The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

Local News

April 16, 2014

Westwood ISD board hears campus improvement plans


Westwood Independent School District Board of Trustees heard plans for improvement at both the campus and district level from school administrators during their regular school board meeting Tuesday at Westwood High School.


Principals from the primary campus to the high school spoke respectively about items on their campus improvement plans including STAAR readiness, professional development training, technology and recruiting, and retaining quality employees.


Topping the list on Westwood Primary School's campus plan was additional writing instruction and opportunities for students to raise scores on state tests, increasing English as a Second Language (ESL) intervention and working to get more teachers ESL certified, according to Principal Sonya Brown.


Other items on the primary's improvement plan included recruiting and maintaining quality employees and creating and maintaining a technology-rich environment. For instance, Brown said the teachers are using two iPads as a pilot program, in addition to its Netbooks.


Westwood Elementary School's campus improvement plan also included more STAAR (State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness) test preparation; professional development training; immersing technology in the curriculum; and providing a safe, orderly school environment, according to Principal Breanna Jones. The addition of security cameras and the upgraded safety plan have helped provide for this, though Jones noted a need to have the playground updated.


Westwood Junior High School's campus improvement plan included improving the outward appearance of the school, including the area between the gym and the cafeteria, according to Principal Donald Ressler. Several construction projects, such as for the school entrance, canopy and sidewalks, are ongoing.


Westwood High School's campus improvement plan includes transitioning the curriculum toward career paths — an aim underscored by House Bill 5 — while keeping the same rigor for college-bound students, according to Principal Kyle Lock.


Lock discussed Westwood's 2014-15 high school course catalogue as it related to House Bill 5, which has required schools across Texas to change courses and graduation plans to some degree.

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