District of Innovation Information

TEXAS DISTRICTS OF INNOVATION (DOI)

Note: Mr. Truitt will use this site to post all applicable West ISD DOI information. Please check back when you can!

Statutory Requirements

HB 1842 (2015) created the law that allows for the designation of Districts of Innovation (DOI). The law can be found in Chapter 12A of the Texas Education Code (TEC). This chapter provides that a traditional school district that is rated acceptable or better may create a district-level innovation plan, potentially including exemptions from the vast majority of the TEC, which constitutes the state’s regulatory framework and statutory safety net for public schools.

Districts of Innovation may be exempted from a number of state statutes and will have:

  • greater local control as the decision makers over the educational and instructional model for students;
  • increased freedom and flexibility, with accountability, relative to state mandates that govern educational programming; and
  • empowerment to innovate and think differently.

HB 1842 specifies that “a local innovation plan must provide for a comprehensive educational program for the district, which may include:

  • innovative curriculum, instructional methods, and provisions regarding community participation, campus governance, and parental involvement;
  • modifications to the school day or year;
  • provisions regarding the district budget and sustainable program funding;
  • accountability and assessment measures that exceed the requirements of state and federal law; and
  • any other innovations prescribed by the Board of Trustees.”

A district may become a DOI by following these steps as laid out in statute:

  1. The district’s Board of Trustees adopts a resolution to consider becoming a DOI, or receives a petition signed by a majority of the members of the district-level planning committee established under TEC 11.251.
  2. The Board holds a public hearing to consider becoming a DOI.
  3. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board either:
    • Declines to pursue the designation or
    • Appoints a committee to develop a local innovation plan in accordance with TEC 12A.003.
  4. The committee then drafts a local innovation plan that must provide for a district-wide comprehensive educational program.
    • Identify requirements imposed by the TEC that inhibit the goals of the plan from which the district should be exempted; the exemptions sought by the district cannot include statutes that are identified as non-exemptible under TEC 12A.004.
  5. The final version of the proposed innovation plan must be posted on the district’s website for 30 days.
  6. The Board must notify the Commissioner of its intention to vote on adoption of the proposed innovation plan.
  7. The district-level planning committee established under TEC 11.251 must consider the final version of the innovation plan in a public meeting and approve it by a majority vote.
  8. Upon conclusion of the 30-day posting period and after the affirmative vote of the district-level planning committee, the full Board may adopt the proposed plan by a two-thirds vote.
To date, West ISD has reviewed all applicable information on how a school district becomes a District of Innovation. We have attended training sessions at Region 12, watched a Texas Education Agency webinar, and visited with leaders of several current Districts of Innovation. Over the past few months, the following public meetings have contained agenda items on this topic. 
  • December 12, 2016, January 24, 2017, and February 27, 2017, West ISD District Advisory Team Meetings
  • December 14, 2016, and January 11, 2017, February 8, 2017, and March 15, 2017, West ISD Regular Board Meetings
 
During the January 11, 2017, Regular Board Meeting, the Board approved the Resolution to begin the District of Innovation process and work in West ISD. The Board approved the Resolution 7-0.
 
During the February 8, 2017, Regular Board Meeting, the Board held the Public Hearing and formed the District of Innovation Advisory Committee. On February 21, 2017, Mr. Truitt, Superintendent, notified the Commissioner of Education of West ISD's intent to study and possibly create a DOI plan. 
 
The District of Innovation Advisory Committee will meet on the following dates:
  • Monday, March 20, 2017, at 6:30 PM at West Middle/High School; Note: The PowerPoint presentation from this meeting is posted on the right-side of this webpage. 
  • Monday, March 27, 2017, at 6:30 PM at West Middle/High School
  • Thursday, April 6, 2017, at 6:30 PM at West Middle/High School
 
All meetings are open to the public. All meeting materials will be posted on this site. 
 
For additional information, please contact David Truitt, Superintendent, at (254) 981-2000.