Nixon-Smiley CISD approves recapture settlement, teacher stipend


The May 9 Nixon-Smiley school board meeting covered many important community issues, including budget, HB 4545 requirements, elementary stipends, student recognition, upcoming events, and safety updates.

A budget amendment to pay for a recapture settlement from 2020-2021 fiscal year was agreed upon.

Deputy Superintendent Jane Dwyer gave an overview on each campus implementation of the accelerated instruction required by HB 4545. Dwyer addressed changes in the honors program increasing class rigor, along with student perseverance.

The update concluded with a summary of the ChallengeMe BadgeMe program, which was started to provide teaching staff with additional training in instructional technology.

A $1,000 stipend for each Nixon-Smiley elementary teacher completing their Reading Academy in August was approved by the board. Each teacher must receive certification to receive the stipend.

The board recognized several students for outstanding accomplishments. These were:

• Senior Martin Moreno, who placed third in the Texas High School Powerlifting Association state competition. Moreno also finished first at NASA National Power lifting Championships in Oklahoma.

• Junior Natalee Mendez, who was recognized for her selection to the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches All-Region team. As a member of the Lady Mustangs, she also finished the season as bi-district champions.

The top ten percent of the graduating class was recognized for outstanding academic achievement. These six students are: valedictorian – Emilie Janicek; salutatorian – David Abundis; Christiana Ramirez; Joslyn Canales; Lizette Macias; and Marissa Esparza.

The monthly safety update presented by Ms. Dwyer included a brief overview of the Ransomed Life presentation. The entire staff was required to attend this training. There was a brief discussion of upcoming required training for board members.

Superintendent Jeff Van Auken during the presentation of the superintendent’s report informed the board of the many awards nights and banquets to take place over the next several weeks culminating with graduation on Friday, May 27 at 7:30 p.m.