Garland ISD

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Garland ISDPublic Schools

*Information as of 2016

District Name: Garland ISD

District Size & Class Size: 57,436 students; class size average is 21.7 students

Grade Level Alignment: We have two pre-k centers, forty-seven K-5 elementary schools, twelve 6-8 middle schools and seven 9-12 high school campuses. We also have one non-traditional campus, one alternative campus and one behavioral transitional campus.

Texas A-F Accountability Rating: This district received a B.

Distinguishing Characteristics: Garland ISD has been on the educational path of excellence for over 100 years. Our rich past, steeped in tradition, is the strong foundation that propels us toward the future and the transformation of teaching and learning to meet the needs of the 21st Century learners in our schools. We all share the same vision from our district Strategic Plan of creating modern learning environments that prepare students today to be globally competitive graduates who are ready for college and career tomorrow.

GISD’s Ready initiative aims to equip students for success in higher education and at work, regardless of where their paths take them. Today’s students need to actively participate and collaborate with one another, and they need to make real-world connections to content. New magnet programs like Montessori, as well as the Ready 1:1 rollout of personal iPads, encourage and support innovative, creative thinkers who can solve problems and apply knowledge to new challenges, skills that are crucial for their success.

Thanks to strong, ongoing community support, these opportunities and others have been made possible through the district’s Bond 2014 program. The new Career and Technical Education Center, the natatorium and campus renovations make this an extraordinary and exciting time to be a part of GISD.

Other notable accomplishments include adding art instruction to all our elementary campuses, increasing Advanced Placement exam participation by 200 percent, launching the Family and Community Engagement Department, and hosting an annual STEAMposium event for all our young innovators. Garland ISD also pays for all PSAT and SAT tests for students in grades 8-11, in addition to AP and IB testing at the high schools. Students take the SAT on SAT School Day, so they can take the test in a familiar setting. Our goal is to ensure that finances and transportation are not a barrier to students being college and career ready. For our employees, we have a full-time clinic that allows them to seek treatment for themselves and their children, to get prescriptions in an easy and affordable location within the district.

Specializations and Program Offerings:
School Choice with specialized magnet programs including Academies for Gifted and Talented students, Classical Magnet, Law Magnet, Collegiate Academy, Dual Language, Global Business and Leadership, Dual Credit, Accelerated Math and Science, International Baccalaureate, Mandarin Chinese Language and Leadership, STEM, Montessori, and Performing Arts. Garland ISD also offers Air Force National Defense Cadet Corps, AVID and three AVID National Demonstration Schools, Apple Distinguished Schools, and multiple National Blue Ribbon campuses. We have partnerships with the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) to offer incentives and study sessions for students preparing for AP exams, Texas Instruments for scholarship and for teacher training, and Discovery Education for training and resources, to name a few.

All high school students in GISD received an iPad this year as a part of our Ready initiative. Next year, all middle school students will receive an iPad.Monthly parent training, workshops and seminars are offered in Spanish and in English throughout the year to assist parents and provide support. Garland ISD also offers multiple programs for special needs students, including a preschool program, early childhood intervention and all related services.

Extracurricular: Our athletic programs begin in the 7th grade and include football, soccer, volleyball, basketball, golf, baseball, cross country, powerlifting, gymnastics, swimming and diving, track and field, tennis, softball, and drill team. Our comprehensive and award-winning Fine Arts programs include children’s chorus in elementary, band, orchestra, strings at elementary, dance, debate, and visual arts, including film. GISD has many spirit groups, clubs and academic organizations, including Academic Decathlon and participation in UIL competition beginning in second grade. A yearly STEAMposium event allows students to compete in multiple challenges focused on science, technology, engineering, arts and math. Our special needs students also participate in Special Olympics throughout the school year. We also offer extensive opportunities for enrichment during the summer.

Safety and Security: All campuses are equipped with cameras and speakers that require visitors to identify themselves and the purpose of their visit to the campus before entering the campus. Each campus also has the Raptor system to scan driver licenses and be screened prior to a visitor leaving the front office. Campuses also have Security Resource Officers (SROs) to ensure safety and support. We have strong relationships and work closely with the Garland, Rowlett and Sachse police and fire departments. We have nurses at all our campuses in addition to technology that allows our nurses to communicate with doctors to share vital signs to help determine course of action when students are ill. All volunteers are required to go through a background check.

M&O/I&S Tax Rates and Last Bond Passage: M&O is 1.04 and I&S is 0.4200. With the strong community support, the last bond was passed in 2014 for $455.5 million for upgrading district technology, updating facilities building a new natatorium and Career and Technical Education Center, and enhancing safety.

Average Home Value in District: $158,284

Selling Points: We provide high quality, award-winning and innovative educational, fine arts, and athletic opportunities that inspire students to learn, follow their passion and achieve their goals. Our biggest selling point is choice; students are not bound to the school or programs near their homes; they have access to a plethora of choices that best meet their needs. Under the leadership of Superintendent Bob Morrison, Ed.D., and our Board of Trustees, we have made gains in every aspect of district operations. The past three years have been filed with milestones and accomplishments that can be viewed in Dr. Morrison’s State of the District and the district Milestone Roadmap.

District Philosophy: Diverse Community, Shared Vision, and Exceptional Education is our district motto, highlighting the strength of the diverse communities we serve: Garland, Rowlett and Sachse. Our District Strategic Plan provides details about our goals, beliefs and vision to ensure our students are globally competitive when they graduate.