Canyon Vista Middle and Sommer Elementary schools earned the Texas Comptroller’s 2013 Texas Honors Circle award by achieving significant academic success while keeping spending low.
The Texas Honors Circle program honors campuses based on the 2013 Financial Allocation Study for Texas (FAST) ratings results. FAST ratings are calculated by comparing the campus academic progress percentile to the average of the district’s and its spending index, according to the website.
When notified of the 4 ½-star FAST rating, Canyon Vista Principal Nicole Hagerty said, “We believe in being good stewards of our taxpayers’ dollars. Department chairs come to meetings prepared to present items for which they are requesting funding, discuss how those items will be used for the good of students, and answer any questions from the group. We have found this practice to be successful in ensuring that our budget is spent wisely with a focus on student achievement.”
Regarding Sommer’s five-star FAST rating, Principal Nancy Varljen said, “This is a tribute to the collaborative work our teachers do on a daily basis to challenge and prepare our students, as well as to the wonderful support of our parent community. We are honored and excited to receive this special recognition.”
FAST began in 2009 when Texas Legislature’s House Bill 3 directed the Comptroller to “identify school districts and campuses that use resource allocation practices that contribute to high academic achievement and cost-effective operations,” according to the webpage. Texas Comptroller Susan Combs created the Texas Honors Circle Award program to recognize districts and schools that receive high marks in the FAST analysis.