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June  19, 2021


12th annual Fish Fry scheduled June 19

to benefit Mikey Jones Scholarship Fund

The 12th annual Fish Fry, benefitting the Mikey Jones Scholarship Fund, has been scheduled for Saturday, June 19 from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Family Life Center of  The United Methodist Church of Frankston.

Fried catfish, with all the trimmings, is $10 per plate and can be eaten inside or ordered to go. All proceeds benefit the fund.

The Mikey Jones Scholarship Fund is designed to aid students in achieving their academic goals beyond high school, especially those students with interests in the vocational and trade fields. Sponsors say thousands of dollars have been awarded to Frankston and LaPoynor students since the death of Mikey Jones. Currently one senior from each school receives $1,000 to further their education.

Mikey Jones has been remembered as a well-known mechanic in the area who inspired all who knew him with his amazing mechanical skill, performed in spite of a painful disability, and a person who brought joy to the people of this community with his amazing perspective on life.

At the event, music for dancing will be provided by Joe Dale Dickerson’s Caddo Creek Band. The band is well known in the area and will provide music that can be enjoyed  by anyone interested in dancing. James Bevins will also provide some of the entertainment.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual fish fry in Mikey Jones’ honor was not held last year but has been resumed this year inside at the air conditioned United Methodist Church Family Life Center, located behind Austin Bank.

The scholarship committee hopes that each person will do whatever makes them comfortable regarding masks and hopes that community citizens will consider getting the COVID shots, if they have not done so.

In addition to attending the Fish Fry, those who desire may contribute to the Mikey Jones Scholarship Fund at Austin Bank.

More information can be obtained by contacting Jerry Jones at (903) 724-0192.


June  1, 2021


2021 Frankston ISD Wall of Honor

inductees: T. L. Beard, Ruth Tindel 

Frankston Independent School District has announced the posthumous recognition of T.L. Beard and Ruth Tindel for their nomination and induction to the FISD Wall of Honor. 

“FISD is proud to remember Mr. Beard and Mrs. Tindel on the Frankston ISD Wall of Honor for their service and commitment to the Frankston community,” the announcement stated.

Started in 2015, the Wall of Honor recognizes members of the community for their exceptional achievement in their chosen field, exceptional community service, or outstanding contribution to the Frankston Independent School District.

Plaques for the 2021 inductees will be added to those of prior honorees in the Frankston High School gymnasium lobby and cafeteria. Because of continued precautions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, FISD plans to further recognize them in a public ceremony along with any 2022 honorees next year.

T.L. Beard, a Frankston native and 1941 FHS graduate, was selected for his love for education, his service to the country in World War II, his successful career which provided jobs for many Frankston residents, his work on behalf of Frankston as Anderson County Commissioner of Precinct 3 and his overall devotion to his hometown.

Ruth Tindel was selected for her more than 20 years of service to FISD employees and patrons as tax assessor-collector and her work on PEIMS, payroll, employee insurance, as well as assisting the superintendent and business manager in budget preparations. Her community service included work with the Frankston Medical Assn. in helping obtain a doctor, and later at the Austin Clinic, along with her inspiration and help with The Frankston Citizen newspaper.

(For more on the 2021 Wall of Honor inductees, see HERE )


June  1, 2021


Area cities receive sales

tax allocations for June

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts reported city sales tax allocations for the June 2021 period showing gains for Frankston and Berryville among most area cities over the prior period last year.

Most area cities reported gains for the year-to-date over the prior year.

The City of Frankston received a net payment of $38,775.23 for June   compared to a $32,538.86 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 19.16 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $215,860.22 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $171,412.12, a gain of 25.93 percent.

The City of Berryville received a net payment of $2,671.02 for June compared to a $2,095.71 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 27.45 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $14,832.81 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $10,754.44, a gain of 37.92 percent.

The City of Coffee City received a net payment of $21,272.88 for June  compared to a $23,997.09 payment a year ago. That’s a decrease of 11.35 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $124,738.25 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $116,224.76, a gain of 7.32 percent.

The City of Cuney received a net payment of $3,107.30 for June compared to a $4,062.85 payment a year ago. That’s a decrease of 23.51 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $17,587.88 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $16,437.67, a gain of 6.99 percent.

The City of Poynor received a net payment of $1,172.45 for June compared to a $1,278.24 payment a year ago. That’s a decrease of 8.27 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $7,138.73 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $7259.64, down 1.66 percent.


May 21, 2021


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W.E. Moore Award            Abbie Ramsey 

Brink Bizzell, Abbie Ramsey receive

Austin, Moore graduation honors

The 41 graduates of Frankston High School Class of 2021 came to the podium and received their diplomas Friday, May 21 amid a crowd of proud parents  and friends strategically seated in family sections complying with the still-active COVID-19 protocol adopted by Frankston ISD.

A highlight of the evening was the traditional awarding of the coveted Jeff Austin Award for an outstanding male athlete and the equally coveted W. E. Moore Award given to an outstanding female graduate.

Abbie Ramsey, also Salutatorian of her class, received the W.E. Moore Award. Brink Bizzell, also selected for Academic Honors, won the Jeff Austin Award, given since 1939, in honor of the late Frankston banker.

The awards were presented by Middle School Principal Cindy Owens.

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Jeff Austin Award              Brink Bizzell

  — FISD Courtesy Photos

Abbie’s achievements also extended to being one of two Frankston graduates who earned enough dual credits in high school to earn Associate of Arts degrees from Trinity Valley Community College. The other recipient was Eryn Pryor, a high school honor graduate who delivered the Welcome at the beginning of Commencement ceremonies. TVCC President Dr. Jerry King further honored the two in a pinning ceremony during the program.


As Salutatorian, Abbie delivered the traditional Salutatory Address early in the ceremony, thanking a whole range of friends, coaches, teachers and relatives for contributing to her success at FHS. She also paid special tribute to those graduates who have opted to enter military service after graduation.

The Valedictorian, Grant Foster, in his Valedictory Address, reminded the graduates that there may be failures and hardships in their lives, but if they persist, despite failures or losses, there can be some opportunities for successes and happier times.

After all was said and done, High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez certified the graduation of the 41 seniors and they made their way to the podium to be handed their diplomas by School Board President Junior Mascorro.

At the close of the ceremony, the graduates traditionally hurled their caps high in the air of the FHS gymnasium as a symbol of their start of their post graduate lives.


May 21, 2021


Class of 2021 Commencement set

May 21; Honor Grads recognized 

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TVCC GRADUATES — Abbie Ramsey, left, and Eryn Pryor received their Associates Degrees from Trinity Valley Community College in Athens on Friday, May 14. The two Frankston High School seniors completed enough dual credit courses during their high school years to earn the degrees. They will be graduating from Frankston High School on Friday, May 21. — Courtesy Photo

The 41 graduating seniors of the Class of 2021 of Frankston High School will be holding Commencement on Friday, May 21 at the FHS gymnasium. The slide show will begin at 5 p.m. and the ceremony at 5:30 p.m.

Attendance limitations have been set for guests per family as outlined in a guidelines letter from FISD.

Following is the order of the ceremony as reported by Frankston ISD:

The Class will enter the gymnasium to the sound of the traditional “Pomp and Circumstance” and the ceremony will begin with the invocation led by honor graduate Brink Bizzell.

The Class and attendees will be led in the Pledge of Allegiance by honor graduate Kasity Staines.

Honor graduate Eryn Pryor will extend the “Welcome” to all attending.

Salutatorian Abbie Ramsey will deliver the Salutatory Address.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens will present awards.

Dr. Jerry King, Trinity Valley Community College president, to present TVCC graduates who completed enough dual credit courses during high school to earn Associate of Arts degrees.

Valedictorian Grant Foster will deliver the Valedictory Address.

High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez will deliver the Certification of Graduation followed by Presentation of the Class for the receiving of diplomas.

The ceremony will end with the Benediction led by honor graduate Melany Pizano and the Class will leave the gymnasium to the sound of the Recessional.

(Class Roll and Honor Graduates HERE )


May 17, 2021


FISD staff member COVID-19

case lab-confirmed on May 17

Frankston school officials reported on Monday, May 17 that another staff member has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the staff member was present on campus on Thursday, May 13.

The superintendent said the school has responded as usual by sending notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new case additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the name of the infected individual or details that may identify that individual, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individual, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days from contact, in quarantine, to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest case is in addition to ones reported on April 15, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new case brings the total since August to 67, of which 38 are students and 29 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


May 17, 2021


Newly-elected FISD trustees given

Oath of Office in May 17 meeting

Newly-elected members of the Frankston Independent School District Board of Trustees were given the Oath of Office Monday, May 17 and officers of the newly constituted board were selected, according to a report from FISD.

Newly elected or returning trustees taking office after the May 1 election were Sheila Smith, Junior Mascorro, J.R. Newman and Brian Merritt.

Officers selected were Junior Mascorro, president; Brian Merritt, vice president; and Dustin Holladay, secretary.

The Board also took action on a number of routine items.

— Approved 7-0 a proposed amendment to the FISD District  of Innovation Plan regarding the school district depositories contract. 

— Adopted 7-0 a resolution of the board regarding Texas Education Agency ESSER III and local Policy CB, state and federal revenue sources.

— Voted against a resolution expressing an official intent to reimburse costs of projects. Voting for were Brian Merritt, Dustin Holladay and Joe Reed. Against were Sheila Smith, Ryan Bizzell, J.R. Newman and Junior Mascorro.

Among consent items approved were First Amendment Policy Revisions to Local Policies FNAA, FNAB, GKD and GKDA and a USDA waiver to extend the Seamless Summer Option (SSO) during the 2021-2022 school year which allows all  FISD students to eat breakfast and lunch free.

School district patrons interested in details of the above items may contact the administrative office at (903) 876-2556.

The board also approved 7-0, as presented, employment of employees for the 2021-2022 school year and discussed local property values and taxes.

Campus reports were given by school principals.

Elementary Principal Melanie Blackwell reported on various activities, some related directly to the end of school. She said campus enrollment totaled 337. Outstanding Indian recognized was Brody Moore.

A Retirement Celebration for Ann Lloyd, Jan Long, Jim Tindall and Vickie Tindall was announced for Wednesday, May 19 at 3:45 p.m. in the Elementary Library.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens recognized achievements of various students and groups, including the National Junior Honor Society induction, the Middle School Play, “Snow White” and the End of Year Middle School Dance.

She also reported total MS enrollment of 195, including 69 in the sixth grade, 67 in seventh grade, and 59 in eighth grade.

High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez noted that Final Exams have been scheduled for May 18-21 and that the Class of 2021 Commencement is set for Friday, May 21 in the high school gymnasium. He also recognized the graduation and receipt of Associates Degrees through dual credit of high school graduates Abbie Ramsey and Eryn Pryor from Trinity Valley Community College on Friday, May 14.

The principal also recognized Jon-Wesley Criswell as the Farm Bureau Student of the Month and Sonja Carter as Farm Bureau Teacher of the Year.

He said total enrollment at the high school was 208 including 59 in the ninth grade, 64 in the tenth, 44 in the eleventh and 41 in the twelfth grade.

Supt. Nicci Cook confirmed the campus enrollments for a total enrollment of 740 students. She said the enrollment was down 29 students from Nov. 2, 2019 when the district opened the school to in-person instruction only.

Supt. Cook said that as of the meeting, there have been a total of 67 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 infection since August, 2020, with 38 students and 29 staff members in the total. She said 20 shots were given in the May 14 NETHealth COVID Vaccination Clinic at FISD.


May 14, 2021


COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic at FISD

considered success by NETHealth

The Frankston ISD COVID-19 vaccination clinic conducted by North East Texas Health (NETHealth) on Friday, May 14 was considered very successful by the Tyler public health entity, according to Supt. Nicci Cook.

Supt. Cook said 20 shots were administered during the period from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

In an email to Supt. Cook, Stephanie Walker, an assistant director for NETHealth, wrote:

“Thank you so much for allowing us in to offer vaccinations; today was a TOTAL SUCCESS, and we appreciate your partnership!”


May 11, 2021


New Council given Oath of Office

after May 1 election results okayed

Newly elected members of the Frankston City Council took the oaths of office Tuesday, May 11, after the results of the May 1 City Election were approved by the prior Council, according to unofficial minutes reported by City Secretary Kelli Landreth-Smith.

The minutes do not become official until they are approved at the next Council meeting.

Court Clerk Linda Howell administered the Oath of Office to all six Council members. Newly elected Mayor Tommy Carr and new Place 2 Council member Lesia Main and Place 4 Councilman Johnnie Day joined incumbents Place 3 Council member Sharyn Harrison, Place 5 Councilman Greg Main and Place 6 Councilman Roger McDonald in taking the Oath.

At this time old Council members officially stepped down and new Council members took their seat.

Outgoing Mayor Gerald Hall said it had been an honor to serve as Mayor and thanked the Council, citizens and employees and offered to help in any way possible. The Council thanked Hall for his service to the community.

After the new Mayor Carr spoke about the experience of Sharyn Harrison as Mayor Pro-Tem, Mrs. Harrison was unanimously elected as Mayor Pro-Tem.

The Council voted to call a Special Election for Nov. 2, 2021 to consider Legalizing Sale of All Alcoholic Beverages, Including Mixed Beverages in the city. The Council was informed they were acting in response to their legal duty to honor a petition calling for a special election.

The Council also voted unanimously to approve an Interlocal Agreement between the City of Frankston and Anderson County Annex for mowing the annex property.

During the meeting, the new Mayor Carr introduced himself and touched on his expectations of the Council. He said he believed as Mayor one person should be held accountable and therefore if there are employee issues, he will be the person to whom they should be addressed. He also spoke about the Council’s role in setting policy and said he wanted a transparent workplace centered around professionalism.

Following staff reports by Police, Frankston VFD, Water and Sewer, Municipal Court and Street Department, the following announcements were made:

A Music Festival hosted by Economic Development will be held on June 5 from 5 to 9 p.m. Also Bulk Item Pickup will be held on May 25-26 with drop-off at City Hall only.


May 10, 2021


Surprise storm wreaks damage

to parts of Brushy Creek area

(Editor’s Note: An unexpected spring storm blew through part of the Brushy Creek area on Monday, May 10 and one of the area residents described the damage and the response of the neighborhood and others who responded to the recovery effort.  Thanks to Mrs. Gigi Selman for her contributions and pictures. )

Special to The Frankston Citizen Online

Although rain, and even storms, had been in the forecast, a small section of Brushy Creek was not prepared for what blew into their area.

This odd storm just hit the small area of Anderson county roads 435, 437 and 4371 off of FM 837, witnesses said.   

“The weather took a crazy turn, and surprised a few of the country residents,” Gigi Selman said. 

Most of the area received the normal storm that was expected, a little rain and wind as usual. They were very surprised when they drove a little way down the road to find the amount of damage around them. 

At around 4 p.m. on Monday, May 10, there came a sudden storm, far worse than what was expected. There was a deluge of hail along with high winds and rain. It happened so fast that one resident, Mrs. Selman, found herself running around the house trying to figure out what to do for protection. 

“The noise of tree limbs hitting the house was frightening,” she said.  “Looking out the window, there was debris flying around and the rain was coming down in sheets.When I looked out the window and saw our flagpole bending, I knew this storm was not normal. "

In a panic, Mrs. Selman said she knew she needed to get a plan. 

“Every room in our house has an outside wall, so there is no safe place to hunker down,” she said. “There is one small hall, with four doors to close, that has always been the go-to spot when we would get a tornado warning. I threw pillows and blankets in there, to make a safety nest. Of course, I knew this was not actually a safe place, but it was all I had.”

Mrs. Selman described the storm and its effects:

“The storm appeared suddenly, wreaked its havoc, and was over quickly.  All of those receiving the wrath of this ‘freaky’ storm, found it hard to describe. Hail was piled up everywhere, and yards were covered in tree limbs and other debris. That was only what was visible from their homes.  As they ventured out, they found that the roads, especially FM 837, had many trees down, blocking the way for cars to pass.  CR 437 and CR 4371 also needed much attention.”  

Brushy Creek is a small community, but it is blessed with neighbors who jump into action at the first sign of damage, Mrs. Selman observed.

“Many trees, large ones, were completely uprooted,” she said. “Neighbors grabbed their chain saws and got to work.”

Going to check on their property and pastures, the Selmans found a great amount of damage from fallen trees.

“We had many trees uprooted, which had fallen and broken several fences, Mrs. Selman reported. “A few treetops were twisted off, which seemed to indicate strong winds. One tree was uprooted, blocking the driveway of Adam Selman.  It had broken a large section of the fence there. His yard was full of shingles, and he said that he didn’t know where a couple of his deck chairs were.” 

Across the highway, at the home place of Larry and Gigi Selman, there were trees blocking the road to their house and to the Olive Branch Cemetery.  On their property there were three huge trees completely uprooted, one of them falling to take down another tree with it. Some trees had to be tended to immediately because of the fences down on land with livestock. They said that others will just have to wait.

“Pictures taken show the sizes of the trees and the terrible mess this storm made,” Mrs. Selman said.  

A large tree also fell on one of the buildings on the property of Andrew and Sunni Lou Adair, it was reported.

“Sunni Lou says that all the goats were safe because they hid under their little barn,” Mrs. Selman said.

There was a heavy, eerie fog at the end of the storm that blanketed the area for a long time, which Mrs. Selman said had added to the danger of traveling the roads. 

 “The crew of county workers showed up immediately with their equipment to begin the task of clearing the roads,”she said. “It was not an easy job, but they stayed until all roads were passable for the community. Their hard work and quick action is much appreciated by all of the Brushy Creek residents.” 

After two days of clearing trees and getting all the tree limbs and debris out of the yards, another storm came through on Tuesday evening, adding more rain and flooding in the area.  

“I just really need the sun to shine soon,” Mrs. Selman said. “Maybe that will help save some of the plants and flowers that were beaten down by the storm.”


May 2, 2021


Lighthouse Baptist Revival May 2-5

to host Evangelist Herman Cramer

The Lighthouse Baptist Church at Frankston will be holding a Revival, featuring Texas evangelist Herman Cramer, starting on Sunday, May 2 at 11 a.m. and continuing that evening at 7 p.m. through Wednesday, May 5, also at 7 p.m. at the church at 11664 Hwy, 155 North.

The pastor, Bro. George Folmar, said the Revival will be held in the new church building under construction, but urged those attending to bring lawn chairs in case there is insufficient seating.

According to information on his website, at the young age of 28, the Revival speaker was considered successful by the world’s standards. After graduating from high school, he began farming the rich and fertile ground of the Rio Grande Valley of Texas. After acquiring 3,000 acres of farm land Cramer had the world in his hands.

Cramer experienced a harvest like no other, his own life. He experienced a personal call to the Gospel ministry one year after his dramatic salvation experience.

The speaker makes his home in Seguin, Texas were he is a member of the First Baptist Church..  He was married to Judell for 57 years before she passed away on March 17, 2019.

Cramer is a graduate of the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth. He is now serving his 38th year in full time evangelism. He served as vice-president and President of the Conference of Texas Baptist Evangelists. He also received the Roy Fish Lifetime Achievement Award from the Southern Baptist of Texas Conference.

Cramer consistently averages 30 to 32 revival services a year.


May 1, 2021


Carr voted as Mayor, Main, Day

Council; Newman FISD trustee

Tommy Carr was elected to Place 1, Mayor, of the City of Frankston and two other newcomers, Lesia Main and Johnnie Day were elected to Council seats in complete but unofficial results in the May 1 City Election, according to results tabulated by Anderson County Election office.

In the Frankston Independent School District trustee election, J.R. Newman was elected to Place 4, a seat to be vacated by Tim Brumley, who decided not to seek re-election. Also Sheila Smith, who was unopposed, was elected to the Place 1 seat to be vacated by Bob Whitehurst, who opted not to seek re-election.

Carr defeated incumbent Mayor Gerald M. Hall Jr. 88-31 for Place 1 Mayor. Lesia Main won the Place 2 Council seat over Shannon Phillips-Hall 70-35, a seat to be vacated by Elmer Gene Birdwell, who decided not to seek re-election. Johnnie Day won over present Council member Alfonso Lang 71-46 for the Place 4 seat on the Council.

The proposition on the City ballot was approved 101-12. It read as follows:

“The reauthorization of the local sales and use tax in the City of Frankston at the rate of one-quarter of one percent to continue providing revenue for maintenance and repair of municipal streets.”

Unopposed Council candidates Sharyn Harrison in Place 3, Greg Main in Place 5  and Roger McDonald in Place 6 received 96, 95 and 102 votes, respectively.

In FISD voting, J.R. Newman won over Christopher C. Morton 139-63 for Place 4 Trustee.

Sheila Smith, unopposed for Place 1, polled 186 votes.

Unopposed incumbents Junior Mascorro in Place 3 and Brian Merritt in Place 5 polled 157 and 161, respectively.

For a comparison of Early Voting and Election Day totals, see HERE .



May 1, 2021


Area cities receive sales

tax allocations for May

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts reported city sales tax allocations for the May 2021 period showing gains for most area cities over the prior period last year.

Most area cities reported gains for the year-to-date over the prior year.

The City of Frankston received a net payment of $45,169.73 for May   compared to a $33,335.67 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 35.49 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $177,084.99 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $138,873.26, a gain of 27.51 percent.

The City of Berryville received a net payment of $2,885.43 for May compared to a $1,767.51 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 63.24 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $12,161.79 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $8,658.73, a gain of 40.45 percent.

The City of Coffee City received a net payment of $20,469.31 for May  compared to a $22,816.60 payment a year ago. That’s a decrease of 10.28 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $103,465.37 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $92,227.67, a gain of 12.18 percent.

The City of Cuney received a net payment of $3,141.73 for May compared to a $3,038.06 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 3.41 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $14,480.58 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $12,374.82, a gain of 17.01 percent.

The City of Poynor received a net payment of $1,645.30 for May compared to a $1,106.98 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 48.62 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $5,966.28 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $5,981.40, down 0.25 percent.


April 27, 2021


FISD trustees okay renovation

bids to football, baseball fields 

Frankston School trustees Monday, April 26 voted for two plans for athletic fields renovations, were against two, and took no action on four more, according to a report received Tuesday, April 27.

The board approved a football field athletic renovation bid proposal without artificial turf provided by Symmetry. The project includes track, stands, parking lot and ticket booth at a cost of $1,065,000 and a football field renovation proposal provided by Sports Field Solutions with a cost of $112,722. Voting for were Brian Merritt, Dustin Holladay, Tim Brumley and Bob Whitehurst. Against were Ryan Bizzell, Joe Reed and Junior Mascorro.

Trustees also approved a baseball field renovation proposal bid provided by Sports Field Solutions with a cost of $598,502. For the proposal were Merritt, Holladay, Whitehurst and Brumley and against were Bizzell, Reed and Mascorro.

The trustees voted against a complete athletic renovation proposal bid by Symmetry with a total cost of $3,650,982. Merritt, Holladay and Whitehurst voted for and Brumley, Bizzell, Reed and Mascorro were against.

The board also voted against an athletic renovation proposal provided by Symmetry which included artificial turf football field, the track, stands, parking lot and ticket booth at a cost of $2,384,080. Voting for were Merritt, Holladay and Whitehurst. Against were Brumley, Bizzell, Reed and Mascorro.

No action was taken on a baseball/softball field athletic renovation proposal bid by Symmetry which would cost $1,669,526, a baseball field grading proposal bid provided by Long’s Irrigation Co., Inc. which would cost $20,879.50, a track renovation proposal bid to scrape and replace provided by Symmetry at a cost of $210,136, a visitor bleacher proposal bid provided by Symmetry at a cost of $442,680 and a proposal to replace wood with metal on existing bleachers at a cost of $40,000.

In other action, the board approved FISD teacher contracts for the 2021-2022 school year.

The board approved consent items which included Remote Homebound Instruction Waiver and certification that FISD will use the 2021-2022 Instructional Materials Allotment to satisfy the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) curriculum.

School principals gave reports on their campus activities.

Elementary Principal Melanie Blackwell recognized Pre-K Outstanding Indians Jase Johnson and Valerie Ruiz. She also reported enrollment of 336.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens recognized achievements of various students.

In the Junior Visual Arts Scholastic Event (VASE), students and their art results were recognized. Ella Dowling received an excellent; Ashlyen Crow two excellents; Kammie Howard an excellent and perfect score; Katelyn Abbott an excellent; Evie Freeze an excellent and a strong; Chloe Hedger a strong; Lauren Shults, an excellent and a perfect score; Angelyna Gonzales a strong and Waylon Lookabaugh an excellent and a perfect score. Titles of the Platinum Medal Winners, Division 1 were: The Boundary Line — Lauren Shults, Armin — Ashlyen Crow and Cosmos — Waylon Lookabaugh.

Gunner Vincent was congratulated for winning fourth place with his Class 3 Santa Gertrudis at the Henderson County Livestock Show and participants in the Anderson County Livestock Show were recognized. The seventh and eighth grade boys and girls track teams and the seventh grade boys were congratulated for their District 19-AA championships and the eight grade boys for taking second place.

Middle School Gifted and Talented (GT) scholarship winners were recognized. They are Aidan Dsouza and Lauren Shultes.  Both received scholarships provided by Region 7 for summer camps, D’Souza at LeTourneau University in Coding and Shults at the Texas A&M Sea Camp in Coastal Ecology.

Mrs. Owens reported enrollment at 195 with 69 sixth graders, 67 seventh and 59 eight graders.

High school Principal Edgar Rodriguez congratulated Regional Tennis qualifiers Alex Oxford and Cael Bruno, state golf qualifier Bandy Bizzell and state fishing qualifying teams of Tyler Fridinger and Clayton Merritt and Bayne Bacon and Waylon London. The UIL Academics Team was recognized for the Sweepstakes Award and the Spelling Team of Riley Selman, Cullen Jones and Elizabeth Derr will be state bound on May 1.

He also recognized Farm Bureau Student of the Month Austin Carr and Teacher of the Month Katie Reed.

The FHS principal said total high school enrollment was 209, including 59 ninth graders, 64 in 10th grade, 45 in 11th and 41 in the 12th grade. 

Supt. Nicci Cook discussed the Frankston Schools Wall of Honor, the Teacher Incentive Allotment and the Texas Education Agency Districts of Innovation Amendment and Renewal. She also reported that as of the meeting a total of 66 COVD-19 cases had been reported, 38 students and 28 staff members.

She confirmed campus enrollments which totaled 740, down by 29 students since FISD began in-person instruction on Nov. 2, 2020.

The superintendent recognized and expressed thanks to two trustees for their leadership. Bob Whitehurst has served 15 years and Tim Brumley 11 years. Both have opted not to seek re-election this year.


April 24, 2021


2021 Art Walk helps make Square

‘shining example of community’

The 2021 Frankston Art Walk on the Square has helped make the downtown square a “shining example of community pride and togetherness”, coordinator Gigi Selman said this week after the big turnout Saturday, April 24.

The success of this year’s event was particularly impressive since it was canceled last year because of the emerging COVID-19 pandemic, still lingering in the background despite increasing numbers getting at least one dose of the welcome vaccines.

“We have now become a larger event with a huge collection of artistic diversity,”Mrs. Selman said. “All talented artists and craftsmen are welcomed, but our priority will always be our love for the original artistic talents of oil, watercolor, drawing and photography.”

In wrapping up this year’s event, Mrs. Selman praised those who helped make it a success and pointed out its growth over the years. She particularly honored the memory of the late Susan Burks Beard, “one of our most beloved artists and friend”.

Mrs. Selman detailed further her thoughts about Art Walk on the Square in a statement.

“I feel like it would be nice to let everyone know how our Frankston Art Walk On The Square began. In 2018, it was originally started to highlight our local artists. 

“At the time, I only knew a few of the talented artists in Frankston, and I wanted to show off their oil paintings, watercolors, drawings and photography. 

“At that time most all of our downtown square buildings were empty. I came up with this crazy idea of having these awesome local artists set up and display their art in these empty buildings, which would be indoors and safe from any weather problems. Having the artists displayed in these empty buildings would, hopefully, draw attention to them, let people see them and maybe want to buy or rent them to bring life back to our downtown area. It was supposed to be a one-time event. 

“The first year was so surprisingly successful that I was told we would be doing it every year. We found out there was an impressive number of talented artists in our community that we never would have known about had we not had the first Art Walk.

“The second year there were a few buildings with businesses in them, but they all allowed us to use them to house our artists again. Once more, our main focus was on artists, not so much on crafts and other skills. We later added them for more interest and to expand our event. 

“What we have is not an arts and crafts fair.  It is an art exhibit of master artists, not limited to locals anymore. We now have artists joining us from nearby locations such as Palestine and Tyler. We plan to continue keeping it mostly local and small, to keep it from becoming an unmanageable event. It takes countless hours and hard work by everyone in our town to make this event happen. 

“Last year was cancelled because of the pandemic. This year we decided to try to hold the Art Walk event as usual, so planning began. Not only were there many more artists, but, miraculously, almost every building on our downtown square held new businesses and were thriving. There are no words to express how proud we were to see the fruits of our efforts be rewarded.

“I would like to thank each and every person and business that supported the Art Walk On The Square this year. There is no possible way to list every single person who planned or helped, because it was pretty much everyone in Frankston. The business owners made room for the artists as well as they possibly could. Even with almost every building now in use, the Art Walk was mostly held indoors and protected because of the hospitality of our business owners. The event overflowed into the open park square this year, but all of the artists and craftsmen made it work. It was a major success again. Thank you to ALL ! 

“We are so thankful to our Frankston Economic Development Board for sponsoring this event every year. I am so proud to be on this board. They care and do SO much for the community we love. Members are: Jim Dwyer, Patti Lookabaugh, Monica Atwood, Judy Hicks, Gigi Selman, Barbara Simpson and Jamie Lade.

“Thanks to the businesses that opened their doors to one or more artists this year, or let us use their sidewalk. It still amazes me that every business on the square supports and cooperates with all the needs of the Art Walk event. All of them! 

Show your appreciation to all of these businesses by shopping with them and supporting them, so they can continue to bring activity to our downtown square. 

