BENAVIDES ISD DISTRICT OF INNOVATION PLAN
What Do We Need to Know About the Benavides ISD’s Opportunity for Being a District of Innovation (DOI)?
On February 13, 2017, the Board of Trustees approved a resolution to explore the opportunity for Benavides ISD to become a District of Innovation. The Board passed this resolution based on its:
- Commitment to the success of our students;
- Long-standing practice of supporting innovation for the benefits of students;
- And the belief that it can be a better decision making body for our students by exercising local control over the decision making process.
What is a “District of Innovation”?
The District of Innovation concept, passed by the 84th Legislative Session in House Bill 1842, gives traditional independent school districts most of the flexibilities available to Texas’ open-enrollment charter schools.
Why choose a District of Innovation?
Benavides ISD will have the freedom to make decisions at the local level. A local school district may want to pursue specific innovations in curriculum, instruction, governance, parent or community involvement, school calendar, budgeting, or other ideas. Essentially, innovation plans are about local control. Benavides ISD’s innovation plan will be unique to our school district and community.
Potential benefits of becoming a District of Innovation include:
- Local control: Districts decide which flexibilities best suit their local needs.
- Customization: Districts can create an innovation plan for a level of school (e.g., only high schools), grade level, or a single campus.
- Autonomy: Districts must submit a district of innovation plan to the commissioner of education, but approval is not required.
- Flexibility: Districts will have the flexibility to implement practices similar to charter schools, including exemptions from mandates such as:
*School start date *Certain student discipline provisions
*90% attendance rule *Teacher appraisal requirements
* Class-size ratios * Site-based decision-making processes
* Teacher contracts * Use of planning and preparation periods
Not all of these possibilities will be the right fit for Benavides ISD. It is us up to the District of Innovation (DOI) committee to determine what laws to exempt Benavides from and which to leave in place.
What’s the process for becoming a District of Innovation?
In Benavides ISD, the DOI process will align with the District’s planning and annual budget development process.
Overview of the proposed timeline is as follows:
- The Board of Trustees passes a resolution to study the concept and opportunities provided under the District of Innovation legislation of HB1842). (February 13, 2017)
- The Board of Trustees holds a Public Hearing and appoints a District Level Committee to develop a District Innovation Plan. (February 22, 2017)
- A district of Innovation Plan is developed by a stakeholder committee appointed by the Benavides ISD Board of Trustees. The process includes feedback loops with the Board of Trustees and DIT. (February 2017 – April 2017)
- The District of Innovation Plan is posted on the district website for at least 30 days. Notify Commissioner of Education of the board’s intention to vote on adoption of proposed plan. (March 10, 2017)
- The DIT holds Public Hearing at which time it considers and then takes vote on district of Innovation Plan. (April 10, 2017)
- Board of Trustees votes to adopt final District of Innovation Plan. (April 18, 2017)
Where should questions/comments about the District of Innovation Plan be directed?
Please direct all questions/comments regarding the District of Innovation opportunity to firstname.lastname@example.org
How will stakeholders be able to follow the District of Innovation process?
The district will maintain a District of Innovation webpage on the district’s website at http://www.benavidesisd.net/Content2/Innovation
Committee meetings will be open to the public and we invite all members of our community to be a part of this process.
District Innovation Plan 2017-2022