Board Brief: New calendar, new P-TECHs and a bond update
Arlington ISD trustees provide a Board Brief from each board meeting, a short video that gives a summary of the meeting’s highlights. Watch the video below or read the brief.
The first Arlington ISD Board of Trustees meeting of 2023 is in the books, and here are a few of the highlights.
Elementary students from Blanton, Butler, Farrell, and Johns got the meeting off to a great start with a performance of the song “Martin Luther King.” Farrell teacher Johnny Maples led the singers, who represented several hundred other students who will join them Monday in performing at the MLK Youth Extravaganza at Fielder Metro Center.
The Youth Extravaganza is part of the MLK Celebration this weekend, which also includes the MLK Art and Essay Contest. The Board of Trustees recognized the student winners of the contest during the meeting, and you can visit the Arlington ISD’s blog next Tuesday for an announcement of all the winners.
Then the board honored the student of the month, Lamar High School senior Austin Palacios. Austin excels in the classroom with his natural curiosity, enthusiasm and grit. But music is his love. Austin is an accomplished member of Lamar’s marching band, symphonic band and jazz ensemble. He’s known for his smile and kindness and is very deserving of this award. Congratulations to Austin.
Then it was down to business. Probably the biggest news of the night is something a lot of parents, students and teachers have been anxiously awaiting – the 2023-24 school calendar. It’s finally official – next year’s calendar was approved by the board last night. Visit aisd.net’s calendars page to see it.
The three-year terms for two seats on the district’s board will end in May, so last night the trustees approved the order of election for those two seats. The election will be on May 6, with early voting starting April 24.
The school board always approves district purchases at board meetings, and one of note from last night was for architectural services for P-TECH renovations. The Arlington ISD is starting two new Pathways in Technology high schools – or P-TECHs – next year. These schools offer students the opportunity to earn college credit and workplace certifications. Arlington ISD already has two P-TECH programs – one at Bowie High School and one at Lamar High School – and is adding new ones at Sam Houston and Seguin high schools. The architectural services will help make some renovations at Sam and Seguin to ensure they have the right spaces and classrooms for the new programs.
Later, the board received and approved the monthly financial report on operations through November and a report of the district’s investment activity through November.
And finally, Kelly Horn, Arlington ISD’s assistant superintendent of facility services, gave the board an update about the 2019 Bond. The 2019 Bond program is a $966 million five-year capital program that includes new construction, renovations and facility condition improvements, along with capital purchases for technology, fine arts and transportation. Much of the presentation focused on new construction and facility renovations and improvements – and there’s a lot to talk about. The brand new, bond-funded Webb Elementary just opened last week, and construction on major additions are just about to start at Arlington High School and Bailey Junior High. Plus, new playgrounds recently opened at four more elementary schools. It’s a lot, but you can find out about all the bond projects at aisd.net/bond2019.
Those are just a few of the highlights from tonight. If you would like more details on any of these, or any of the items not in this brief, you can watch the entire meeting here.