding these items to admin off TASB - yes.   Will be auditing policies in Oct.
    • BBE(LOCAL): board members - authority
    • BDD(LOCAL): board internal organization - attorney
    • BJCD(LOCAL): superintendent - evaluation
    • CI(LOCAL): school properties disposal
    • CO(LOCAL): food and nutrition management
    • COA(LOCAL): food and nutrition management - procurement
    • COB(LOCAL): food and nutrition management - free and reduced-price meals
    • CRB(LOCAL): insurance and annuities management - liability insurance
    • EFD(LOCAL): instructional resources - field trips
    • EHBAF(LOCAL): special education - video/audio monitoring
    • FNF(LOCAL): student rights and responsibilities - investigations and searches

  • Discussed TASB policy local DNA, as a first reading.
        Mr. Rick Geer, introduced Dr. Campbell who created a committee to consider this.   He said this helps veteran teachers (3+ years), and would allow administrators to have more time to work with teachers that may be struggling.
  • Approved 7 additional personnel units
        Mr. Rick Geer said some campuses have enough growth to justify a P.E. aide - have exceeded at both intermediate schools, will exceed at 3 elementary soon.   Since 2016, 1/4 students require special education services, due to new state requirements.   Population has increased by 461 students, or 45%.   Adding 7 aides will be slightly below normal ratio, but well within TEA regulations.   They plan to use Capital Improvement funds to cover the $166k.   Mr. Carroll asked if this was due to summer registrations - yes, both intermediate campuses over 900.
  • Held a 40-minute executive session re:

    • Consultation with Attorney
    • Deliberation Regarding the Ratification of Employment of Professional Contract Personnel
    • Conduct quarterly evaluation of Superintendent

  • Approved the ratification of employment of professional contract personnel as discussed in Closed Session
  • No action regarding the quarterly superintendent's evaluation
  • Ms. Green has been accepted to Leadership TASB.
  • Monday, August 12 - 4:30 PM-8:00 PM, STEAMfest @ NFHS
    Monday, August 19 - First Day of School & Back to School Bash
    Tuesday, August 27 - 6:00 PM-7:00 PM - Rhea Re-Dedication @ Rhea Intermediate
    Thursday, August 29 - 6:00 PM-7:00 PM - Smith Re-Dedication @ Smith Intermediate

  • Adjourned at 2058
  • Dr. Terry said planning Aug. 22 board workshop.   Positive vibes brochures will be sent to all staff.
Monday, 2019, July 29