Due to the resignation of Tammy Cross from the DISD Board of Education in December, the January meeting began with member changes on the board.
Jim Hodson was voted in to complete Cross’s term as seat number one on the board. Due to family issues, Hodson could not be at the January 6 meeting but will be formally seated in February.
Cross also served as Vice-President on the board. Current board member Nate Morrison was voted to take her place as Vice-President.
Morrison took an oath to uphold his new responsibilities before the meeting proceeded. During the meeting, the school district’s A-F School Report Card was discussed.
Superintendent Jason Simeroth said the district received a C+ grade from the state with the high school receiving a B+, the middle school receiving a B, and the intermediate school receiving a C.
Robert E. Lee Elementary received an A- grade and both Washington Irving and Northwest Heights received A grades. Simeroth said the district’s grade is not purely an average of the schools’ grades but some aspects are weighted more heavily than others.
The board approved hiring a Director of Secondary Education and a Director of Elementary Education to the district’s staff.
These two positions would ensure devoted attention would be paid to the curriculum at both levels to pay special attention to issues such as state and federal testing and common core curriculum.
It was discussed that many schools of similar size to Durant have such employees to help students. The board also discussed the 2013 fiscal year audit report with a new auditing company, Sanders, Bledsoe &Hewett.
The board discussed an option for rearranging the student body within the district’s three elementary schools. Currently the schools each have students grades Pre-K to third.
With the introduction of “grade centers” Simeroth said each school would ideally be divided up into grades providing easier access to needed resources for each grade.
No actions have been taken in this regard but a public opinion link will be added to the district’s website, www.durantisd.org. Simeroth said he hopes to have the link on the page by the end of the week.
They also acknowledged an anonymous donation of $2,500 to the district following the Robert E. Lee open house in December.
The board approved the hire of a new sixth grade teacher at the Durant Intermediate School. The position will be filled by Susan Hall. Hall has taught for the past several years at local school Victory Life.
The board also recognized the resignation of the high school assistant principal Dale Perrin.Perrin has been with DISD for approximately 38 years.
“Dale’s put in a lot of good years and we will miss him,” said Simeroth.