April 17, 2012
Employee Newsletter of Richardson ISD

April 18
   Principal Appreciation Day

April 25
    Administrative Professionals Day

May 8
    National Teacher Appreciation Day
May 9
    Texas Paraprofessional
    Recognition Day

May 28
    Memorial Day Holiday

May 31
    Last Day of Classes

June 3 - Graduations:
    Berkner - 12:30 p.m.
    Pearce - 4:30 p.m.
    Richardson - 8:30 p.m.

June 4 - Graduation:
    Lake Highlands - 7:00 p.m.

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ImageI am excited about sharing discussion from last evening's Board meeting related to budget considerations. While no decisions are final until the budget's adoption in June, I want to let you know that recruiting and retaining high-quality staff members is one of the priorities of our Board.

Last year, Richardson ISD addressed the reduction of state funding due to the shortfall in the Texas budget. Many of you were involved as you participated in meetings and responded to RISD's survey regarding budget reduction priorities. These priorities were used to develop three scenarios based on different estimates in loss of state funding. Due to this proactive planning, the District was able to avoid a teacher layoff that many neighboring districts underwent, but one of the difficult decisions required to maintain priorities was to freeze all salaries at the 2010-2011 level.

While all decisions, including the salary freeze, were made for the 2011-2013 biennium, modifications are now being examined because of the availability of additional funds. These funds are categorized in one of two ways, funds available for one-time costs and funds for recurring expenses.

The Board is considering the use of a portion of the one-time funds. These funds are available because the loss in state funding was less than projected in the first year (2011-2012) of the biennium. I am recommending a 2% one-time, lump sum additional benefit to employees in allocated positions as part of the District's goal of retaining high-performing teachers and staff. Details for this one-time additional benefit are still being determined; however, the payment would be made during the 2012-2013 school year.

The Board also is evaluating the use of recurring funds. Although the loss of state funds in 2012-2013 will be greater than original projections, higher-than-projected enrollment growth creates a surplus of recurring funds. The Board is considering the use of these funds for additional teaching allocations to address growth. Additionally, the District is evaluating a possible increase in its contribution to employees' insurance coverage to help offset the continued rise in health care costs. These provisions would occur during the 2012-2013 school year subject to budget approval.

RISD fared well and has a history of financial integrity due to the long-range planning embraced by the Board, which is evaluating the proposed 2012-2013 budget and employee compensation package based on a multi-year timeline. While the Board would like to give raises to all staff members, the uncertainty of the legislative decisions in 2013 is a major concern. Unfortunately, finance is not a one-time problem but an on-going challenge. Since we do not foresee any major increases occurring in school finance funding, we are being very cautious so that we do not commit to expenses that we cannot afford over the 2013-2015 biennium.

With all the budget concerns in mind, employee compensation is still an important component of Richardson ISD's commitment to Vision 2020.

I trust you will welcome this exciting news. I will continue to keep you up to date on local and state developments.

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RISD's Dubey Named Athletic Director of the Year
Richardson ISD's Bob Dubey has been named Athletic Director of the Year by the National Foundation of Football's Gridiron Club of Dallas.

"Coach Dubey," as he is still known to so many in the district, has been in RISD for 35 years, beginning as a teacher and assistant coach at his alma mater, Richardson High School, and eventually becoming the head football coach at Berkner High School before becoming RISD's Athletic Director.

As a teacher, Dubey has earned the Meadows Foundation Award, the Texas Excellence Award as an outstanding high school teacher, and was named the RISD Health Teacher of the Year three times.

As a coach, he has been named the Dallas Cowboys High School Coach of the Week, District Coach of the Year, Metroplex Coach of the Year and currently serves as president of the Texas High School Athletic Directors Association.

Congratulations to Bob for this well-deserved honor!
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Celebrating Earth Day
Earth Day is this Sunday, and many schools are making preparations. Please make an extra effort this week to maximize recycling at your building and at home. If your campus does not have a student Green Team helping with recycling, this would be a perfect week to start one. Students who participate in sorting and recycling learn the value of reducing waste and conserving natural resources.

Recycling extends the life of our municipal landfills and reduces the RISD cost of trash disposal. One of the most important things to remember when recycling cardboard in our Single Stream Recycle dumpsters is to break down the boxes, or flatten them out to save space. This helps keep the recycle dumpster from becoming over filled and spilling out onto our property.

