By Lindsay Starr Platt
The Board of Trustees of Belton Independent School District (ISD) met for a regular meeting on Monday night. The board of trustees approved the considerations for contracts with two architectural firms for the design of both the new high school and an elementary school to implement into their plan “Roadmap to BISD 2025”. “Roadmap to BISD 2025” is the adopted to plan to help serve the Long-Range Facilities Planning which is a ten-year plan to serve the growing Belton school district.
O’Connel Robertson Architects of Austin were awarded the contract for the second comprehensive high school. The contract for a new elementary school was awarded to WRA Architects of Dallas.
If funding is approved in a 2017 bond election by voters, construction for new elementary school could begin that year and the high school could break ground in 2018.
“The word is out that our community is a great place to live and raise a family,” said Randy Pittenger, President, Board of Trustees, Belton ISD. “That is bringing more students to our schools.”
Phil Haggerty, Assistant Superintendent, Business Services, Belton ISD, opened the meeting with the 2016-2017 Budget update. Haggerty presented that Belton ISD’s will have a projected enrollment this coming school year of 11,202 students. The proposed total revenue per student is $8,396.
After the presentation of the budget update that has an estimated expenditure of $94,053,295 for this year, the board of trustees met for a closed session and reconvened in an open session. The open session was led with awards and recognitions of staff, students and community members. Students and coaches were also recognized for academic and athletic team accomplishments in state and regional qualifiers and championships to include; SkillsUSA National Competition, 2016 ESC Region 12 Elementary Teacher of the Year, Big Red Community Partner and Project Apple Tree.
This month’s Big Red Community Partner award was awarded to ASCO Equipment, which donated a forklift for students to train with and waived the rental fee for students working toward a Level 5 Forklift Certification, and helped students learn to become skilled forklift operators and earn certification, and.
LaGay Pittenger was presented an award for the 2016 ESC Region 12 Elementary Teacher of the Year. Pittenger has been teaching for 23 years at Lakewood Elementary. Pittenger is now also a nominee for the Texas Teacher of the Year.
Project Apple Tree expects to help about 1,500 students in ISD and provide each participant with a new outfit, school supplies, a dental care kit, and soap and a washcloth. Volunteers are welcome to help on August 15 to distribute the supplies. Several “apples” were “picked” on Monday night by board members and attendees to help make a child’s first day of school more enjoyable.
David Tuma, Publisher, The Belton Journal was honored on behalf of the newspaper providing 150 years of service to the community and Belton schools. The Belton Journal is the oldest continually published newspaper in the state of Texas and continues to provide stories and highlights of students, staff and events.
Belton ISD announced their new head baseball coach, Mark Krueger. Krueger was welcomed by the board of trustees and introduced to attendees of the meeting. Krueger has been with Belton ISD for 23 years as a classroom teacher and coach.