Pictured: Pasadena ISD Board of Trustees Kenny Fernandez, secretary; Jack Bailey, member; Dr. DeeAnn Powell, school superintendent; Fred Roberts, vice-president; Nelda Sullivan, president; Marshall Kendrick, member; Vickie Morgan, assistant secretary; and Mariselle Quijano, member
When it comes to supporting the school system, the Pasadena ISD Board of Trustees are the All-Stars of the school district.
These seven individuals volunteer countless hours to serve the district’s 56,000 students, 8,000 employees and its community members. January is School Board Recognition Month and the Pasadena ISD family will join school districts across the state to thank these local leaders for their dedication and willingness to serve as advocates for our children and public schools. As elected officials, they are the voice of their communities, serving first and foremost in the best interest of Texas school children.
“Even though we are making a special effort in January to show appreciation to our board members, we realize their many contributions reflect a year-round commitment. They generously give of themselves to ensure that decisions directly affecting our local schools are made by representatives of this community, people who are close to our schools and know our teachers, parents, and students,” said Dr. DeeAnn Powell, Pasadena ISD school superintendent.
“Board members shoulder critical responsibilities and often make difficult choices,” Powell said. “Their ultimate goal is always focused on the future success of the children in our district. It’s more important than ever before that the public supports our schools so that today’s students are prepared to be productive citizens and the leaders of tomorrow.”
Board members are elected by local constituents and play a crucial role in governing the district. Working collaboratively with the school superintendent, staff, parents, students, and community members, the Board establishes a vision for the district, adopts a strategic plan to achieve that vision, looks for opportunities to move the school district forward and remain united in shaping the quality of education for children.
To achieve these goals, the board is visible in the community, and can be sited at campuses, community functions and small group gatherings seeking input about matters that impact the district. On a formal level, the board hosts monthly meetings to make difficult decisions that affect students and staff.
In addition, board members attend training sessions to stay informed about changes in federal regulations and educational trends. Board members also serve on various community, service and civic organization and are members of area chambers of commerce, Rotary Clubs, Optimist Club, Lions Club, PTO’s and local churches.
Serving as a crucial link between the community and classroom, this board has been instrumental in enhancing curriculum, increasing student and campus achievements and implementing many successful programs. These include:
- Increasing the Connect Personalized Learning program
- 1-to-1 wireless towers implementation
- Pasadena ISD being named a state demonstration site for blended learning under the Raising Blended Learners initiative
- Earning a Met Standard rating from the Texas Education Agency, with eight campuses receiving all distinction designations
- Raising the graduation rate to 89 percent
- Securing, in conjunction with the Grants Department, over 27 grants totaling $8 million for district programs
- 40 Early College High School graduates earning associate’s degrees
- Red Bluff and Turner being named “Let’s Move! Active School National award winners
- Pasadena Memorial being named Best High School in America by the U.S. News and World Report in the Bronze category for the second consecutive year
- Earning multiple state and international business awards for financial transparency
- Opening two campuses to create space for classroom learning as a result of the 2014 school bond
- Providing a Community “U” Academy to give parents and community members an inside scoop of the school district
- Having a board with a combined total of over 120 years serving the district
- Implementing the 1-to-1 technology initiative
- Securing $42,276,453 in high school scholarships for 2016
- Increasing the number of Advanced Placement tests taken over the years to 6,171, with 292 scholars
Board members serving Pasadena ISD are Nelda Sullivan, president; Fred Roberts, vice-president; Kenny Fernandez, secretary; Vickie Morgan, assistant secretary; Marshall Kendrick, member; Jack Bailey, member; and Mariselle Quijano, member.
“If you spot a board member, please be sure to thank them for their service to Pasadena ISD,” Dr. Powell said.