Members of the New Braunfels ISD board of trustees on Dec. 13 approved new single-member district boundaries in an effort to balance the population of each district.

The school district has a population of 61,136 residents, according to census data, and the redistricted map will reduce the difference in population between the single-member districts.

According to state law, the difference in population between the most populated and the lowest populated precincts cannot exceed 10%.

District 1 has 15,756 residents, and District 3 has 9,534 residents, representing a 49.21% difference between the two. District 2 has 11,220 residents; District 4 has 10,008 residents; and District 5 has a population of 14,618 residents.

The proposed plan reallocated portions of districts 4 and 5 to District 3 and reallocated a portion of District 1 to districts 2 and 4.

During the board meeting, trustee John Tucker suggested moving a portion of the northwest border of District 4 to follow Landa Street, which the board approved.

The new map will go into effect in early 2022.

Board members also approved spending $12,585.06 in Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief funds to purchase a one-year digital license for a character-building curriculum to be used for secondary education.

The Character Strong curriculum includes lessons on emotional understanding, empathy, values, goals and leadership, said Kara Bock, assistant superintendent for NBISD, and the curriculum includes lessons for each grade level.

A proposal to designate NBISD as a District of Innovation, or DOI, also moved forward with board members adopting a resolution to begin the process of achieving the designation.

A DOI designation allows Texas school districts to have more independent control over district operations. The concept was passed into law in 2015 during Texas' 84th legislative session.

Following the board's approval, a public hearing will be held and a planning committee will be appointed in January.

Once the committee is formed, the members will present their plan in March, and the board will vote on the resolution in April or May, Superintendent Cade Smith said.