Board Meeting Briefs – September 17, 2019

 

Recognition of July 2019 National Sodexo Award: Gayla Ruiz, Collins Elementary

Congratulations to Gayla Ruiz, Collins Elementary Kitchen Manager – Schools Sodexo Experience National winner for July 2019.  Gayla Ruiz is the kitchen manager at Collins Elementary. Collins was one of the campuses open for summer feeding. Throughout summer feeding, Gayla continued to offer nutritious meals to kids in the surrounding communities and participated in the Texas Farm Fresh initiative. Gayla went above and beyond to make sure that the food on the line looked appealing and that the items on her cold line looked fresh and were arranged so the line looked colorful. Gayla paid attention to detail on her lines to make sure that food items would draw attention. During service, Gayla would take time to stand out front while students went through the line and would talk to them about the food being offered.

 

Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) Presentation

Coordinator of Counseling and College Readiness Erica Hill presented on the district’s progress on the exploration of the AVID program.

 

Dual Language Program Update

Executive Director of Curriculum and Instruction Sonja Howard presented on the dual language programming at the Elementary Schools.

 

Enrollment and Staffing Update

Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources Gabril Munoz presented on student enrollment and staffing update.

 

Child Nutrition Update

Director of Child Nutrition Karen Kovach presented on the creative action document for reducing excess fund balance in the child nutrition program.

 

Texas Education Agency Maximum Class Size Waiver

The Board approved the classroom size waiver application for the 2019-2020 academic school year.

Year 2107/2018/2019 2107/2018/2019 2107/2018/2019 2107/2018/2019 2107/2018/2019 2107/2018/2019
Grade K 1 2 3 4 Total
District 0/0/1 0/0/0 0/0/1 0/0/2 0/0/0 0/0/5
Baty 0/0/1 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/2 0/0/0 0/0/3
Collins 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0
Creedmoor 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0
Del Valle 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0
Gilbert 0/0/1 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/1
Hillcrest 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0
Hornsby 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0
Popham 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/0
Smith 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/1 0/0/0 0/0/0 0/0/1

A waiver must be submitted to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) for every kindergarten through fourth grade classroom in which the student-teacher class ratio is greater than 22. The table below shows a three-year comparison for 2017, 2018 and the current 2019-2020 school year. The table indicates the number of classrooms that will exceed the 22:1 ratio after final adjustments are made to balance classes. At this time, there are five maximum class size waivers to request. In order to preserve the integrity of our instructional programs and ensure that students are instructed in the appropriate setting, Human Resources and Curriculum and Instruction staff may have class size waivers to bring later in the fall semester as enrollment continues.

 

Bilingual Education Exception Application—Elementary PK-5th Grade

The Board approved the Bilingual Education Exception Application – Elementary PK-5th Grade.

The bilingual education program serves children in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade. There are approximately 1,965 English language learners (ELLs) in Del Valle elementary schools. The bilingual program serves 1,433 students, and the  elementary ESL program serves 532 students. The district does not have enough bilingual certified teachers in the elementary grades to provide the required bilingual education program to all identified students. Currently, there are 96 certified bilingual teachers in bilingual classrooms serving bilingual students. In accordance with TAC §89.1207 (a)(1), a school district that is unable to provide a bilingual education program as required by §89.1205(a) because of an insufficient number of appropriately certified teachers shall request from the commissioner of education an exception to the bilingual education program and the approval of an alternative program. DVISD requested a bilingual program exception for those teachers not yet bilingual certified and who are serving students in the bilingual program. The table below shows the total number of certified teachers under this exception serving bilingual students:

PK K 1 2 3 4 5 Total
Baty 1 1 1 3
Collins 2 2 3
Creedmoor 1 2 4 7
Del Valle 1 1
Gilbert 0
Hillcrest 1 1 1 3
Hornsby 1 1 2 1 5
Popham 1 1
Smith 1 1 2 4
District 2 1 2 4 3 6 9 27

 

English as a Second Language Program Waiver Application for Secondary Schools

The Board approved the English as a Second Language Program Waiver Application for Secondary Schools.

The English as a Second Language (ESL) Education program in Del Valle ISD secondary schools serves students in 6th through 12th grade. There are approximately 995 English Learners (ELs) in Del Valle ISD middle schools, a decrease from the 1,030 reported this same time last year, and approximately 1,056 at the high school and the Opportunity Center, an increase from the 880 reported this same time last year. In accordance with TAC 89, a school district that is unable to provide an ESL program as required by §89.1205(c) because of an insufficient number of appropriately certified teachers shall request from the commissioner a waiver of the certification requirements for each teacher who will provide instruction in ESL for English learners. The district does not yet have enough ESL certified teachers in the secondary school grades to provide the required ESL education program to all of our identified students. The total number of non-ESL certified teachers teaching ELAR under this waiver serving ELLs is as follows:

6th 7th 8th Total
Dailey MS 3 1 1 5
Del Valle MS 3 4 3 10
Ojeda MS 2 0 2 4
DAEP 0 0 0 0
District MS 8 5 6 19
9th 10th 11th 12th
Del Valle HS 3 4 3 0 10
Opportunity Center 2 1 1 1 5
District HS 5 5 4 1 15
Del Valle ISD 34

 

Consider and Act on Receipt of Funds For Resources in 3 Additional Prekindergarten classrooms.

The Board approved the Receipt of Funds for Resources for Three Additional Prekindergarten Classrooms.

