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Recap Of June 10, 2019 Frisco ISD Board of Trustees Meeting

June 12, 2019 15:12 PM

Last night, new Frisco ISD Board of Trustee Members Gopal Ponangi and Natalie Hebert were sworn in for their first term in office. The Frisco Chamber of Commerce looks forward to working with them for the betterment of our community. Additionally, Trustee Chad Rudy was sworn in after his re-election and then was elected by his fellow trustees as the Board President. Trustee John Classe was elected Vice President, as well as the Frisco ISD representative on the EDC Board. Trustee Debbie Gillespie was elected by her peers as the Board’s Secretary.

The FISD Board received its full 2019-20 Budget Presentation by Frisco ISD staff, which you can view here.

House Bill 3, which was signed into law yesterday by Governor Greg Abbott, will fundamentally change the way school finance works in Texas. At the Frisco ISD level, the new law provides compression that will lead to a 9% reduction in the property tax rate – resulting in a reduction of $35 million in revenue to the district that would have come from local property taxpayers. However the state will send Frisco ISD $18.6 million in new funding, and the district is expected to pay $41.1 million less in recapture to the state under HB3, although that number is still a projection. Overall, the new law, combined with the changes that were passed by voters in the TRE in November 2018, provides a healthy amount of new dollars for the district, while at the same time providing a reduction in local property taxes.

With this new funding, the district plans to add 120 new secondary teacher positions and 30.5 elementary teachers, in addition to other support positions. Teachers can expect a $2,000 pay raise, plus an additional $500 if they have been teaching for more than five years. The charts below provide a projection on teacher salaries increases and a pie graph of projected overall district spending in the 2019-20 school year:

It is worth noting that House Bill 3 provides additional funding to provide full-day Pre-K for eligible students, a requirement of the bill. However, FISD is continuing to evaluate how it will transition from a half-day program to a full-day program and as a result has not included financial projections for the expanded program in the budget. The FISD Board approved the 2019-20 budget at a special meeting on Wednesday, June 12, 2019.

The Board also discussed an expanded “Brain Break” program, which you can read more about from Frisco Chamber member, Community Impact Newspaper.

Finally, the FISD Board discussed its district of innovation plan, including potential amendments. The Frisco Chamber spoke in support of additional flexibilities to ensure that subject matter experts from the business community would be eligible to potentially teach in a classroom, even if they don’t have a teaching certificate at the time of hire, as we feel this could benefit our future workforce. You can read more about this in last week’s advocacy update. Additionally, the Board discussed proposals to require teachers to be on probationary contracts for two years instead of one, reduce requirements on attendance in order to receive a grade in any K-12 course and give additional flexibility to administrators for student discipline at the elementary school level. The Board approved these proposals, which are subject to Texas Education Agency approval, at the special meeting on Wednesday, June 12, 2019.

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