Board Briefs

Board Meeting 

August 27, 2021

The TSD Governing Board held its third meeting of the year, virtually.

Board members present at the virtual meeting included: Shawn Saladin, Interim President, Sha Cowen, Christopher Moreland, Heather Withrow, Keith Sibley, David Saunders, Darlene Nobles, and Erin O’Donnell.

The TSD Governing Board President called the meeting to order at 10:07 AM.

The TSD football and volleyball students led the Board and audience in the Pledge of Allegiance.

The Governing Board recognized Donna Altuna for her years of hard work at TSD. The strategic goal teams’ (SGT) chairs and co-chairs were also recognized for developing the new strategic plan: Stella Egbert, Joey Vaughn, Elizabeth Sterling, Malibu Barron, Bobbie Beth Scoggins, Julie Dodd, Megan Scarboro, Wilmonda McDevitt, Peggy Ann Wenger, and Ann Meredith.

Superintendent Claire Bugen provided a high-level summary of events and programs that occurred since the previous board meeting. She informed the Governing Board that TSD was able to host in-person camps and extended school year for students receiving accelerated instruction. She informed the Board that the annual Communications Skills Workshop (CSW) was held virtually with about 830 people participating.

Bugen also provided a brief summary of Opening of School program and highlighted this year’s theme, Creating Connections. She explained that enrollment has fluctuated during COVID-19, but that the school started the year with 464 students—last year at this time, 477 students were enrolled with 30% of students in-person.

Bugen said that she is working on encouraging staff to get vaccinated by holding town halls, providing information, and setting up vaccination clinics.

Bugen announced Beth Polo’s departure from TSD to join the Texas Education Agency (TEA). Bugen went over the new student family orientations, and then updated the Board on the Racial Equity Task Force.

Bugen provided a summary of the COVID-19 Delta variant status on campus. There was discussion regarding the current leave policy for individuals who become sick with COVID-19. Julie Dodd, HR director, explained that state employees are given up to 10 days for state leave, but that leave expires September 30th. If the state doesn’t extend the leave, Bugen explained that the Executive Leadership team will meet and determine the best alternative.

Donna Altuna provided the Board the annual report on student performance and proposed quality indicators for school year 2020-2021.

Bugen and SGT chairs went over the District Improvement Plans for 2021-2022.

Bugen then provided an update on the Conference of Educational Administrators of Schools and Programs for the Deaf (CEASD) accreditation visit scheduled for November.

Director of Instruction, Stella Egbert, went over the list of Professional Pathways for Teachers (PPfT) appraisers list and calendar.

Chief Financial Officer, Justin Wedel, went over the FY2022 Operating Budget, and he explained the background of the State Auditor’s Office (SAO) contracting authority.

Bugen provided a legislative update of TSD’s request. She explained how the legislature approved all the requests made but the process and the way it was funded was unusual. She also went over bills passed that affect TSD directly or indirectly.

The Governing Board selected their interim officers: Shawn Saladin, President; Heather Withrow, Vice President; and Sha Cowan, Secretary.

Items approved by the Board included:

Consent Items 
    • Minutes for the previous meeting;
    • Gifts and donations to the school;
    • Operations report;
    • FY21 operating budget;
    • 2021-22 term and probationary contracts.
PPfT appraisers list and calendar
FY22 operating budget
SHAC membership
Student code of conduct 2021-2022
Termination of two contract personnel
Superintendent performance evaluation
Superintendent goals
Board meeting calendar for 2021-2022
Board Policies
  • BJCD (Superintendent: Evaluation)
  • BJCD-E (Superintendent: Evaluation Exhibit)
  • GKD (Community Relations: Use of School Facilities for Non-school Purposes)
  • (with minor edits) AIA (Accountability: Accreditation and Performance Indicators
  • (with minor edits) GRA (Relations with Governmental Entities: Local Governmental Authorities

The president adjourned the adjourned the meeting at 3:15 PM.

If you have questions or request additional information, please feel free to email the PIO at gabriel.cardenas@tsd.state.tx.us