The businesses hosting artists and donating to the event are The Bank-quet Room, Barbara and Shaun Simpson; Atwood Hat Company, Brooks Atwood; Illusions Wax Works, Monica Atwood; Silvermoon Tack and Gifts, Amy Blase; In The Cut Barber Shop & Tanning, Cory and Sarah Fredieu; Tommy’s Woodworking, Tommy Davis; Krajca’s Electric, Sid Krajca; Michelle’s Beauty Shop, Michelle Barnes; Jim Dwyer Building and Paul and Linda Streck’s Building. Spring Market donated 25 cases of water.

“The hardest part of this year’s Art Walk was the passing of one of our most beloved artists and friend Susan Burks Beard. There was no way we could have this Art Walk without her, so her studio on the square was opened for visitors to stop in and be amazed by her unique artistic talents. Thanks to her husband, Kevin Beard, and her parents, Johnny and Judy Burks, she was with us.

“I would like to introduce you all to The Art Walk Committee of Bossy Women: Staci Saunders, Kelly Wiggins, Monica Atwood, Tawana Blair, Patti Lookabaugh, Kelli Landreth-Smith, Barbara Simpson, Thresa Stone, Michelle Ellis and Suzanne Beddingfield. If you see any of these ladies, please thank them for all they do and for helping to make Frankston the best little hometown in Texas. They rock ! 

“I would like to especially thank those who helped with putting up and taking down the unbelievably heavy Art Walk signs: Larry Selman, Adam Selman and Clint Selman. They all have pulled muscles now. 

“We have now become a larger event with a huge collection of artistic diversity.  All talented artists and craftsmen are welcomed, but our priority will always be our love for the original artistic talents of oil, watercolor, drawing and photography.  Those artists are the reason this event began, and they are the reason our Frankston downtown square has come to life with activity and prosperity. Our Frankston Downtown Square has become a shining example of community pride and togetherness.” (Interesting pictures of Art Walk on the Square HERE )


April 19, 2021


Mayor, two Council seats draw 

opponents in May 1 city voting

Two candidates have filed in each race for Mayor, Place 2, and Place 4 for the City Council of the City of Frankston in the City Election scheduled for Saturday, May 1, according to City Secretary Kelli Landreth-Smith.

The City Council has approved a joint election with Frankston ISD and contracted with the Anderson County Elections Administrator to perform various duties and responsibilities on behalf of the City and the school district.

Incumbent Place 1 Mayor Gerald M. Hall Jr. will be opposed by Tommy Carr. In the Place 2 seat to be vacated by Elmer Gene Birdwell will be two candidates, Shannon Phillips-Hall and Lesia Main. In Place 4, incumbent Alfonso Lang will be opposed by Johnnie Day.

Drawing no opposition are Place 3 Council member Sharyn Harrison, Place 5 Councilman Greg Main and Place 6 Councilman Roger McDonald, all incumbents.

Also on the ballot will be a Special Election proposition which reads:

“The reauthorization of the local sales and use tax in the City of Frankston at the rate of one-quarter of one percent to continue providing revenue for maintenance and repair of municipal streets.”

Voters will have the option of voting for or against the proposition.

Early voting will begin on Monday, April 19. The City Council, in officially calling the election, approved two 12-hour early voting days, Tuesday, April 20 and Thursday,  April 22. Elligible voters are those residing in the City of Frankston.

Current Council members are Mayor, Place 1 Gerald Hall; Council, Place 2 Elmer Birdwell; Council, Place 3 Sharyn Harrison; Council, Place 4 Alfonso Lang; Council, Place 5 Greg Main; and Council, Place 6 Roger McDonald.

• • • •

Three newcomers seeking FISD

trustee posts in May 1 election

Two incumbents and three newcomers have filed for places on the Frankston Independent School District Board of Trustees in the May 1 election.

The filings were reported after the last date for filing, Feb. 12.Sheila Smith filed for the Place 1 seat, now held by Bob Whitehurst and two candidates, J.R. Newman and Christopher Morton are seeking the Place 4 seat now held by Tim Brumley.Junior Mascorro in Place 3 and Brian Merritt in Place 5 filed to return to the board and are unopposed.

Whitehurst in Place 1 and  Brumley in Place 4 decided not to seek re-election.

Early voting in the election will begin on April 19. Eligible voters are those residing in the Frankston Independent School District.

 

April 15, 2021


FISD reports April 15 student

lab-confirmed COVID-19 case

Frankston school officials reported on Thursday, April 15 that another student has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the latest student was present on campus on Friday, April 9.

The superintendent said the school has responded as usual by sending notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new case additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the name of the infected individual or details that may identify that individual, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individual, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days from contact, in quarantine, to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest case is in addition to ones reported on March 9, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new case brings the total since August to 66, of which 38 are students and 28 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


March 24, 2021


FISD trustees decide to maintain

current guidelines for COVID-19

Frankston School trustees Wednesday, March 24 decided to leave current COVID-19 precautions and protocols as they are after a discussion which included the results of  employee surveys on the issue, Supt. Nicci Cook reported.

The Texas Education Agency Public Health Guidance had been revised stating that local boards could modify or eliminate mask requirements by board action.

Supt. Cook said the board took no action to modify or eliminate the mask requirements for the remainder of the year.

Two-thirds or 67 percent of employees surveyed supported leaving the precautions and protocols in place.

“Wear masks; socially distance until this pestilence is gone,” one of those surveyed opined.

Among the one-third who wanted to eliminate or modify the requirements, one said, “Extra cleaning would be fine but masks should not be mandatory. We need our freedom back.”

In a second survey 57 percent opposed making wearing of face coverings optional.

In action by the board the following was approved.

— A resolution regarding wage payments during emergency school closings.

— An order authorizing the issuance of Refunding Bonds, Establishing the parameters  for the refunding and delegating authority to the Administration to complete the sale of the Refunding Bonds.

— Approved FISD Teacher Contracts for the 2021-2022 School Year.

Among consent items approved were auditors for the school year ending Aug. 31, 2021: Pattillo, Brown and Hill; certifying Supt. Cook as the District Representative to the Region 7 Advisory Committee for 2021-2022; and the Application for Missed School Days Waiver for 2020-2021.

Reports were given by Elementary School Principal Melanie Blackwell,  Middle School Principal Cindy Owens and High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez.

Mrs. Blackwell reported elementary enrollment was 333. She also recognized Kindergarten Outstanding Indians Christina Thompson and Sage White.

Mrs. Owens recognized the FMS Tribe in the sixth, seventh and eighth grades and congratulated Gunter Vinzant for participating with his Class 4 Santa Gertrudis and Dylan Brotherton with his pig at the Houston Livestock Show. She also congratulated the seventh grade girls track team for finishing first in the Frankston Relays and the Middle School boys and girls track teams for finishing first at the Cushing Relays. Congratulations were also given to Academic Rodeo winners Angelyna Gonzales, Jordan Montalvo and Katelyn Abbott and Farm Bureau Teacher of the Month Sunni Boles Adair.

Mrs. Owens said total FMS enrollment was 193, with 69 sixth graders, 67 seventh graders and 57 eighth graders.

High School Principal Rodriguez recognized Farm Bureau Student of the Month Ramiro Hernandez and the State Champion Ja’Miyah Burton, Powerlifter in the 105-pound Class with a 240 in the Squat, 115 in the Bench and 290 in the Deadlift for a 645 total.

He reported a total enrollment of 210 with 59 in the ninth grade, 64 in the 10th grade, 46 in the 11th grade and 41 in the 12th grade.

Supt. Cook reported on Ag Mechanics participants Trenton Taylor and Jared Cook at the Henderson County Livestock Show and the new Maintenance and Transportation Supervisor Mark Ryals. She said a new bench had been donated in memory of Taryn Ellis Evans by the Class of 1993.

The superintendent confirmed the enrollment figures at the three campuses totaling 734, down 33 students since the school went to in-person education on Nov. 2, 2020. She said there had been 65 COVID-19 cases reported since August, 37 students and 28 staff members.

The Board also continued their discussion on the proposed athletic renovations.

A detailed description of proposed athletic renovations may be seen HERE .


March 9, 2021


FISD reports March 9 student

lab-confirmed COVID-19 case

Frankston school officials reported on Tuesday, March 9 that another student has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the latest student was present on campus on Friday, March 5.

The superintendent said the school has responded as usual by sending notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new case additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the name of the infected individual or details that may identify that individual, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individual, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days from contact, in quarantine, to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest case is in addition to ones reported on Thursday, Feb. 8, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new case brings the total since August to 65, of which 37 are students and 28 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


March 6, 2021


U. S. Senate passes COVID relief

bill with 50-49 party-line vote

The United States Senate Saturday, March 6 passed the American Rescue Plan Act, a bill designed for COVID-19 relief, by a vote of 50-49 with all 50 Democrats voting for it and 49 Republican senators voting against. One GOP senator was absent due to a death in the family, it was reported.

Among the Republicans voting against the bill were Texas Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz. Senate Republicans, led by Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), generally contended that the legislation was unnecessary. 

The bill includes direct financial assistance for struggling Americans, targeted aid to the restaurant, childcare and airline industries, funding for vaccines and testing, aid to small businesses and support for state and local governments.

The bill passed by the Senate was different than one passed by the House. The House version had included, among other things, raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour in graduated steps over a period of time. The Senate parliamentarian ruled that the minimum wage provision could not be included on the Senate bill if the bill was to be considered as one for budget reconciliation and therefore passed by a simple majority rather than 60 votes needed under “filibuster” rules.

The Senate version of the bill will now be returned to the House of Representatives where House members may vote to accept the Senate changes. Indications from House leaders are that they will accept the Senate version and Democrats, with a House majority,  along with some possible Republican support, are expected to pass the bill and send it for the expected signature by President Joe Biden.

See a summary of provisions in the bill passed by the Senate HERE .  


Feb. 22, 2021


FISD trustees approve administrator

contracts, discuss athletic renovations

Frankston School trustees Monday, Feb. 22 approved administrator contracts and continued their discussion of proposed athletic renovations without taking action on a proposed bid by Symmetry.

The board also discussed bond refunding and maintenance tax note, but took no action.

A detailed description of proposed athletic renovations may be seen HERE .

The board was informed that two incumbent trustees and three newcomers had filed for re-election in the May 1 school board election. The incumbents are Place 3 trustee Junior Mascorro and Place 5 board member Brian Merritt. Also Sheila Smith has filed for the Place 1 seat, now held by Bob Whitehurst, who decided not to seek re-election; two candidates, J.R. Newman and Christopher Morton, have filed for the Place 4 seat now held by Tim Brumley, who did not seek re-election.

Campus principals and Supt. Nicci Cook gave reports on various activities.

Elementary Principal Melanie Blackwell reported that current FES enrollment is 332. She also reported that four first graders had been designated as Outstanding Indians. They are Braddock Lawson, Brantley Long, Brilea Smith and Farrah Wiggins.

Congratulations were also expressed to Sheila Canady who was chosen as Frankston Elementary Outstanding Teacher by the Anderson County Farm Bureau.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens reported that FMS students earned first place performing the play “This is a Test” by Stephen Gregg at the District 18-AA Middle School One-Act Play contest on Jan. 29. Haley Bragg was named Best Performer. Six students were named to the All-Star Cast: Aleiah McKee, Aliyah Guthrie, Michael Merlin, Willow Blase, Wyatt Reed and Cason Phillips. Selected for Honorable Mention All-Star Cast were America Chavez, Chloe Hedger, Ayana Hensley, Jocelyn Perez and Sawyer Griffith.

Mrs. Owens also recognized the accomplishments of 26 high school and middle school band members who participated in the UIL Solo and Ensemble Contest the weekend of Feb. 20. She said 21 members received first division medals and 12 advanced to state competition.

The MS principal reported that several middle school FFA students have been building birdhouses and raised garden bed boxes.

Also FMS seventh graders studying Texas History were recognized for presenting Alamo projects created during class to explain the timeline of events that took place. The projects were presented on display boards with models, Power Point presentations and videos, and one group used Minecraft to re-enact the events.

Middle school enrollment totaled 193 with 72 sixth graders, 65 seventh graders and 56 eighth graders.

High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez recognized John Riley Jimenez as Farm Bureau Student of the Month. He also noted that the Frankston Maidens basketball team was to be in the Class AA Area Playoffs game against Bruceville-Eddy on Feb. 23. He said Ag Mechanics students will be entering projects at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo on Feb. 26-28.

Rodriguez reported total high school enrollment of 207 with 58 ninth graders, 63 tenth graders, 45 eleventh graders and 41 twelfth graders.

Supt. Cook reported on damage and repairs as a result of the recent severe winter storm and snowfall. The facilities affected were the Middle School Science Labs, football concession stand and restrooms, baseball/softball concession stand, animal barn water and a gas smell detected in the high school cafeteria and football equipment room.

She said the total enrollment of 732 noted by campus principals is down by 37 students from Nov. 2, 2020 when FISD opted for total in-person instruction, discontinuing virtual learning. She also reported that total COVID-19 cases since August are 64, with 28 staff and 36 student infections.


Feb. 8, 2021


Another FISD student reported

with COVID-19 infection Feb. 8

Frankston school officials reported on Monday, Feb. 8 that another student has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the latest student was present on campus on Tuesday, Feb. 2.

The superintendent said the school has responded as usual by sending notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new case additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the name of the infected individual or details that may identify that individual, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individual, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days from contact, in quarantine, to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest case is in addition to ones reported on Thursday, Feb. 4, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new case brings the total since August to 64, of which 36 are students and 28 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.


Feb. 4, 2021


Three more FISD students, one

staff reported as COVID cases 

Frankston school officials reported on Thursday, Feb. 4 that two students and a staff member have been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

That followed a report on Tuesday, Feb. 2 that a student case was confirmed, bringing the total cases so far this week to four.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the latest students were  present on campus on Tuesday, Feb. 2 and the staff member was last present on Friday, Jan. 29.

The superintendent said the school has responded as usual by sending notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmations.

The instances of the new cases additionally were entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun case investigations and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days from contact, in quarantine, to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the cases to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest cases are in addition to ones reported on Thursday, Jan. 28, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new cases bring the total since August to 63, of which 35 are students and 28 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.


Jan. 31, 2021


SERVED IN POYNOR, FRANKSTON AREA 38 YEARS   

     Dan Wicker honored by church, city upon moving

Dan Wicker, a resident of the Frankston and Poynor area for some 38 years, was honored Sunday, Jan. 31 at The United Methodist Church of Frankston for his service to his church and the communities in which he lived.

At the age of 93, he will be moving to the Dallas area on Tuesday, Feb. 2 to be near his family there.

DAN WICKER

Church lay leader Kathy Clarkston presented Wicker a framed picture of the historic gazebo in the Town Square City Park, bordered with a mat signed by numerous church and community members. Rev. Matt Thomas, pastor, read and presented Wicker with a proclamation from Frankston Mayor Gerald Hall recognizing his contributions to the community.

Among his activities while in the Frankston area, he served six years as Mayor Pro-tem on the Poynor City Council and was chairman of the Poynor Rural Water Authority and as an Election Judge for 23 years in Poynor and was a member of the Poynor Volunteer Fire Department for 10 years.

