The district’s Launch to Learning for the upcoming school year, the ongoing conversation on equity and diversity, and the LISD dress code were among the topics during the Trustees’ agenda review meeting Thursday night.
Launch to Learning 2020 takes shape
Trustees probed the district’s Launch to Learning plan for beginning the 2020–21 school year. LISD will start school virtually Aug. 13 while preparing for a safe return to campuses.
LISD’s Virtual Empowered Learning in fall 2020 will look radically different from the emergency distance learning that was necessary for the spring. The district is planning extensively for safety measures once in-person learning resumes on our campuses. Cleaning procedures, contact tracing, facility enhancements, and protective equipment are integral parts of the district’s COVID prevention and response plans.
“I get that we have parents that absolutely have to work and daycare considerations are a real strain,” Trustee Jim MacKay said. “As a Board, we also have an obligation to do what is right for the greatest number of people in our district. There are no easy answers.”
Board considers district equity audit
To further the district’s ongoing Community Conversation on Equity and Diversity, LISD leadership recommended conducting an equity audit to help identify the root causes of inequalities in LISD. The audit will focus on three areas:
- Policy and practice
- Professional Learning
- Community collaboration
Last month the Board of Trustees was presented with a report on the Community Conversations meetings focused on Equity and Diversity held this spring. The two equity community forums were facilitated by Dr. Cherie Dawson-Edwards and Dr. Bradley Carpenter.
The administration also requested the following action steps:
- development of a district equity policy;
- districtwide staff development on racism, diversity, and cultural responsiveness; and
- expansion of communication and community engagement efforts to improve inclusivity and accessibility.
Dress code conversation to include stakeholders, continue through the summer
The district will form and consult a panel of students, parents, board members, and staff to review potential changes to the LISD dress code prior to bringing it before the Board for approval in August.
Due to implicit and racially biased rules, the administration believes additional changes may need to be made to the dress code. With virtual learning to start the year, every effort will be made to accurately review and get feedback from stakeholders.
“I’ve been on the Board since 2015 but haven’t seen this kind of holistic approach,” Board President Trish Bode said. “I think that speaks volumes about what we’ve heard from our community about how we’re trying to be responsive. I really appreciate staff for bringing this opportunity to our community and getting buy-in on our dress code. It’s huge.”
Each school year the Leander ISD Board of Trustees approves the Student Code of Conduct. Updates to the 2020- 2021 Student Code of Conduct reflect recommendations from the Texas Association of School Boards model and feedback from stakeholders. Because this is a non-legislative year, the only recommended changes are to the dress code.
Board hires SRE’s Hodges as Principal for Wiley Middle School
Steiner Ranch Elementary School principal Angela Hodges was announced as the new principal at Wiley Middle School. Read more about Hodge’s hiring here.