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SUPERINTENDENT’S MESSAGE: BCISD bond, census, and Hall of Honor

Burnet Consolidated Independent School District Superintendent Keith McBurnett.

Burnet Consolidated Independent School District Superintendent Keith McBurnett.

A question I have been asked by some community members is, “Why is the district holding a May 2020 election when (Burnet Consolidated Independent School District) recently had a November election?”

The simple answer is that, even though the November 2019 bond failed, the facility priorities identified in that bond still exist. Second, because of rising construction costs and inflation, the longer the district waits to complete facility improvement projects, the more expensive the projects will become.

But the main reason for a May 2020 bond is that Bertram Elementary School’s enrollment is outpacing demographic projections. Bertram Elementary, with a capacity of 450 students, has grown by 32 students since August. Today, there are 403 students enrolled; the July 2019 demographic study did not project Bertram Elementary’s enrollment being at 400 students until 2022. A bond election will allow BCISD to accommodate student growth at Bertram Elementary and avoid the addition of portable buildings to that campus.

To find out more about the 2020 bond, click here.

Another way to learn more about the 2020 bond program and the district is to join me on Wednesday, March 4, at the Burnet Community Center, where city of Burnet Mayor Crista Goble and I will offer short talks on the State of the Community from the city and school district’s perspective. The doors open at 11:30 a.m. so attendees can visit tables representing the city and school district. Lunch will be served beginning at 11:45 a.m., and the program will begin at noon.

The lunch is always delicious, and, once again, dessert is being provided by the Burnet High School Culinary Arts Program.

The event is free of charge and residents are encouraged to attend. No RSVP is necessary.

The BCISD Board of Trustees held its first budget workshop February 24 in preparation for the 2020-21 school year. The board discussed revenue projections along with compensation models and staffing needs in each of the following categories: Managing Student/Teacher Ratios, Behavior Support, and Campus Support. The board also discussed the current tax rate and its plan to lower it by at least 5 cents to $1.18, even if the 2020 bond passes.

In a recent survey of Texans, 59 percent believe their community public schools have too little money. One way to ensure that Burnet County and Burnet CISD receive the funding they deserve from the federal government is by making sure every citizen is counted as part of the 2020 census. Beginning March 12, households will receive letters with a unique ID that will allow recipients to respond to the census. Please take a moment to be counted during this important once-every-10-year event.   

At the beginning of February, the district honored the seventh group of inductees to the Burnet CISD Hall of Honor and the BCISD Educator of the Year at the annual Burnet Chamber of Commerce Banquet. It was a special evening honoring people who make up the fabric of Burnet CISD and the Burnet community. I want to personally congratulate the following recipients:

  • Distinguished Former School Board Member — Elton Heine
  • Distinguished Former Athlete — Dr. Michael Maxwell
  • Distinguished Burnet High School Graduate — Ross Johnson
  • Distinguished Former Employee — Arlee Barton
  • Educator of the Year — Katie Hewitt

It is so important that these people’s stories are a part of the district’s history. We thank them all for their contribution. In addition to their names being added to perpetual plaques located at Burnet High School, a brief story on each honoree is posted on the district’s website.