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La Vernia makes big steps in special education
La Vernia Independent School District trustees review department updates during their Oct. 15 meeting.
LA VERNIA -- Although no action was taken, other than the consent agenda approving minutes and bills at the Oct. 15 regular meeting of the La Vernia Independent School District (ISD) board of trustees, several departments presented their status thus far in the school year.
Special education in the La Vernia ISD has seen many advances in recent months, thanks to technology newly incorporated into the department.
Ron Glazener, special education director for La Vernia ISD, said during the meeting that the new technology, along with new additions in staff, have propelled the program to new heights.
“There have just been so many positives this year,” Glazener said. “Our kids won four gold medals at the Special Olympics and one in a softball competition.”
One of the devices Glazener said has led to communication breakthroughs is a Dynavox.
“The Dynavox is an assistance technology device,” Glazener said. “It allows students who are nonverbal or have difficulties communicating in writing and verbalizing. It allows them to respond according to grade level.”
One of the children assisted by the Dynavox is someone Glazener describes as a limited ambulatory student.
“Before learning to utilize the device, she was having difficulty communicating,” Glazener said. “Now, we can see that she is very intelligent and advanced cognitively. Her mind works great, but, until now, her body hadn’t been able to communicate what was in her mind; it’s truly amazing.”
Glazener thanked the board for the technology, which includes iPads, as it has advanced his program immensely.
“There is just so much more we can do now,” Glazener said.
“It was a natural transition for Glazener to assume that role this year,” said Superintendent Tom Harvey of Glazener’s promotion to special education director. “He has hit the ground running and I appreciate the smooth transition.”
La Vernia ISD board of trustees Oct. 15 regular meeting
In attendance: Superintendent Tom Harvey; Assistant Superintendent Diane Fisher; Finance Director Laura Ramzinski; Board members Eric Friedrichs, David Watson, Janice Gimbel, James Barnett, John Bilicek, and Richard Schier; Board President Michael Jendrusch; Director of Technology Allen Bordelon; and Superintendent’s Secretary Kristen Beavers
The board also heard a report on the district’s investments from First Public, which manages La Vernia ISD’s capital in the Lone Star Investment Pool.
“The biggest thing is having our investments in a safe environment, especially with the volatility of the market in this economy,” Harvey said.
First Public representatives addressed concerns on the possible effects of future inflation on the district’s investments and explained what effect, if any, the outcome of a presidential election could have, as well.
The representatives also informed the board that many schools have taken advantage of refinancing options while interest rates are at historic lows, Harvey said after the meeting.
“The interest rate is very low,” the superintendent said. “Even so, our investments outperformed the treasury bills last year. Belonging to this pool ensures that our investments are secure and that the taxpayers’ money is safe.”
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