For 27 years, Wicker volunteered for service on Meals-on-Wheels, delivering a reported 23,000 meals during the time. He also served as a nursing home ombudsman for 25 years.

 During the last six years, he served on the Board of Directors of the Frankston Depot Library and Museum, Inc. The Board, in January, approved a Resolution recognizing and commending him for service as director, to the library and museum and to the community. The resolution, suitable for framing, was presented to him on Jan.  30.

After his wife, Jean, passed away in October 2019, he had continued his service to both church and community until the COVID-19 pandemic precautions restricted his activities.

Almost from the time he first moved to Poynor after retirement 38 years ago, he and his late wife have been active in The United Methodist Church of Frankston. They moved their residence to Frankston about 15 years ago. They had been active in their church in the Dallas area for many years, participated in various projects there and were active in professional and citizenship organizations.


Jan. 28, 2021


FISD students, staff members reported

Jan. 26-28 to have COVID-19 virus 

Frankston school officials reported on Thursday, Jan. 28 that a second staff member this week has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

On Wednesday, Jan. 27, school officials had reported that a staff member and a student were confirmed to have the virus.

The officials on Tuesday, Jan. 26 had reported also that a student has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the most recent staff member infection was an individual on campus Monday, Jan. 25. The previous infected staff member had been on campus on Thursday, Jan. 21 and the students were on campus on Friday, Jan. 22 and Monday, Jan. 25. 

Supt. Cook said the school has responded as usual by sending notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmations.

The instances of the new cases additionally were entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun case investigations and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days from contact, in quarantine, to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the cases to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest cases are in addition to ones reported on Thursday, Jan. 21, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new cases bring the total since August to 59, of which 32 are students and 27 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Jan. 25, 2021


FISD trustees hold  Annual Report

hearing, set board election on May 1

Frankston ISD trustees on Monday, Jan. 25 had a full agenda of items for action and discussion, not the least of which was a public hearing on the FISD Annual Report, including the Texas Academic Performance Report (TAPR).

In the public hearing, it was reported that FISD had received a superior rating in the Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST), had been rated as accredited and met status requirements on the Special Education Determination program. The school received no accountability rating in the report due to the declaration related to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020.

Among the items for consideration and action were:

— An order calling for the School Board Election on May 1.

— Approval of the Anderson County Elections Contract  for May 1,

— Adopting a resolution regarding extension of time to use sick leave in accordance with the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

— Evaluation of the superintendent and approval of a contract extension.

— Approval of the 2021-2022 school calendar.

— Adoption of a resolution of annual review of Frankston ISD investment policy.

The board also discussed bond refunding and maintenance tax note with presenter SAMCO Capital and further discussed possible athletic facility upgrades in the future.

In observance of School Board Appreciation Month in January, the proclamation of the Governor was read and the board members presented certificates of appreciation. Also gift baskets were presented.

The board approved calling of the board election for May 1. Candidates for election could begin filing for places on the ballot, as of Jan. 13 and have until Feb. 12 to file applications with the school office.

Up for election are Place 1, currently held by Bob Whitehurst; Place 3, now held by Junior Mascorro; Place 4, now held by Tim Brumley; and Place 5, now held by Brian Merritt. Whitehurst has indicated he will not seek re-election.

Mascorro and Merritt are reported to have filed so far to be on the ballot. Early voting will begin on April 19.

The board also approved the contract with Anderson County to allow the trustee election to be held in conjunction with the primary election for state, district and county offices.

Trustees also approved the resolution regarding extension of time to use sick leave which allows for 80 hours (two weeks) of paid sick leave (prorated for part-time). Reasons for being unable to work included being subject to a government quarantine/isolation order, advice by a healthcare provider to self-quarantine, experiencing symptoms and seeking medical diagnosis or treatment, and caring for a family member subject to quarantine, school closure.

Reports were heard from school principals and the superintendent on celebrations, news and updates.

Elementary Principal Melanie Blackwell reported total enrollment as of the meeting to be 328 students. She also recognized second grade outstanding students Madison Eubanks, James Galloway and Eric Suggs and various curricular and extracurricular activities.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens report total enrollment of 192, including 71 sixth graders, 65 seventh graders and 56 eighth graders. She also recognized students with outstanding overall performance in each grade for the third six weeks and results of the Scripps Spelling Bee. Oliver Campbell won first and will advance in the competition. Emily Barrett was second. Lauren Shultz and Kammie Hogard were honored as Warriors of the Week.

High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez reported total enrollment of 210 with 58 ninth graders, 65 tenth graders, 45 eleventh graders and 42 twelfth graders. He recognized Allison Criswell and Jacob Eckert as Warriors of the Week and noted the observance of Senior Night at the Maidens basketball game in which seniors Abbie Ramsey and Teallie Tatum were recognized.

The principal also announced a new program, starting next week, in which parents will be able to track the location of their child’s regular bus route. He said parents are being notified by email on how to set up the program on their mobile devices. Also further information is on the school website.

Supt. Nicci Cook gave her report which showed 730 total enrollment on all campuses and restated the numbers on each campus. She said enrollment was down by 39 students from Nov. 2, 2020 when the school was opened for in-person instruction only and virtual learning suspended. She also gave latest figures as of the meeting date on COVID-19 cases and numbers in quarantine on each campus and among staff members. More recent figures are available elsewhere on this website.


Jan. 21, 2021


FISD student reported Jan. 21 confirmed

as being infected with COVID-19 virus

Frankston school officials on Thursday, Jan. 21 reported that another student has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the student was on campus on Wednesday, Jan. 20. 

Supt. Cook said the school has responded as usual by sending notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmations.

The instance of the new case additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the name of the infected individual or details that may identify the individual, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individual, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days from contact, in quarantine, to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest case is in addition to ones reported on Thursday, Jan. 7, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new case brings the total since August to 55, of which 30 are students and 25 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Jan. 7, 2021


FISD student, staff member reported  Jan. 7

to be confirmed as infected with COVID-19

Frankston school officials on Thursday, Jan. 7 reported that another student and another staff member have been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the student was on campus on Wednesday, Jan. 6. She said the staff member has not been on campus since before the winter break.

Supt. Cook said the school has responded as usual by sending notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmations.

The instance of the new cases additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun case investigations and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days in quarantine from contact to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the cases to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest cases are in addition to ones reported on Monday, Jan. 4, just after the winter break, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new cases bring the total since August to 54, of which 29 are students and 25 staff members.

Students and staff observed the Christmas-New Year holidays break starting Thursday, Dec. 17, and the school campuses have been closed until Jan. 4. Students returned for in-person instruction on Wednesday, Jan. 6.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

Community spread of the virus daily in Anderson and Henderson counties and seven-day rolling rate of COVID-19 may be seen in the sidebar and its related links on this page.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Jan. 4, 2021


FISD reports 10 staff, 2 students confirmed

with COVID-19 during winter holiday break

Frankston ISD on Monday, Jan. 4 reported that during the winter break 10 staff members and two students were lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the school has responded as usual by sending a notifications to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new cases additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements, as reported in earlier notifications.

As is customary, the local health department has begun case investigations and will be contacting any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for the balance of 14 days in quarantine from contact to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the cases to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest cases are in addition to ones reported on Wednesday, Dec. 16, prior to the winter break, and before, the superintendent said. She said the new cases bring the total since August to 52, of which 28 are students and 24 staff members.

Students and staff observed the Christmas-New Year holidays break starting Thursday, Dec. 17, and the school campuses have been closed until Jan. 4. Students are to return for in-person instruction on Wednesday, Jan. 6.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

Community spread of the virus daily by a human in Anderson and Henderson counties and seven-day rolling rate of COVID-19 may be seen in the sidebar and its related links on this page.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Dec. 16, 2020


Another FISD student confirmed

infected with COVID-19 Dec. 16

Frankston ISD officials have reported on Wednesday, Dec. 16 that another student was lab-confirmed to have been infected with the COVID-19 virus. 

The student was present on a school campus Tuesday, Dec. 15, according to the report.

The new case was reported in addition to a student and a staff member reported to have been confirmed to have the virus on Tuesday, Dec. 15.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the school has responded as usual by sending a notification to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new case for Dec. 16 additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will contact any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for 14 days to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest cases are in addition to ones reported on Monday, Dec. 15 and before, the superintendent said. She said the new case brings the total since August to 40, of which 26 are students and 14 staff members.

Students and staff will be observing the Christmas-New Year holidays break starting Thursday, Dec. 17, and the school campuses will be closed until early January.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Dec. 15, 2020


FISD reports another student, staff

member COVID-19 cases on Dec. 15

Frankston ISD officials have reported on Tuesday, Dec. 15 that another staff member and another student were lab-confirmed to have been infected with the COVID-19 virus. 

The staff member was present on a school campus on Tuesday, Dec. 15 and the student was present on Monday, Dec. 14, according to the report.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the school has responded as usual by sending a notification to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new cases for Dec. 15 additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will contact any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for 14 days to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest cases are in addition to ones reported on Monday, Dec. 8 and before, the superintendent said. She said the new cases bring the total since August to 39, of which 25 are students and 14 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Dec. 14, 2020


FISD trustees approve 2019-20 audit,

discuss proposed athletic upgrades

Frankston ISD trustees Monday night, Dec. 14 approved the 2019-2020 audit of school finances, heard campus reports and discussed proposed athletic renovations under consideration for possible future action by the board.

Campus principals reported their enrollment and other activities and Supt. Nicci Cook reported on such school honors as the All-District selections for both volleyball and football.

Elementary School Principal Melanie Blackwell said enrollment on her campus was 336. She also announced Third Grade Outstanding Indians Landry Harbuck, Leighton Loveless and Braelyn Scarborough.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens announced that enrollment on her campus was 192 with 68 sixth graders, 67 seventh graders and 57 eighth graders. She also announced “Warriors of the Week” Bethany Priestly and Jhayro Armas.

High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez reported enrollment on his campus of 212. He said there were 57 ninth graders, 67 10th graders, 47 11th graders and 41 12th graders.

In her report, Supt. Cook said total enrollment for all campuses was 740 students, down by 29 students from Nov. 2, including those students who had been on virtual learning and chose alternative educational environments when FISD decided to go to in-person learning completely.

Supt. Cook discussed with the board members the proposals which had been formulated for Athletic Renovations at the baseball and softball fields and at Jeff and Opal Austin Stadium for football and track.

Proposed were options for the installation of artificial turf on all the athletic fields and possible renovations which would provide a 1,200-seat grandstand with press box and a ticket booth with integrated restrooms. Additional work on the parking lot, sidewalk and curbing was also discussed.

The board also discussed possible savings and revenue which might accrue as a result of the renovations. It was estimated that FISD could save $49,265 in maintenance, labor and supplies per year with savings over the life of the project, 15 years, of $738,975.

Additionally it was projected that the school might have possible additional revenues from advertising sales and field rentals over time.

Projections were that the total cost of proposed renovations would be $4 million with $1 million paid from the fund balance and $3 million by financing at a rate of 12.5 percent for a total of $3,375,000 for the project. Under that financing arrangement the payment for 15 years would be $225,000 per year, according to the estimate.


Dec. 14, 2020


Most area cities post sales

tax allocation increases

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts reported city sales tax allocations for the December 2020 period showing gains for most area cities over the prior period last year.

Most area cities reported gains for the year-to-date over the prior year.

The City of Frankston received a net payment of $36,157.00 for December compared to a $25,002.25 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 44.61 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $380,067.71 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $298,237.99, a gain of 27.43 percent.

The City of Berryville received a net payment of $2,198.79 for December compared to a $1,595.85 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 37.78 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $24,194.68 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $18,432.41, a gain of 31.26 percent.

The City of Coffee City received a net payment of $20,158.10 for December compared to a $16,471.75 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 22.37 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $245,046.50 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $203,311.87, a gain of 20.52 percent.

The City of Cuney received a net payment of $2,824.43 for December compared to a $3,101.52 payment a year ago. That’s down 8.93 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $34,232.34 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $27,525.72, a gain of 24.36 percent.

The City of Poynor received a net payment of $1,224.57 for December compared to a $1,166.62 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 4.96 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $14,216.93 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $14,909.91, down 4.64 percent.


Dec. 8, 2020


 FISD student reported on Dec. 8

confirmed with COVID-19 virus

Frankston ISD officials have reported Tuesday, Dec. 8 that another student has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus and was present on a school campus on Friday, Dec. 4.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the school has responded as usual by sending a notification to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new case for Dec. 8 additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will contact any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for 14 days to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest case is in addition to ones reported on Monday, Dec. 7 and before, the superintendent said. She said the new case brings the total since August to 37, of which 24 are students and 13 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556. 


Dec. 7, 2020


Another FISD staff member reported

as confirmed Dec. 7 with COVID-19

Frankston ISD officials have reported Monday, Dec. 7 that another staff member has been lab-confirmed to be infected with the COVID-19 virus and was present on a school campus on Thursday, Dec. 3.

Supt. Nicci Cook said the school has responded as usual by sending a notification to all student families and staff members concerning the confirmation.

The instance of the new case for Dec. 7 additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will contact any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for 14 days to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the case to the proper state agencies, as required.

The latest case is in addition to ones reported on Friday, Dec. 4 and before, the superintendent said. She said the new case brings the total since August to 36, of which 23 are students and 13 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Dec. 3, 2020


FISD staff, student COVID-19

cases confirmed in Dec. 3 notice

Parents and staff members of Frankston ISD were sent notifications Thursday, Dec. 3 that a staff member and a student lab-confirmed to have COVID-19 were present at the school on Friday, Nov. 20 and Tuesday, Dec. 1, respectively, Supt. Nicci Cook reported.

The instance of new cases for Dec. 3 additionally was entered on the COVID-19 dashboard on the school website, according to a recent notification change. The dashboard can be accessed HERE .

As is customary, the local health department has begun a case investigation and will contact any individuals determined to be in close contact with the infected individuals, including direct notification of local students and staff. Those in close contact will remain off campus for 14 days to ensure they are virus free and there will be no further spread, the notification stated.

Supt. Cook also reported the cases to the proper state agencies, as required.

The two cases are in addition to ones reported on Wednesday, Dec. 2 and before, the superintendent said. She said the new cases bring the total since August to 35, of which 23 are students and 12 staff members.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Dec. 1, 2020


FISD changes notification method

for confirmed COVID-19 cases

Frankston ISD is changing its way of notifying parents and staff of confirmed COVID-19 cases on the school campuses, beginning Dec. 1, according to Supt. Nicci Cook.

“We will no longer be sending out phone calls for each notification,” she said.

Instead, the school website will provide the dates of the confirmed cases per campus, she said. The site also has a link to a sample of the letter which notifies parents and staff members of the confirmed cases.

Supt. Cook said email notifications are still being sent to all parents and staff members informing them that either staff members or students have been confirmed to have the virus.

The website can be reached at www.frankstonisd.net or through a link on this website HERE ,

The information is also available  through the Texas Public Schools COVID-19 Data website: https://dshs.texas.gov./coronavirus/schools/texas-education-agency/ .

In making this announcement, Supt. Cook reported that FISD has had three new lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases at the school on Wednesday, Dec. 2. One was a staff member on campus on Tuesday, Dec. 1 and the other two were students last on campus Nov. 20.


