Education

Three forums that will be used to shape the Belton Independent School District’s first strategic plan were rescheduled after last week’s winter storm.

District officials announced the three meetings — two of which will be online and the other in person for Spanish-speaking community members — are set for next week.

“Last week’s winter weather may have disrupted our initial plans, but we’re moving forward,” Deputy Superintendent Malinda Golden said. “We are eager to hear from the community about what’s most important to them as we continue our efforts together to plan the best path forward for the district.”

The meetings will be two hours long and follow the same agenda, according to a news release.

The online forums are scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday and 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday. Visit bisd.net/strategicplan to access the link to the virtual meetings.

The third meeting will be presented in Spanish only. It is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Charter Oak Elementary, 8402 Poison Oak Road in Temple. Child care will be provided, according to the district.

The strategic plan will be a document laying out the district’s goals for the coming year. Belton ISD’s growth is fueling the need for the planning document — which will lay out the district’s needs for things such as facilities and staff.

In the fall, Templeton Demographics told the school board it projects the district to gain nearly 4,500 students over the next decade — a 35.7 percent increase. That would push enrollment to around 16,000 students from about 12,600 students, according to the district.

Trustees are expected to receive an update on the school district’s demographics next month, according to officials.

The strategic plan will be based on the recently approved Journey of a Graduate, a community-based document on what learning experiences Belton ISD students should have. Administrators have said the strategic plan will help put the Journey of a Graduate into action.

Administrators anticipate the school board to consider the strategic plan sometime in late spring or early summer.

“We now know what the community’s aspirations are for our students. The big question remains: How do we get there? Our strategic plan will set us on the right path,” Golden said.

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