School board pleased with Looney’s performance
By Donna O'Neil, Managing Editor
Williamson County Schools Superintendent Dr. Mike Looney received the results of his annual review at last week’s board work session and saw the results ratified at the Tuesday board meeting.
Though the board had three new board members and one vacancy when the results were tallied recently, Looney’s grades were within 1 percent of his rating last year. Looney received 227.4 out of a possible 264 points on a review that rated six specific goal areas. District 1’s Kenneth Peterson, District 3’s P.J. Mazera and District 7’s Robert Hullett were newly elected during the last election season. The District 6 was vacated when former board member Terry Leve moved to Colorado. That seat was recently filled by Cherie Hammond, who was appointed by the Williamson County Commission last week.
Goal No. 1: The superintendent will lead the district to an increase in the average composite ACT score of .30.
Among the accolades in comments section of this goal where, “nice job,” “excellent work,” and “awesome performance.”
District 10 board member Eric Welch wrote: “Williamson County Schools’ ACT composite score increased from 22.8 in 2011 to 23.1 in 2012, meeting the board’s aggressive improvement goal for an already high-achieving district. Dr. Looney should continue to direct and support staff in providing a rigorous curriculum that challenges and prepares students for their ACTs.”
Goal No. 2: The superintendent will lead the school district to a full implementation of BYOT [Bring Your Own Technology] at all schools in the district.
In his evaluation, District 1 board member Kenneth Peterson wrote: “Dr. Looney has done a good job getting this program started and implemented in the school system, however I believe there needs to be additional training for teachers and accountability to ensure this program is being utilized in the classrooms. I do anticipate Dr. Looney building on this program over the next coming year and look forward to seeing all teachers prepared to fully implement this program inside their classrooms.”
District 11 board member Mark Gregory wrote: “Great job, smooth implementation.”
Goal No. 3: The superintendent will lead the district to improvement of 5 percent on TCAP scores as measured by the percentage of proficient and advanced students.
District 9 board member Rick Wimberly wrote: “WCS improvement in TCAP scores is an extraordinary achievement, in excess of expectations, and exemplifies Dr. Looney’s strong leadership and superb performance by his team throughout WCS.”
Goal No. 4: The superintendent will successfully present a comprehensive plan for adoption relating to the creation of an Educational Foundation.
District 12 board member Vicki Vogt wrote: “The Education Foundation has already been formed and chartered. An online investment program has also been created. The intention of the goal was achieved much quicker than anticipated. This is truly a major accomplishment for Williamson County Schools.”
Goal No. 5: The Superintendent will develop and present an incentive plan to recruit hard-to-fill positions in the district.
Board vice chairman and District 5 board member Gary Anderson wrote: “Dr. Looney met this goal, but I feel that part of what was done was reactionary and no acted on soon enough after the initial wage and hour student was concluded by HR. It is now met, just wish it was met sooner.”
District 4 board member Tim McLaughlin wrote: “This goal needs more work! We need to be able to attract the best of the best! I appreciate the work in nursing and central office staff, but there is much more needed within the school system.
Goal No. 6: The Superintendent will develop a tracking system to gauge student participation in extracurricular activities using 2011-12 as a baseline year.
District 3 board member P.J. Mezera wrote: “The tracking system appears to only track high school; and has no distinctive beyond athletics; nor does it take into account multiple activities by the same students. Needs improvement.”
District 7 board member Robert Hullett wrote: “Well done. And again, we must continue the discovery process as we search for solutions to challenges our students face in their decision-making processes, where their class schedules might conflict with the pursuits of their extracurricular dreams and aspirations.”
Board members were invited to write their thoughts in an additional comments section. District 2 board member Janice Mills wrote: “You have done an excellent job leading WCS. The district continues to move as a result of your innovative ideas, tenacity, and the respect that you exhibit in the day-to-day operation of the system. I appreciate the straightforwardness in dealing with the board, parents, commissioners and staff while still exhibiting empathy and understanding. Keep up the excellent work. I am looking forward to working with you and making WCS the school district that others strive to be.”
Board chairwoman and District 8 representative Pat Anderson wrote: “We have experienced another successful year under your leadership. You continue to motivate and inspire. While the name at the top of this document is yours, I believe it is important to recognize that the evidence presented in the narrative and the achievements of our goals are the result of hard work, perseverance, and dedication by all. We are, indeed, relentlessly focused. Congratulations.”
Looney’s response to the comments during the board meeting included recognition of others in the district. “I don’t teach a single class in this district. We have incredible employees who have worked together to meet these goals – BYOT, increased ACT – it is our teachers who deserve the credit. They are the men and women who quiet the noise of the world. They inspire me every single day. I get goose bumps when I walk into these schools.”
Posted on: 1/22/2013