BOARDWORKS June/July 2007
A Publication of South Texas Independent School District
Board hires new Sci Tech principal
The STISD Board of Direc- new challenge in his profes-
tors voted to hire Michael sional career.
Aranda of Weslaco as the
“I’m grateful for the oppor-
new principal of Sci Tech
tunity to apply my leader-
at its special-called July 12
ship skills at a high school
campus and continue work-
Aranda, an assistant principal ing with a talented, experi-
at Med High, moved across enced staff,” he said.
the street and assumed his
A Rio Grande Valley na-
position at Sci Tech on July
tive, Aranda graduated
18. The 39-year-old educa-
from McAllen High School
tor took the place of Edward
in 1986. He went on to
Argueta of Harlingen, who
graduate from Texas A&M
was principal for nearly seven
University in 1990 with a
bachelor’s degree in Biol-
According to Marla M. ogy and the University of
Guerra, Ed.D., superinten- Texas-Pan American in
dent of STISD, Aranda is a 1996 with a master’s degree
strong administrator and will in Education.
do well in his new role.
Aranda and his wife, Steph-
“In the two years he was at anie, live in Weslaco with
Med High, Michael quickly their two boys, 12-year-old
distinguished himself with Nathan and seven-year-old
his diligence and leader- Ian. When he is not work-
ship,” Guerra said. “He has ing, Aranda volunteers as
the character and dedication a member of the executive
it takes to be an excellent
principal.” “ Michael quickly distinguished himself with his diligence
and leadership. He has the character and dedication it takes
advisory board for Su Casa
de Esperanza, a non-profit
organization that empowers
Aranda started his career in
August 1990 as a high school
Science teacher with McAl-
to be an excellent principal.
— Superintendent Marla M. Guerra, Ed.D.
people who live in poverty
with work skills, education
and medical services.
len Independent School Dis-
trict. In 1993, he moved August 2005 as an assistant principal at
to Weslaco Independent School District, Med High. ALSO IN THIS ISSUE
where he started as a middle school Science Junior High to split from BETA in August
teacher and later became an assistant high With 14 years in the education field, Aranda 2008 ... Page 4
school principal. Aranda joined STISD in is eager to become a principal and meet a
Approved: Hiring of the following at Med Tech; 31; and
2007-08 professional staff: • Lee Streicher, English teacher at Sci • The April pay date moved from Fri-
• Nilda Camarena, Science Composite Tech; day, April 25 to Thursday, April 24.
teacher, BETA; • John Whittier, Science teacher at BETA; To see the final calendar, go to www.
• Irma Castillo, assistant principal at and stisd.net/calendar.html.
Med High; • Kelly Zarate, part-time Social Studies
• Gerardo Cavazos, Physical Eduation teacher at Med Tech. Approved: 2007-08 Student Meal
teacher at Sci Tech; Prices. The prices will remain the same
• Andrew Cortez, Science Composite Approved: 2007-08 Compensation Plan. as last year: $.30 for reduced-price
teacher at Sci Tech; Professional employees will receive a breakfast, $1.00 for full-price breakfast,
• Lydia Flores, English teacher at $600 annual increase while paraprofes- $.40 for reduced-price lunch, $1.50 for
BETA; sionals and hourly workers will receive a full-price lunch and $2.75 for adult
• Vivian Galloso, school nurse at $400 annual increase. To see the complete lunch.
BETA; plan, go to www.stisd.net/finances/budget.
• Alejandro Garcia, Computer Science html. Approved: 2007-08 Student Code of
teacher at BETA;
Conduct. This year, the code of conduct
• Michele Guajardo, Science teacher
Approved: Public hearing date for the includes a new section, “Possession of
2007-08 budget and proposed tax rate. The Electronic Music Devices,” on Page 7.
• Nelly Houston, Technology Educa-
hearing will be held on Tuesday, August It states that electronic music devices
tion teacher at Sci Tech;
28 at 7 p.m. at BLA lecture hall, before are permissible at school as well as the
• Sandra Loya, Special Education
the school board meeting. The final budget bus with the use of personal earphones.
teacher at Sci Tech;
and tax rate will be approved at the August These devices, however, may not be
• Richard Martin, Technology Educa-
meeting. used in the classrooms during class time.
tion teacher at Sci Tech;
To see the section or complete code of
• Crystal Martinez, Science teacher
Approved: 2007-08 Preliminary School conduct, go to www.stisd.net/resources.
at Med Tech;
Budget. Based on a tax rate of $.0492 per html.
• Diana Martinez, Science Composite
teacher at Med High; $100 in property value, STISD’s projected
• Brad McKinney, assistant principal revenue and expenditures is $39,031,619. To Approved: Announcement of va-
at Med Tech; see the complete budget, go to www.stisd. cancy for the 2007-08 positions:
• Gerardo Monteagudo, Physical net/finances/budget.html. • Child Nutrition clerk at Mercedes
Education teacher at BETA; campus;
• Lauren Payne, Business Education Approved: 2007-08 Calendar Revision. • Head cook at BETA; and
teacher at BETA; The following changes were made to the • Head cook at Mercedes campus.
• Maribel Berrones, Technology Edu- school calendar: To see all of the current job vacancies, go
ation teacher, BETA Jr. High. • Exam Break Day moved from Friday, to www.stisd.net/jobs/listings.html.
