The budget is always challenging to navigate, especially when you have more wants and needs than resources. Using ESSER funding has allowed our district to survive the decrease in enrollment and keep excess staffing to help recover from learning loss and provide help for mental health challenges. ESSER funds are expiring at the end of the 23-24 school year, and we will not have that resource in the future. Despite the loss of ESSER funding, the needs of our growing emergent bilingual population and the increased demand for mental health support is not going away. The mental health needs of students are growing, given the anxiety associated with the pandemic. In this instance, we must have clear goals that we are focused on accomplishing for our district. As we address our budgetary challenges, it will be vital that we maintain focus on finding creative ways to address the mental health and educational needs of students and families within and outside of the classroom.
What Can We Do?
- Make phone calls, send texts, and encourage students to come to school whenever they are well
- Encourage state legislators to fund schools based on enrollment versus attendance
- Advocate with state legislators for an increased dollar amount for each student (also known as the basic student allotment)
- Be proud advocates of your public school and community
As we look forward we will host community events to share more about our financial challenges and ways that we will be working together to manage our shortfall in funding (Learn About Our Board’s Legislative Priorities).
Community Budget Meetings
- February 9: Community Communication Meeting Eastside – Olle Middle School, 6:00 PM
- February 16: Community Communication Meeting Central – Alief Center for Advanced Careers, 6:00 PM
- February 28: Community Communication Meeting Westside – Alief Center for Talent Development, 6:00 PM
Congratulations to Elsik High School student Emillio Alas, who won first place in Level 1 welding at the 10th Annual Cy-Ridge FFA welding contest. He was awarded $8,000 in Scholarships, An RTIC cooler full of welding supplies, a beautiful belt buckle and a Certification. Hastings High School student Waynerd Hercules placed third in Level 3, $2,000 in Scholarships, multiple prizes and a Certification. In total, Alief ISD CTE Welding students earned 13 Certifications and a total of $25,000 in welding school scholarships.
Alief ISD art students brought home 9 Gold Keys, 13 Silver Keys and 39 Honorable Mentions for Art from the Harris County Department of Education. Congratulations to the students, including those who received Gold Keys: O’Donnell Middle School – Ishmael Abdullah; Elsik High School – Clara Centino, Crystal Giang (2), Brandon Piedrasanta and Diana Salgado; Hastings High School – Ken Okolo; and Kerr High School – Nha Nguyen and Tu Khue Phan.
I am so proud of our amazing students!
Lastly, recently I sat down with Hastings senior, Ameenat Adisa for a new video series, Q&A with Dr. Mays. View the video here.
Dr. Anthony Mays
- February 6: Soda with the Superintendent – Olle Middle School, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
- February 15: Soda with the Superintendent – Albright Middle School, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM