A new 71-passenger school bus was approved Monday night in a 6-0 vote by the Louise ISD school board to be purchased at an estimated cost of $96,000.

Currently, Louise ISD is borrowing one school bus from El Campo ISD, as the district’s school buses are worn down. Only one of the current Louise ISD buses has working air conditioning.

Louise ISD officials try to replace one of the out-of-date buses with a new one every two years. The bus that gets replaced will be either the oldest one or the one with the most mileage or wear-and-tear, Superintendent Garth Oliver said.

The board elected to purchase an SUV or van to be used for faculty and staff transportation for $38,000 and $41,000.

He looked around at many vehicles before presenting a 2018 model for the board to examine, Oliver said.

Four board members approved the motion, while two dissented, one of whom was Board President Linda Alderson.

She didn’t want to spend that amount of money on a vehicle that’s not for student use.

Louise community members are invited to attend a meeting for Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events (CRASE) at Edna High School 6 to 8 p.m. on Oct 28.

The annual flu vaccine clinic, which will be held on-site at Louise ISD this week, offers vaccines for students at $10, and at no cost to faculty. Parents with Medicaid can be vaccinated at the clinic.

Regarding travel for school clubs or organizations, Louise ISD does not have a policy in place defining a school-sponsored off-campus trip.

The board broached this topic Monday night, working to draft criteria.

During the last few years, Louise ISD organizations traveled to Florida, London, Washington D.C., and other cities for UIL competitions and non-competitive related events.

By labeling a trip as school-sponsored, the district assumes potential liability. Factors such as student safety, and representation of Louise ISD were discussed.

As the only 2A school district in the area to do out-of-state travel this frequently, Louise ISD lacks examples from other districts to look to when crafting a travel policy, Alderson said.

“This is a good problem to have,” Oliver said.

Board member Jay Heard suggested if the district furnishes funds or transportation for the trip, the event should qualify as school sponsored.

The board decided not to vote on the topic and to continue the discussion in November.

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