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Gladewater ISD preps for May 2014 bond election

By Christina Lane
May 22, 2013 at 11 p.m.

To help the district in preparations for a May 2014 bond election, Gladewater ISD has retained an architect firm and hired a new assistant superintendent, said superintendent J.P. Richardson.

Gladewater ISD is negotiating a contract with Huckabee Inc. to assist with bond planning and related architectural services, Richardson said.

The Fort Worth-based firm has assisted with other East Texas bonds, including Longview ISD's most recent $267 million bond building program. Richardson said he is still negotiating a price with Huckabee for its services. The school board has not authorized a bond election; it will likely do so in January or February, pending response from the community.

"A school district is the heartbeat of a community," Tom Lueck, Huckabee's principal architect for the program, said in a release. "Investing in schools helps communities prosper. The Huckabee team is the right choice for Gladewater because we understand how to help communities like this thrive and grow into something even greater. We are honored to be a part of this community's path into a bright future."

Because of the projected bond election, Richardson also decided to reopen an administrative vacancy that had not been filled in the prior year. When Curriculum Director Connie Player became principal of Gay Avenue Primary School in August 2012, Richardson opted against filling Player's position. Instead, he and Assistant Superintendent Mitzi Lloyd assumed the duties.

"With me being involved in the bond committee which will be made up of community members, taxpayers in the district, and teachers, I needed to concentrate my efforts in that area," Richardson said. "With the new STAAR and end-of-course testing, we need somebody who can also concentrate on those. So I decided to open the position back up."

The district hired Darryl Dans as assistant superintendent of curriculum, instruction and assessment, Richardson said. Dans will start in Gladewater ISD on July 1. He comes to the district from Deweyville ISD, a 2A school district near Beaumont, where he currently serves as Deweyville High School principal.

"He has a lot of experience; he's worked in large school districts and small school districts. He's been a curriculum director, and he has a great school where he is at right now," Richardson said.

Meanwhile, Player is stepping down as principal of Gay Avenue Primary School and retiring. She had worked for the district since 2007.

The district has hired Amanda Langford, assistant principal at Chandler Elementary School in Kilgore, to fill the role, Richardson said. Langford has four years of administrative experience. Her husband, Chris Langford, is an assistant principal at Gladewater High School.



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