* TABSE WORD *
* < < < < < February 2023 > > > > > *
Black History Month
It is most vital that we continue to teach and discuss our past, regardless of how repressive and terrible some of it has been. We cannot forget, change or lessen the impact of racism and hate that has affected people of color around the globe throughout all of history. Learn and remember our past, but continue making contributions as we have since before arriving at Jamestown, Virginia in 1619. We are strong and chosen warriors and people! Happy Black History month!
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Happy Valentine's Day
Someone You Should Know
Dr. Mary L. Thomas
Dr. Mary L. Thomas is originally from Dallas, Texas and has been in Austin, Texas for over 50 years. She is the original Family Life International Fellowship’s (FLIF) Clerk and currently, the Operation’s Director. As an active member of FLIF, she serves in numerous capacities at the Greater Calvary Bible Church. As a Trustee, Deaconess, Church Clerk, and Pastor’s Aid Coordinator, she volunteers in serving youth and the community. She received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees from East Texas State University. She earned a doctorate degree from Texas A&M University, College Station. She is Director of the Servant Warrior Leader Rites of Passage process. As the founding President/CEO of Starr Consulting Firm, she conducts professional educational training for students, teachers, parents, administrators, agencies and community members.
As the founding President of the Austin Area Alliance of Black School Educators (Austin AABSE) over 30 years ago, she served as the inaugural President. She is the current president after expanding her leadership on the state and national levels. She is the seventh past president of the Texas Alliance of Black School Educators (TABSE) from 2006 - 2008. Under her leadership, the Faith Based and Aspiring Superintendent’s Symposiums were founded. She also served on the NABSE Board and Foundation Board. She was creator of the Ethics Policy.
She lends her gifts, skills, and talents to uplift all children, especially African American children. Dr. Thomas volunteers on numerous boards with causes that uplift mankind. Dr. Thomas has been in the field of education since 1975 in the roles of Early Childhood- Doctorate level teacher, Assistant Principal, Principal, and central office administrator. She currently serves as Executive Director of State, Federal and Private Accountability in the Austin Independent School District where she oversees over one billion grant fund dollars and compliance. She is a trainer of trainers and certified in fourteen areas in education. Recently, Dr. Thomas was elected as Board of Trustees to the Manor ISD.
Recently, she was recognized and awarded as one of 100 Top Leaders and two Top Outstanding Leadership Awards in 2022 recognition to her contributions to the Fields of Education and Learning by Education 2.0. She is committed to doing the right thing, the right way, for the right reasons to benefit God and the scholars, employees, parents, and the community. She is passionate as a servant leader and gives her time to grow and develop others to reach their potential. She is family oriented and loves spending time traveling with her two children, six grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
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Dr. McFarland Appointment by Governor Greg Abbott
“I am honored to receive this appointment and excited to have a seat at the table,” Dr. McFarland said. “I recognize this appointment comes as a result of the significant impact that the Crowley ISD team has had on improving student outcomes in spite of challenging conditions. Strengthening the educator pipeline is critical to ensuring sustainable success of our public school system, and I am excited to be a part of the team that is charged with identifying solutions. Thank you to Commissioner of Education Mike Morath and Governor Greg Abbott for their confidence and trust. I am ready, willing and excited to serve.”
Dr. McFarland was the eleventh TABSE past president from 2014-2016 and the NABSE twenty-second past president from 2018-2021.
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TABSE Election of Executive Board Members
Mrs. Mary "Mae" Olison
Candidate for President-Elect
Dr. Darwin Spiller
Candidate for President-Elect
Ms Dianne Shaw
Candidate for Financial Secretary
New Interim Superintendent Named
The Manor Independent School District Board of Trustees unanimously voted to appoint Dr. Tamey Williams-Hill as Interim Superintendent of Schools.
Dr. Williams-Hill joined Manor ISD in September 2022 as the Chief Human Capital Officer after serving 20 years at Austin ISD in various roles. She holds a Ph.D. in school improvement from Texas State University. She also has a master’s degree in education administration, a master’s in social work and a Bachelor of Arts in social work, also from Texas State University. Dr. Williams-Hill says she “is excited to serve as interim superintendent of schools and looks forward to continuing working with scholars, staff and the community.” Congratulations to Dr. Williams-Hill in her appointment.
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State School District Takeover
Despite a new school board being elected, a new superintendent being named in June 2021, and some campus administrative changes, the school district has addressed and made numerous improvements amongst some campuses in question. Because Houston has elected new school board members and a new superintendent being named to lead the district in making improvements throughout the district, the question arises, how can the state takeover the district and remove the elected school board members and replace the superintendent with a conservator?