Nov. 30, 2020


LISD re-opens in-person instruction

after temporary transition to virtual

LaPoynor Schools were open for in-person instruction on Monday, Nov. 30 following the Thanksgiving break and a temporary transition to virtual learning during the week before that, according to Dr. James Young, superintendent.

LISD had transitioned to virtual learning Nov. 17-20, in an effort to ensure that community exposure to COVID-19 is diminished, according to Supt. Young, in a letter posted on the school website. The action was taken due to two positive COVID-19 tests within the LISD staff over the previous weekend, the superintendent wrote in the letter.

At the time of the letter, Dr. Young wrote that the district anticipated a return to in-person instruction on Nov. 30, if possible. With the latest announcement, the superintendent decided that a return to in-person instruction was possible.

The letter stated, at that time, that, during the aforementioned time and the following week, Nov. 23-27, Thanksgiving break, “all campuses will remain closed and no extra-curricular events will occur on district property.” He emphasized that virtual learning would continue Nov. 17-20 despite the fact that there will be no in-person instruction during the period.

The letter further stated that students involved in events held outside the district “may participate in those events if they have no exposure to or symptoms of COVID-19”. Extra-curricular students could meet at the district for transportation and preparation for off-campus events, but coaches must screen all participants upon arrival, the letter had stated.

LISD has posted on its website a graphic showing incidence of COVID-19 cases among staff and students and recoveries as of Dec. 1, 2020.


Nov. 30, 2020


Four FISD staff, two students confirmed

with COVID-19 in Thanksgiving week

While many students and staff at Frankston Schools were enjoying their Thanksgiving break, four staff members and two students were confirmed during the week to be infected with the COVID-19 virus, according to a report Monday, Nov. 30 by Supt. Nicci Cook.

Supt. Cook said all six individuals were last on campus on Friday, Nov. 20, the last school day before the start of the Thanksgiving holiday break.

The superintendent reported the cases to the Texas Education Agency when she returned Monday, after the break.

The six new cases confirmed bring the case total to 28 since August, 18 students and 10 staff members. 

Supt. Cook said the customary emails were sent to parents and staff members and reported to the local health department for contact tracing. A number of student and staff members have been or presently are under quarantine to mitigate the spread of the virus, she said.

In a report on Nov. 20, Supt. Cook had said that three cases of COVID-19 infection were confirmed, two staff memIbers and another a student who tested positive. One staff member was last on campus on Friday, Nov. 13, the other on Wednesday, Nov. 18 and the student was last on campus on Thursday, Nov. 12, she said.

On Monday, Nov. 16, three staff members and two students who tested positive for COVID-19, were confirmed, prior to those in the later Nov. 20 report, she said. Those staff members were all on campus on Friday, Nov. 13, and one of the students was on campus Wednesday,  Nov. 11 and the other on Thursday, Nov. 12, according to an earlier report.

Prior to the Nov. 16 report, six students, lab-confirmed Nov. 12 and 13, had been reported to have the COVID-19 virus and determined to have been on campus on Nov. 11 and Nov. 12, according to the superintendent.

In separate cases earlier, six students and one staff member had been confirmed to be infected with the virus, one student as early as September.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Nov. 20, 2020


Three more COVID-19 cases reported

last week at FISD; total rises to 22

Three more cases of COVID-19 infection were confirmed last week, two staff members and another a student who tested positive, Supt. Nicci Cook reported Friday, Nov. 20.

One staff member was last on campus on Friday, Nov. 13, the other on Wednesday, Nov. 18 and the student was last on campus on Thursday, Nov. 12, she said.

That brings the total since August to 22, including 16 students and six staff members, the superintendent said.

FISD is observing the Thanksgiving break Nov. 23-27.       

Supt. Cook said the customary emails were sent to parents and staff members and reported to the local health department for contact tracing and to the appropriate state agencies. A number of student and staff members have been quarantined to mitigate the spread of the virus, she said.

Three staff members and two students who tested positive for COVID-19, were confirmed on Monday, Nov. 16, in addition to those reported late last week, she said. Those staff members were all on campus on Friday, Nov. 13, and one of the students was on campus Wednesday,  Nov. 11 and the other on Thursday, Nov. 12, according to an earlier report.

Six students, lab-confirmed Nov. 12 and 13, were reported earlier last week to have the COVID-19 virus and determined to have been on campus on Nov. 11 and Nov. 12, according to the superintendent.

Cases so far have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Nov. 16, 2020


LISD goes to virtual learning Nov. 17-20

after two positive staff COVID-19 tests 

LaPoynor Independent School District will be transitioning to virtual learning for the remainder of this school week, Nov. 17-20, in an effort to ensure that community exposure to COVID-19 is diminished, according to Supt. James Young, in a letter posted on the school website.

The action was taken due to two positive COVID-19 tests within the LISD staff over the weekend, Dr. Young writes.

The letter stated that, during the aforementioned time and the following week, Nov. 23-27, Thanksgiving break, “all campuses will remain closed and no extra-curricular events will occur on district property.” He emphasized that virtual learning will be  conducted from Nov. 17-20 despite the fact that there will be no in-person instruction during the period.

The letter further states that students involved in events held outside the district may participate in those events if they have no exposure to or symptoms of COVID-19. Extra-curricular students may meet at the district for transportation and preparation for off-campus events, but coaches must screen all participants upon arrival, according to the letter.

Dr. Young writes that the district anticipates a return to in-person instruction on Nov. 30, but if this is not possible, other guidance and information will be provided, as necessary.

“Thank you for your patience and understanding during this time; we all realize that each family is experiencing their own difficulties because of the pandemic,” the superintendent writes, “Our thoughts and prayers are with each of you.”

The letter urges that the district may be contacted if there is a need of service.

The elementary school may be reached at (903) 804-8626, and the secondary school at (903) 804-8660 or may be reached by email through the website.


Nov. 16, 2020


Three FISD staff, two more students

COVID-19 positive early this week

Frankston ISD has had three staff members and two more students to test positive for COVID-19, confirmed on Monday, Nov. 16, in addition to those reported late last week, according to Supt. Nicci Cook.

The superintendent said the staff members were all on campus on Friday, Nov. 13, and one of the students was on campus Wednesday,  Nov. 11 and the other on Thursday, Nov. 12.

Supt.  Cook said she has reported a total of 19 cases to the state, including 15 students and four staff members, since August.

The latest positive tests are in addition to six students last week, lab-confirmed Nov. 12 and 13, to have the COVID-19 virus and determined to have been on campus on Nov. 11 and Nov. 12, according to the superintendent.

Latest cases have been both from community spread and in-school exposure, school officials believe.

The superintendent said that, in keeping with Frankston ISD practices to respond to COVID-19, emails were sent to all student families and staff members on the affected campuses, notifying them that the students were lab-confirmed to have COVID-19.

Supt. Cook said the notifications stated that the local health department has been advised of the cases and is in the process of conducting prescribed contact tracing. The superintendent said the same procedure, involving quarantine for 14 days, of those coming in close contact with the infected individuals, is being followed. A number of students and staff members had to be quarantined, she said.

The notification contained the same warnings, assurances and information about symptoms stated in previous reports concerning the other cases confirmed, the superintendent said.

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Nov. 16, 2020


Frankston School trustees approve

routine items, hear reports Nov. 16

The Frankston ISD Board of Trustees Monday night, Nov. 16 approved three routine items under consideration and heard reports from the superintendent and principals on various activities.

The board also held a public hearing on the First Report for the Financial Integrity System of Texas (FIR$T). In that report, Frankston ISD received a superior rating and received 98 of a possible 100 points, determined by 15 indicators. The district also was in compliance with the payment terms of all debt agreements and made timely payments to the TRS, TWC, IRS and other government agencies in the Financial Management Performance Report.

In action items, the Board approved on respective votes of 6-0:

— A resolution regarding the Anderson County School District Legislative Platform for the 87th Legislative Session.

— District Improvement Plan for the 2020-2021 School Year.

— Early Childhood (EC) Literacy and Math and College, Career, Military Readiness (CCMR) Goals as required under House Bill 3 of the Legislature.

In regard to the goals in the latter action, the goal set for EC was to increase the percent of third grade students whose score meets grade level or above on STAAR Reading from 43%  to 53% by August 2025 and increase the percent of third grade students whose score meets grade level or above on STAAR Math from 49% to 59% by August 2025. The goal for CCMR was set to increase the percent of graduates who meet the criteria for CCMR from 71% to 81% by August 2025.

Reports by administrators included the following:

Elementary School Principal Melanie Blackwell reported current enrollment of 337. Among other things, she introduced Fourth Grade Outstanding Indians Ariana Hurtado, Destiny Lazo, Skyla Pessink and Lyla Sewalt.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens reported enrollment totaling 192 with 68 sixth graders, 67 seventh graders and 57 eighth graders. She introduced Warriors of the Week Chloe Dollarhide, Eli Perry, Mary Motes and Emily Barrett.

The Seventh Grade A volleyball team was recognized as being undefeated and District champions. The seventh grade football team had a 5-0 record and the eighth grade football team was 5-2-1 for the season. Also the Greenhand FFA Quiz Team finished third in district competition.

High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez reported enrollment of 214 with 58 in the ninth grade, 68 in the 10th grade, 46 in the 11th grade and 42 in the 12th grade.

Supt. Nicci Cook reported total district enrollment of 743 currently. She also recognized the Indian football varsity which played in the AA bi-district playoff game and Regional Cross Country qualifiers Kaylee Davis, Abigail Fletcher, Logan Ratliff and Govani Martinez. Davis, Fletcher and Martinez finished in the top 25 at Regional. A discussion of future band activities also was included in the report.


Nov. 13, 2020

 

Six FISD students during week

confirmed COVID-19 positive

Three more students at Frankston Schools were lab-confirmed Nov. 12 and 13 to have the COVID-19 virus and were determined to have been on campus on Nov. 11 and Nov. 12 respectively, according to Supt. Nicci Cook.

She said the three new student cases were the fourth, fifth and sixth cases confirmed since the week began on Nov. 9 and the 13th among students confirmed since August. Only one staff member has been reported as confirmed to have the virus.

The superintendent said that the sixth case confirmed on Nov. 13 and on campus Nov. 12, is related to two other cases confirmed late in the week, and, along with at least one other case, is  likely, but not definitely, due to contact at school, the superintendent believes.

While FISD staff is diligently enforcing health protection guidelines of social distancing and wearing of face coverings to mitigate COVID-19 spread at school, Supt. Cook continued to urge community members to intensify their efforts to wear masks and observe prescribed social distancing to avoid further community spread to students or staff as well as others at risk.

The superintendent said that, in keeping with Frankston ISD practices to respond to COVID-19, emails were sent to all student families and staff members on the affected campus, notifying them that the students were lab-confirmed to have COVID-19.

Supt. Cook said the notifications stated that the local health department has been advised of the cases and is in the process of conducting prescribed contact tracing. The superintendent said the same procedure, involving quarantine for 14 days of those coming in close contact with the infected individuals, is being followed. A  number of students had to be quarantined, she said.

The notification contained the same warnings, assurances and information about symptoms stated in previous reports concerning the other cases confirmed, the superintendent said.

Supt. Cook said she is reporting, as required, the cases to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Nov. 12, 2020


Coffee City Council confirms

vote results of Nov. 3 election 

The Coffee City Council Thursday, Nov. 12 canvassed and confirmed the results of the City Election held on Tuesday, Nov. 3.

The unanimous decision of the Council came after the results were examined and read for Council members during the meeting.

Mayor Pro Tem Phillip Rutledge read the results, which were as follows:

In the Mayor’s election, Frank Serrato received 130 votes and Edward McDaniel 106. Rutledge said there were 28 under votes, he explained as being where a voter chooses not to cast a vote in that category.

In the Alderman Place One election, Chuck Jones received 144 votes and GeoJan Wright had 68 votes with 52 under votes.

For Alderman Place Three, Kevin Swanson had 118 votes and Don Weaver 103 with 43 under votes.

In the Alderman Place Five election, Ray Ver Hey ran unopposed and had 184 votes with 80 under votes.

The mayor pro tem had said at the Nov. 9 regular Council meeting that he had learned that there probably would be changes in the final count since there were several provisional ballots to be counted at that time. Some slight changes were apparent in the vote totals submitted for canvassing.

Mayor Pro Tem Rutledge informed the Council at the beginning of the meeting that paperwork for a recount for the Mayor’s position had been filed, and the administrative officer for the recount would be Denise Hernandez with the Henderson County Elections office. Rutledge said that the Council will take action and confirm the results.

The Mayor Pro Tem said that a total of 264 people voted in the city election.

After the voting results were read, Rutledge said he was present when the election was underway and that Henderson County provided a trooper for security. He stated that the election personnel “did an excellent job”.


Nov. 11, 2020


Two more FISD students confirmed

to be positive with COVID-19 virus

Two more students at Frankston Schools were lab-confirmed Nov. 11 to have the COVID-19 virus and were determined to have been on campus on Friday, Nov. 6, according to Supt. Nicci Cook.

The superintendent said that the cases were unrelated and still believed to be the result of community spread. 

She said the latest infections mean that 10 students and one staff member have been confirmed as infected since August.

She emphasized that, as far as is known, no students, so far, have been determined to have been infected while at school.

While FISD staff is diligently enforcing health protection guidelines of social distancing and wearing of face coverings to mitigate COVID-19 spread at school, Supt. Cook continued to urge community members to intensify their efforts to wear masks and observe prescribed social distancing to avoid further community spread to students or staff as well as others at risk.

The superintendent said that, in keeping with Frankston ISD practices to respond to COVID-19, emails were sent to all student families and staff members on the affected campus, notifying them that the students were lab-confirmed to have COVID-19.

Supt. Cook said the notifications stated that the local health department has been advised of the cases and is in the process of conducting prescribed contact tracing. The same procedure involving quarantine of those coming in close contact with the infected individual is being followed and a number of students had to be quarantined, she said.

The notification contained the same warnings, assurances and information about symptoms stated in previous reports concerning the other cases confirmed, the superintendent said.

Supt. Cook said she is reporting, as required, the cases to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notifications, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Nov. 10, 2020


Most area cities post sales

tax allocation increases

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts reported city sales tax allocations for the November 2020 period showing gains for most area cities over the prior period last year.

Most area cities reported gains for the year-to-date over the prior year.

The City of Frankston received a net payment of $36,912.44 for November compared to a $29,130.56 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 26.71 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $343,910.71 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $273,235.74, a gain of 25.86 percent.

The City of Berryville received a net payment of $2,018.10 for November compared to a $1,210.95 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 66.65 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $21,995.89 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $16,836.56, a gain of 30.64 percent.

The City of Coffee City received a net payment of $19,200.51 for November compared to a $13,985.92 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 37.28 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $224,888.40 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $186,840.12, a gain of 20.36 percent.

The City of Cuney received a net payment of $2,585.00 for November compared to a $1,972.52 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 31.05 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $31,407.91 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $24,424.20, a gain of 28.59 percent.

The City of Poynor received a net payment of $1,458.16 for November compared to a $1,479.29 payment a year ago. That’s down 1.42 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $12,992.36 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $13,743.29, down 5.46 percent.


