Board Meeting: September 28, 2021

Public Hearing for School FIRST Rating

Vicki Garcia, executive director of business operations, announced that Denton ISD received a rating of “A” for “Superior Achievement” under Texas’ School FIRST financial accountability rating system, the district’s 19th time to earn the honor.

The “Superior Achievement” rating is the state’s highest, demonstrating the quality of Denton ISD’s financial management and reporting system. 

School FIRST (Financial Accountability Rating System of Texas) is the financial accountability system for Texas school districts developed by the Texas Education Agency in response to Senate Bill 875 of the 76th Texas Legislature in 1999. It was amended under House Bill 5, 83rd Texas Legislature, Regular Session, in 2013.

The primary goal of School FIRST is to achieve quality performance in the management of school districts’ financial resources, a goal made more significant due to the complexity of accounting associated with the Texas school finance system.


Workshop Items

Student Liaison Board of Trustees

A group of students from the LaGrone ATC provides a ‘voice’ in sharing their perspectives, suggestions, and recommendations to the Board of Trustees. Megan Stuart, senior; Tyra Phillips, junior; Jason Lewis, senior; Nadiah McCain, junior addressed the Trustees, sharing their experiences through the law enforcement, photography and health science focuses.

“The supportive nature of the faculty and their ability to be open and flexible has really made my experience at LaGrone exceptional,” said Jason Lewis, senior.

This group of young college and career-ready-minded students will share their thoughts as students of the LaGrone Academy and the LaGrone Advanced Technology Complex. Students specifically shared that the advantage to earn a certification upon graduation was a huge benefit and a key reason they enrolled.

“Since our teachers are really sharing their passion and talents around different professions, we feel really welcomed and engaged in our learning,” said Nadiah McCain, junior.

Career and Technical Education Update

Carla Ruge, director of the career and technical education, and Marcus Bourland, principal of the LaGrone ATC, reported on the areas of focus for the program and campus. Students have access to 30 different programs through 127 courses and 15 clusters. They may earn 40 different certifications or licensures. In the 2015-16 school year, 922 students earned certification or licenses: 314 from Denton High; 243 from Guyer High; 336 from Ryan High. Only 29 students were from out-of-the-district. 

“While we still have programs in which we have room to grow, we do have space limitations in a few areas that the addition from the upcoming capital improvement will help us add physical space to our more popular programs,” said Marcus Bourland, principal.

Discussion and Review of Employee Grievance Regulations

Deron Robinson, the general counsel, provided an update to the Denton ISD Administrative Regulations reflects a change to the Employee Complaints/Grievances process. Currently, an informal process is in place encouraging all employees to meet and discuss concerns and/or complaints with their direct supervisor. If no resolution is reached at this informal meeting, an employee may submit a formal written complaint.

A formal process was added to the Administrative Regulation to state that once a complaint is filed, the lowest level/classification of an administrator who has authority to remedy the alleged complaint shall serve as the Level One Hearing Officer. In the event a Level Two complaint is filed, the Level Two Hearing Officer will not be the direct supervisor of the Level One Hearing Officer.

Additionally, the Regulation was updated to state that Level One and Level Two hearings may be held in-person or virtually, as agreed upon by the parties. This was an information item for Trustees, no action by the Board was required to make the adjustment.


Discussion and Review of the HB 3 Teacher Incentive Allotment

Jason Rainey, director of secondary human resources, provided the Board of Trustees with information regarding the HB 3 Teacher Incentive Allotment (TIA). In addition to a review of the HB 3 TIA, an update on the process for seeking and obtaining robust stakeholder input, and the timeline for successful application submission for TIA Cohort E.

HB 3 Teacher Incentive Allotment is fully funded by the Texas Education Agency. Further, 90 percent of TIA funds received by the District must be allocated, for compensation, to the assigned campuses of the teachers earning the designation. Learn more about Teacher Incentive Allotment on the district home page


Report Items

Denton Central Appraisal District (DCAD) Board of Directors Nomination Report

The Denton Central Appraisal District (DCAD) has requested its taxing 

jurisdictions to nominate up to five people to be considered for their Board of Directors. According to Section 6.03 of the Property Tax Code, it is the chief appraiser’s responsibility to initiate this process. The chief appraiser does not have the authority, or duty to investigate, or judge, the qualifications of the nominees. The nominations must be returned to the Denton Appraisal District by October 15, 2019.  As of this meeting, we’ve received inquiries from Brian Webb, Thomas Washington.  We can nominate up to five people.


COVID-19 Update

Susannah O’Bara provides an update on COVID-19 in the district.


Other Items of Note

  • Recognized Chef Megan Gill, a 2014 graduate of Ryan High School, recently participated in the finale episode of Hell’s Kitchen: Young Guns hosted by celebrity Chef Gordon Ramsay. 
  • Recognized Strickland Middle School’s Krista Singleton just started her 13th year as a science teacher and cheer coach.