3 Tyler ISD administrators set to retire

Published on Tuesday, 8 April 2014 00:47 - Written by Emily Guevara, eguevara@tylerpaper.com

Tyler ISD will say goodbye to three administrators this summer after the board approved their retirements.

Gloria Bell, Head Start director; Darlene Marshall, executive director of elementary education, area 1; and Dr. Karen Raney, director of assessment and accountability, will retire effective Aug. 29.

Ms. Bell has served TISD for 35 years, starting out as an aide at Griffin Elementary School.

“She has done a fabulous job for our school district,” TISD Superintendent Gary Mooring said Monday during a board workshop.

Ms. Marshall has worked in public education for 32 years, 15 of those in TISD.

“She’s done an outstanding job in Tyler and working with her has been a privilege,” Mooring said.

Ms. Marshall will continue to work with TISD in a different capacity as she works with the Boys & Girls Clubs of East Texas.

Dr. Raney has served 29 years in TISD holding various positions before assuming her current role.

Mooring said she knows so much about the state accountability system and has a wealth of knowledge.

“We’re going to really miss her,” he said.

In other business, Kim Tunnell, TISD’s chief leadership and performance officer, presented information about a new part of the district’s accountability rating.

This piece is designed to go beyond performance on the state assessment and show how the district is doing in other areas.

The plan as outlined now would evaluate TISD in nine areas. These are fine arts, wellness and physical education, community and parent involvement, 21st century workforce development, second-language acquisition program, digital learning environment, dropout prevention strategies and gifted and talented education program.

A final area would measure the district’s compliance with required reporting and policy.

TISD still is tweaking the wording on the indicators that will help determine the rating in each category.

“We’re trying to get input from a variety of different groups to formulate our plan,” Ms. Tunnell said.

TISD’s District Planning Committee, central office staff, principals and the Tyler Area Business-Education Council are among those who have looked at and discussed the plan.

Ms. Tunnell said the categories and rubric will be evaluated on an annual basis to determine if it is still appropriate for the district.

One board member raised a question about the validity and comparative nature of such a plan. Because each district is creating its own evaluation measures, a district might try to create an evaluation measure in a way that would make it look good.

Mooring said he doesn’t expect the state to compare districts with each other nor does he expect districts to create plans that would inflate performance.

He said in talking with other superintendents, he expects to see a certain amount of transparency. District leaders know that if every district achieves the highest rating, the state likely would get involved.

This rating system is separate from the rating system that the state uses to judge academic performance on the standardized test. The district is scheduled to present its first ratings report to the public in August.