Nov. 9, 2020


Coffee City Council extends service

of current auditor for 2020-21 year

The Coffee City Council on Monday, Nov. 9 approved DKG CPA as the city’s auditor and extended his services for the 2020-21 fiscal year.

The action was taken by unanimous vote and followed an earlier report on the 2019 city audit by David Godwin of the firm.

Godwin said the audit went well and he singled out the Municipal Court for having the best audit of any municipal court he has audited.

The remainder of the meeting consisted mostly of reports by the Mayor Pro Tem, Economic Develop Corp. president, municipal court judge, police and fire departments.

Mayor Pro Tem Phillip Rutledge called the Council’s attention to the Nov. 12 special meeting set to canvass the votes in the Nov. 3 City Election. He said he had learned that there probably would be changes in the final count since there were several provisional ballots to be counted.

Rutledge noted that this was his last regular council meeting and he thanked the staff and everyone who has been on the council for his eight years, saying he would still be around to help in any way.

In his EDC report, President Jim Beggerly, after a status request from Rutledge, reported that the Lake Palestine Business Center had been sold; the buyer is currently making repairs and has a business plan for its use.

The EDC president thanked the auditor for his assistance and the EDC sees areas where they could improve.

“We see a couple of areas where we have to change a little and a couple of areas where we have to make ourselves more transparent in what we are doing,” Beggerly said.

Municipal Judge Shellena Bivens said there were 193 new cases in October. Of those, 24 were dismissed after completion of driver’s safety; 13 were satisfied by deferred disposition, one after proof of insurance, three miscellaneous dismissals, one satisfied after community service, two by community service, one by jail credit, and four by indigency. She said total fines collected for October was $26,658.

Police Chief Brian Myers said that the new “Citizen Self Reporting” module is now live. (There is a link on the city website). He outlined the various incidents which citizens can report, using the feature.

For the fire department, Lt. Walter Kern reported that in October, the department responded to four building fires, five grass fires, 13 medical calls, two rubbish fires, three boat calls, one illegal burn, one MVA and one police assist.


Nov. 9, 2020


Eighth FISD student confirmed

with COVID-19 virus infection

An eighth Frankston School student has been confirmed to have been infected with the COVID-19 virus over the weekend, according to Supt. Nicci Cook.

The student was last on campus on Nov. 6, the. superintendent said.

She said the latest infection means that eight students and one staff member have been confirmed as infected since August.

She emphasized that, as far as is known, no students, so far, have been determined to have been infected while at school, a credit to the teachers and staff who have worked hard to enforce rules to mitigate spread of the virus.

While FISD staff is diligently enforcing health protection guidelines of social distancing and wearing of face coverings to mitigate COVID-19 spread at school, Supt. Cook urged community members to increase their efforts to wear masks and observe prescribed social distancing to avoid further community spread to students or staff as well as others at risk.

The superintendent said that, in keeping with Frankston ISD practices to respond to COVID-19, an email was sent to all student families and staff members on the affected campus, notifying them that a student was lab-confirmed to have COVID-19.

Supt. Cook said the notification stated that the local health department has been advised of the case and is in the process of conducting prescribed contact tracing. The same procedure involving quarantine of those coming in close contact with the infected individual is being followed, she said.

The notification contained the same warnings, assurances and information about symptoms stated in previous reports concerning the other cases confirmed, including the one confirmed in early September, the superintendent said.

Supt. Cook said she is reporting, as required, the cases to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

The notification, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms, widely listed, in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Nov. 7,  2020


Biden, Harris declared as U.S. winners

while area voters favor Trump, Pence

The Democratic Party candidates Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have been declared as winners of President-elect and Vice President-elect of the United States Saturday, Nov. 7 in the General Election on Tuesday, Nov. 3, based on latest results.

Nevertheless, voters in the Frankston and Anderson and Henderson County areas favored President Donald Trump and Vice President Michael Pence to return for a second term. The Republican ticket also was favored in Texas unofficial results.

The Biden/Harris ticket was declared as winner after voting results in Pennsylvania allowed a declaration that the Democratic candidates had won the state’s 20 electoral votes, giving them 273 Electoral College votes, 270 needed to win. Nevada later declared with six more electoral votes, total of 279. On Nov. 12, the Biden/Harris ticket was projected as winning Arizona and its 11 electoral votes to raise the total to 290. On Nov. 13, the Democratic candidates have been projected as apparent winners in Georgia, pending any recount results. That would raise the electoral vote to 306, if sustained.

Meanwhile, in the local area unofficial results in the Presidential race, the Trump/Pence ticket outpolled the Biden/Harris ticket 15,062 to 3,934 in Anderson County and 28,816 to 7,048 in Henderson County.

Incumbent U. S. Sen. John Cornyn led  challenger M.J. Hegar 14,897 to 3,773 in Anderson County and 28,625 to 6,660 in Henderson County.

Latest results nationally were giving the Democratic ticket of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris the lead in the national popular vote as counting of votes continued in several states.

In the race for U.S. Senate control, so far, Democrats in Colorado and Arizona have been declared winners over their Republican opponents. The Democrats required a gain of four to equal the number of Senate Republicans. Two Senate races in Georgia had results which appear to require runoff elections in early January, which possibly could provide the two additional Democratic seats in the Senate, analysts observe. Georgia is one of the states in which the Biden/Harris ticket narrowly leads. If the Senate elections ended split 50-50, a tie could be broken with a vote by the vice-president, who presides over the Senate.

Locally, unofficial results in district, county and state races are reported below. Included in those results are those of the city election in Coffee City and results in LaPoynor, Neches and Brownsboro school trustee voting in the area.


Complete but Unofficial Results in Anderson and Henderson counties, including Area Voting Boxes

HERE


Nov. 5, 2020


Some 70% of home learners choose

return to FISD classroom learning

At the October meeting, Frankston ISD trustees okayed suspending remote learning and invited the remote learners to return to in-person learning on campus, as of Nov. 2, if they do not choose alternative learning environments.

On Thursday, Nov. 5, Supt. Nicci Cook reported that, out of 75 students doing home learning, 53 have returned for on-campus learning at Frankston Schools, or 70.7 per cent. She said 22 students withdrew from FISD to seek learning at other school districts or through home schooling.

After the board action, Supt. Cook wrote, in part, in a letter to Frankston ISD families:

“We are moving in a direction that we feel is best for all Frankston ISD students and staff.”

In the letter, the superintendent noted that the board discussed “the impact that remote/online instruction has made on its students and teachers.”

She said the discussions “revealed the concept of remote/online instruction has not been successful for the majority of our home learning students, and the added burden of a full-scale dual instructional system on our teachers is unsustainable.

“We believe it is time for all FISD students to return for in-person, on-campus instruction for the success of all students,” Supt. Cook wrote in the letter.

She noted that “the district’s health and safety measures are working. . .None of the (COVID-19) cases are confirmed to have originated within the district.” So far, that has been sustained, reports indicate.


Nov. 5, 2020


Seventh student confirmed with COVID-19

infection, believed by community spread

Another student at Frankston Schools has been confirmed as being infected with the COVID-19 virus, believed to be infected by community spread, according to a Thursday, Nov. 5 report by Supt. Nicci Cook.

The superintendent said the student was last on campus on Monday, Nov. 2.

She said that brings the total number of students infected to seven. Also, earlier this week a staff member was confirmed to be infected by the virus, Supt. Cook said.

She emphasized that, as far as is known, no students, so far, have been determined to have been infected while at school.

While FISD staff is diligently enforcing health protection guidelines of social distancing and wearing of face coverings to mitigate COVID-19 spread at school, Supt. Cook urged community members to increase their efforts to wear masks and observe prescribed social distancing to avoid further community spread to students or staff as well as others at risk.

The superintendent said that, in keeping with Frankston ISD practices to respond to COVID-19, an email was sent to all student families and staff members on the affected campus, notifying them that a student was lab-confirmed to have COVID-19 and was  present on campus on Nov. 2.

Supt. Cook said the notification stated that the local health department has been advised of the case and is in the process of conducting prescribed contact tracing. The same procedure involving quarantine of those coming in close contact with the infected individual is being followed, she said.

The notification contained the same warnings, assurances and information about symptoms stated in previous reports concerning the other cases confirmed as well as the one confirmed in early September, the superintendent said.

Supt. Cook said she is reporting, as required, the cases to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

Those families and staff members receiving the notification received the following assurance:

While we do not have reason to believe that those who were not in close contact with the infected individual have reason to be concerned, we ask that you, as always, to watch for symptoms of COVID-19.” Symptoms were then listed, as in earlier emails, which might indicate a possible COVID-19 infection.”

The notification, as before, further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of the symptoms in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.


Nov. 3, 2020


First FISD staff member confirmed COVID-19

infection; no student contact, officials believe

Frankston Schools Tuesday, Nov. 3 has had the first staff member to be tested positive for COVID-19 who was on campus Monday, Nov. 2  but had no contact with students, according to Supt. Nicci Cook.

Supt. Cook emphasized that, as far as is known, no students, so far, have been determined to have been infected while at school. The new staff case brings the total since school opening to six students and one staff member, she said.

The superintendent said that, in keeping with Frankston ISD practices to respond to COVID-19, an email was sent to all student families and staff members on the affected campus, notifying them that a staff member was lab-confirmed to have COVID-19 and was  present on campus on Nov. 2.

Supt. Cook said the notification stated that the local health department has been advised of the case and is in the process of conducting prescribed contact tracing. The same procedure involving quarantine of those coming in close contact with the infected individual is being followed, she said.

The notification contained the same warnings, assurances and information about symptoms stated in previous reports concerning the other cases confirmed as well as the one confirmed in early September, the superintendent said.

Supt. Cook said she is reporting, as required, the cases to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

Those families and staff members receiving the notification received the following assurance:

While we do not have reason to believe that those who were not in close contact with the infected individual have reason to be concerned, we ask that you, as always, to watch for symptoms of COVID-19.” Symptoms were then listed  which might indicate a possible COVID-19 infection.”

  • Temperature of 100.0 degrees Fahrenheit or higher when taken by mouth;
  • Sore throat;
  • New uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing (or, for students with a chronic allergic/asthmatic cough, a change in their cough from baseline);
  • Diarrhea, vomiting, or abdominal pain; or
  • New onset of severe headache, especially with a fever.”

The notifications further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of these symptoms in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.

While FISD staff is diligently enforcing health protection guidelines of social distancing and wearing of face coverings to mitigate COVID-19 spread at school, Supt. Cook urged community members to be as cautious to avoid community spread to students or staff as well as others at risk.


Oct. 19, 2020


FISD board votes to suspend

home learning, starting Nov. 2

Frankston ISD Board of Trustees present Monday night, Oct. 19 voted 5-0 to suspend home learning, beginning Nov. 2, the start of the third six weeks grading period, according to a report by Supt. Nicci Cook.

Supt. Cook said, in part, in a letter to Frankston ISD families:

“We are moving in a direction that we feel is best for all Frankston ISD students and staff.”

She said in the letter, “. . . the District’s health and safety measures are working. Since the beginning of school, FISD has had six confirmed cases, 6 students and 0 staff members, which is a rate of about 0.6%. None of the cases are confirmed to have originated within the district.”

In the letter, the superintendent further noted that the board discussed “the impact that remote/online instruction has made on its students and teachers.”

She said the discussions “revealed the concept of remote/online instruction has not been successful for the majority of our home learning students, and the added burden of a full-scale dual instructional system on our teachers is unsustainable.

“We believe it is time for all FISD students to return for in-person, on-campus instruction for the success of all students,” Supt. Cook wrote in the letter.

“All FISD students are to return to school as soon as possible, or at the latest by Monday, Nov. 2, 2020. . . This grace period has been established to allow parents of students affected by this decision time to evaluate educational options and determine what is best for their students,” the superintendent wrote. A partial list of options was suggested.

“Should you choose to pursue alternative means of education for your child, we wish you success beyond measure,” Supt. Cook said to parents of remote learners in the letter.

According to the current enrollment report, the vast majority of FISD students have been choosing in-person, on-campus instruction with only nine percent choosing remote learning.

“For students who have a medical attestation, test positive for COVID-19, or have to quarantine because of the virus, a remote learning option will be available (at FISD) during that specified timeframe,” the letter informs. The parents are urged to contact their students’ campus principal for more details.

The suspension was one of the items considered during the board’s regular meeting for October. Action on other items will be reported in the following  article.

.

FISD trustees support Joe Reed

For HC Appraisal Board place

Frankston School Trustees Monday night, Oct. 19 gave their support to FISD trustee Joe Reed for Place 5 on the Henderson County Appraisal District Board of Directors in a 5-0 vote, according to a report from Supt. Nicci Cook.

Five members of the Board were present and two not present at the regular October meeting. Present were Bob Whitehurst, Junior Mascorro, Dustin Holladay, Ryan Bizzell and Brian Merritt. Not present were Tim Brumley and Joe Reed.

The trustees also approved 5-0 the Texas Education Agency Innovative Courses for Students in Grades 7-12 and the Courses for 7th and 8th Graders for High School Credit, both for the 2020-2021 School Year.

The TEA Innovative Courses featured Career and Technical Education which includes: General Employability Skills such as Career Development; and Principles of Exercise Science and Wellness such as Health Science. Other electives included Sports Medicine I under Health/Physical Education.

The high school credit courses for seventh and eighth graders include: Principles of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources; Principles of Art, Audio/Visual Technology and Communications; Principles of Construction; Band 1; Art 1; Theater Arts 1; Spanish 1; Algebra 1; Career Investigations (General Employability Skills); Professional Communications; and Touch Data Entry (Tech Applications).

In other agenda items, Principals gave enrollment reports.

High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez reported total enrollment of 226, with 63 in the ninth grade, 70 in the 10th, 49 in the 11th and 44 in the 12th grade. He reported a total of 27 online learners with seven in the ninth grade, eight in the 10th, four in the 11th and eight in the 12th grade.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens reported total enrollment of 201 with 72 in the sixth grade, 66 in the seventh and 63 in the eighth grade. She said a total of 12 were in Asynchronous Learning, four in the sixth grade, one in the seventh and seven in the eighth grade.

Elementary School Principal Melanie Blackwell reported total enrollment of 344 with 314 in-school and 30 virtual learners.


Oct. 19, 2020


Fifth, sixth student COVID-19 cases

at FISD due to ‘community spread’

Two more student cases of lab-confirmed COVID-19 infection have been detected at Frankston Schools and determined to have been contracted due to community spread, Supt. Nicci Cook reported in an update Monday, Oct. 19.

She said one of the cases was discovered late Friday afternoon, Oct. 16 in a student who was last on campus Wednesday, Oct. 14. The other infection  was discovered over the weekend and was a student last on campus on Thursday, Oct. 15, the superintendent said. She described the two students as siblings.

Earlier a student case was confirmed on Thursday, Oct. 8 after two students were confirmed on Tuesday, Oct. 6 to be infected with the virus and the last days they were on campus were Oct. 2 and Oct. 5, respectively, the superintendent said. Another student lab-confirmed to be infected with COVID-19 was last present on campus on Oct. 7, she said. In an earlier report, a case was also confirmed in early September.

