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Godley Independent School District - Empowering Students

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Godley ISD school board trustees adopted a balanced operating budget and lowered the district’s property tax rate for the second year in a row during its regular monthly meeting on August 28, 2023, at Godley High School.

Following a public hearing, the board approved an operating budget of $35.9 million to cover normal expenditures as well as a $2.2 million food service budget, which covers the district’s self-sufficient child nutrition program, and $10.5 million debt service budget, which covers interest and debt payments from bond programs and other capital improvements.  

The lower tax rate of $1.2892 is comprised of $0.7892 for maintenance and operating expenses in the general fund and $0.50 for interest and sinking expenses for debt service.  The new overall rate represents a decrease of 18.5 cents below the previous rate of $1.4746.  The tax rate is levied on each $100 of property valuation.

Executive Director of Finance Bryan Myres reported that the maintenance and operations tax rate declined for the second consecutive year due to growth in local property values.  Myres previously reviewed changes in state law that could lead to an increase in the residential homestead exemption to $100,000. 

Separately, trustees reviewed a tax rate proposal for Hill College of $0.023605. 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 tax rate will be considered at the next monthly meeting.

Assistant Superintendent Jason Karnes presented a draft of the district’s first community report under the Community-Based Accountability System.  The report features data and information on district progress and activities regarding seven important pillars:  student learning and progress, student readiness, engaged and well-rounded students, community engagement and partnerships, professional learning and effective staff, fiscal systems and safety and well-being. The community report will be distributed digitally as well as in print to all district stakeholders.

Trustees approved a list of innovative courses that enable students to master knowledge, skills and competencies not included in the essential knowledge and skills of state-required curriculum. GHS courses include:  Introduction to Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Flight, Entrepreneurship II; Practicum in Entrepreneurship; Emergency Medical Technician - Basic; Advanced Floral Design; Kinesiology I - II; Advanced Video Game Programming; Agriculture Leadership, Research and Communications; General Employability Skills; PAL I - II; Sports Medicine I - III. 

Board members adopted a resolution for a good cause exception to a new state law requiring a licensed police office at all school campuses.  Instead, the district will continue to use officers from the new Godley ISD Police Department as well as school guardians to provide armed security.  Guardians are staff members who volunteer and undergo training and other requirements in order to carry a weapon on campus.

Also in school safety and security and the police department, the board approved an inter-jurisdictional pursuit policy agreement with the Greater Dallas-Fort Worth Regional Law Enforcement Mutual Aid Task Force.  Also to align with Johnson County, board members approved public safety software from SOMA Global that includes computer-aided dispatch, records management, report writing, property and evidence keeping and other critical incident and operations management.  Trustees also appointed new school guardians.

Reports to the board included:

  • Superintendent Dr. Rich Dear announced that district enrollment currently totaled 3,007 students - up 196 (or almost 7%) from the previous year and up 114 from the first day of school. 

  • 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 the start for refurbishment of the athletic field at Legacy Elementary School.

  • Nikki Nix, the district’s director of career and technical education, presented new branding for The WILD including logos for programs of study and student-run enterprises that will be located in the future four-story center at Godley High School.

  • Karnes provided the first 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.  The administration will continue work on the plan and present a final recommendation to the board at a future meeting,

  • Director of Safety and Well-Being Brian Hunt discussed the School Health Advisory Council. A list of new members will be submitted to the board for approval, and the council will hold several meetings throughout the school year to recommend school health and wellness initiatives.

The board approved minutes from a recent special meeting and the last regular meeting, budget amendments, as well as financial, investment and tax reports. For the current school year, trustees also approved a contract with the Region 11 Education Service Center for instructional, technology, administrative services as well as a memorandum of understanding with the Johnson County Juvenile Board for mandatory placements.  

In other action, the board also extended bank depository contracts with both Wells Fargo Bank and ACS Bank for the 2023-25 biennium.  To comply with recent changes in state law, board members designated ten non-business days for the 2023 and 2024 calendar years for purposes of the Public Information Act.

School trustees have their next regularly scheduled board meeting on Monday, Sept. 25. 

  • Budget
  • School Board