Lockhart ISD is pleased to announce that two campus leaders have been promoted to take on leadership roles at the District level.
Faith Pope, current Plum Creek Elementary School Principal, will take on the position of Director of Elementary Curriculum and Instruction. A resident of Lockhart for 15 years, Pope has been an educator for 24 years. Prior to joining LISD as Plum Creek Principal, she worked as a bilingual teacher in grades kindergarten through fifth in San Antonio, Austin, Lockhart, and Orange, Calif., schools. She has also worked as an instructional coach and served as the Academic Dean for Waelder ISD. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies from Concordia University and a Master of Arts in Bicultural Bilingual Studies.
Pope replaces Linda Bertram, who retired this year after serving Lockhart ISD students in campus and leadership roles for 12 years. Bertram worked as an Assistant Principal and Interim Principal at Lockhart Junior High School and as an Assistant Principal at Lockhart High School. She was promoted to Director of Curriculum and Special Programs in 2009, and worked in that leadership role till her retirement.
“We are grateful for the many years that Ms. Bertram devoted to our community’s children,” commented Susan Bohn, LISD Superintendent.
Current Lockhart Junior High School Principal and M.L. Cisneros Freshman Campus Interim Principal, Mark Estrada, has been promoted to Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction. Mr. Estrada earned both a Bachelor of Science of Exercise and Sport Science and Master of Science in Secondary Education, with a Minor in Education and Community Leadership at Texas State University. He is currently pursuing his Doctorate in Education in the Cooperative Superintendency Program at the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to leading Lockhart Junior High School, Estrada was the Principal of Plum Creek Elementary School and worked as a middle school teacher/coach and assistant principal and as an elementary school principal in Del Valle ISD.
“Faith and Mark have both shown that they have the knowledge, skills and work ethic to step up to increased leadership roles in the District,” Bohn said. “Most importantly, they have high expectations for our children and staff, and their commitment to the achievement of our children is unwavering in their work. I am thrilled that we have leaders of their caliber willing and ready to step up in Lockhart ISD.”
Both Pope and Estrada will remain on their campuses as principal until the District hires replacements to serve both campuses. When Estrada assumes responsibility for District curriculum and instruction duties, current Deputy Superintendent, Kim Brents, will supervise the District’s Human Resources Department in addition to campus principals and her other duties.
“Faith and Mark are both much loved and respected by their students, staff, and parents,” Bohn said. “While it is always difficult to pull a leader from a campus, their promotions mean that all 5,600 students in our District will now benefit from their talent and leadership. Growing leadership in our organization is a priority for our Board of Trustees and for me. Instead of losing talented individuals like Faith and Mark to some other District’s administration, we are blessed that our teachers and students have the opportunity to continue to benefit from their leadership.”
Other changes are afoot at Central Office this week as the District bids farewell to longtime Superintendent and Board Secretary Darla Damron, whose resignation was effective on Tuesday afternoon.
At Monday night’s Board meeting, Bohn, along with the Trustees, expressed their appreciation and respect for Damron who Bohn said, “…for many, many years put the needs of Lockhart ISD maybe before her own.”
Damron chose earlier this month to leave the District to pursue an out-of-state move with her family.
In other business on Monday, the Trustees discussed the recent rating from the Texas School Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST) for 2016-2017.
For the 14th consecutive year, Lockhart ISD received a superior rating for their financial accountability, which includes a review of the District’s financial reporting, assets, liabilities, payment histories and management of the District’s finances.
“As you can imagine, there is a lot of work that goes behind each of these indicators,” CFO Tina Knudsen said. The Board praised the Finance Department for their years of hard work to keep the District’s finances in such good order.
In brief news:
The Trustees heard a presentation from Owners’ Building Resources regarding the ongoing construction projects. According to Project Manager Jo Zunker, work is still going forward on “punch list” items at Alma Brewer Strawn Elementary, and contractors are working to address drainage, sidewalk and other accessibility issues at Lockhart High School.
The Board recognized the Lockhart Evening Lions Club for their annual donation of school supplies for the District’s children.
The Lockhart Independent School District routinely meets on the fourth Monday of each month at the Lockhart Junior High School Library at 6:30 p.m. The meetings are open to the public and are webcast at www.lockhartisd.org.