Supt. Cook emphasized that, as far as is known, no students, so far, have been determined to have been infected while at school. The two new cases bring the total since school opening to six, she said.

The superintendent said that, in keeping with Frankston ISD practices to respond to COVID-19, separate emails were sent to all student families and staff members on the affected campuses, notifying them that students lab-confirmed to have COVID-19 were  present on the aforementioned dates.

Supt. Cook said the notifications stated that the local health department has been advised of the cases and is in the process of conducting prescribed contact tracing. The same procedure involving quarantine of those coming in contact with the infected individuals is being followed, she said.

The notifications contained the same warnings, assurances and information about symptoms stated in previous reports concerning the other cases confirmed as well as the one confirmed in early September, the superintendent said.

Supt. Cook said she is reporting, as required, the cases to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

As reported earlier, FISD will not release the names of the infected individuals or details that may identify them, due to privacy requirements.

Those families and staff members receiving the notifications received the following assurance:

While we do not have reason to believe that those who were not in close contact with the infected individual(s) have reason to be concerned, we ask that you, as always, to watch for symptoms of COVID-19.” Symptoms were then listed  which might indicate a possible COVID-19 infection.”

  • Temperature of 100.0 degrees Fahrenheit or higher when taken by mouth;
  • Sore throat;
  • New uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing (or, for students with a chronic allergic/asthmatic cough, a change in their cough from baseline);
  • Diarrhea, vomiting, or abdominal pain; or
  • New onset of severe headache, especially with a fever.”

The notifications further cautioned that if anyone does begin experiencing any of these symptoms in a way that is not typical, they are encouraged  to contact their physician.

Those notified were also asked that anyone who is lab-confirmed for COVID-19 to notify the school office at (903) 876-2556.

While FISD staff is diligently enforcing health protection guidelines of social distancing and wearing of face coverings to mitigate COVID-19 spread at school, Supt. Cook urged community members to be as cautious to avoid community spread to students as well as others at risk.


Oct. 13, 2020


Coffee City Council hears of police

chief resignation, LPBC sale status 

Coffee City Council members Tuesday, Oct. 13 learned that the recently employed police chief had submitted his resignation and that the Lake Palestine Business Center was currently under contract to be sold, according to a report from City Secretary Doug Davis.

Mayor Pro Tem Phillip Rutledge announced that Police Chief Bryan Miers had submitted his resignation because he had an offer he could not turn down. Rutledge said the city is back in the position of looking for a new police chief. He said that Chief Miers had suggested a candidate for the position and that he and Councilman Riley Standifer had spoken with that candidate. The Mayor Pro Tem said he would be calling a special Council meeting after the election to canvass the vote but he did not know for sure when that would be.

In regard to the sale of the LPBC, Ray Ver Hey, vice president of the Economic Development Council, said the EDC has discussed the LPBC at their meeting on Oct. 5 and said the center is currently under contract to be sold. The closing of the sale, planned for Oct. 9 had been expected on Oct. 16. He said that, after discussion, there were no changes to the EDC basic rules. Also discussed in open forum was the property on SH 155 and FM 3506 and  that the property was back under contract again. Mayor Pro Tem Rutledge asked Ver Hey to inform the Council when the properties closed.

In the matter of the police chief resignation, Chief Miers commented prior to presenting the police report.

He thanked the Council and citizenry of Coffee City for giving him the opportunity to work at Coffee City and he apologized for leaving. He said the opportunity presented to him was something he had to take advantage of and that leaving after such a short time was not in his nature.

Mayor Pro Tem Rutledge said that Chief Miers had offered and received approval from his future boss to be given time to spend with the new police chief who will take over his duties in Coffee City.

In his earlier report, Rutledge had reported that the new police software called CopSync, approved for purchase at the last Council meeting, was running within two days of purchase. He said the city is currently waiting for reimbursement from the state. Both the police chief and City Judge Shellena Bivens reported on the uses of the software in facilitating their duties.

The Council also heard a report from Fire Chief Chris Moore and detailed reports from the police chief and city judge on their activities during September.


Oct. 1, 2020


Most area cities post sales

tax allocation increases

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts reported city sales tax allocations for the October 2020 period showing gains for most area cities over the prior period last year.

Most area cities reported gains for the year-to-date over the prior year.

The City of Frankston received a net payment of $30,715.82 for October compared to a $24,005.45 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 27.95 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $306,998.27 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $244,105.18, a gain of 25.76 percent.

The City of Berryville received a net payment of $1,956.52 for October compared to a $1,374.29 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 42.36 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $19,977.79 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $15,625.61, a gain of 27.85 percent.

The City of Coffee City received a net payment of $20,030.47 for October compared to a $16,502.72 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 21.37 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $205,687.89 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $172,854.20, a gain of 18.99 percent.

The City of Cuney received a net payment of $2,719.54 for October compared to a $2,307.67 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 17.84 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $28,822.91 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $22,451.68, a gain of 28.37 percent.

The City of Poynor received a net payment of $1,014.04 for October compared to a $1,325.46 payment a year ago. That’s down 23.49 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $11,534.20 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $12,264.00, down 5.95 percent. 


Sept. 28, 2020


LaPoynor ISD adopts 2020-21 budget

of $5,309,864, okays property tax rate

LaPoynor Independent School District trustees have approved a 2020-21 budget of $5,309,864 with an increase of 0.44 percent in Maintenance and Operation, a decrease of 2.72 percent in Debt Service and a 0.28 percent decrease in total expenditures, according to documents submitted by school officials.

The trustees approved a M&O tax rate of $0.966400 per $100 valuation and an Interest and Sinking Fund (debt service) rate of $0.275000 per $100 valuation, and a total rate of $1.241400.

The Interest and Sinking Fund tax revenue is used to pay for bonded indebtedness on construction, equipment or both. The bonds and the tax rate necessary to pay those bonds were approved by the district.

The tax will be assessed on a total property value of $214,073,242.

The LISD is expecting $2,082,864 in revenue from Local and Intermediate Sources, $3,182,000 in State Program Revenues and $45,000 in Federal Revenue.

The budget allocates $3,029,917 for Instruction, $88,477 for Instructional Resources and Media Services, $116,187 for Curriculum and Instructional Staff Development, $205,856 for School Leadership, $145,825 for Guidance, Counseling and Evaluation Services, $80,470 for Health Services, $182,332 for Student Transportation, and $194,125 for Curricular/Extracurricular Activities.

Also the budget expects expenditures of $290,730.48 for General Administration, $534,415 for Plant Maintenance and Operation, $65,000 for Security and Monitoring Services, and $283,960 for Data Processing Services, as well as other expenses of lesser amounts.

They expect to spend $10,100 on Facilities Acquisition and Construction.

The LISD reports total outstanding and unpaid bonded indebtedness of $6,310,000.

Maintenance and Operation Fund balance is listed as $3,583,164 and an Interest and Sinking Fund balance of $164,877.

(See the complete budget for 2020-2021 HERE )


Sept. 21, 2020


FISD trustees appoint auditors, nominate

Henderson County Appraisal director

Frankston School trustees Monday night, Sept. 21 appointed auditors and nominated a director to serve on the Henderson County Appraisal District board in their regular meeting.

The trustees voted, with no opposition, to employ Pattillo, Brown, and Hill, LLP as auditors for the year ending Aug. 31, 2020.

They also voted, with no opposition, to nominate Joe Reed as Place 5 director on the board of the Henderson County Appraisal District.

In reports to the board Supt. Nicci Cook and principals of elementary, middle and high schools reported their enrollments as of the meeting, among other matters.

Elementary School Principal Melanie Blackwell reported total elementary school enrollment of 343, with 313 in-person and 30 virtual learners.

Middle School Principal Cindy Owens reported a total enrollment of 197, 61 in the sixth grade, 66 in the seventh grade and 70 in the eighth grade. Of that total, 19 are virtual learners.

High School Principal Edgar Rodriguez reported total enrollment of 226 with 59 in the ninth grade, 72 in the 10th grade, 51 in the 11th grade and 44 in the 12th grade. He reported that, of the total, 28 are virtual learners.

In her report, Supt. Cook said total enrollment for all campuses is 766 with 689 in-person learners and 77 virtual learners.


Sept. 18, 2020


2020 Homecoming royalty crowned

 at FHS in ceremony on Sept. 18 

Seniors Melany Pizano and Brink Bizzell were crowned as 2020 Frankston High School Homecoming Queen and King in ceremonies Friday night, Sept. 18 prior to the  football game between Frankston and Paris Chisum.

The Frankston Indians football team put on an exciting offensive show but lost to a talented Paris Chisum team 75-60. The two teams were tied at 14-14 after a quarter of play, but Chisum forged ahead to a 35-27 lead at halftime.  A complete report of the game will follow later HERE .

The traditional Homecoming ceremony, normally held on the field prior to the game, was changed to 6:45 p.m. in the Frankston High School gymnasium this year.

A format similar to other years was followed. However, this year, attendance was restricted to ticket holders, family and friends, to assure following social distancing and capacity guidelines consistent with COVID-19 mandates. Those attending were required to wear face coverings and temperatures were  taken at the door.

The Homecoming Court presented was as follows:

Freshmen —Bandy Bizzell, Jasmine Fisher, Tripp Hallmark and Ryan Harper.

Sophomores — Lynsie Bizzell, Jaycee Nabors, Seth Gaskin and Henry Suggs.

Juniors — Haidyn Hokit, Grace Roark, Cullen Jones and Cael Bruno.

Seniors — Emily Bizzell, Kelsey Loebig, Melany Pizano, Callie Selman, Brink Bizzell, Jaden Evans, Tyler Fridinger and Kevin Tinsley.

AT  RIGHT,  are 2020 FHS Homecoming Queen and King Melany Pizano and Brink Bizzell.       — Citizen  Photo 

The annual Parade and Square Fair, normally held on the Saturday following the Homecoming game, has been postponed, until further notice, due to risks involved relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to local sponsors



Sept. 15, 2020


Frankston Schools’ enrollment totals 757

with 662 in-person, 95 remote learners

Frankston Schools total enrollment was 757 as of Tuesday, Sept. 15, with 662 enrolled in in-person learning and 95 in remote learning, Supt. Nicci Cook has reported.

Supt. Cook said that there were 336 enrolled in elementary school, 197 in middle school and 224 in high school. She said there were 294 in-person learners and 42 remote learners in elementary school, 178 in-person and 19 remote in middle school and 190 in-person and 34 remote in high school.

The total enrollment reported on Sept. 8 was 772. That included 350 in elementary school, 197 in middle school and 225 in high school. At that time the number of home learners was not definite, the superintendent said.

Supt. Cook said there had not been any additional cases of COVID-19 after one case was confirmed by lab test during the week ending Sept. 4.

The local health department did a case investigation and contact tracing and those determined to have had contact with the infected individual were quarantined for the necessary 14 days and then returned to school, she said.


Sept. 14, 2020


Frankston EDC board okays funds

toward new fire department truck

The Frankston. Economic Development Corp. board voted unanimously in their September meeting to donate $22,000 to the Frankston Volunteer Fire Department to be applied to the city share of funds for purchase of a new fire truck, according to a report from City Secretary Kelli Landreth-Smith.

The 2020-21 budget of the City of Frankston had included a contingent $8,000 as part of the city’s share in the event the FVFD is successful in obtaining a grant to help purchase the truck.

In other action the EDC board discussed providing “sails” (shading)) for the Town Square City Park playground. The board decided to receive bids on the proposed project.

The board members discussed projects for the coming year and the budget, which is being prepared for consideration at the October meeting.


Sept. 14, 2020


Coffee City Council okays EDC sale

of Lake Palestine Business Center

The Coffee City Council Monday night, Sept. 14 voted unanimously to act on approving the Economic Development Corporation’s proposed sale of the Lake Palestine Business Center as discussed in a closed session and already approved by the EDC.

Councilman Don Weaver made the motion, seconded by Councilman Edward McDaniel.

The EDC has been in negotiations with a prospective buyer for the LPBC and a contract of sale is pending, according to Jim Beggerly, EDC president, in a later explanation after the meeting.  He said it is hoped the transaction can be finalized soon.

The EDC acquired the property located on SH 155 near the motel some five years ago, Beggerly said. The aim was to lease the spaces in the center to private businesses with hopes of creating jobs and additional city sales tax revenue, he said. At their Sept. 2 regular meeting, the EDC board decided to recommend to the City Council the sale of the property, according to an EDC meeting report.

Earlier newly named Police Chief Bryan Miers was introduced to the Council and took the oath of office administered by notary Sandy Atteberry.

The new Chief later briefed the Council on a proposal to enter into a contract with CopSync (Kologik) to provide technology services to the police department. He told the Council that he had used the CopSync before, and it was a very good program. He also stated that several agencies around the area are also using the program and have no issues.

After some discussion, Councilman Weaver made a motion and Councilman McDaniel seconded to go with the CopSync program and it was passed unanimously.

In other matters, the Council acted on approving two new members to the EDC board, appointed by the EDC. The appointees are Micah Wolfe and Greg Malkoch. The Council voted unanimously to approve the appointments.

Mayor Pro Tem Phillip Rutledge announced that the National Night Out had been canceled. He also announced that the Fall Cleanup would be held in October.

The Council also heard reports by EDC President Jim Beggerly, Municipal Court Judge Shellena Bivens for the month of August, Police Chief Miers and the Fire Department report by Deputy Chief Bill Johnston.

For discussion and other details of the Council meeting, a video of the meeting is made available by the city HERE .


Sept. 11, 2020


Most area cities post sales

tax allocation increases

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts reported city sales tax allocations for the September 2020 period showing gains for most area cities over the prior period last year.

Most area cities reported gains for the year-to-date over the prior year.

The City of Frankston received a net payment of $33,199.59 for September compared to a $25,443.37 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 30.48 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $276,282.45 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $220,099.73, a gain of 25.52 percent.

The City of Berryville received a net payment of $2,285.75 for September compared to a $1,336.34 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 71.04 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $18,021.27 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $14,251.32, a gain of 26.45 percent.

The City of Coffee City received a net payment of $22.475.03 for September compared to a $16,020,23 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 40.29 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $185,657.42 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $156,351.48, a gain of 18.74 percent.

The City of Cuney received a net payment of $3,055.91 for September compared to a $2,195.10 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 39.21 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $26,103.37 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $20,144.01, a gain of 29.58 percent.

The City of Poynor received a net payment of $1,084.62 for September compared to a $1,154.53 payment a year ago. That’s down 6.05 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $10,520.16 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $10,938.54, down 3.82 percent.


Sept. 8, 2020


Frankston adopts 2020-21 General Fund,

Water and Sewer budgets, city tax rate

The City of Frankston has adopted a General Fund budget and Water and Sewer budget for 2020-21 and set a property tax rate in action by the City Council Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020, according to City Secretary Kelli Landreth-Smith.

The General Fund budget allocates a total of $932,735.86 and a Water and Sewer Fund budget of $558,277.56. The local property tax rate adopted is $0.384489 per $100 valuation, for maintenance and operation.

