The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

October 22, 2013

PISD board hears FIRST report; approves high school band trip

By CHERIL VERNON
Palestine Herald-Press

PALESTINE —

The Palestine Independent School District Board of Trustees held a public hearing to discuss the Schools FIRST (Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas) District Status for the 2011-12 school year during its regular meeting Monday night.

PISD received a “Superior Achievement” rating.

Also during the meeting, the PISD board approved Palestine High School Band's 2014 Disney trip proposal. The trip will include about 70 students, 10 parent chaperones and three band directors who will travel on two coach buses (one bus for girls, one bus for the boys). The group will leave May 23, 2014 for Orlando, Fla. and return in Palestine on May 27, 2014.

On May 25, 2014, the students will depart for Epcot Disney Performing Arts OnStage Performance. They will have the opportunity to rehearse with professional musicians and record in a Disney recording studio to make a soundtrack for a cartoon.

The Disney trip will cost $400 per person, plus $300 per person for the bus fee. Students and chaperones will pay the same $600 in six installments. The Band Boosters are fundraising to cover the remaining bus costs.

Students planning to participate in the Disney trip will have the opportunity to fundraise by signing up for stadium cleanup for every home football game on Thursday and Friday nights. They also are able to check out and sell discount cards. Most students are covering a substantial part of each payment through fundraising.

In other action, the board:

• HIRED the following: Tupac Alcauter as a TACE (Texas Afterschool Centers on Education™) Family Engagement Specialist (new position); Cinda Hudson as a student service provider at PHS; Renda Songer as a cosmetology instructor at PHS. Hudson will replace Tammy Norris, who is retiring from the district in December after more than 36 years of service.

• APPROVED resignations from Patricia Hamil, TACE site coordinator at Northside Primary School and Tambra Norris, a PHS teacher.

• APPROVED an AgriLife Extension Adjunct Faculty agreement for the 2013-14 school year.

• HEARD an update on the PISD Interlocal Agreement with the Palestine YMCA.

• HEARD an update on PISD's student iPad program.

• APPROVED the appointment of board member Janie Sepulveda as a trustee to serve as Anderson County Appraisal District representative.

• APPROVED the consent agenda, which included: minutes of the Sept. 16 board meeting, bills paid in September, financial report, monthly investment report, tax collection report, budget amendments and donations.

• HEARD a financial update from PISD Director of Business Services David Atkeisson.

• HEARD Superintendent's Report including: Northside Primary's new drop-off and pick-up locations for parents and buses, enrollment report, election information and update on Fall Team of Eight training.