With student achievement and academic success at the foundation for their initiatives, Leander ISD continues to excel in PK-12 education. According to Niche.com, the district ranks #3 of Best School Districts in the Austin area. In part, because of the curriculum they offer their student population. But, there’s more such as innovative programs, student and teacher successes, and community involvement. And, there’s much more to come in the 2019-2020 school year. Expansion projects, communication improvements, and more schools are leading the way. With its commitment to excellence LISD continues to be a leader in education and community services and here’s why:
Education and communication improvements, initiatives
The LISD’s Legislative Committee led the way in creating a set of 2019 Leander ISD Legislative Priorities, which outlines the district’s key legislative agenda for the 86th Texas Legislative Session. The district’s priorities fall within three areas: safety, education, and finance. Topics such as student data privacy, safety enhancements for schools facilities, and funding for mental health services were included.
LISD students will reap the benefits of the board’s decision to add new courses to the LISD 2019 course catalog. Courses include: Latin V IB (Higher Level), IB Mathematics: Applications & Interpretations, IB Mathematics: Analysis and Approaches, Multivariable Calculus, An American Experience, and Parenting Education for School Age Parents I-II.
Plans to replace the district’s student information system with a new one have been set in motion. In December 2018 the board of trustees approved ESchoolPlus by PowerSchool Group LLC as the new system. The district plans to have it up and running by the start of the 2019 school year. The new system will aid the district in managing student information, attendance, schedules, grades, and assessments along with improved functionality. According to LISD’s Superintendent Dan Troxell, it will also allow LISD to communicate more effectively with families and staff to improve student success.
Larkspur Elementary is Leander ISD’s 43rd school and its 27th elementary school. The school will open its doors in August of this year. Currently under construction, the new school is located in the northern-most portion of the district in the Larkspur subdivision.
Plans to open a 9th middle school in 2020 across from Glenn High School is also in the works. The school’s name, Danielson Middle School, honors former Cedar Park High School dance teacher, Stacy Danielson.
Partnerships, community involvement
The district’s partnership with Austin Community College’s new San Gabriel campus in Leander is providing LISD students with more opportunities for dual credit courses. To date, more than 1,300 LISD students take dual credit courses through the program. Statistically, 20 percent of LISD students attend a two-year higher education school after their high school graduation. High school students in the dual credit program do so because it gives them a head start into college level courses. It’s also a more affordable way to fund a college education.
The Leander ISD’s Educational Excellence Foundation (LEEF) raised more than $130K during its annual gala this January. The non-profit organization exists to provide support for innovation and enrichment for both students and teachers.
The LISD College & Career Pathways program partners with area businesses in the month of February during COOL Week. The popular program is a work-based experience that allows 12th grade students to work on-site in an industry of their interest.
As of February 2019 LISD is accepting public donations online for negative meal balances. Those making a donation will receive a Contribution Acknowledgement form after each transaction.
Twenty-two LISD seniors were named National Merit Semifinalists based on their outstanding performances on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). Additionally, 75 students were named National Merit Commended Students and 32 were recognized as National Hispanic Scholars by the College Board.
Twenty-four LISD students district-wide received top honors during the LISD Council of PTAs Reflections Program. This year marked the program’s 50th anniversary. Students were asked to create art work reflecting the theme “Heroes Around Me.” All winners will advance to the state competition.
The ABCs of Leander’s ISD
LISD serves the educational needs of the master-planned hill country community of Travisso. Currently, the district educates over 37,000 students in classrooms ranging from PK to K-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 16 to 1. With 200 miles of ground to cover it is also one of the largest in central Texas. To date, LISD manages 42 campuses. The current count is 26 elementary schools, eight middle schools, six high schools and two alternative schools within the district boundaries. However, because of the area’s exploding population there’s more on the way. To advance their students academically, LISD offers Advanced Placement classes, Gifted and Talented programs, Alternative and Special Education classes, and International Baccalaureate (IB) courses.