WAXAHACHIE

The Waxahachie ISD Board of Trustees decided on the exterior style of the North Grove Elementary campus during a workshop Monday afternoon. After that decision was made, the board was then updated on traffic studies to possibly implement school zone signage and lights at various campuses.

Corgan vice president David Safir presented four exterior designs of the North Grove Elementary campus during the open meeting.

The first was a classical style resembled the Waxahachie High School. However, Safir did mention the “challenge is bringing it down to a kid-scale.” An art deco-style was then presented, which was similar to the original Marvin Elementary. The third design presented was a "prairie style" that resembled some of the houses built in Waxahachie.

A more modern look was the final design presented. It featured a warm and natural look with wood and large glass windows.

The board of trustees eliminated the prairie and modern style and then discussed the remaining two.

“You can’t go wrong with classical in Waxahachie,” said trustee Joe Langley. The board ultimately agreed and leaned toward the classic look.

Jacob Perry then discussed concerns with school zones, signage and lights that were brought to the attention of the district. He noted the City of Waxahachie and TxDOT conducted traffic studies for the WHS and Coleman Junior High campuses, and a survey for the Wilemon STEAM Academy campus is underway.

Studies showed there to be less than five percent of pedestrian traffic at the high school, so they did not have any suggestions on crosswalks.

“I think we should knock down the speed limit and maybe put some speed restriction bumps — not like the bumps at Coleman but some that will slow them down,” Perry said. He noted a main crosswalk for students and car riders will also be painted.

“For Coleman, everything recommended was done. I’ve requested to the city to put a flashing yellow light above the first warning sign across the crosswalk on North Gate, which is between the school and Walmart.”

Perry said the city will analyze its budget and will get back to him on the probability of installation.

Even though the traffic study for Wilemon is ongoing, Perry has discussed with the city about a crosswalk on Bryson and Second Streets.

“In my opinion, […] I don’t see them knocking down the speed limit on Bryson to 20 [miles-per-hour because we have that huge parking lot that separates the actual campus from that area of the road.”

Trustee Kim Kriegel pointed out the lack of crosswalk personnel across U.S. Highway 77 toward the bank.

DISTRICT TRANSFERS

Mike Morgan, WISD Director of Student and Campus Services, discussed data he collected that pertained to inter-district transfers and campus capability utilization. Morgan reported that capacity at the elementary level is at 88 percent, the junior high campuses are at 78 percent and the high school is at 77 percent.

Morgan agreed that "there was some abuse" when it came to inter-district transfers.

Morgan suggested that “students who move the summer prior to or during their fifth or eighth-grade year may remain at the previous year’s campus pending an approved application.”

Board president Dusty Autrey questioned how to address the policy when North Grove opens. “On a re-zoning year, I don’t know if you can have that policy," Morgan explained. "But, on a non-rezoning year, it tries to provide that stability for those students.”

Morgan said he has about five to 10 students who would qualify for the policy on an annual basis.

UNTANGLING THE WEB

Advancements in the campus websites is a popular topic brought up by Waxahachie ISD Interim Superintendent Bonny Cain.

Communication Director Jenny Bridges stated she has addressed the situation by contracting the current webmaster for 20 to 25 hours a week.

“Our current webmaster has worked on a contract base with us for about eight years now, and she works about 10 hours a week. That is perfectly efficient for updating the website, but as far as making any significant change or making it better, it doesn’t really allow her time to do that.”

This will double the time spent on updating the websites and she will also work as a graphic designer. She would travel to campuses and meet with administration once a week.

Bridges also discussed the implementation of Monsido. This technology would assess district websites to catch typos and broken links. An additional $25,000 a year would be needed to pay the webmaster and incorporate the technology. The board supported this idea, and a full-time contract would be implemented when the budget is revised.

The board was given the option to discuss the district safety and security audit in a group presentation or by individual meetings. Unanimously, the board decided the paper update was enough.

The board adjourned at 6:52 p.m. into the regular meeting.

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Ashley Ford | @aford_news | 469-517-1450