Next Thursday, April 5, is the final day to register in order to be eligible to vote in the May 5 Salado ISD bond election.
The website to register is www.votetexas.gov/register-to-vote/
This week I am providing a few facts regarding our school district’s academics, finances, and growth.
This school year our district earned the post-secondary readiness distinction from the Texas Education Agency. This award is based on the following nine criteria: State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) scores, graduation rate, graduation plan rate, percentage of graduates that are college ready, percentage of high school students that complete an advanced or dual-credit course, Advanced Placement (AP) exam scores, SAT and ACT test participation, SAT and ACT test performance, and the percentage of graduates that complete one or more coherent sequences of Career Technology Education (CTE) courses.
There are 1,216 school districts in Texas and we are one of only 58 districts (fewer than 5percent) that received this recognition. Out of the 159 school districts in Central Texas (Austin/Waco regions) we are only of only six districts that received this recognition. We are the only school district to receive this recognition out of all twelve districts in Bell County.
Our school district received the highest (superior) rating and a perfect score of 100 on the Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST) rating. We have the lowest tax rate in our school district in the last 27 years (since the 1989-1990 school year). In the past years we have refinanced previous bonds four times and saved our taxpayers a total of $3,138,337.
Our district’s enrollment has increased from 1,348 to 1,854 students during the past five years. This is a 38percent increase, which is the highest percentage increase of all 81 school districts in the Waco region. Of those 506 additional students, 410 of them (81percent) are resident students that moved into the district, while 96 of them (19percent) are out-of-district transfer students. Over a year ago (January 2017), we discontinued accepting new transfer students with the following three exceptions: children of employees, siblings of current transfer students, and children of active duty military or disabled veterans. As a result, our transfer student enrollment decreased from 254 students last year to 237 students this year. In spite of this, our enrollment still increased by 100 students because we have 117 more resident students move into our district this year.
Our district’s enrollment is projected to increase another 939 students during the next ten years. These enrollment projections are based on only resident student growth and a continuing decline in transfer students. If the May 5 bond election is approved, the new middle school would open in August 2020. By then, our enrollment is projected to increase by another 306 resident students.
Please remember that next Thursday, April 5, is the deadline to register in order to be eligible to vote in the May 5 Salado ISD bond election.