MISD bids farewell to administrators

Outgoing superintendent, deputy superintendent honored at final meeting of 2020

Bill Spinks
Midlothian Mirror
The Midlothian Independent School District administration headquarters.

Last week’s Midlothian Independent School District board of trustees meeting was filled with farewells for two departing leaders as the board cleared the agenda to take care of pressing personnel matters.

Outgoing superintendent Dr. Lane Ledbetter was honored for his five-plus years of service to MISD. Ledbetter is returning to his alma mater to become superintendent of Carroll ISD.

Deputy superintendent Judy Walling, who is retiring, was also recognized for her 36 years of service in education.

Board vice president Matt Sanders said Ledbetter is living the American dream of going back to the place where he grew up to finish his career as an educator.

“We had a few things we needed to get done when Dr. Ledbetter arrived, and he jumped in immediately and formed a plan,” Sanders said.

Ledbetter said he had planned to call Midlothian home, but when the opportunity to return to Carroll came along, doors opened. Ledbetter was full of praise for trustees, cabinet members and the community in his final remarks.

“This community has been tremendous to us,” Ledbetter said. “This district has been tremendous to us in terms of support. I can’t thank the people that I’ve worked with here enough for what you’ve done and what we’ve been able to accomplish as a district in the last five and a half years.”

Sanders presided over the meeting in the absence of board president Carl Smith. All other trustees were present.

Other items

• Student-athletes from Heritage High School’s cross country team and Midlothian High School’s volleyball region semifinalists were recognized at the meeting. HHS senior Renee Elliott competed at state for the second year in a row, and the Lady Panthers won their first-ever outright district championship this fall.

• Several public speakers spoke in favor of adding African-American studies classes in MISD. The board recently studied changes to the curriculum, and racial tensions did heighten in the district during the summer amid local and national incidents.

• The consent agenda was approved, with four items pulled. Trustee Andrea Walton initially objected to curriculum items being placed on the consent agenda but made the motion to approve the preliminary course list, which was unanimously approved. A calendar adjustment for four spring instructional days, a restructuring of administrators and the addition of two technology support positions, and a donation of the old Irvin Gymnasium to the city of Midlothian were likewise approved separately.

• The board took no action on a nomination to fill a vacancy on the Ellis County Appraisal Board.

• Trustees approved a resolution to continue employee benefits under the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act in the event that those benefits are discontinued.

• A timeline for the superintendent search was approved, as well as a request for proposals for a superintendent search consultant. Assistant superintendent Karen Fitzgerald said the district is providing a website that will share updates on the search.