$2.3 million in grants for mental health, afterschool
supports also approved
The Houston Independent School District Board of Education
voted 8-0 with one abstention to approve a $41 million budget amendment to fund
additional supports for special education, pay for personal protective
equipment (PPE), enhanced cleaning services and supplies, and computer devices
The extra funding for special education amounts to $17 million and has been under consideration since August of 2020. The funding will pay primarily for assigning speech-language pathologists to campuses where students in need have been identified and allow for expansion of the number of existing Intensive Intervention Teams. The funding will also pay for the addition of mental health specialists to address students’ emotional and behavioral challenges. The district will also use the additional funding to increase the number of occupational and physical therapists and assistive technology specialists.
The board also adopted by a vote of 9-0 the district’s 2020
tax rate of $1.1331 per $100 of taxable property value to allow the Harris
County Tax Assessor-Collector to begin the preparation of 2020 tax bills.
The HISD Board of Education will host two community meetings ahead of a vote to set new district goals for student outcomes. All meetings are virtual and open to the public.
are scheduled to vote on the goals during a special meeting on Thursday, Oct.
mission as the Board of Education is to educate the whole child so that every
student in HISD graduates with the tools to reach their full potential,” HISD
Board President Sue Deigaard said. “As we discuss and consider new goals for
student outcomes in our district, we want to better understand the views of our
communities, which is why public participation in these community meetings is
important to us.”
Houston Independent School District Board of Education on Thursday issued a
proclamation designating Sept. 15 through Oct. 15 as Hispanic Heritage
Month in the district.
Heritage Month kicks off with the anniversary of the 1821 Independence Day of
Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. The month also
encompasses the independence days for Mexico (Sept. 16) and Chile (Sept.
the month, a variety of virtual events showcasing performances, art, and many
other displays of the rich Hispanic culture can be observed across the city of
The Houston Independent School District Board of
Education on Thursday unanimously approved 9-0 a resolution concerning virtual instruction that
provides flexibility for the district, if needed.
Currently, HISD is scheduled to begin in-person
instruction on October 19, 2020, pending COVID-19 conditions. The board voted
to provide flexibility to extend the virtual learning period for an additional
two weeks if that becomes necessary based on recommendations from health
authorities. As announced on July 15, HISD’s plan to provide face-to-face
instruction beginning on October 19 has not changed.
Trustees also approved a plan
to carry out online learning on Election Day, November 3, 2020 to accommodate
voters and maintain safe conditions for students and staff amid COVID-19
conditions. Per state law, the district is required
to make campuses available as voting sites during elections.
The Houston Independent
School District Board of Education approved a $54.6 million amendment to the
2020-2021 budget, which includes a $31 million purchase of devices and wireless
hotspots to help close the digital divide and ensure students are equipped to Reconnect Safely and Return Strong when classes resume virtually on Sept. 8.
The district has provided
76,362 devices for students in need since the pandemic and plans to distribute
22,750 additional devices by next month. HISD has provided 6,628 hotspots for
students in need and plans to distribute an additional 19,151 of the wireless
devices by next month as well.
The added appropriations in
the budget amendment will also fund additional special education positions,
personal protective equipment (PPE), social distancing signage, plexiglass
dividers, and instructional supports.
During a special meeting, Houston Independent School District trustees publicly supported the district’s Reconnect Safely, Return Strong reopening plan to begin the 2020-2021 school year.
To safeguard the health and well-being of students, staff and families as the City of Houston confronts an increasing number of positive COVID-19 cases, HISD will begin the school year on September 8 instead of August 24.
Classes will continue virtually for six weeks. In-person classes will begin October 19, subject to change based on COVID-19 conditions across the City of Houston and guidance from local, state, and federal health officials.
The Houston Independent School District Board of Trustees
voted 7-2 on Thursday to pass a $2 billion 2020-2021 budget, which includes a
$34.4 million salary and benefits package as well as an increase in employer
contribution to health insurance premiums for employees.
The Houston Independent
School District Board of Education will consider passage of a $2 billion budget
for the 2020-2021 academic year which includes a $34.4 million salary and
benefits package as well as an increase in employer contribution to health
insurance premiums for employees.
Editor’s Note: The HISD Board of Education is hosting a public hearing at 5 p.m. on Thursday, May 28 to gather feedback on beginning the process of becoming a District of Innovation, as designated by the TEA. More information can be found here.
The Houston Independent School District Board of Education at
its virtual meeting on Thursday voted 7-2 in favor of a resolution to initiate
the process of designating HISD as a District of Innovation.
By adopting District of Innovation status, HISD could exercise greater local
control over decisions impacting positive educational outcomes for students.
The resolution approved by the Board of Education outlines specific exemptions
from state law that the district would seek, including:
month of April, the Houston Independent School District is celebrating National
Arab American Heritage Month to recognize the historical and cultural
contributions made by the people of Arabic descent.