PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

March 24, 2014

NISD to begin HB5 self-evaluation

Erinn Callahan
The Port Arthur News

NEDERLAND — Nederland ISD employees will begin the process of assessing the district’s academic accountability this week.

House Bill 5, which passed the Senate in May 2013, requires Texas high school students to pass only five high-stakes tests before graduating, instead of the previous 15. The bill also mandates that each district complete a self-evaluation of academic and financial accountability, assistant superintendent Stuart Kieschnick said at a Monday meeting of the NISD board of trustees.

Kieschnick said that the evaluation allows for a broader analysis of the district’s success, rather than simply looking at test scores.

“There are a lot of things schools do outside of academics,” he said.

Principals at each NISD campus, along with an appointed team of staff members, will evaluate their campus’ success in nine different programs, which include wellness and physical education; community and parental involvement; 21st century workforce; second language acquisition; and dropout prevention.

Each individual campus will use a digital program called Showcase to complete the evaluation, which must be done by May. The administration will then use the evaluations from each campus to complete its own overall assessment of the district. NISD will submit its evaluation in June, Kieschnick said.

Faculty and staff received software training on Friday, March 21.

The self-evaluation allows the district to highlight its successes, Kieschnick said, but also gives them the opportunity to locate areas where improvement is necessary.

“It puts the district in a position to brag on themselves and shine, but also to see some needs,” Kieschnick said.

Email: ecallahan@panews.com

Twitter: @ErinnPA