Board Highlights: Facilities, Bond Oversight, Budget & more!

Board of Trustees Highlights
An Update from the Eanes ISD Board of Trustees
Superintendent's Report

We celebrated School Board Recognition Month in January and honored our Trustees at the January 30 meeting. I thought I'd share my remarks from the meeting below, to further our thanks for their continued service.

Eanes ISD Trustees serve countless hours working to make public education the best it can be for every child. In a climate of change and challenge, they develop policies and make tough decisions on complex educational and social issues that affect the entire community and the lives of individual students. They bear responsibility and oversight for an annual budget of $120 million; 8,000 students; more than 1,000 employees; and 10 campuses, including our Adult Transition Services building.

We proudly salute these education advocates as they provide vision and leadership for student achievement, academic programs, district funding, and school facilities. Their service ensures that decisions about local public schools are made by those most familiar with the needs of our community's children and families. These dedicated individuals deserve recognition and thanks for their unfailing commitment to the continuing success of our students now and in the future. Thank you.

In January, the Board heard reports on facilities, bond oversight, the Spanish Immersion pilot program and more. We also had the pleasure of dedicating the Westlake HS Volleyball Court to retired coach Al Bennett. A formal presentation is being planned and will be announced.

See a synopsis of the January meetings below. The full Board agenda packets are online.
Facilities & Enrollment Committee Update

After seeing the final report from the Facilities & Enrollment Committee at the December 19 meeting, the Board further discussed potential options at the January study session. Based on the demographer's latest numbers, the administrative leadership discussed the following:
  • Re-distribute the CDC program currently offered at Cedar Creek ES to Valley View ES and Forest Trail ES under the same service offerings (Employee & Community), while the CDC at Barton Creek ES would remain the same.
  • Replace the two (2) existing onsite portables at Cedar Creek ES with two (2) new Learning Studios with restrooms due to their age, infrastructure, etc.
  • Improve student corridor traffic flow at Hill Country Middle School with modifications to existing doorways and configuration of hardware.
The group continues its discussions with campuses and committee members and will make a final recommendation in February.

See Facilities & Enrollment Committee update.
Bond Oversight Committee Update

The Bond Oversight Committee for the 2015 Bond provided an update to the Board at the January study session. Out of the $52.5 million bond, more than 85 percent of the funds have been expended on projects.

See BOC presentation.
See website for updates.
2018 Strategic Summit

A report from the third annual Board Strategic Summit was presented at the January 30 meeting. The Strategic Summit brings together Trustees and administrative leadership to deepen understanding of key initiatives, clarify continuing efforts and priorities and determine future work or priorities.

The results solidified continued efforts in:
  • Guaranteed Viable Curriculum
  • Social-emotional learning
  • Community building
  • Operations and long-range planning
The goals will be refined, and move into the District Improvement Plan and the Campus Improvement Plans.
2018-19 Budget Discussion

The Board was presented information on the development of the 2018-19 budget at the January 30 meeting. Factors such as student enrollment and taxable assessed valuation (TAV) are the primary influencers to the budget, and the Board was provided updated estimates on both.

Part of the discussion included reexamining the 3-2-1 plan, which worked towards a balanced budget by 2018-19. While the passage of the Tax Ratification Election (TRE) in November helped the budget significantly, with many factors such as state funding, TAV, the Governor's property tax proposal and enrollment out of the district's control, the Board discussed possibly altering or delaying the 3-2-1 plan.

The Board reviewed scenarios for a multi-year strategic budgeting plan which would allow the Board to look at budgeting on a two-year rather than one-year cycle. This type of budget planning would allow the Board to make budget decisions with the best available information.

See budget planning presentation.
Spanish Immersion Update

The Board heard an update on possible expansion of the Spanish Immersion Pilot, Futuro. The success of Futuro at Cedar Creek and Bridge Point is being analyzed, including assessment of students' increasing language proficiency and the satisfaction of families enrolled in the program. In addition, principals Jessica Brown and Heather Meek updated the board at the December 19 meeting.
Among conditions noted in the presentation, the scarcity of highly-qualified (i.e. certified)
teachers in the Austin area who are fluent in the language remains the most critical challenge for maintaining, let alone expanding, the Futuro pilot.

The Board agreed to allow the administration to further investigate possible expansion and report back the results.

Trustees Election Called

The Trustees Election will be May 5, 2018 for Place 4 (currently held by Julia Webber) and Place 5 (currently held by Jennifer Salas).

Interested applicants may file for a place on the ballot with the EISD General Counsel at the Eanes ISD Administration Building at 601 Camp Craft Rd, Austin, TX 78746. The first day for candidates to file for a place on the ballot is Wednesday, January 17, 2018, and the deadline to file is Friday, February 16, 2018 at 5:00 p.m.
Early voting runs April 23 through May 1.

See more Trustee Election information.

Thank you to our Trustees!

Dr. Colleen Jones, President
Jennifer Salas, Vice President
Christie Bybee, Secretary
Ellen Balthazar
John Havenstrite
Jason Paull
Julia Webber
Future Meetings
The next study session is February 13 (6pm open session), and the regular meeting is February 27 (7pm open session).
Always check for the most up-to-date schedule. To see agenda items, listen to meeting audio, or access board policy, please visit
Eanes ISD Board of Trustees
Eanes Independent School District, 601 Camp Craft Road, Austin, TX 78746
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