Thanks for a firm foundation

Published 3:11 pm Thursday, January 23, 2020

Dr. Rickie R. Harris

Monday night was an opportunity for the district to appreciate an important group of leaders. 

The Board of Trustees for the West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District provides a firm foundation for our district to build upon. Our board illustrates with their decisions that we should always keep students at the forefront of everything we do. By doing so, we stay focused on the well-being of the students of West Orange-Cove CISD. There are many things that are distractions of that focus: budget issues, state laws, state testing, marketing, etc. However, they remain steadfast on the success of our students. This is proven in their desire to be an informed, involved, and innovative board. 

Our board continually strives to be an informed board, and they do so by attending training sessions throughout the year. Many of these trainings take them away from their families for days at a time, not to mention the numerous board meetings and trainings that are conducted within the district. Many people may not be aware of the hours of training that are required by board members after each Texas legislative session. 

Not only are our board members informed, but they are extremely involved. It is a normal occurrence to see our board members at events. For example, some of our board members will spend all day Friday on a campus to join in the activities. There are certain times of the year when there are events occurring nightly on different campuses, and many of our board members will attend them all. Additionally, our board members serve on committees that are extremely time-consuming. Strategic planning, bond committee, facilities committee, scholarship selection committees and Youth Leadership Southeast Texas selections committee are examples of their involvement. 

Lastly, WOCCISD board of trustees leads with innovative thinking. They are constantly exploring new, more effective ways of accomplishing goals. Our board encourages outside of the box thinking as long as it is in best interest of students. This was proven by the approval of millions of dollars to purchase interactive boards for teachers, placing chrome books in every classroom, and the construction of a theater room at West Orange Middle school so teachers can combine classes to view instructional movies in a comfortable setting. 

I am proud to be a part of a team that is led by a group of individuals that provide a firm foundation to build upon. Yes, January is board appreciation month. However, these selfless, dedicated individuals should be celebrated every day. 

We believe in John Maxwell’s philosophy that “One is too small a number to achieve greatness.”

Go Mustangs! 


Dr. Rickie R. Harris is the Superintendent at West Orange – Cove CISD