The Glen Rose Independent School District is looking forward to a new school year and hopes to build on the momentum of recent successes.

Superintendent Wayne Rotan said Glen Rose students continue to improve Texas Assessment of Academic Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) scores. And high school students scored above the national average on the 2007 ACT exam. The ACT is a college entrance exam that tests English, math, reading, and science skills.

Students from Glen Rose exceeded the state and national average in all four subject areas and posted the highest scores for Glen Rose in the past 15 years. A record 48 students took the ACT in 2007, which is the second highest total ever at GRHS. Overall, Glen Rose high school students had a composite score of 22.4. The average state composite score was 20.5 and the national average was 21.2.

Rotan also said the Glen Rose Tiger football team advanced to the regional finals for the first time in the team’s history, ending the season with a 10-4 record. Students from many other organizations also made it to state level competitions this year.

With the success of the past school year come big changes for the next. One of the biggest changes for parents and students will be the addition of parking spaces at the Junior High and Elementary campuses, as well as the administration building. Rotan said the decision to add parking was based in part on a survey done during the 2006-07 school year.

“The parking spaces will be finished by the first day of class [in August],” Rotan said. “We also changed our drop off and pick up routine at the Intermediate campus to help with traffic issues.”

The Junior High will also receive three new science labs in 2008-09 to provide students more hands-on experience and learning.

A new distance learning lab will allow Glen Rose high school students to participate in virtual field trips and distance learning classes. In addition, each classroom will have an ActivBoard installed before the start of the new school year.

Rotan said they are currently making plans to help teachers as well. Glen Rose ISD purchased an unused storefront next to Brookshire’s on US Hwy. 67. The building will be used to create a technology and training center for teachers.

“We knew we had to make some progress in this area,” Rotan said.

Bids will be brought to the Board of Trustees in July and Rotan said he hopes to have the center completed by February.

Rotan said funding for the projects has been possible through the proceeds from the 1997 bond election. He said the Texas Education Agency ranked Glen Rose as the 6th lowest combined tax rate in Texas.

“Glen Rose ISD has had a very successful school year in academics and athletics,” Rotan said. “But the one thing that continues to set us apart from all other school districts is our support from the community.”