The Huffman school district, along with an estimated 20 other Texas school districts, is working toward becoming a District of Innovation.
Huffman ISD passed a resolution during its Aug. 1 board meeting to initiate the process of becoming a DI and formed a committee of teachers, parents, campus administrators and local business owners. That committee met Aug. 11 to provide input on the plan for Huffman ISD.
“In previous years, Huffman ISD had a flexible schedule which included late arrival for students on Wednesday and we learned we would need to find another option for this to continue,” Huffman ISD Assistant Superintendent Joel Nolte said. “Through becoming a DI, we learned we could continue with the late arrival day on Wednesdays but also be flexible with teacher certifications to hire more for our Career and Technical Education classes and school class size opportunities. We started the process under one premise, the late arrival days, and it grew to the discovery of other opportunities.”
Huffman ISD posted all of the information regarding becoming a DI on its website and is in the midst of a 30-day review period so residents can express their concerns or ask questions regarding the plans.
District of Innovation
House Bill 1842, passed in the 84th Texas Legislative Session in spring 2015, provides an opportunity for Texas school districts to be designated as a DI. This will allow those districts to be exempted from a number of state statutes and to have greater local control as the decision makers over their education and instructional model for students, increased freedom and flexibility, with accountability, relative to state mandates that govern education programming and empowerment to innovate and think differently.
In recent information released by Texas Education News, “81 percent of the schools applying for DI are claiming the flexible school day exemption, 67 percent are filing for the teacher certification exemption and 52 percent are filing for DI for the class size waiver,” which are all of the reasons why Huffman ISD is applying to be a DI.
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