February 24, 2017
Bastrop ISD Initiates Process for District of Innovation Status
(Bastrop) – The Bastrop Independent School District Board of Trustees held a public hearing at its February meeting and based upon input gathered from stakeholders, approved a resolution to explore becoming a District of Innovation.
Established by the 84th Texas Legislature, the District of Innovation designation gives school districts in Texas access to many of the flexibilities afforded open enrollment charter schools. The designation also provides the district with certain exemptions from sections of the Texas Education Code that may inhibit the goals of the district.
“Some areas we will consider seeking exemptions relate to curriculum, instructional methods, campus governance, parental involvement, and modifications to the school calendar, for example,” said Steve Murray, Superintendent of Bastrop ISD. “We will also examine options in Career and Technical Education that could give us flexibility in recruiting and hiring so that we have access to the best recruits in key industries. That could be very impactful on student learning in the classroom.”
The local innovation plan, which would be in place for five years, would be developed by a local committee made up of nearly 60 district stakeholders, including parents, teachers, business and community members, school administrators, district leaders, students, board trustees, and teacher organization representatives. Their responsibility would be to ensure that the local innovation plan aligns with the Strategic Action Plan approved by the board in August 2016. The committee would also consider academic needs, staffing requirements, and other district goals. The Board of Trustees approved the committee members charged with exploring district of innovation status at its February meeting.
“We anticipate our innovation plan to be unique to Bastrop, incorporating our local values, needs, and the goals that are important to this community,” said Barry Edwards, Deputy Superintendent. “This is an exciting time, and we are happy to partner with our teacher organizations as well as so many constituents around the district to help us determine what’s best for Bastrop ISD.”
Bastrop ISD is located 30 miles southeast of Austin and serves nearly 10,600 students from the communities of Bastrop, Cedar Creek, Red Rock, Rockne, Paige and other rural areas of Bastrop County.
For more information, contact Kristi Lee at (512) 772-7106.