Despite plans to retire this December, Ector County Independent School District trustees voted Tuesday to accept the resignation of Superintendent Tom Crowe, effective September 1.
Crowe, who has served as ECISD’s superintendent for five years, publicly announced in May that he planned to retire in December, but most recently stated that he felt it was in the best interest of the district to leave earlier. With a base salary of $267,903, the district will pay Crowe $135,000 for the remainder of the year, and he will remain available to act as a consultant through December.
The board has appointed former ECISD board member Jim Nelson to serve as interim superintendent until a permanent replacement is identified.
In addition to his time as an ECISD trustee, Nelson’s experience in education includes serving as Texas Education Commissioner, Texas Association of School Boards Chairman, Richardson ISD Superintendent, and CEO of Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID). He is currently an attorney at Thompson and Horton LLP.
According to minutes from Tuesday’s board meeting, trustees’ evaluation of Crowe was “strong” and “reflected the good work he has done in improving morale and student performance in ECISD.” Accountability standard ratings released by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) Wednesday, however, reveal that much work still needs to be done within the district.
The ratings show nine ECISD campuses were deemed improvement required (IR), meaning the school did not meet state standards in terms of student achievement on standardized testing, student progress across core subjects, closing of performance gaps, and/or postsecondary readiness. Those campuses include Bonham Middle, Bowie Middle, Crockett Middle, Wilson and Young Medal of Honor Middle, Ector Middle, Gale Pond Alamo Elementary, Burnet Elementary, Blackshear Elementary Magnet, and G.E. ‘Buddy’ West Elementary.
As a district, and using the same criteria with the exception of postsecondary readiness, ECISD scored a D.
Crowe said that he plans to appeal at least six of the campus’s ratings.