If you want to share your campus Earth Day success story, please contact Energy Management on 469-593-0058 or by email at edward.sheftall@risd.org.
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It's that time again! Dr. Kay Waggoner and the Board of Trustees will host a luncheon for district employees who have retired or are retiring during this school year. This year's luncheon will be Friday, May 25.

For plans to be made, Human Resources needs the names of those employees who are planning to retire at the end of this school year. If you plan to retire, please send a letter of resignation or a resignation form to Human Resources by April 27, 2012.

Even though the date of your retirement may be June 1 or later, you can still submit the form prior to that date.

Diana Zimring in Payroll also needs to be notified if you intend to retire.

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Marketing Your Summer Events/Activities/Camps

Each year, Communications compiles a list of district or partner-affiliated summer programs, camps, events and activities for inclusion on the RISD website and in School Times. If your school, program or department offers a summer activity to RISD students, please send information, including a flyer and/or contact information, to elaine.simmons@risd.org.

Events/activities of RISD non-profit partners such as UTD or the City of Richardson are also welcome.

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Reminder: Continuing Health Care Coverage after Resigning from Employment

In 2007, the Texas Legislature added a provision in state law that extended the length of time for certain individuals to remain enrolled in their current health care plan following a resignation from employment. The Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS) subsequently revised Rule 41.38, Termination Date of Coverage, to provide guidance to TRS-ActiveCare participating entities.

Active public school employees who participate in their employer's health care plan and who submit their resignations from employment with an effective date that is after the end of their employer's instructional year may be entitled to continue their current health coverage until the end of the current plan year, Aug. 31, 2012. The employer may not diminish or eliminate the amount of premium contributions to be paid on the employee's behalf during any coverage continuation period. The employee will still be responsible for his or her share of any premiums during the same coverage continuation period.

Active public school employees who are resigning employment to retire under the TRS pension plan and who are eligible for TRS retiree health coverage under TRS-Care should consider closely coordinating the ending of their current health care coverage with the beginning of their coverage under TRS-Care. They may be entitled to defer the effective date of their TRS-Care coverage for up to three (3) months, while remaining on their employer's current health coverage plan. In certain instances, they may be entitled to waive their TRS-Care coverage at the time of their retirement due to the existence of their current coverage from their employer and later enroll in TRS-Care due to a special enrollment event, as defined in TRS-Care rules.

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Health Yourself Byte

The Medical Center of Plano, in conjunction with the American Cancer Society and the Dallas/Ft. Worth Dermatological Society, will be sponsoring a FREE melanoma and skin cancer screening. Click here to download the flyer. (PDF)

Saturday April 28, 8 a.m.-noon
No appointments - First Come, First Served!
Skin cancer prevention tips (PDF)
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Human Resources - Current Openings
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Marketplace - Item of the Week
1920/30 Elgen Bicycle
Seller's Name: Pat Crawford
Seller's Email: pat.crawford@risd.org

Item Price: $200
Item Description: 1920/30 Elgen bicycle. Needs tires. Found one like this on Ebay for $450.00.
  To browse all of the items available on the Marketplace, please visit risd.org/marketplace.  
To list an item on the RISD Marketplace please use the item listing form provided. New listings submitted to RISD Communications using the listing form will be eligible to be posted upon review.

Each item listing will remain posted until the seller requests the posting be removed. To request that a listing be removed, please contact Elaine Simmons.

Marketplace Services & Employee Discounts
RISD Communications has added both the Services and the Employee Discounts sections to the Marketplace. Each section has a different listing form. Thank you for visiting and using Marketplace.
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New Teacher Contest and Employee Discount

Panera Bread Company Top Teacher Contest - Click here for details.

Rock Fitness Teacher Specials - Click here for more information.

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Congratulations to:

Christiana Clark, Yale Elementary, who welcomed daughter Abby Clark on April 9.

Lindsey Kent, MST Magnet School, who welcomed son Nathan Jay Kent on April 16.
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Congratulations to:

Karen Howard, Mark Twain Elementary, who married Allen Walton on April 7.
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Our thoughts and prayers are with:

Friends and family of former Maintenance & Operations employee Joseph Negrete.

Jennifer Runci, Budget and Finance, whose brother died recently.

