Waxahachie School District Trustees on Monday approved the completion plans of the secured entrance construction project for six schools in the district.

Ryder Appleton informed the board these schools will have secured entrances by the beginning of school.

Included in the last phase of the project were Clift Elementary, Felty Elementary, Finley Junior High, Howard Junior High and Global High School.

“This will complete the project. All the campuses have their security access improved,” Appleton said.

Construction at the other schools in the district, including the Waxahachie High School and the Ninth Grade Academy, has been completed.

“At each school, visitors’ access will be limited to the vestibule at the school’s entrance. Access beyond that point will be controlled by the school’s staff,” Appleton said.

“Global will be the easiest to complete. For visitors, we will set up a doorbell and a video camera to be screened at the front desk,” Appleton said. Many of the other schools required additional wall, window or door construction to create a controlled safe barrier.

Appleton gave the trustees a video overview of the schools completed and illustrated the additional safety features of each as well as other upgrades to the school.

A related action item to the security project was the architectural fees for the project’s engineering. Ron Lueck of Huckabee addressed the changes in the fees to the trustees during their workshop session of Monday’s scheduled meeting.

During the regular session, trustee Floyd Bates asked the board to consider other engineering sources for future projects.

“We need to be sensitive to the selection of engineering services, not get locked into one firm,” Bates said.   

The trustees unanimously approved the $53,507 invoice from Huckabee.

During the workshop session, Director of Public Relations Dr. Nicole Mansell described an attendance improvement incentive plan to the trustees. The plan would give the students who have a perfect attendance record a chance for various rewards.

“One of the rewards would be a new car donated by Waxahachie Autoplex. Waxahachie Autoplex contacted me offering the new car to a student who meets the district’s requirements. Other districts in the area partner with dealerships for similar programs,” Mansell said.    

The trustees discussed selection criteria and how to keep the students motivated.

“The ultimate goal is to get these students in class so they get all the instructional material,” Interim Superintendent David Truitt said.

Truitt gave the trustees an update on House Bill 5 and TASB Board Policy Update 97 during the workshop session.

During the regular session, Update 97 along with the 2013-2014 Student Code of Conduct was unanimously approved.

Other agenda items unanimously approved by the board were:

•The Professional Development Appraisal calendar and appraiser list.

•Ellis County Extension faculty as adjunct members of the WISD staff.

•The recognition of Ellis County Texas 4-H as being eligible for extra curricular status.

•The nomination of Mike Robinson as the districts’ delegate to the TASB convention and nominating Floyd Bates as alternate delegate.