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student, teacher and police officer

This week students and staff throughout Crandall ISD showed their support and gratitude to CISD Police Officers. Football players and coaches from Crandall High School provided breakfast, transportation employees gave cookies, and the CHS softball team wrapped up the week with donuts and cards.

The officers were celebrated and appreciated for their bravery, courage and tireless pursuit to keep our students and staff safe.

“We are so thankful for our officers and their outstanding focus on the safety of our students and staff,” said CISD Superintendent Dr. Wendy Eldredge. “We are proud to celebrate these brave men and women throughout the year.”

The generosity was not lost on CISD Police Chief Billy Taylor, who has served the district more than five years.

“We are honored and thankful for the students and staff who showed their support,” Taylor said. “We want to develop a trusting relationship with them and show them that we are normal people who work hard every day to protect them.”

CISD has four officers that ensure the safety of our 5,500—and growing—Pirates. Visit the department website to learn more.

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CISD kicks off Wellness Wednesdays for staff to promote overall health
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This year, Crandall ISD introduced Wellness Wednesdays--a weekly initiative where employees are encouraged to participate in some form of a wellness activity, whether it is walking around the building, reading a book or doing a yoga class.

The goal of the program is to encourage staff to do something each week for their mental and physical health. The activities do not need to be intense, they are intended to encourage small steps in the direction of wellness.

According to Katrina Spotsville, CISD’s Social Emotional Learning Coordinator, emotional wellness is just as important as the physical aspect.

“Our mental health impacts our physical health and overall well-being,” Spotsville said. “Someone struggling with mental health issues such as anxiety or depression can find it difficult to maintain focus, find motivation for tasks and relate to others.”

She is hosting “Convos with Katrina,” where she has confidential, informal chats with employees that are designed to support CISD’s front-line workers.

Janna Settles, CISD Coordinator of Nursing, also stressed overall wellness within three specific areas--physical, mental and spiritual.

“Everyone is busy,” Settles said. “It seems like we continue to get busier every week. However, we must take time to take care of ourselves, or we cannot take care of others in our care. By incorporating Wellness Wednesday into our district, we are striving towards overall health for each one of our staff.”

Settles noted that encouragement is key in reaching goals and a combined effort among employees often makes the challenges more enjoyable.

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CISD Class of 2034 thanks the district’s education foundation for their shirts

The Crandall ISD Education Foundation partnered with Coby Pritchett and Nate McCrary of Texas Farm Bureau Insurance to provide 400 shirts to kindergarteners of CISD. 

CISD Superintendent, Dr. Wendy Eldredge, and members of the Education Foundation Board joined the excitement with students at Noble-Reed Elementary. Joining them were the school’s namesakes, Amy Noble and Linda Reed, who taught kindergarten during their tenure in CISD. 

“The Education Foundation was excited to do this for our kindergartners,” said Kimberly Bramhall, executive director of CEF. “We loved getting to go to campuses and see the kids’ faces light up.”

Each student received an adult large, which symbolizes that the education foundation grows with them from kindergarten to graduation.

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Crandall ISD history made as the 5,000th student enrolled in the district

On the first day of school, Martin Elementary first grader Zuri Paniagua didn’t know it, but she made Crandall ISD history as the 5,000th student enrolled in the district. But that record number didn't stop there -- as of September 1, CISD has 5,356 students enrolled.

Last week, CISD Superintendent Dr. Wendy Eldredge, along with Martin Principal, Matthew Bersherse and Zuri’s first grade teacher, Gretchen Everett, presented Zuri with a few Pirate gifts to welcome her to the district. 

Zuri is not new to the Crandall ISD community. In fact, she has a brother at Martin ES, as well as another at Crandall High School. Zuri said she loves her new school and her favorite subject is math. But her favorite part of her new school is the playground.

When asked about her favorite part of being a Pirate, she responded, “Because you get to go on a boat!” When Zuri grows up, she wants to be a “big kid” teacher.

“We are so excited to have Zuri and all of our Pirates -- past, present and future -- who have helped us to achieve this amazing milestone,” said Eldredge. “We cannot wait to see Zuri learn and grow this year.”

In the past five years, the CISD has grown at a booming rate of 32 percent. The district had 4,056 students enrolled for the 2017-18 school year -- a 1,300 student increase between then and now.

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CISD adopts budget and lowers tax rate for the third-consecutive year

At last night’s board meeting, Crandall ISD board members adopted a $61,264,008 budget for the 2021-22 school year and lowered the district’s tax rate for the third-consecutive time.

The new budget, up from last year’s $51,908,635, reflects a 2-percent midpoint raise for teachers and staff—a much supported effort coming off a Covid-riddled 17 months of instruction and operation. It also includes the district’s food services fund and debt services fund.

“Our teachers have held a pivotal role in leading this district’s charge since March of 2020, when everything changed overnight,” said Dr. Wendy Eldredge, superintendent of Crandall ISD. “All of our staff members have taken on additional responsibilities. I appreciate them for all they do—every day—for our Pirates, and I appreciate our board for approving the additional compensation.”

Trustees also voted to lower the district’s tax rate to $1.37. CISD has lowered the rate 17 cents throughout the past three years. In 2018-19 it stood at $1.54.

Within the budget, Trustees also approved increasing teacher starting pay to $51,800 to make CISD more competitive with neighboring districts. Additional education programs include cosmetology and JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps). Both will bolster offerings to Crandall High School students through the Career and Technical Education program.

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