Westwood Way

Happenings In Panther Nation - February 2021

I have a confession to make…….. I get distracted when I drive and tend to look at things along the side of the road. I’ve had this problem for a pretty good while, and no matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to overcome it.

Just this last weekend coming back from Fort Worth, I was driving on U.S. 287 and saw a cow in a pasture and started watching it. I watched it eat grass and saw its baby calf come up to it before realizing I was headed off the road. I had managed to keep my pickup headed straight for a good distance before I eventually recognized that I was driving off the road in the same direction I was looking. I was able to safely correct and get the pickup back between the lines.

I began reflecting on how our journey through the 2020-2021 school year is similar to my trip on U.S. 287 from Fort Worth. We began the year with mixed emotions but excited to see our kids. During Convocation, I challenged us to be an architect and not an archaeologist, and we began our journey. Early on, we were focused on our responsibilities and meeting the needs of those around us. We have stayed positive and haven’t allowed ourselves to be distracted by all the noise around us.

But at some point, though, like when I was driving, we tend to take our eyes off the road and shift our focus. We can begin to listen to the person that is complaining instead of helping them overcome their struggle. We can turn our attention to thinking about how things used to be instead of creating a better normal.

As we enter the Spring stretch, we have to be careful that we don’t end up heading in the wrong direction, just like I did while driving. Our journey will take the path on which we are focusing. We must stay committed to recreating education and being an architect who desires to design the best culture possible. We must stay focused on staying on the road and not veering to the edge!


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School Board Update

During the February Board Meeting, the following items came before the School Board:

Angela Choate was sworn in as District 1 Board of Trustee. Mrs. Choate will serve until the May election.

Christine Bedre presented the 2019-2020 Annual School Report during a Public Hearing.

Members of the Long Range Steering Committee discussed the work they have completed and presented and recommended adopting the Profile of a Learner, Profile of an Educator, Profile of a Leader, and Profile of the Learning Spaces.

Phil Nedbelak presented a Transportation Department update.

Kyle Johnson presented an update on the financial year to date and discussed the necessary price increase for adult meals.

Wade Stanford presented Board Policy Update 116. This was a 1st Read with No Action. This item will be presented as an Action Item in March.

Wade Stanford presented an update on the Palestine Youth Sports Organization.

The Board of Trustees unanimously approved the Profile of a Learner, Profile of an Educator, Profile of a Leader, and Profile of the Learning Spaces as recommended by the Long Range Steering Committee.

The Board of Trustees unanimously approved the increase of adult meal prices from $3.75 to $4.00.

The Board of Trustees unanimously approved administrative contracts as presented.

The Board of Trustees unanimously approved real estate agent Jodi Harding of Combined Associates to represent the District in the sale of the 53 acre Loop property.

The Board of Trustees unanimously approved the Superintendent to negotiate, within the parameters discussed, the sale of the 53 acre Loop property with the Westwood ISD Board of Trustees having final approval of the sale in a future Board Meeting.