The Woodlands Edition | April 2022


News from Lone Star College & Conroe, Magnolia & Tomball ISDs


Substitute fill rate up in Conroe ISD following spring break CONROE ISD According to the Conroe ISD COVID-19 dashboard, CISD’s substitute fill rate reached a 2021-22 school year high on March 22 following the return from spring break, which was held fromMarch 11-18. BY ALLY BOLENDER FEWER POS I T IONS UNF I LLED After substitute fill rates dropped as low as 57% in January, rates improved in March and April. Substitute fill rates in Conroe ISD

NUMBER TOKNOW Conroe ISD reported its lowest substitute fill rate of 2022 on Jan. 24 with 57% of needed substitute positions filled. That number had recovered in late March to as high as 81% on March 22, according to the district’s COVID-19 dashboard. 57% EDUCATIONHIGHLIGHTS CONROE ISD Christopher Povich, principal of Grand Oaks High School, was named assistant superintendent for high schools March 21. CONROE ISD In an April 5 special meeting, the Conroe ISD board of trustees approved a $1,500 pay raise for teachers as well as a 2% raise for nonteachers and a starting pay for hourly employees of $13 per hour for the 2022-23 school year. “WE ARE RECOMMENDINGA 6.6% INCREASE IN IN-DISTRICT TUITION, MATCHING [THE] INFLATIONRATE.” JENNIFER MOTT, LONE STAR COLLEGE SYSTEM CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER The Conroe ISD board of trustees will meet at 6 p.m. April 19 at 3205 W. Davis St., Conroe. 936-709-7752. • The Magnolia ISD board of trustees will meet at 6:30 p.m. May 16 at 11659 FM 1488, Magnolia. 281-356-3571. The Tomball ISD board of trustees will meet at 5:30 p.m. May 10 at 310 S. Cherry St., Tomball. 281-357-3100. • MEETINGSWE COVER

The March 22 substitute fill rate was 81% with 58 of 287 open positions unfilled, according to the district’s COVID- 19 dashboard. Comparatively, the district reported the lowest substitute fill rate of 2022 on Jan. 24 with 57% of needed substitute positions filled. FromMarch 21-24, the employee attendance rate remained above 95%, which was higher than the atten- dance on the same days the last school year. Throughout 2022 the numbers of employee and student absences were highest in January and early February and have steadily decreased since then. CISD Superintendent Curtis Null announced Feb. 15 the district Feb. 21 would move from COVID-19 safety alert Level 3 to Level 2. As of April 4, the district lowered the

Positions unfilled

Positions filled





Jan. 25

April 8


COVID-19 safety alert level to 1, the lowest level established by the district. District guidance for COVID-19 protocols can be found at

Tomball ISDmulls newcampus start times

LSCS increases tuition



LONE STAR COLLEGE SYSTEM Jennifer Mott, the chief financial offi- cer of the Lone Star College System, said on March 3 the system will need a 6.6% increase in expenditures due to inflation. “For tuition, we are recommending a 6.6% increase in in-district tuition, matching that inflation rate,” Mott said. “This is $6 per credit hour.” Mott said out-of-district, out- of-state and international tuition rates could increase by $12 more per credit hour. Mott said the average tuition increase will be around $48 per semester for a student. The tuition rates were approved at a LSCS board meeting March 8.

TOMBALL ISD Steven Gutierrez, Tomball ISD’s chief operating offi- cer, proposed a staggered schedule by campus for school start times during a workshop presentation to trustees March 7. These adjusted start times would allow students to arrive and leave school on time while accounting for the ongoing bus driver shortage affecting the district, Gutierrez said. A 30-member committee sought parental feedback and worked with the transportation department to draft a four-tier bell schedule, he said. Gutierrez said the district has continually been short 25 drivers, which has contributed to lengthy

bus routes, crowded buses, and late drop-offs and pickups. “When you think about cost-sav- ings and efficiency, first and foremost, our students get a better experience [with this plan], and we can do it with 25 drivers fewer,” Gutierrez said. Lauren Thompson, Timber Creek Elementary School princi- pal, said buses have to finish their secondary-level routes before picking up elementary students from campuses, which causes a series of delays. TISD trustees did not take action on the tiered schedule March 7, as it was presented during a workshop meeting.

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