In a decision released Jan. 13, the Texas Supreme Court threw out a previous temporary injunction upheld by the Third Court of Appeals, siding with the TEA and its ability to move forward with taking over the district under the current law. The Texas Supreme Court cleared the way for the state to potentially take control of the Houston Independent School District, which state education officials say has been plagued by mismanagement and low academic performance at one of its high schools.
Texas Education Agency Commissioner Mike Morath first moved to take over the district’s school board in 2019 in response to allegations of misconduct by trustees and years of low performance at one of its high schools. Houston ISD sued and, in 2020, a Travis County district judge halted Morath’s plan by granting a temporary injunction. The injunction was upheld by an appeals court, but the TEA took the case to the state’s highest court, where the agency’s lawyers argued last year that a 2021 law — which went into effect after the case was first taken to court — allows for a state takeover.
A final decision has not been determined at this time, however, the states largest school district will be impacted severely if a take over is allowed and will have ramifications for other school districts throughout Texas.
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38th Annual TABSE State Conference
The 38th Annual TABSE State Conference will convene February 15-19, 2023 at the Horseshoe Bay Resort in Horseshoe Bay, Texas.
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University President Vacancy
Midwestern State University President Vacancy
Accoding to Dr. Tedd Mitchell, Texas Tech University Chancellor, while this news may be unexpected, we are fortunate to have a strong leadership team and university community at MSU Texas. To assist during the transition, I have asked Keith Lamb, Ph.D., vice president for enrollment management and student affairs and chief strategy officer at MSU Texas, to serve as interim president. Dr. Lamb has accepted the role, effective today, and will continue to serve the university in a dual appointment at this time.
In the coming weeks, I will be working closely with MSU Texas leadership and our Board of Regents to formalize the next steps for our presidential search process. MSU Texas is a thriving institution with incredible momentum and talented and dedicated faculty, staff, students and supporters. There is no doubt we can find the best talent – from near and far, with the qualifications and leadership attributes the Mustangs family desires and deserves – to lead MSU Texas.
I will share those details and timing with you once that information becomes available, and if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach out to me.
Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D.
Texas Tech University System Chancellor
Texas Tech University System
1508 Knoxville Avenue, Lubbock, TX 79409
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NABSE Official Affiliate Celebration Souvenir Brochure
You are receiving this 146 page booklet for your personal perusal and enjoyment. It is my belief that a hard copy should be printed for each local affiliate to keep in your local files for future reference. It cannot be said that all NABSE members will receive this booklet, however, it is being provided to all TABSE members at this time. Thank you to the TABSE members who contributed to the brochure including Ms Rhonda Williams, which highlights some of our South West TABSE accomplishments.
TABSE Business Partner Of The Month
Lightspeed has brought powerful instructional audio solutions to K-12 classrooms around the world for more than 30 years. Each product inspires communication and collaboration by delivering crystal-clear, low-volume and highly intelligible sound.
Lightspeed offers solutions for several learning environments, including whole-group and small-group instruction, as well as support for distance and hybrid classrooms.
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TABSE Institutional Member School District Of The Month
The Sweeny Independent School District, in partnership with parents and community, will provide a quality education for all students, empowering them to pursue their full intellectual, physical, and social potential and developing them to become productive citizens in an ever-changing, interdependent world.
Sweeny ISD is an open enrollment school district, welcoming students who live outside its boundaries to take advantage of small schools and personalized learning without paying tuition.
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As your outgoing TABSE Historian, I wish to say how much I have enjoyed serving on the TABSE Executive Board during the past two years as Historian. During this time, I have produced the TABSE WORD, monthly newsletter, which has been sent to all members in good standing. It has been a joy and pleasure to provide information about our Texas affiliate and share information about our TABSE past history makers, especially for our younger educators. Our past TABSE founders and TABSE presidents have been featured, so that their contributions and sacrifices are known which have helped to bring us to our present status as a strong and viable affiliate within NABSE.
Through articles found in the newsletter, leadership has been chronicled and documented by those featured. Our history has shown that leaders have been more than a face to be seen or a voice to be heard, but a representative of the total organization. I thank you all who have helped make TABSE the strong state affiliate which we have become. To all future leaders, it is hoped that our current and future accomplishments are shared with future members, so that they also will know where we have come from and our future destinations.
I leave the TABSE Historian position in very capable hands and offer my assistance whenever needed. My background has included the following: NABSE member since 1983, NABSE Life Member 2005, TABSE member since 1989, TABSE 1st Golden Life Member, NABSE Legislative Co-Chair 2004-2018, NABSE NEPI Co-Chair 2005-2018, TABSE Legislative Chair 2005-2018, TABSE Nomination/Election Chair 2005-2018, TABSE Excellence Award 2005, along with several HAABSE legislative and election positions. I hope that I have provided some knowledge, recognitions, highlights and humor in the newsletter and that you have enjoyed reading the contents. Thank you all for your support over the past years.