In the General Fund budget, $165,010.41 was allocated to City Hall, including $71,510.41 for payroll and $93,500 for expenses. The Police Department was allocated $529,651.41 with $390,186.85 projected for payroll and $139,464.56 for expenses. The Municipal Court allocation was projected to be $109,079.24 with $84,529.24 projected for payroll and $24,550 for expenses.

Additionally, $42,000 was allocated to the Fire Department, $16,000 to the Frankston Depot Library, $4,400 to the Kathleen Cook Fitzgerald Museum, $5,000 to city parks and a total of $61,594.80 to Streets. The latter allocates $29,194.80 for payroll and. $32,400 for expenses.

Allocations were increased for City Hall, Municipal Court, the library and Streets and decreased to the Police Department, the latter largely due to the purchase of a vehicle in the last fiscal year.

Part of the increase in City Hall was due to purchase of a copier, to be shared with the water department, and all departments shared in the cost of an IT service, according to the city secretary. The library received an additional $2,250 and proceeds of the sale of land, formerly designated as a street but never used, were added to the funds available for Streets, she said.

The allocation for the fire department, carried over from last year, is an amount which would be the city’s share if the FVFD receives a grant to purchase a new vehicle. 

The Water and Sewer Fund budget projects a payroll of $305,277.56 and other expenses of $253,000.

According to a comparison with the year before, the General Fund budget increased by a net of $4,089.36 over 2019-2020. The Water and Sewer Fund budget allocation netted a decrease of $21,726.62 over 2019-2020, largely due to the purchase of a vehicle in the last fiscal year.


Sept. 8, 2020


Berryville Council hears reports;

August meeting actions reviewed

The Berryville City Council heard reports on Water and Field Operations and the Volunteer Fire Department in an abbreviated meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 8 at the City Hall, according to the agenda.

Financial reports for the past two months were also considered.

Details of any possible further major actions will be reported later.

The Council reviewed and approved the minutes of the Aug. 17 noon meeting which included a proposed zoning change and a replacement concrete foundation for the new Firehouse No. 1.

The regular meeting scheduled for earlier in August had been rescheduled.

The proposal for the zoning change pertained to a 7.01-acre tract in the Martin Pruitt A-643 Survey which Mayor Ron Hewlett said had been discussed in prior meetings, negotiated with the property owner and a public hearing held on July 15, 2020. He said a vote on the change was in order. Following a brief discussion, Councilman Lee Danner made a motion and Council member Gayla Leary seconded to leave the property as is. All Council members present voted in favor.

In the matter of the replacement concrete foundation for the new firehouse, Mayor Hewlett said the new foundation would cost $6,500. In answer to a question from Councilman Danner, the Mayor said the $6,500 would be paid from the Volunteer Fire Department account. Danner made a motion to proceed with the new slab and piers and Council member Leary seconded. All present voted in favor.

In the Water Field Operations report, Water Operator Ruben Servin told the Council, answering a question by Councilman Terry Stubbins, that the bearings went out on the dump trailer and he had to replace the axle.

At the August meeting Mayor Hewlett, Council members Leary, Danner and Terry Stubbins were present. Mayor Pro Tem Sue Morgan and Council member Bobbie Evans were absent, according to the minutes.


Sept. 2, 2020


Coffee City EDC nominates new board

members, recommends sale of  LPBC

The Coffee City Economic Development Corporation considered appointment of two board members, support for a fishing tournament at the Lake Palestine Resort, and the proposed sale of the Lake Palestine Business Center (LPBC) at their regular meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 2, according to a  report by Jim Beggerly, President.

The board also discussed the EDC’s new website, coffeecityedc.com and the new frankstoncitizen.com website.

The board nominated Micah Wolfe and Greg Malkoch as new board members to be recommended to the City Council for approval. They put on hold the fishing tournament support, pending further developments, and they voted to recommend to the Council the sale of the LPBC.

All five of the current members were present: President Beggerly, Vice President Ray Ver Hey, Treasurer Sandy Atteberry, and Directors Cynthia Swanson and Don Weaver. Also present were the EDC Secretary Jan Daughtry, City Council Mayor Pro Tem Phil Rutledge, GeoJan Wright and Ed McDaniel and EDC board candidates, as well as a potential buyer for the Lake Palestine Business Center (LPBC).

Coffee City EDC meetings are normally scheduled for the first Monday of the month at 6 p.m. at the Community Center. Next scheduled meeting is for Monday, Oct. 5. The public is invited.


Aug. 27, 2020


Coffee City Drawing for Nov. 3

 ballot spots held on Aug. 27 

The City of Coffee City held a drawing on Thursday, Aug. 27 for placement of names on the Nov. 3 General Election Ballot for candidates for mayor and three aldermen up for election, according to City Secretary Douglas Davis.

In the Mayor’s race, Frank Serrato will be first on the ballot and Edward McDaniel second.

Chuck Jones will be first and GeoJan Wright second in the race for Alderman Place 1.

For Alderman Place 3, Kevin Swanson will be first on the ballot and Don Weaver second.

Since Ray Ver Hey is unopposed, his name will be the only one for Alderman Place 5.

The candidates filed for ballot spots by the Aug. 17 deadline for candidate filing in the Nov. 3 election.


Aug. 24, 2020


FISD trustees approve 2020-21

budget, tax rate after hearing

Frankston School trustees Monday night, Aug. 24 approved a 2020-2021 budget of $9,274,378 and a combined maintenance and operation and interest and sinking fund tax rate of $1.3405 per $100 valuation, down from a rate of $1.4199 assessed last year.

The action came after a public hearing on the proposed budget and tax rate.

To fund the budget, trustees are expecting local revenues of $2,958,863 and state funds totaling $6,315,515. The decreased tax rate is partially made possible by increased taxable values totaling $9,836,621. Taxable value in 2020 rose to $285,142,483 compared to $275,305,862 in 2019.

The lower tax rate included a M&O rate of $1.0547 per $100 valuation compared to $1.0683 currently. The I&S rate approved is $0.2848 compared to $0.3516 currently.

The FISD annual bond payment is $918,520 and the adopted rate is projected to raise $757,202, with the balance coming from an existing debt allotment of $161,318.

Expenses in the budget include $7,058,614 for salaries, compared to $6,842,137 in 2019-2020. Instructional expenses budgeted are $5,312,983 compared to $5,120,446 the year before.

Extracurricular budget projected was $667,239 compared to $634,027 the prior year. Facilities expense is projected to be $1,327,726 compared to $1,427,720 in 2019-20.

Electricity Ideal Impact expense is projected to be $136,206 compared to $154,221 for the year before. SB22: Statutorily Required Public Notices are projected to be $4,000 and HB 1495: Advocacy Spending is expected to be $2,100.

Although questions were invited from those in the public attending the hearing, school officials have indicated they will be glad to answer any specific questions about the budget or tax rates.


Aug. 21, 2020


Races for Mayor, two Council

Places in Coffee City filings

Races for Mayor and two of three places on the Coffee City Council developed at the close of filings on Aug. 17 for places on the Nov. 3 General Election ballot,  according to Douglas Davis, city secretary.

Meanwhile, a vacancy was created in the office of Mayor when GeoJan Wright resigned on Tuesday, Aug. 11, Davis reported. He said Mayor Pro Tem Phillip Rutledge will assume the day to day operations of the city until a new Mayor is selected in the Nov. 3 election.

Ms Wright had been serving as Mayor after being appointed by the Council upon the resignation of Pam Drost in April 2019. Ms Wright had been serving as Place 1 Council member and had been appointed Mayor Pro Tem the month before, according to a report in the April 11, 2019 issue of The Frankston Citizen

Filing for Mayor were Edward McDaniel and Frank Serrato. Seeking Council Place 1 will be Chuck Jones and GeoJan Wright, the former mayor. Seeking Place 3 will be Don Weaver and Kevin Swanson. Ray Ver Hey is unopposed on the ballot for the Place 5 spot.

Davis also announced that Bryan Miers was approved as Chief of the Coffee City Police Department. Miers was approved on Friday, Aug. 14 in a special meeting called to discuss the position of Police Chief. The Council approved Miers by a vote of four to one after returning from a closed session.

Davis said Chief Miers has extensive experience in law enforcement in and around the Henderson County area. He expressed welcome to Chief Miers to the department and to the City of Coffee City.


Aug. 14, 2020


FISD outlines programs

to aid student learning

Frankston ISD is off to a strong start for the 2020-2021 school year, according to school officials.

This year will be unique and challenging for FISD staff, students, and parents as they navigate this unprecedented educational journey, the officials state on their website.  In an effort to accommodate on-campus students, home learners, and all the possibilities the year may bring, FISD has implemented several new technology programs. School officials describe them as follows: 

ClassLink is the new online portal where students will access digital resources.  Microsoft Teams is one of those resources and also the platform where teachers will communicate with students.  Teams is where teachers will deliver instruction, class notes, recorded lessons, assignments, and meet with students remotely. 

FISD has added a link to its website homepage called, Online Learning, where the most up-to-date information on the online programs will be provided for students to use. Helpful information is provided to assist students in using these new technology tools, school officials say. (See Online Learning link HERE .)


Aug. 13, 2020


LaPoynor ISD to follow executive order

by governor on COVID-19 protocol

In accordance with an executive order by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, LaPoynor  School officials have decided to make a serious effort to comply with all precautions necessary to assure the health and safety of students, teachers and staff upon the opening of “in-person” learning at school on Monday, Aug. 17.

The school board affirmed, in a special meeting of school trustees Monday, Aug. 10, that LISD will follow the governor’s mandate. 

The governor’s order in July mandates face coverings for children 10 and older. Supt. James Young recommended that each person obtain a copy of the governor’s executive order and follow it. The board’s decision modifies earlier school opening information which caused staff and parents to ask whether masks would be optional.

The executive order states that “every person in Texas shall wear a face covering over the nose and mouth when inside a commercial entity or other building or space open to the public, or when in an outdoor public space, whenever it is not feasible to maintain six feet of social distancing from another person not in the same household.”

It was noted that the Texas Education Agency requires schools to follow the governor’s mandate.

In addition to use of masks and other health and safety measures, the superintendent said that temperatures will be screened.

Supt. Young said the district is committed to providing a learning and teaching environment which mitigates the risks of infection by the COVID-19 virus in the interests of students, parents and other school district patrons.

The superintendent said he would be happy to address any concerns parents have about the ever changing guidelines and procedures related to COVID-19 health and safety measures.


Aug. 13, 2020


Frankston Council okays U.S. 175

Project loan, water, sewer rate hikes

The Frankston City Council. Tuesday night, Aug. 11 approved obtaining a loan of $138,000 for their part of the upcoming project on U.S. 175 east and okayed a $1.00 water rate increase and an additional $1.00 sewer rate hike, effective Oct. 1, according to a report from City Secretary Kelli Landreth-Smth.

Both actions were approved unanimously by the Council. Present for the vote were Council members Roger McDonald, Alfonso Lang, Sharyn Harrison and Greg Main. Mayor Gerald Hall, presided.

In announcements during the meeting, it was reported that a Bulk Item pick-up has been scheduled for Sept. 22 and 23. Also announced was postponement of the annual Square Fair, until further notice, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Council reviewed loan and payment options for the U.S. 175 project and agreed to take out a loan at Austin Bank with a term of 120 months. Estimated payment was $1,305 per month with a fixed rate of 2.5 percent for the first five years and an adjusted rate of Prime-.35 percent annually thereafter.

A proposal to raise the water and sewer rates, effective Oct. 1 was introduced and approved by the Council.

Michael Hatton updated the Council on recent repairs on Garrison Street which involved replacing a collapsed culvert at the intersection of Garrison and Garner streets. In another street repair report, it was revealed that oil sand had been ordered to start filling in potholes and work had already begun.

Councilmen Lang and Main expressed interest in considering an ordinance providing weight limits on side streets in hopes of preserving the streets. Councilman Lang also expressed concern about grass clippings in the street after citizens mow.

Among consent items approved were scheduled budget workshops on Aug. 18 and Aug. 25 by teleconference to determine allocations for various budget items.


Aug. 11, 2020


Action on proposed ordinances

eyed by Coffee City Council

The City Council of Coffee City Monday night, Aug. 10 voted to act upon an ordinance for weight limits/permits on city roads, but a motion to act on an ordinance for reduced speed limits on designated residential roads died for lack of a second.

The Council also tabled consideration of an Economic Development Corp. appointment of a new board member sending the appointment back to the EDC for further consideration.

The Council’s action came after some lengthy discussion of the advisability of the proposals led by Mayor GeoJan Wright with Aldermen Don Weaver, Riley Standifer, Marquis Castleberry and Edward McDaniel present.

Also considered by the Council were proposed personnel policy changes presented at the July 2020 Council meeting. The Council approved changes in the Compensatory time policy, Vacation/Sick time change to Personal Time Off, and the Holiday schedule for calendar year 2021.

Mayor Wright and City Secretary Douglas Davis reminded the Council that the last day to file for a place on the Nov. 3 General Election ballot is Monday, Aug. 17.

Up for election are Mayor, now held by Ms Wright; Place 1, now held by Edward McDaniel; Place 3, now held by Don Weaver, and Place 5, now held by Phil Rutledge. Weaver has filed for re-election and McDaniel has filed for Mayor.

For detailed discussion of these and other matters before the Council, a video of the meeting, posted by the Council, is available HERE .


Aug. 8, 2020


Area cities post gains

in sales tax allocations

The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts reported city sales tax allocations for the July 2020 period showing gains for area cities over the prior period last year.

Most area cities reported gains for the year-to-date over the prior year.

The City of Frankston received a net payment of $34,192.09 for July compared to a $23,233.41 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 47.16 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $205,604.21 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $168,031.19, a gain of 22.36 percent.

The City of Berryville received a net payment of $2,636.85 for July compared to a $2,076.41 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 26.99 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $13,391.29 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $11,263.99, a gain of 18.88 percent.

The City of Coffee City received a net payment of $24,838.71 for July compared to a $17,447.39 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 42.36 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $141,063.47 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $123,361.09, a gain of 14.35 percent.

The City of Cuney received a net payment of $3,577.17 for July compared to a $2,334.01 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 53.26 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $20,014.84 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $15,684.95, a gain of 27.60 percent.

The City of Poynor received a net payment of $967.62 for July compared to a $961.62 payment a year ago. That’s a gain of 0.62 percent. The city has received year-to-date payments of $8,227.26 this year compared to last year’s YTD payment of $8,367.99, a slight loss of 1.68 percent.


Aug. 7, 2020


FISD lunch schedule emphasizes small groups  

Frankston Independent School District, in order to comply with COVID-19 requirements, will be using a staggered lunchtime schedule to minimize the size of groups and risk to students.

Elementary school students will be eating their lunch in their classrooms according to a staggered schedule. 

Middle school and high school  students will be eating in small groups throughout the campus. Some will eat in classrooms, the library, the cafeteria  or the gymnasium, but all will go through the cafeteria line to get their food, according to the plan.

The plan is designed to keep down the size of the groups eating at one time and facilitate social distancing.

Also related to health and safety, teachers and staff will be provided with masks and face shields for use throughout the day for protection from transmission of the virus, and students will be provided masks. If desired, acceptable protective gear may be supplied by staff, teachers or students for their personal use.

In addition, FISD will purchase school supplies for every student to start the school year, according to school officials.




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