NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - Nacogdoches ISD administrators and board members selected a date to undergo mandatory training following an ultimatum presented by the Texas Education Agency Thursday.
Participants are taking the directive in stride.
School board members are accustomed to spending time in all kinds of meetings, but there's a Texas Education Agency mandatory training coming up November 9 and 10 for Nacogdoches ISD that was never anticipated.
The district learned one day before a TEA accountability committee visit last month that TEA deputy commissioner of governance had several concerns about NISD'S turnaround plan for three "improvement required" campuses. Interim Superintendent Sandra Dowdy doesn't know what the concerns are specifically.
"I can't say at this time, nor do I know if there is anything wrong with the plan," Dowdy said. "It's just that we're not going to approve them until you've gone through the governance training."
Which is being taught the role of a board member. NISD board president Steve Green calls it a 101 class that he's willing to take.
"We got to do what got to do to get our kids, if it will get us more focused, then it will be a good thing," said Steve Green, the NISD school board president.
Pam Fitch, a newcomer to the board, is taking a similar positive approach.
"I think it will be great for us," Fitch said. "I don't perceive it to be punitive in any way."
"I think it's a solid plan," Fitch said. "What I would really love to see is some really innovative, out of the box thinking and some out of the box approaches."
"Regardless if we have to wait to get it approved, we're going to be moving on in the direction we need to go in," Green said.
"We're not stopping and doing nothing," Dowdy said. "We're continuing with our implementation plan so that we can resolve the issue."
That's what the TEA wants until the district receives notice regarding approval or rejection of the turnaround plan.
The TEA is requiring all participants in any one district to attend the training together. When so many school districts voiced opposition to a four-day training, the state reduced it to two 12-hour sessions.