October 28, 2019 Board Meeting Summary

Board of Trustees – Meeting Summary

October 28, 2019


Board Recognizes Students & Staff

National AP Scholar - AP Scholar with Distinction Awards

Twenty-one students have been named as National AP Scholars - AP Scholars with Distinction. The AP Scholar with Distinction designation is awarded to students who average a minimum of 3.5 on all their AP exams and score 3 or more on at least five of these exams.

The 2019-2020 Allen High School National AP Scholars - AP Scholars with Distinction awardees are Eden Chen; Sarah Chen; Chris Deng; David S. Edgemon; Sumadhwa Guruprasad; Shabab Haque; Rachel M. Hong; Harry S. Kang; Angela Liu; Kevin Luong; Siddhi S. Malvankar; Priya Mandava; Huy B. Nguyen; Avani N. Putcha; Faiza Rahman; Wasif Reaz; Roderick Kobe C. Seto; Pranay P. Srivastava; Yi Jun Yang; Angela J. Yeung; Ethan Zhao.

TASSP Region 10 Outstanding Principal of the Year  

Jill Stafford, Principal of Lowery Freshman Center, has been selected to represent the Texas Association of Secondary School Principals as the Region 10 Outstanding Principal of the Year. TASSP recognizes outstanding principals and assistant principals

from the 20 regional Education Service Centers in the state. School administrators are nominated and chosen by their peers within their regions. Nominations are based upon exemplary performance and outstanding leadership. As a region winner, Stafford is eligible to compete for the state title of Texas Principal of the Year.

Jill has been the principal of Lowery for the past seven years. She also served as a house and associate principal at Allen High School, and she has 27 total years of experience in education. 

Employees of the Month

Each month, the Allen ISD Human Resources Department recognizes one elementary teacher, one secondary teacher, and two district employees (anyone other than a classroom teacher) as the Employees of the Month. The monthly recognitions are sponsored by The Foundation For Allen Schools and Credit Union of Texas.

The Board of Trustees was proud to recognize the following honorees:

  • Elementary Teacher of the Month: Elizabeth Yearwood at Bolin Elementary.
  • Secondary Teacher of the Month: John Garrott at Allen High School.
  • Employee of the Month: Jeff Kungle in the Technology Department. 
  • Employee of the Month: Julie Spielman from Kerr Elementary


Board Holds Public Hearing on Financial Accountability Rating 

The Board of Trustees held a public forum to discuss the financial accountability system known as Schools FIRST (Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas). For the 2019 FIRST rating (fiscal year 2017-2018), Allen ISD earned the highest available rating of “A=Superior” by obtaining a score of 96 out of 100 possible points from 15 measurement indicators. A full description of each measurement indicator is available in the Board Book.


Board Receives Legislative Update

Deron Robinson, General Counsel, and Dr. Maroba Zoeller, Chief Governmental Affairs Officers, provided the Trustees with an update on legislative issues. Specifically, they discussed the major components of HB3 (the school funding bill) and the impact it will have on Allen ISD.


Board Receives Update on AISD/Collin College Partnership

The Board of Trustees received an update on the Intergovernmental Participation Agreement between Allen ISD and Collin College. The Intergovernmental Participation Agreement provides that the District will make a payment to Collin College for design and construction of a designated Allen ISD Dual Credit Center. Collin College will construct the center on the site of the new Collin College Technical Center scheduled to open in Fall 2020. This will allow Allen ISD students exclusive use of the facility for a term of 50 years, in which Allen ISD students may enroll in at least three different types of college courses: dual credit; dual credit leading to an associate’s degree; and academic dual credit tied to advanced technical certification. The Agreement will provide an opportunity for Allen ISD students to obtain an associate’s degree or technical certification by the time they graduate from Allen ISD.

Within the agreement, the total payment by Allen Independent School District to Collin College for design and construction costs will be up to but not exceed $12 million. Payment will be made in two $6 million installments – one at the time that design and construction costs exceed 50% of the total budgeted cost and a second at the time when Collin College receives the Certificate of Occupancy.


Trustees Approve Allen ISD’s Annual Financial & Compliance Report

Each year, Allen ISD’s fiscal accounts undergo an audit from a Texas-certified or public accountant holding a permit from the State Board of Public Accountancy. For fiscal year 2018-2019, the audit was conducted by Evans & Knauth, PLLC, and an Annual Financial and Compliance Report was compiled as a result of the audit. After review, the Board of Trustees approved Allen ISD’s Annual Financial and Compliance Report.


Board Approves Purchase of 6 Special-Needs School Buses

The Board of Trustees approved the purchase of six 39-passenger special-needs school buses with chair lifts. The total cost of the purchase is $636,110, which will require a budget amendment to add this amount to the 2019-20 Transportation budget.

The Operations Department recommended the purchase of six additional Special Education buses to support current services as they relate to students with special needs, as well as anticipated growth within the program.

Before the purchase, Allen ISD had 38 Special Education buses in its fleet, 32 of which have daily routes. There was a need to add three additional routes to accommodate the growth in our PPCD program. The Transportation Department faced a challenge in that each route has its own specific bus needs (i.e. chair lifts, star seats, integrated seats, regular seating.) Each of these buses are configured differently to accommodate student needs, meaning they cannot be interchanged routinely with one another.


Board Adopts Amendment to District of Innovation Plan

The Board of Trustees have adopted an amendment to the local District of Innovation plan that could potentially provide increased local control over group health benefits. 

Background: At their November 28, 2016 regular meeting, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to adopt the Local Innovation Plan which had been developed by the Allen ISD Local Innovation Committee and approved by the District Improvement & Planning Committee by the required majority vote. The Commissioner was so notified, and the Local Innovation Plan was implemented.

District administrators determined a need for more flexibility in scheduling and drafted a proposal for an Amendment to the Local Innovation Plan, which was approved unanimously by the District Improvement & Planning Committee and was approved by the board unanimously on June 26, 2017. An Amendment to the Local Innovation Plan addressing the need for flexibility in contracts and minimum days of service was also approved by the District Improvement & Planning Committee and unanimously approved by the board on January 22, 2018. A proposal for an Amendment to extend the exemption that had been obtained in the original Local Innovation Plan from Texas Education Code Chapter 21: Section 21.003 Teacher Certification was approved by the District Improvement & Planning Committee and approved by the Board October 22, 2018.

On September 17, 2019, a proposal for an Amendment to the current local innovation which would allow exemption to Texas Education Code: §22.004(i) was presented by Deron Robinson, General Counsel, and Shelia Smith to the District Improvement & Planning Committee.

TEC: §22004(i) enacts preclusion from providing alternative Uniform Group Coverage Program once the program of coverages under Chapter 1579, Insurance Code is implemented. The current process allows no flexibility in the design of group health insurance benefits to fit the needs of all Allen ISD employees. This provision also prohibits the District from procuring group health insurance benefits that may provide better coverages for its employees and at a lower cost. The exemption sought would allow that flexibility for the district.

The District Improvement & Planning Committee approved the proposal by the required majority vote. The Amendment has been posted for the required thirty days, and DIPC recommends that Amendment for approval of the Board.

Administrative Recommendation: The Board should adopt the attached Amendment to Local Innovation Plan, as recommended.


Next Board Meeting 

The next regular meeting of the Allen ISD Board of Trustees is scheduled for Monday, November 20 at 7 p.m. at Allen City Hall.