|Trinity Standard - Local News
Copyright 2013 - Polk County Publishing Company
'Improvement required' at local schools
Trinity Standard -
TRINITY — In what basically is a "pass/fail" rating system this past year, two of the Trinity Independent School District's campus fell short and were rated as "improvement required." During Monday's meeting of the Trinity School Board, Superintendent Dave Plymale presented the Texas Education Agency's annual accountability summary for 2013. He noted that schools throughout the state were either listed as "met standards" or "improvement required." He said this was the first year this system was used and added it will be changed again for the 2014 report. In the TEA report, Trinity Middle School (TMS) and the now closed Trinity Intermediate School (TIS) were listed in the "met standards" category. Plymale explained that in their accountability review, TEA looked at four indexes – student achievement, student progress, closing performance gaps and postsecondary readiness. The postsecondary readiness only applied to high schools as a measure of how well students were prepared for college. While TMS and TIS met or exceeded the state minimums on the indexes, Trinity High School (THS) fell short on the student progress rating and Lansberry Elementary School (LES) fell short on three indexes. The district as a whole also was listed as improvement required because it fell three points short of meeting the closing the performance gap standard. This index measures how well the gap between the lowest and highest performing sub-population groups is being closed. Sub-population groups include economically disadvantaged, African-American, Hispanic and White. Plymale told the board that THS missed meeting the student progress standard by only three points while LES fell short by two points on student achievement, 14 points on student progress asnd 10 points on closing the performance gap. "I think we are making good progress on fixing the problems," he told the board. "We know the areas we need to address. "I think we'll see some progress this year, especially on student progress and closing the achievement gap," the superintendent added. Honor program eyed In other action Monday, the school board approved a proposal from Board Member Monty Huffman to create a system to honor former students and school employees who have excelled. Under the plan, a committee will be formed to draft criteria under which the former students and staff members will be recognized. Huffman said one of the goals of the program would be to help instill pride in the local school district by honoring those who have achieved recognition after they graduated. He said this would include student athletes who go on to excel at the college and professional levels as well as teachers who have dedicated their lives to Trinity students. Plymale noted the district has recognized outstanding local educators in the past, citing the Edna Lansberry Elementary School, which was named in honor of a longtime elementary school teacher and principal. Huffman suggested that as a minimum a wall of honor be created to recognize the former students and employees. "We have a wall right there," he said pointing to a wall in the boardroom. "We could hang their photos there so everyone who comes through here will know who they are." After the plan was approved, Plymale and the board invited the public to nominate former students or staff members by emailing the information to Debbie Ogden at firstname.lastname@example.org. Other action During the meeting, the board also: • Received a report from the officers of the Trinity PTA listing income and expenses during the 2012-13 school year. During the year, the PTA generated $38,291 in income and spent $35,450, including $7,475 awarded to various student groups, $5,613 to Project Graduation and $12,586 to purchase stock for the concession stands. It was noted in the report that most of the PTA's income -- $28,041 – was generated through concession stand sales. • Authorized Plymale and the school district's attorney to finalize the termination of former Business Manager Kevin Parish's contract and to obtain a written settlement. • Named Barry Coleman as the school district's computer network manager.