Local program praised in state publication

During Monday's meeting of the Sweetwater ISD (Independent School District) Board of Trustees' meeting, Superintendent Terry Pittman stated in his monthly report that the local Community Captains program was mentioned in a recent TASB (Texas Association of School Boards) newsletter. Pittman shared the information with Diana Freeman, TASB's LTS (Leadership Team Services) senior consultant, who included it in her article found in the state-wide publication.Freeman explained the program as "a group of men from the community who are voluntarily connecting with high school students as mentors." The students have been taken to basketball games by their mentors, spend time with each other and the mentors take an overall interest in each student's lives. "Recently, they took several of the students to a nursing home to visit with residents," wrote Freeman. "Again, a simple connection in the community that demonstrated interest on the part of the schoolchildren while being a gift to the residents in the form of company that helped break the monotony of being homebound." Also during the report, it was noted that the missed instructional day waiver was approved by the Texas Education Agency (TEA), with will note a daily average attendance total. Three days were missed due to inclement weather this school year, with two covered by the make-up days scheduled on Good Friday and Memorial Day. An update was also given from the audit letter from the TEA, as correspondence continues between the group and school district. Results were also shared from exit level retests, as retesting will take place this week.Tax collections were reported at $7,258,084 for the M&O (Maintenance and Operations), or 95.46%, while the I&S (Interest and Sinking) stands at $861,677, or 95.56%. And as of April 15, district enrollment totaled 2,185 students. Since the first day of classes this year, 99 students have been added to the district.Looking ahead, the regular May meeting will include the swearing in of unopposed trustees Mark Meneses and Russ Petty, as well as the newly elected board member to be voted on during the May 10 election. Running for the District 5 seat are Jana Hall and Danny Escobar.Also during the May meeting, the rotation of the board officers will take place. Meneses will serve as board president, with Neal Hoover taking on the role of vice president and Leah Andrews serving as secretary.