Posted Date: 08/29/2017
Greetings! Welcome to the 2017 – 2018 school year! It has been a busy and exciting time around the district as we begin our journey toward excellence. And, oh, the places we’ll go!
I want to start by celebrating our success—it is official, the Blanco Independent School District MET STANDARD in the Texas Education Agency accountability system and was one of only 58 districts in the state of Texas to earn a Postsecondary Distinction. The postsecondary distinction – the only distinction at the district level under the state accountability system – takes into account factors such as graduation rates, ACT/SAT participation and performance, Career and Technical Education (CTE) graduates, and dual-credit course completion rates. In addition, Blanco High School has been recognized as one of the top high schools in the nation by U.S. News and World Report! BHS also earned 4 distinctions in the Texas Education Agency accountability system. The distinctions include: Academic Achievement in ELA/Reading, Academic Achievement in Mathematics, Academic Achievement in Social Studies, and Postsecondary Readiness. Blanco Middle School earned 1 distinction for being in the top 25% for student progress. Finally, Blanco Elementary School earned 3 distinctions: top 25% for student progress, Academic Achievement in ELA/Reading and Postsecondary Readiness. I take great pride in our ratings, and I certainly recognize the fact that this achievement was the result of a collective and relentless effort throughout our district. Congratulations to the staff and students of Blanco ISD!!
I hope that you are settling into the routine of a new school year and are ready for all the challenges that the year will present. I’d like to begin by reminding everyone of our mission in the Blanco Independent School District. The mission and purpose of the Blanco Independent School District is to provide all students in the district an educational program which will allow them to develop to their full potential intellectually, physically, and socially in order to be responsible citizens and contributing members of society. As an educational community, we shall motivate, guide, direct, and generally encourage morality, self- discipline, personal virtue, team and individual achievement, and the regard for the well-being of self, others, community, and country. Inherent within this mission is the belief that all students can learn and that the Blanco Schools can make a difference in the lives of its students. It is our mission to serve the educational needs of every student in every classroom every day. We welcomed 1015 students into our classrooms on the first day of school, and I know we are up for the task!
Other than a new superintendent, the district leadership team remains intact this year. We are excited to have Jowie Walker as the principal at the Elementary School, Kathryn Korelich at the Middle School, and Keitha StClair at the High School. In addition, Dina Johnson is our Director of Curriculum and Special Programs, Kathryn Rutherford continues as the Director of Special Education, Matt Streger serves as the district Business Manager, James Caudell and Collin Gaskamp keep us up to date with Technology and Tony Petri remains as the Maintenance Director. Although he is a familiar face in Blanco, Coach Bill Tesch is taking on a new role as Athletic Director and Head Football coach.
Because quality relationships are essential to the success of our school district, we will continue to work relentlessly to build and maintain those bonds with all of our stakeholders. I believe it is important to lay a great foundation for open communication between home and school. With that in mind, the district will communicate in a variety of ways to keep the community up to date on happenings in the district. During the school year, I will involve community stakeholders in different committees and organizations to provide a “behind the scenes” look at our school district.
On a financial note, the BISD Board of Trustees approved a $10.6 million dollar working budget for the 2017 – 2018 school year. As we worked toward a balanced budget, our expenses have been reduced, and our tax rate will remain at $1.1962 per $100. We will strive to ensure that Blanco ISD has a solid financial foundation for many years based on sound fiscal decisions. We know that our taxpayers support our schools, and we take that financial responsibility very seriously.
If you have been around our campuses, you know that the year is in full swing. Books have been distributed, desks have been assigned, and class schedules have been memorized. Our band, athletic teams, cheerleaders, and other groups are perfecting their skills and preparing for the exciting year ahead. Many students are already representing the royal blue and gold in various competitions. It’s a great time to be a Blanco Panther!!
As we all settle into the new school year, I am excited about the world of possibilities that this year presents. I invite you to be partners with us as we journey through another school year—visit, volunteer, ask, and through your participation, make our school district even better!
As we look back on the past with pride, we look forward to the future with promise.
Superintendent of Schools
Blanco Independent School District