Several recognitions were made during the regular May meeting of the Waxahachie ISD board of trustees, with two of those to outgoing trustees, Max Simpson and Lorinda Yates.

Yates was absent due to illness; however, Nicole Mansell read a statement from Yates expressing her thanks and appreciation to the board, in particular, her having been a part of the recent bond program and the renovation of Lumpkins Stadium.

Presenting Simpson, Mansell told of his many accomplishments. 

“In addition to being a board member since 2004, he has held several positions with the district, including assistant superintendent,” said Mansell, who was joined in presenting Simpson with his plaque of appreciation by district superintendent, Thomas Collins.

“I’m normally quiet, but I wanted to say a few words,” Simpson said with a smile. “The only thing I have done longer than being in education for 53 years is being married for 55 years.”

Telling several antidotes about his time in the district, he recalled how he had urged a high school student to become a teacher.

“Now, here she is in our LEAP program, wanting to be an administrator. What a testament,” he said, going on to tell about experiences as an administrator. One of his memorable was when he was assistant superintendent and Charles Sullins was a board trustee.

“I never felt so safe as when he would sit down and take his gun and put it up on the rail of the bench,” he said.

Following his comments, Simpson received a standing ovation.

Other recognitions were made to the media. Certificates of appreciation were presented to Neal White and JoAnn Livingston of the Waxahachie Daily Light and Ken Roberts of KEBC Radio.

“Both of these have always reported the Waxahachie school district and its students in a fair and positive manner,” Mansell said.

Seven of the district’s teachers were recognized for participating in the Leadership Experience for Aspiring Principals program: Brad Andrews, Shelle Blaylock, Theresa Burkhalter, Candace Johnson, Tonya Harris, Jay Thompson and Darla Wilson.

Two schools and their principals were recognized for being a Title I, Part A Distinguished School, for the 2010-2011 school year: Eric Brewster of Dunaway Elementary and Elizabeth Green of Wedgeworth Elementary.                 

Agenda items up for consideration included changing the grading period for grades pre-kindergarten through fifth to a nine-week period. Trustee Floyd Bates asked why not in the secondary, with Collins saying there are UIL requirements for a six-week reporting period. Deputy Superintendent David Truitt said the only issue would be communication with the parents, especially those with children in both primary and secondary schools. The request passed unanimously.

Updating the trustees on funding issues was Assistant Superintendent of Finance Teresa Thomas.

“Of the $830 million of federal money, Waxahachie will receive $1.214 million. This will help our budget process for one year only,” she said, saying that the state funding is still in the Legislature with different versions in the House and Senate. With both, the district stands to lose funding by a wide amount range. “I’m hoping that they will compromise and reduce the amount that we will lose,” she said.

Collins updated the trustees on several issues including the possibility of holding the 2011-2012 graduation at Lumpkins Stadium as opposed to Potter’s House.