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Leaving behind a legacy of transparency and accountability

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(Trustee Audrey Pinkerton recently announced that after completing her three-year term in May, she would not seek reelection to the Dallas ISD Board of Trustees. Below is the letter she shared with her fellow trustees and the superintendent.)

It has been an honor to serve District 7 with my colleagues on the board, the superintendent and the dedicated employees of Dallas ISD. As I look back over the past three years, I am proud of what I’ve helped accomplish.

When I joined the board, 37 DISD schools were failing; today there are only 4. At my urging, DISD administrators made a number of positive changes. The Teacher Excellence Initiative was adjusted from a system where 40% of teachers did not get a raise, to one where 97% of teachers receive a merit-based increase. For the first time ever, DISD developed a 5-year financial plan, which revealed a potential financial crisis that the district was able to take action to avoid. And after hosting a series of public meetings that invited parents into the discussion, we convinced the District to seek other alternatives rather than close 22 neighborhood schools.

I am proud to have stood for transparency and accountability, for the needs of the students, families, staff and community, and for using our scarce resources in the areas that have the highest impact on students.

I want to thank my family for their patience and support, and the people of District 7 and education champions all around Dallas for their words of appreciation and encouragement during the past three years.

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While I brought a business perspective to school district governance, my service did not begin with elected office, but rather as a parent and civic-minded neighbor engaging our community in support of our schools. If the next Trustee for District 7 continues to engage the many talents of our community and upholds the principles of transparency and accountability, then I’m confident the spirit of THINK PINK will continue to serve our children in the future.

Other news:

Congratulations to W.H. Adamson High School’s Academic Decathlon team, which garnered third place in the Region XII Academic Decathlon competition. Adamson competed in the medium division category. This year’s theme was the 1960’s: A Transformational Decade.

Read for Me, a free, interactive literacy event for all grade levels takes place Saturday March 23, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at W.H. Adamson High School. It will feature activities, authors, guest speakers, and more. There will be free breakfast, lunch, giveaways and books! Additionally, the World Languages Asian Festival will also be represented at Read for Me. To learn more and register, visit: www.dallasisd.org/readforme

Ember Carvajal, from Sidney Lanier Expressive Arts Vanguard, and Miklo Rocha, from Lida Hooe Elementary School are among the district’s top 15 students in the County Spelling Bee and now have a chance to compete for more than $50,000 in scholarships and prizes at the National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C.

Kudos to the Destination Imagination teams from Rosemont Elementary School and Molina High School for earning a spot in the state Destination Imagination tournament in March. Rosemont’s Brainy Bison team placed 1st in its category, and Molina’s Pantopes team also earned 1st place in its division. The teams will now advance with 24 other Dallas ISD teams to compete in Corpus Christi.

Dallas ISD Trustee Audrey Pinkerton, District 7