TISD board to consider academic benchmarks, will not discuss Robert E. Lee name change at Monday meeting

Published on Friday, 13 October 2017 21:33 - Written by

CORY MCCOY, comccoy@tylerpaper.com

The Tyler Independent School District Board of Trustees will take a first look at early academic indicators for the 2017-18 school year during its Monday meeting.

The board is set to review a presentation of the first benchmark tests of the year for campuses districtwide and also look at a campus improvement plan for Dogan Middle School, one of its two remaining “Improvement Required”campuses.

There are no agenda items related to the discussion of renaming Robert E. Lee High School. Over the past two months, dozens of community members have weighed in with their thoughts on whether to keep or change the name.

Board President Fritz Hager released a statement on Friday afternoon, explaining why the board has not set an agenda item for discussion or vote for its October meeting.

“The agenda for the next public meeting of the Tyler ISD Board of Trustees has been set. There is no agenda item related to the renaming of any school on the agenda,” Hager said. “We followed the board policy governing agenda setting, and the issue was not requested as an agenda item by my fellow trustees nor added by me.”

While Hager has publicly stated he is open to changing the name of Robert E. Lee High School, he also said whatever process the board follows would be deliberate.

“Our board is not swayed by forces outside our community,” he said. “We will address this issue on our schedule and in a manner that minimizes distraction, allows us to continue to work on other important items, and gives sufficient time for trustees to gather the input needed to make a decision that is best for all students.”

Hager said it is his hope that this will give more time for people to have conversations about the school district and racial matters - historic and current.

“I know I have personally benefitted from hearing from stakeholders on all sides of this issue, but particularly from people whose backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives are different from mine,” he said. “I trust the wisdom, concern for all students, and the commitment of my fellow board members and respect the way they have modeled authentic, respectful discussions on sensitive and controversial issues. I treasure their friendship and am honored to serve the students of Tyler ISD with them.”

TWITTER: @TMT_Cory

IF YOU GO

WHAT: Tyler ISD Board Meeting

WHEN: 7 p.m. Monday

WHERE: Jim Plyler Instructional Complex, 807 W. Glenwood Blvd.