Board Briefs
News from the Spring Branch ISD Board of Trustees

Summary of Meeting

At the start of the meeting, a moment of silence was held to commemorate 26 people, including 20 young students and six adults, who were shot and killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newton, Conn., on Dec. 14, 2012.

In honors and recognitions, a Memorial Middle School counselor’s secretary whose bright smile lights up the front office area was named December Employee of the Month, while Pine Shadows Elementary parent and Bank of America employee Adriana Fernandez was named Volunteer of the Month.

During an earlier held Special Meeting, Trustees approved the Superintendent of School’s annual evaluation. The Board of Trustees issued a statement praising district leadership under Duncan F. Klussmann, Ed.D.

Employee & Volunteer of the Month - We Thank You
Memorial Middle School counselor’s secretary Vicki Kahanek was recognized as the district’s December Employee of the Month. Vicki, who has worked for more than five years for SBISD, assists students, parents and the middle school’s counseling team. “There is no situation that she can’t handle. Vicki always has a smile on her face and goes above and beyond in her duties and responsibilities. She never hesitates to take initiative and help us with any situation we encounter,” counselors Diana Peters, Sarah Katy Smith and Liz Rushing stated in their nomination.

December’s Volunteer of the Month is Adriana Fernandez. Since January, Ms. Fernandez has logged more than 170 volunteer hours at Pine Shadows, which has allowed her to earn a very generous grant for the school through the Bank of America Charitable Foundation. She works 30 hours a week at Bank of America, but still finds time to volunteer. Adriana even spent one week of vacation volunteering at the school. Many consider her a tremendous role model for volunteers and other Bank of America employees.

New Academic Calendars

Among items approved unanimously in the routine Consent Agenda were the 2013-14 and 2014-15 Academic Calendars. Under next year’s calendar, classes will begin in SBISD on Monday, Aug. 26, 2013. The first semester will conclude Dec. 20, 2013. The final day of instruction will be held on June 4, 2014. The 2014-15 Academic Calendar was also approved. Decisions on the new calendars followed months of local review, study and discussion by district committee that included staff, parents and community members.


Dual Language Program Discussion
Associate Superintendent of Curriculum & Instruction Jennifer Blaine presented a report to Board members on draft recommendations of the Secondary Dual Language Task Force. This task force recommends that all dual language students, including those in one way dual language and two way dual language program models, be served in secondary schools.

SBISD now offers dual language programs at three elementary campuses – Cedar Brook, Pine Shadows and Sherwood elementaries. One middle school program also operates at Westchester Academy for International Studies. The task force collected data about current dual language students to help guide recommendations.

The task force recommends that Spring Woods and Spring Forest middle schools accept dual language students and Spring Oaks Middle be considered a third possible option. In addition, Westchester Academy for International Studies would continue to be another option with a dual language lottery. At the high school level, Spring Woods and Stratford high schools would first implement such a program. Trustees may vote next month on task force recommendations.

Superintendent's Evaluation
In separate Special Meeting action, Trustees approved the Superintendent’s annual evaluation, and on behalf of the district Board of Trustees, Board President Pam Goodson released the following statement on Dr. Klussmann’s yearly review:

“Dr. Klussmann continues to serve Spring Branch ISD with exceptional focus, vision and integrity. Dr. Klussmann exhibits a level of commitment to his students, staff, and community that is unmatched, making him one of the best Superintendents in the state and country.

“Under his leadership, the District has developed the ambitious goal of doubling the number of students who complete some form of higher education, a goal that will challenge the system and raise the bar for all stakeholders. He is personally invested in the success of all students, building positive relationships along the way. This investment is demonstrated through the innovative SKY Partnership, support of the PIQE parenting program and the development of the Spring Branch Plan. He has embraced the challenge of changing the culture in the system to ensure that all students have equal opportunities for success.

“Dr. Klussmann continues to support SBISD staff and faculty by providing opportunities for professional growth and employee success. He is fully committed to developing strong campus leadership and placing effective principals and teachers at each and every campus. He is a compassionate leader who extends an open line of communication with every employee in the district. Dr. Klussmann is highly visible and engaged in every aspect of every campus, a quality his employees recognize and appreciate.

“Dr. Klussmann’s relationship with the community is one of utmost respect. He values community engagement and recognizes the importance of establishing networks that can provide valuable information and resources for the district. By creating and nurturing community collaborations (Good Neighbor, Parent U and the SpringBoard Mentor Program, etc.), he empowers community stakeholders, resulting in improved student achievement.

“Dr. Klussmann is an excellent steward of taxpayers’dollars. He continues to exercise a fiscally conservative approach to budgeting, which has resulted in another unqualified opinion from the auditors. His leadership over the 2007 Bond Program has resulted in all projects being completed on time and on budget. As a result of his vision and extraordinary focus, Dr. Klussmann led the charge of the collaborative partnership between SBISD, KIPP and YES resulting in a $2.1 million grant award from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

“In closing, Dr. Klussmann is an extraordinary leader who continues to perform at the highest level. He is ambitious in his vision, steadfast in his commitment to student achievement and passionate about public education. We thank him for his remarkable service.

In other action...
  • Heard a report on School Board Member Training for 2012
  • Held a first reading of policy on TASB Policy Update 95
  • Adopted local policies on Naming Facilities and Admissions, Interdistrict Transfers
  • Discussed several Board Operating Procedures
This publication is distributed by the SBISD Communications Office. If you have questions or input, please contact Steve Brunsman, Spring Branch ISD Communications Director.