Board notes: June 27, 2017

Garland ISD Trustees approved the district’s new Strategic Plan at their June 27 meeting. This set of goals and measures will lead GISD decision-making and progress for the next five years. A strategic planning committee representing teachers, administrators, parents, community members and local businesses developed the proposal. Its five goals include student success, student/parent/community engagement, operational excellence, employees and organizational improvement, and financial stewardship. Visit the Strategic Plan web page to view the entire document.

The committee also crafted a set of value statements for the district. These core beliefs will become part of GISD’s identity in addition to its mission and vision statements. They read:

  • We believe every student can learn.
  • We know every student deserves our best.
  • We value and celebrate all cultures.
  • We respect all students, families, staff and communities.
  • We demonstrate ethical behavior.

Education Transforms Lives.

During informational presentations June 27, the board received financial projections for 2017-18. While staff recommended potential new positions and initiatives such as Balanced Literacy, possible budget reductions were also identified. Discussions included the impact from the recent legislative session, such as raised contributions for GISD to the Teacher Retirement System. Trustees will now consider staff raises in preparation for adopting next year’s budget.

The board received information about 17 academic and enrichment opportunities available over the summer as well. More than 7,000 students are being served through content mastery classes, retests and fun activities, such as coding, robotics, cooking, emergency preparedness and more.

Community forums for GISD’s superintendent search have been announced. The public is invited to Rowlett and South Garland high schools, as well as the Curtis Culwell Center, from 7-8 p.m. on July 18. An additional forum will also be held from 7-8 p.m. July 19 at RHS. For more information, visit

Recognizing student accomplishments, Trustees presented seventh and eighth-grade academic pentathlon teams from Austin Academy for Excellence with Evidence of Excellence awards. Both teams placed second in the nation at the 2017 United States Academic Pentathlon National Competition. Since its inaugural contest in 2014, Austin Academy has finished among the top two competitors every year.

The board also approved new administrative and principal appointments. See the table below for details.


New Position

Previous Position

Jason Adams

Area Director

Principal, Beaver Technology Center

Carmen Blakey

Principal, Hudson MS

Assistant Principal, Sachse HS

Bobbie Carter

Principal, Cooper ES

Assistant Principal, Herfurth ES

John Fishpaw

Principal, Austin Academy

Assistant Principal, Garland HS

James Iorio

Principal, Montclair ES

Principal, Frisco ISD

Andrea Kleckner

Principal, Park Crest ES

Assistant Principal, Park Crest ES

Kara Onken

Principal, Hickman ES

Assistant Principal, Chapel Hill ISD

Brandy Schneider

Principal, Armstrong ES

Assistant Principal, Sachse HS

Aurora Trichell

Principal, Roach ES

Assistant Principal, Southgate ES

Brian Trichell

Principal, Bullock ES

Assistant Principal, Walnut Glen Academy

Melissa True

Principal, Heather Glen ES

Principal, Wylie ISD

Adam Varrassi

Principal, Lyles MS

Principal, Dallas ISD

Jeffrey Waller

Principal, Stephens ES

Assistant Principal, Steadham ES

Additional board meeting information can be found in the online agenda and archived video, chaptered by items.