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Godley Independent School District - Empowering Students

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Godley ISD School Board of Trustees 2023-24

Godley ISD school board trustees heard an updated demographic report during its regular monthly meeting on September 25, 2023, at Godley High School.

Demographer Bob Templeton reviewed current demographics, economic and housing indicators and enrollment growth projections.  Higher interest rates have tempered the Dallas-Fort Worth housing market, but closings and new home prices remain steady. Current work on the Cresson relief route along U.S. Highway 377 as well as planned expansion of Farm to Market Road 1187 both will bring new residents to the school district.

Templeton’s key takeaways from the updated analysis, which included a review of future residential activity in the district, were:

  • District enrollment grew by more than 650 students between 2017 and 2022.

  • The district has over 780 lots currently available to build on, with over 16,200 additional lots in the planning stages.

  • Groundwork is currently underway on roughly 830 lots that will impact the district in the next 1-2 years.

  • Under the moderate growth scenario, campuses could begin to experience crowding in the 2026-27 school year.

  • The district is forecasted to enroll nearly 4,000 new students by 2028-29 and nearly 4,900 by 2032-33

  • The high growth scenario could result in 5,138 new students by the 2028-29 year.

Chief Academic Officer Dr. Airemy Caudle provided the second review of the district improvement plan, which includes a comprehensive needs assessment and other data to determine goals, projects and resources for the school district, and first review of campus improvement plans.  Plans are based on seven pillars through the Community-Based Accountability System.  The administration will continue work on the plans and present a final recommendation to the board at a future meeting.

Board members discussed a change to the District of Innovation plan that allows schools to waive certain portions of state law in order to provide flexibility.  Previous provisions of the innovation plan allowed for the employment of non-certified individuals for career or vocational fields, bilingual education or languages other than English.  The change will allow for additional flexibility for staff members participating in the Teachworthy program, a “grow your own” initiative that helps paraprofessionals earn college degrees and become certified teachers through both hands-on experience and on-the-job training. The change will be presented to the District Education Improvement Committee and then back to the school board for final approval.

Trustees adopted a lower tax rate proposal for Hill College of $0.021423. The previous rate was $0.024210 to fund the two-year junior college, which covers Johnson County.  Per agreements with most school districts in the county, the college tax is adopted by each school board to fund college operations and programs. 

The board adopted a change order amending a previous order approved by trustees in August regarding Phase 2 projects at Godley High School.  The amendment does not affect the dollar amount but includes the contractor’s fee.  This phase includes the high school career and technical education center and competition gymnasium, and the change order is necessary to address infrastructure improvements required by Johnson County Special Utility District as well as other updates not included in early bid documents.  To provide transparency, the administration brought the minor change forward for board approval. 

Appointments were approved to the school district’s Student Health Advisory Committee, which is a group of individuals representing segments of the community to provide advice on coordinated school health programming and its impact on student health and learning. The SHAC provides an efficient, effective structure for creating and implementing age-appropriate, sequential health education programs as well as early intervention and prevention strategies that can easily be supported by local families and community stakeholders.

The board adopted a resolution not authorizing the employment of chaplains in place of school counselors.  Districts must make a choice following enactment of a new state that allows districts to utilize uncertified chaplains to support, services and programs for students.  The district maintains a good relationship with local faith leaders and will continue to utilize these individuals with Fellowship of Christian Athletes, See You at the Pole events, baccalaureate services and responding to tragic events.

Board members discussed a policy change to designate places for all trustees.  If approved, two or three places would be up for election each May.  Candidates would file for a place rather than the board in general. There would be no change in candidate eligibility and residency requirements set by state law.  Trustees would still be elected by plurality through at-large voting and serve staggered three-year terms.  In a plurality voting system, the candidate with the highest number of votes wins.  Trustees will consider the policy change at a future meeting.

Trustees nominated candidates to serve on boards of directors for appraisal districts serving Hood County and Johnson County. 

Reports to the board included:

  • The board heard from Satterfield & Pontikes Construction Company regarding facility progress for Phase 2 projects at GHS including The WILD career and technical education center and competition gymnasium. In addition, REEDER Construction reported on Phase 3 construction for the high school’s fine arts wing as well as refurbishment of the athletic field at Legacy Elementary School.

  • Caudle updated the board on the Emergent Bilingual program regarding students who speak one or more languages other than English.  She reported that this is an area where the district is experiencing significant growth and staff continues to look for ways to help support students and their families as they transition to a new environment.

  • Nikki Nix, director of career and technical education, reported on changes in state accountability reporting for college, career and military readiness.  The Texas Education Agency is updating scaled scores that do not reflect growth in the number of students earning CCMR points.

The board approved minutes from last month’s regular meeting, budget amendments, as well as financial, investment and tax reports. 

In other action, the board adopted a resolution supporting a culture of voting to improve civic engagement and voter turnout among eligible students, employees and community members.  Trustees also approved an amendment to a communications systems agreement with Johnson County regarding public safety voice radio communications, and the board also adopted local policy changes to provide paid leave for police officers or emergency personnel who experience an illness or injury in the line of duty.

School trustees have their next regularly scheduled board meeting on Monday, Oct. 23.

  • School Board