Message to Parents

 

TO:              Northwest ISD Parents and Caregivers

FROM:         Ryder Warren, Superintendent of Schools

SUBJECT:   Superintendent’s Update

DATE:         September 29, 2017

It almost doesn’t seem possible, but today, September 29, marks the end of the first six weeks of school.  We’ve had an outstanding start to our year, and that directly correlates with the efforts I see every day in our schools.  Our kids, our staff, and our parents and caregivers are working every day to make sure our students are moving forward academically, and I see that every time I step onto a campus.  While we’ve had our challenges, these phenomenal efforts have made this first six-week period an absolute success. 

I have two main topics for my update to you this week.  The first – school attendance – is a message to all of us as parents and caregivers, and the second topic – proof of residency – only applies to a small percentage of parents, but I needed to make sure everyone understands the issue. 

Make School Attendance a Priority

The first topic to focus upon this week (and for the rest of the school year) is on good, consistent school attendance.  Let me preface this by saying I do not want kids coming to school who are too sick to learn.  Pretty much every student we have in the district will get sick sometime during the course of every school year, and our parents and caregivers will be there to take care of them.  However, on many campuses we are seeing that kids are racking up absences by choice, and as a district, we must address this. 

Our emphasis on school attendance is sometimes criticized by those who think we are only concerned about finances, and it is absolutely true that we receive funds from the state for every child in attendance.  However, our main concern is the education and progress of our students to make sure all of them are making at least a full year of academic growth during the course of the school year.  Logically, the more absences children have, the more critical learning time they are missing.  School attendance is important. Good attendance rates for districts comparable to NISD are at or above 98%.  Our rate last year was 96.5%, so we have some work to do on this.  Please make school attendance a priority for you and your child.

Provide Residency Documentation

As I stated above, this issue only applies to a few families.  Northwest ISD is one of the top 10 fastest-growing school districts in the state in relation to student enrollment.  With the tremendous growth our area is experiencing, it is even more critical that we plan ahead, monitor the growth, and put systems in place to aid us as we expand. The most important issue to this is to make sure we are focusing all of our efforts and our assets on children who live inside the boundaries of NISD. 

At this time, we have families who have not yet provided proof that about 300 students live within our district. Those families will be getting one more reminder from us next week and will be given the final due date to provide this evidence just as the vast majority of parents and caregivers have already done.  Any family who has not yet provided documentation that their child is living inside the district boundary (or any student who has not been approved for transfer) will be un-enrolled from NISD schools beginning October 16.

In the craziness of the start of a new school year, if you have forgotten or not made it a priority to supply this information, please do so as soon as possible. If you have questions or if there are special circumstances surrounding your situation, please contact 817-698-1099 or DistrictRegistrar@nisdtx.org so that we can assist you. Families who do not live in Northwest ISD are expected to enroll in the district in which they actually reside.

Thank you all for such a great start to the school year.  If you have questions about anything in this update or about anything else, do not hesitate to contact the central office at 817-215-0000.  We will find the right person to address your questions or concerns.

Sincerely,

Dr. Ryder Warren, Superintendent of Schools

Northwest Independent School District