• Drucilla Peña, librarian at BETA; May 2 to Friday, April 25 to accomodate
• Jody Peña, counselor at BETA; the new Texas Assessment of Knowledge Approved: Renovation of the Albert
• Leticia Peña, assistant principal at and Skills (TAKS) testing dates; Hughes building at BETA. The job
BETA; • Med High’s graduation ceremony will begin in September. Upon comple-
• Ruben Ramirez, Science teacher at moved from Saturday, May 31 to Mon- tion, the Hughes building will house
BETA Jr. High; day, June 2 while Med Tech’s moved the high school music and theatre arts
• Emily Reece, Mathematics teacher from Monday, June 2 to Saturday, May programs.
Recognition Board hires
The STISD Board of Directors hired three
new assistant principals at the summer
board meetings, held June 19 and July 31.
On August 13, Irma Castillo of Weslaco and
Leticia Peña of Mission will join Med High
and BETA, respectively, as administrators
while Brad McKinney of Rancho Viejo will
return to Med Tech as an administrator.
Castillo, 33, was a Science teacher at W.A.
Todd Ninth Grade Campus in Donna. A
1992 Med High alumna, she earned her
bachelor’s degree from Baylor University
in Waco in 1996 and master’s degree from
the University of Texas-Pan American in
Edinburg in 2004. Castillo has worked in
Ray & Irasema Coody: Ray Coody, STISD Child Nutrition coordinator, and Irasema Coody, education for 11 years.
BETA Child Nutrition supervisor, were recognized for their exceptional professionalism and dedica-
tion to the students and staff of STISD. McKinney, 47, was a Science teacher
at Med Tech. He graduated from Saint
Joseph Academy in Brownsville in 1978
and received his bachelor’s degree from
the University of Texas at Austin in 1983
and master’s degree from the University of
Texas at Brownsville in 1991. McKinney has
worked as an educator for 20 years.
Peña, 47, was a Math and Reading coach
for Hidalgo Independent School District. A
1977 graduate of Zapata High School, she
earned her bachelor’s degree from Texas
A & I University in Kingsville in 1980 and
master’s degree from Laredo State Univer-
sity in 1983. Peña has been an educator for
The board will hire an assistant principal for
Med High: Med High ranked 21st in the na- Sci Tech: Sci Tech ranked 52nd in the nation Sci Tech at its August meeting. The 2007-
tion in Newsweek’s “Top 100 High Schools” edi- in Newsweek’s “Top 100 High Schools” edition 08 school year marks the first time STISD
tion (May 18, 2007). Principal Barbara Heater (May 18, 2007). Principal Edward Argueta ac- hires four new assistant principals, one for
accepted the honor on behalf of the school. cepted the honor on behalf of the school. each school.
Bulletin Board Jr. High to split from BETA
• First Day of School: August 27
in August 2008
• Board of Directors Meeting: August 28
At its July 31 meeting, the STISD Board of the students and increase the academic ac-
at 7:30 p.m., BLA (Mercedes)
Directors approved the separation of the countability of the BETA junior high and
• Board of Directors Meeting: September junior high at BETA, allowing the junior high school programs.
25 at 7:30 p.m., BLA (Mercedes) high to operate as an independent school
“STISD is known for its small schools,
starting in August 2008.
focus on the individual student and strong
• Parental Involvement Conference: Octo-
At this time, BETA is the only STISD academic curriculum,” Hembree said, “and
ber 13 at 9 a.m., BLA (Mercedes)
school to serve both junior high and high the split will help us continue that focus.”
school students. Though the junior high
Opening in August 2008, the junior high
BoardWorks is published for patrons of South and high school students are housed in
will have a new name, its own administra-
Texas Independent School District after each different buildings, the Edinburg campus
regular meeting of the Board of Directors. Board tion and a dedicated gymnasium. The 2007-
currently operates as one school, with one
meetings take place on the fourth Tuesday of 08 school year will be used to transition
the month at 7:30 p.m. Board minutes are the administration.
final authority on action taken at STISD board BETA into two separate schools, allowing
meetings. According to Deputy Superintendent Jeff time for the construction of the additional
Editor: Andi Atkinson Hembree, STISD will implement the split classrooms and new gymnasium at the
(956) 565-2454 or firstname.lastname@example.org to better serve the instructional needs of junior high.
WANTED: Community Members & Parents for the Educational Improvment Council & STISD Education Foundation. Call (956) 514-4216 for more details.
100 Med High Dr. Non-Proﬁt
Mercedes, TX 78570 Organization
Phone (956) 565-2454
Fax (956) 565-4639 McAllen, TX
Think Outside the Book! Website www.stisd.net
Marla M. Guerra, Ed.D.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Ernesto Alvarado, President Arturo Guajardo
David W. Vela, Vice-President Maria G. Leal
Robert “Bobby” de la Garza, Secretary Filomena Leo
Douglas E. Buchanan Robert J. “Bobby” Lerma
Cain Caceres Henry LeVrier
Eduardo L. “Larry” Cantu Joe L. “Joey” Lopez
Mariaelena S. Champion Irma Perez-Treviño
Homero Garcia Joe A. Rodriguez
Hector Gonzales Julio S. Saldaña, Jr.
Eduardo “Ed” Gonzalez Romeo Villarreal
Octaviano “Tony” Gonzalez