DVISD partnered with the City of Austin last April to receive startup funding to purchase furniture and instructional materials for 4 classrooms at Hillcrest Elementary School. Del Valle ISD was responsible for staffing the classrooms. This month, the City of Austin contacted us and has offered funding for furniture and instructional materials for 3 additional classrooms. The City of Austin funding would grant approximately $16,000 per classroom for furniture, instructional materials and other resources. This would be a benefit to our district. The district is in the process of ordering furniture and instructional materials for our prekindergarten classrooms. This funding will offset those costs.

 

Compensation adjustment for paraprofessionals and auxiliary personnel

The Board approved the Compensation Adjustment for Paraprofessionals and Auxiliary Personnel.

The initial 3% of mid-point raises for non-exempt employees was approved and the minimum hourly rate was set at $15.00 ($16.00 for bus drivers only). This created an inequity between the paygrades, because consideration was not given to those employees already making at least $15.00 and in a higher paygrade/job classification. Administration met with TASB to discuss short term and long term options. The recommendation from TASB for the short-term is to provide these employees with an additional 3% of mid-point raise to reestablish the appropriate variance among paygrades. We have a total of three-hundred and ten employees (310) impacted by this adjustment for a total projected cost of $300,000. The long-term plan is to contract with TASB in January 2020 to conduct a comprehensive compensation study.

 

Consider and Act on the utilization of excess bond funds for the purchase of additional furniture for elementary and secondary campuses.

The Board approved the Utilization of Excess Bond Funds for the Purchase of Additional Furniture for Elementary and Secondary Campuses.

District staff reviewed the increase in student enrollment for elementary campuses and determined that additional furniture is needed. Staff also reviewed data provided from secondary campuses requesting replacement furniture and have determined that additional furniture is needed. The current furniture totals: Elementary: $63,329.82 Secondary: $415,501.60 Allocation for additional need / future growth: $121,168.58

 

Consider and Act on Ordinance Adopting Maintenance & Operations and Interest & Sinking Tax Rates for 2019-2020

The Board approved the Ordinance Adopting Maintenance and Operations and Interest and Sinking Tax Rates for 2019-2020.

House Bill 3, as enacted by the 86th Legislative Session and signed into law by Governor Abbott requires compression of the Maintenance and Operations tax rate by 7 cents for the 2019 tax year. In considering the tax rate to pay principal and interest payments on bonded indebtedness for the 2019-2020 school year, the District is recommending the reduction of the debt service (I&S) tax rate by 1 cent. The overall reduction in the tax rate is 8 cents per $100 valuation from the previous year. We recommend that the board adopt the rate of $0.97 for Maintenance & Operations and $0.34 for Interest & Sinking for a total tax rate of $1.31per $100 valuation. These rates must be adopted as two separate motions: one for Maintenance & Operations and one for Interest & Sinking. The vote for each must be a record vote. The adoption of this tax rate increases taxes raised compared to the previous year and exceeds the calculated effective tax rate compared to the previous year. According to Board Policy CCG (Legal) and Section 26.05 of the tax code, specific language is required in the motion to adopt the tax rate and in the Tax Rate Ordinance. This statutory language is included. This language is specific to the calculated “effective” tax rate and not the actual tax rate. The effective tax rate is a calculated tax rate that would raise the same amount of tax revenues as the previous year’s tax rate would when applied to the current tax base. Although somewhat confusing because the actual tax rate is being reduced, the language is specific and required by statute.

 

Consider and Act on Budget Amendment #3 for 2019-2020 General Fund

The Board approved Budget Amendment #3 – General Fund 2019-2020.

In order to accurately reflect current expenditures and account for funds in the proper functions, the board was asked to approve Budget Amendment #3 for the 2019-2020 General Fund. This amendment includes the following:

  • Transfer of $60,000 – Public Address Speaker Additions – Technology

 

Consider and Act on Budget Amendment #4 for 2019-2020 Debt Service Fund

The Board approved Budget Amendment #4 – Debt Service Fund – 2019-2020.

In order to accurately reflect current expenditures and account for funds in the proper functions, the board was asked to approve Budget Amendment #4 for the 2019-2020 Debt Service Fund. This amendment includes the following:

  • Allocation of $14,870,600 for Bond Defeasance Payments of callable bonds during the 2019-2020 school year.

 

Consider and Act on Resolution of Board-Approved Credit by Examination Audit Process

The Board approved the Resolution of Board Approved Credit by Examination Audit Process.

The Board of Trustees must approve an audit process annually for credit-by-examination assessments pursuant to Texas Administrative Code 74.24(a)(3) and 19 Texas Administrative Code 74.24(b)(1). Del Valle ISD does not create its own credit-by-examination assessments. Instead it utilizes those created and validated by the University of Texas at Austin. As such, the District is able to rely on the university’s audit and validation processes. Only those Districts that choose to create their own credit-by-examination assessments are required to also create an internal audit and validation process. The board must pass a resolution affirming that the University of Texas at Austin’s certification and audit demonstrates that the examinations accurately and appropriately assess a student’s knowledge and skills for the appropriate grade-level.

 

District Initiated Revision to DEC(LOCAL)

The Board approved the Board Policy Update DEC (LOCAL).

These revisions to the neutral absence policy within DEC(LOCAL) were presented to the Board of Trustees as an information item at the August 2019 Board meeting: Local Policy for Revision DEC(LOCAL) LEAVES AND ABSENCES: NEUTRAL ABSENCE POLICY. The proposed change clarifies the conditions precedent to any adverse employment action, aligns common terminology, and reflects current human resource practices.

 

Closed Session

The Board approved action items that were discussed during Closed Session.

 

Board Meeting videos are available online at http://delvalleisdtx.swagit.com/board-meetings/