The Canadian Record (Canadian, Tex.), Vol. 118, No. 06, Ed. 1 Thursday, February 7, 2008 Page: 3 of 36
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THE CANADIAN RECORD
THURSDAY "7 FEBRUARY 2DDB
By fd Sterling
WW PRESS ASSBCUm
AUSTIN—The Texas Education Agency announced
Jan. 25 its plans to add security measures in admin-
istering the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and
Random test monitoring, seating charts and scram-
bling the order of field test items on exams are among
more than a dozen steps to be taken this school year,
said Education Commissioner Robert Scott.
Some steps are supposed to make TAKS tests
more resistant to cheating. Other steps are designed
to provide more information that can be used in in-
vestigations if allegations of testing irregularities
One measure, for example, is to ask students in
grades 9, 10 and 11, prior to taking tests, to sign a
statement promising not to cheat.
TAKS measures reading at grades 3 through 9;
writing at grades 4 and 7; English language arts at
grades 10 and 11; mathematics at grades 3 through
11; science at grades 5,10 and 11; and social studies
at grades 8,10 and 11. Satisfactory performance on
TAKS at grade 11 is a prerequisite to a high school
Panel to focus on accountability
Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and Speaker Tom Crad-
dick jointly appointed members to the Select Com-
mittee on Public School Accountability.
SB 1031, passed last year during the 80th session
of the Texas Legislature, requi red the creation of the
select committee. SB 1031 also changed the state's
method of assessing high school student perfor-
mance by moving from high-stakes exit-level tests to
end - of-c ou r se examinations.
Committee appointees, who will study the issues
and work on ways to achieve the goal of SB 1031, are:
Math teacher Susan Lewis, Northside Independent
School District, San Antonio; Principal Dalia Bena-
vides, South Elementary School, Midland Indepen-
dent School District; Superintendent David Splitek,
Lackland Independent School District, San Antonio;
Superintendent Thomas Randle, Lamar Consoli-
dated Independent School District, Rosenberg; and
Deputy Superintendent Beto Gonzalez, Brownsville
Independent School District.
Also, Ron Steinhart, former CEO, Bank One
Commercial Banking Group; Salem Abraham, presi-
dent and owner, Abraham Trading Co.; Sandy Kress,
Commission for College Ready Texas; and Larry
Kellner, chairman and CEO, Continental Airlines.
And, Rep. Rob Eissler, co-chair; Sen. Florence
Shapiro, co-chair; Education Commissioner Robert
Scott; Higher Education Commissioner Raymund A.
Paredes; Rep. Diane Patrick; and Sen. Tommy Wil-
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
I WOULD LIKE TO make it easier for ev-
eryone (teachers, students and the general
public) to voice concerns that they might have
about the school system to myself so that I
may bring these to the attention of the board.
The idea that I have come up with is a web-
site where comments can be posted. Before
every meeting, I will make a list of every
comment and the number of people who have
made that comment. I will read a summary
Super Bowl Party
WE LIVE IN DALLAS, but our hearts
belong to Canadian. Consequently, we can't
overcome the urge to speak up on the elimina-
tion of the July 4th Rodeo.
An indelible picture in our minds is looking
down Main Street and seeing the nostalgic
sight of the old Santa Fe Depot. Canadian lost
a significant piece of history and charm when
of the results to the board at the beginning of
each meeting during public comment.
Why am I doing this? It's simple. I cover
several counties in the Texas Panhandle with
my business and have very strange working
hours. I might not be as available as some
board members to hear concerns and I would
like to rectify that situation. So I'm going to
use tools that I have available to help every-
one communicate their concerns to me.
I am a database, server, network
guy, not a web designer, so the site will
be very simple. The site is located at:
www. cisdcomments. com
I look forward to hearing your comments
[the depot] was destroyed for "progress."
Please don't take away another piece of
continuity and charm by eliminating the his-
toric 4th of July Rodeo. The annual celebra-
tion without the Rodeo would be like holding a
Super Bowl Party without the Super Bowl.
Some of us old timers have a strong need
to hold on to some of the traditions of the past.
We recommend that need to the younger gen-
eration. It makes growing old easier and more
DON & FREDDIE HODGES, Piano
this ratio low. Clearly a low student to teacher ratio is a good thing for the kids, but the
teachers benefit too.
Now let's move to the Superintendent's salary. In the first table above it lists Frank
Belcher's salary of $91,000. This is correct. The part that is misleading is what it lists
as the state average. The problem is this category is "Central Administration". This
includes not only the Superintendent, but the Assistant Superintendent, the Director of
Human Resources, the Tax Assessor/Collector, and can even include the Business Man-
ager. When Canadian ISD reports this data, we only have the superintendent's salary in
this category. Statewide, when these other people's salaries are included, it drags down
the average. Again, I feel the best way to determine if Mr. Belcher is getting paid fairly
is to look at what other school districts pay. TASB does a superintendent survey each
year, and here are some of the salaries listed in that survey:
Amarillo $213,000 Dalhart
Borger $125,000 Dimmitt
Bushland $118,000 Dumas
Canyon $136,170 Pampa
$106,577 Perryton $100,600
$95,600 Plemons $84,800
$134,500 Spearman $97,800
$113,029 Stratford $78,000
I understand where the data is confusing and can be misleading. There are so many
facts and figures it could fill this entire newspaper ten times over. I hope that if you are in-
terested in learning more you will take the time to completely study the TEA's website at:
In spite of all of this information, the local school board is considering raising the sal-
ary of some of our teachers. We have some of the best teachers in the panhandle and we
should pay them accordingly. Also, to be really honest, I don't like the fact that Spear-
man pays their teachers more. However, it is also important to keep in mind our respon-
sibility to the community to be prudent with our local tax dollars.
Canadian ISD, Board President
BETTER NEWSPAPER CONTEST
(~EST. 1926 ~|
National Newspaper Association
Texas Press Association
West Texas Press Association
Panhandle Press Association
We are members of the Society of
Professional Journalists and staunch
advocates of the SPJ Code of Ethics
LETTERS TD THE EDITDR
are always welcome, and will be
published if they are signed and
cannot be considered libelous.
We will not publish anonymous
letters under any circumstance.
All letters must be accompanied
by a phone number for
verification purposes. Letters
may be edited for length.
Each letter should be received
at our office no later than
Wednesday noon for publication
in that week's newspaper.
PLEASE DIRECT LETTERS TD:
The Canadian Record
P.D. Box m, Canadian, TX73DI4
ALL E-MAILS ACKNOWLEDGED UPDN RECEIPT
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Brown, Laurie Ezzell. The Canadian Record (Canadian, Tex.), Vol. 118, No. 06, Ed. 1 Thursday, February 7, 2008, newspaper, February 7, 2008; Canadian, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth252690/m1/3/: accessed October 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Hemphill County Library.