Michelle Patchen, Hamilton Park Pacesetter Magnet/Resource, whose grandfather died recently.

Ryan Titus, Hamilton Park Pacesetter Magnet/Extended Day, whose grandmother died recently.
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Important Reminder about Changing Benefit Elections during the plan year - the 31 day rule
The Richardson ISD benefit plan year for medical, dental and flexible spending plans is Sept. 1 through Aug. 31. RISD participates in the IRS Section 125 Benefits Election Plan that allows employees to pay for eligible benefits on a pre-tax basis. Because of this, there are special rules and requirements for the plan.

Any election made as a new hire or during the specified open enrollment period is irreversible unless you are affected by a valid status change, as defined by the IRS, and the district is notified within 31 days of the change. All benefit elections will remain in effect during the entire Plan Year unless you have a valid status change.

Requests for change in coverage must be completed within 31 days of a status change. If approved, the request will be made effective for the first day of the month following the qualified status change. If you do not request a change within the required 31-day period, you must wait until the next open enrollment period to make the change.


Luke Davis Reception - May 7
You are cordially invited to attend a Farewell reception honoring outgoing RISD Board of Trustees Member Luke Davis.

Monday, May 7, 2012
4:30 - 5:30 p.m.
Administration Building Foyer
Preceding Regular Board Meeting


Texas Paraprofessional Recognition Day - May 9
The Texas Legislature has designated second Wednesday in May as Paraprofessional Recognition Day.

Thank you to all RISD paraprofessionals, including teacher assistants, instructional aides, educational trainers, library attendants, bilingual assistants, special education associates, mentors, and tutors.


Notary Public Training
Region 10 will host notary training, Friday, April 20 at its Education Service Center, 400 E. Spring Valley Rd. in Richardson. Information will include how to become a notary, duties of a notary and authority of a notary.

Sessions are 9 a.m.- noon and 1-4 p.m. RISD General Counsel Mia Martin will conduct the training sessions

To register, please click here.

Retiring or Moving? Complete the Resignation Form Today!

Are you retiring or moving at the end of the 2011-12 school year? Don't hold on to that resignation form! If you have made that decision, please complete the resignation form and send it to Human Resources. You can make the effective date the last day of your duty assignment. The resignation form can be found on the District intranet. Human Resources thanks you in advance for helping us as we plan for RISD's future.

If you will be retiring, you will hear from HR in the near future. We are in the process of planning a retirement luncheon in your honor, so please send the resignation form to HR as soon as you know.

Questions? Please contact Human Resources at 469-593-0254.

Have a Student Who is a Good Kid?
Nominate them for the Dallas Morning News/Neighborsgo Good Kid feature, which runs every Friday in the Richardson / Lake Highlands Neighbors insert of the paper. Good Kid is only for high school students.

The application form is here.
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Did You know?
Each week there are dozens of stories about RISD students & staff online at the Dallas Morning News Neighbors website. Each week, Morning News editors select some to be published in the hard copy insert in Friday’s paper. Check it out and/or submit news about your campus at www.neighborsgo.com. Look under Richardson and/or Lake Highlands. Please remember that parental permission is required before student photos can be published. Questions? Please contact Communications at (3-0305).
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RISD notes archives
  Did you miss a week of RISD Notes? To view the archives of RISD Notes, click here.  
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Links to the submission forms are located on the right-hand side of this web page.
Due to the volume of submissions, RISD Communications can no longer accept news item submissions though email. Beginning with next week's publications, all news item submissions for both RISD Notes and School Times Now should be submitted using one of two online forms.

Links to these forms will be available in every edition of RISD Notes moving forward and on the Communications Intranet page.

Thank you for reading and contributing to RISD Notes and School Times Now!
  Not sure which form to use?
RISD Notes is a weekly employee electronic publication which features news, information and achievements of staff and school partners only. Some student events are highlighted so that employees may plan to attend. Also, only staff are included in Births and Weddings, and only staff, their family, and former staff are included under Sympathies.

School Times Now contains news and information pertaining to Richardson Independent School District and its students, staff, schools, teams, clubs, groups or organizations. Information about businesses, individuals, or organizations not affiliated with or sponsored by RISD is not eligible for inclusion in School Times Now.

Please remember that students appearing in photos submitted for School Times Now! should be cleared for district publication via their privacy elections completed at enrollment.
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