Humble ISD officials urge community to contact legislators about proposed education bills

Katy ISD received an award for increasing access to AP exams.

Katy ISD received an award for increasing access to AP exams.

Frustrated over education-related legislation in the 2019 state legislative session, Humble ISD officials urged community members to contact their local representatives to make their opinions heard. HISD Superintendent Elizabeth Fagen along with HISD trustee Robert Sitton voiced their concerns at the March 19 school board meeting about how the legislative session could affect the district.

Specifically, Fagen referenced recent news reports the Texas Education Agency's State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR, testing was too difficult. The article, which was first reported by Austin-based magazine Texas Monthlyasserted the STAAR—specifically the reading portion—requires students to perform above their grade level to pass.

"For me to learn that we have a STAAR test that is, for the most part, testing our children at two grade levels above their expected outcomes, I find that incredibly unfair," Fagen said. "I feel like it's very important that we have the conversation, we encourage our state leaders—who are very much aware of the situation—to fix the STAAR, to realign it to appropriate grade levels, to make it a fair assessment of the outcomes that we've all agreed are appropriate."

Additionally, Sitton, who is chairman of the Finance Committee, said he recently discussed a newly filed school finance reform bill, House Bill 3, with legislators in Austin. The bill aims to restructure the state’s school finance system by directing $9 billion toward Texas school funding and lowering school property taxes. However, Sitton said HISD is not anticipated to receive enough funding to keep pace with the fast growth of the district.

"You’ve got some school districts out that there projected to have an increase in their state revenue upwards of 21-26 percent," Sitton said. "And then you have Humble ISD, Katy [ISD] and Fort Bend [ISD] that have a lot of households, and their taxpayers are shouldering the burden of public education for their community, and we’re getting a 0.5-1.5 [percent increase]. Is that really fair and equitable?"

HISD officials projected the district would receive 40.85 percent of its 2019-20 revenue from the state, 55.93 percent of its revenue from local taxpayers and 3.22 percent from the federal government, according to district data from September.

Other agenda items:

  • Trustees unanimously approved a joint election agreement between HISD and the city of Humble for the May 4 election. Voters can expect to see two contested races and one uncontested race for the board of trustees. Candidates San Juanita Branham, Ryan Engolio, Nikki Roux and Robert Scarfo are running for trustee Place 2, as current trustee Keith Lapeze did not run for re-election. Meanwhile, incumbent Colin Carney and candidate Lori Twomey are running for Place 6. Incumbent Nancy Morrison, who serves as board vice president, is uncontested in the race for trustee Place 7.

  • Trustees unanimously approved a resolution to nominate Fagen for the Texas Association of School Boards’ 2019 Superintendent of the Year award. The TASB award honors administrators for achievement and excellence in public school administration, according to the district.

By Kelly Schafler

Managing editor, South Houston

Kelly joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in June 2017 after majoring in print journalism and creative writing at the University of Houston. In March 2019, she transitioned to editor for the Lake Houston-Humble-Kingwood edition and began covering the Spring and Klein area as well in August 2020. In June 2021, Kelly was promoted to South Houston managing editor.



MOST RECENT

Heather Lagrone, Adrienne Holloway, Luis Guajardo, Maya Ford and Charleen Jones sit onstage while Holloway introduces the audience to the Harris County Housing Needs Assessment study on Oct. 19. (Emily Lincke/Community Impact Newspaper)
Kinder Institute housing survey results reveal Harris County's needs

To meet the need for additional, more affordable housing for only 20% of the 500,000 cost-burdened residents, 8,174 housing units would need to be added annually through 2031, according to the study.

There are a number of ways to enjoy fall in the Lake Houston area, whether checking out a family-friendly festival, facing fears at a spooky haunted house or getting out into nature to enjoy the weather. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Here's your 2021 guide to fall activities in the Lake Houston area

There are a number of ways to enjoy fall in the Lake Houston area, whether checking out a family-friendly festival, facing fears at a spooky haunted house or getting out into nature to enjoy the weather.

The Houston Gem & Mineral Society will host its 68th annual Gem, Mineral & Fossil Show, during which attendees can peruse jewelry, minerals and fossils. (Courtesy The Houston Gem & Mineral Society)
Attend a play, peruse gemstones: 10 things to do in the Lake Houston area throughout October, November

Here are a few events and things to do in the Lake Houston area throughout the months of October and November.

New Caney ISD Superintendent Matt Calvert at an Oct. 18 board meeting said the district is considering changing the class times for elementary and secondary school classes for the 2022-23 school year. (Kelly Schafler/Community Impact Newspaper)
New Caney ISD seeking feedback on proposed schedule changes for 2022-23 school year

Under the new proposal, elementary classes would run from 8:10 a.m.-3:45 p.m., and secondary classes would be held from 7:15 a.m.-2:50 p.m.

Humble City Council Member Charles Cunningham announced his Republican candidacy for the state Rep. District 127 seat in a news release Oct. 19. (Community Impact Staff)
Humble City Council Member Charles Cunningham announces candidacy for state Rep. District 127 seat

Prior to joining Humble City Council, Cunningham served as a member of the Humble ISD board of trustees for 12 years.

Want to know more about new businesses coming to the Katy area? Below you can find details on the five latest commercial projects filed in Katy. (Courtesy Canva)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: Read the latest top news about restaurants, businesses and other commercial projects that are coming soon or now open

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 19.

Huberty will retire at the end of his fifth term in the Texas House of Representatives, where he introduced bills focused on public education reform. (Brooke Ontiveros/Community Impact Newspaper)
Kingwood Rep. Dan Huberty announces retirement after 10 years

Huberty will retire at the end of his fifth term in the Texas House of Representatives, where he introduced bills focused on public education reform.

Harris County Commissioners Court's revised redistricting map as of Aug. 31. (Screenshot courtesy Harris County Commissioners Court)
Harris County Commissioners Court to take public comments on redistricting Oct. 21

The meeting will be held at the Harris County Commissioners Court, located at 1001 Preston St., Ste. 934, Houston, at 4 p.m.

Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers is opening a new Greater Houston-area location Nov. 16 at 7351 FM 1960, Humble. (Courtesy Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers)
Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers announces grand opening date for Humble restaurant

The restaurant will feature the brand’s new design, a double drive-thru and a patio with outdoor seating.

Bel Furniture celebrated its grand opening in Humble on Sept. 18. (Wesley Gardner/Community Impact Newspaper)
Bel Furniture celebrates grand opening in Humble

Located at 20450 Hwy. 59, the store offers an array of products to help customers furnish their living rooms, bedrooms, dining rooms, home offices and outdoor areas.

On Oct. 5, the Groundwater Management Area 14 voted on a nonbinding resolution to amend language for a proposed desired future condition that would last for five years. (Community Impact Newspaper file photo)
‘We’re very pleased’: Lone Star Groundwater president reacts to movement on proposed groundwater guidelines

On Oct. 5, the Groundwater Management Area 14 voted on a nonbinding resolution to amend language for a proposed desired future condition that would last for five years.

The new H-E-B store is located on Ronald Reagan Boulevard in north Leander. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: New H-E-B in Leander opening soon; Texas Supreme Court grants rehearing for high-speed rail eminent domain case and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 18.