NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - During the 2011 and 2012 school year 500 students transferred out of the Nacogdoches Independent School District. With less than a week left before the upcoming school year superintendent Dr. Fred Hayes is giving parents the option to voice their concerns.
"Our enrollment is 6,400. So, if you take that 500 and add them back to our population, of course it increases the size of our school district," Dr. Hayes said.
Hayes said the district will proactively handle bullying issues, safety issues, and any academic needs.
"We're really just trying to find out from our community members what Nacogdoches ISD can do better. So, it really is an extremely important meeting," Hayes said. "We want to be the best school district we can be for this community."
Being the best includes listening to problems parents and students have.
During Monday night's meeting one mother said she decided to home-school her student after she said the school district did not meet her child's needs.
"My daughter was sexually assaulted at one of the schools and the hardest thing for me was just to get compassion after she had gone through that."
Every parent in the meeting wanted to know what the school district was doing for their child.
"Looking back at an early age what do I need to be preparing our children for?" Noel Cooper said.
Noel Cooper's child will not begin school until next year but he has been comparing districts.
Julie Johnson just moved back to Nacogdoches and is upset with the lack of information provided on the district's web site.
"It's not just the course offerings. I mean there is just no information and there's no good communication where you can make a good choice of where to send your kid," Johnson said.
Hayes said a strong school district is the basis of a strong community, and together they will try their hardest to fix each issue.
Roughly the district receives $5,000 per student each school year.
"Of course it does mean money. We lose money for every student who goes somewhere else, but it's really not about the money," Hayes said. "It's really about the community and the education of the community in Nacogdoches."
Hayes has added several innovative programs since he became the superintendent in 2011. Two main focuses are on careers and college readiness for students.
During Monday's meeting parents said the community will go down hill if students continue to transfer out of the district.