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LISD moving forward with housing project

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By Kyle Mooty

LPR Editor

A housing addition – Live Love Lockhart initiative — just for Lockhart ISD employees was given the go-ahead Monday night during the regular school board meeting after a few months of urging from Superintendent Mark Estrada.

The council voted 6-1 in favor of moving forward on the project, which will allow more affordable housing for teachers, according to Estrada, who said prospective teachers have been scared of moving to Lockhart due to the rising costs.

“Central Texas is in a housing crisis,” Estrada said. “It’s not the same Lockhart two, three or four years ago. A number we’ve been seeing is $400,000. I never thought I would see a house on Mockingbird Lane listed at $600,000. People have to ask, ‘Can I leave Houston or San Antonio and go to Lockhart to work?’ The answer is they can’t afford to. This is the why behind why we’re having this conversation.”

The biggest price of the development of the subdivision will be the cost of the road.

Employees of Lockhart ISD will have the mortgage payments taken out of their checks if they live in the subdivision.

In other business:

The Education Foundation for Lockhart ISD has awarded a record $110,348 through 55 innovative grants to LISD teachers.

The annual grant giveaway from the Education Foundation is in its seventh year, awarding $400,393 to teachers during that time.

Lockhart ISD President Tim Clark said, “The Education Foundation Board of Directors is delighted to be able to assist our classroom teachers in this way, and we are extremely grateful to our sponsors and donors that make this contribution possible. We remain committed to assisting our teachers in making public education in Lockhart a true strength of our community.”

The Education Foundation’s fundraising events include its annual “Chip-in for LISD Golf Tournament” and “50 Lions Who Can Cook.”

“This is easily one of the happiest days of the years for our teachers,” Estrada said. “Our teachers are always Locked on Excellence. In this case, they’ve gone above and beyond to submit proposals for innovative programming for our Lions next year. As leaders, we are filled with pride and excitement knowing all of the amazing instruction and learning in store for our students because of the support from the Education Foundation for Lockhart ISD.”

LISD announced the selection of Melody McIntosh as the new director of special services at the regular Board meeting Monday evening. In this role, she will oversee special education and Section 504 services for students with disabilities. 

McIntosh began her career as a social-behavioral skills teacher at Susie Fuentes Elementary School in Hays Consolidated Independent School District in 2005 and was promoted to a districtwide behavior specialist position in 2007, a role she served for five years. In 2012, McIntosh joined Austin Independent School District as a special education teacher and department chair, ascending to special education coordinator, and then was selected for campus leadership in her most recent role as assistant principal at Nan Clayton Elementary School. She joined Texas State University College of Education as an adjunct professor, teaching special education courses to undergraduate students.

Melissa Corona, who joined Lockhart ISD in 2017 as the director of special services, has recently accepted a new role at Hays CISD.

“It is an honor to join the Lockhart ISD team,” McIntosh said. “I look forward to working with students, parents, staff, and the community to fully unlock the potential of every Lion we serve.”

LISD Superintendent Mark Estrada added, “We are very excited to welcome Ms. McIntosh to LISD. Her 17 years of education and leadership experience, as well as her specialized experience in special education, will serve our Lions well.” 

McIntosh earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from California Lutheran University and a Master of Science in Special Education from Portland State University. 

McIntosh begins her duties at LISD May 2.

Morgan Shelp of Lockhart High School was awarded the Legacy of Excellence Coin, symbolizing those who truly exemplify excellence in LISD. 

Shelp won an American Legion Auxiliary Essay contest hosted by Post 41. The theme was dedicated to allegiance to America, honoring the concepts of patriotism and our national symbols.

Several LHS basketball players, both girls and boys, were recognized for being named THSCA Academic All-State. To be nominated for the honor, student-athletes must be in good standing with the team, of good moral character, a senior, and have an overall grade-point average of 92 or above from courses from grades 9th-11th grade and courses completed from their senior year. 

Players from the boys’ team included Major New and Sean Schexnayder on the 2nd Team, and David Morales named Honorable Mention.

From the girls’ team were Carson Smith and Grace Stofle making the 2nd team, and Destiny Arrazola as Honorable Mention.

Recognized for her Locked On Excellence achievement was Zenaida Tucker, who placed third in her weight class at the 5A Division 2 State Championship in Corpus Christi. Tucker also received a scholarship through THSWPA by writing an essay on what Powerlifting has meant to her and what her plans beyond graduation. She was the Region 2 winner of this award. 

Members of the LHS Color Guard, which placed 7th in the state at Texas A&M in the Texas Color Guard Circuit State Championship, were recognized. They included: Autumn Murphy, Chloe Bingham, Emma Bingham, Finn Hurt, Heaven Alexander, Jezzel Barriga, Milo Broz, Mariana Ortiz, Rylee Fischer, Serena Rodriguez, Gareth Schulte, Alexa Lopez, Alondra Mendoza, Analaura Maldonado, Emily Pendergrass, Hillary Barrera, Lillian Utzinger, Marelin Hernandez, Marissa Cervantes, Oleanna Ruiz Silva, and Mr. Sergeo Rodriguez.

Fifty-six Lockhart ISD teachers were recognized for their completion of the district’s “New to Profession Academy” at Monday night’s Board of Trustees meeting.

Included were the following:

Alma Brewer Strawn Elementary – Lizbeth Arely Cano, Andrea Fernandez, Alexandra Bejarano, Uriel Iglesias, Sara Hamby

Bluebonnet Elementary – Shanna Hall, Kayla Stephens, Lindsey Petterson, Karla Zuniga, Amara Lee Garza, Courtney Gray

Clear Fork Elementary – Kelly Manning, Kaitlin Duggins, Sheri Holmes, Sonya Layla Teces

Navarro Elementary — Malori Miller, MacKenzie Harfst

Plum Creek Elementary — Dakota Ruiz, Monica Hernandez, Maria D. Suarez Diaz, Clarissa Collins, Lupita Suarez Diaz

Lockhart High School – Celina Crandal, Beatrice Espinoza, Ty W. Hennrichs, Alma Morales, Mercedes Rodriguez, Carrie Schaible.

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