PILOT POINT — The Pilot Point school board officially hired Byron Terrier of Goose Creek Consolidated Independent School District as the district’s new superintendent Wednesday.
Terrier’s first day on the job will be May 20.
In another action Wednesday, board members voted 5-0 to reassign current Superintendent Glenn Barber to associate superintendent, effective May 20. Barber will hold the post until his retirement, Aug. 30, and there will be no reduction in his salary as a result of the change, according to a copy of the amended contract.
Board President Melinda Street said the action allows for a smooth transition in which Barber will be available should any questions arise as Terrier becomes familiar with the district.
“We wanted to have [Terrier] available to work with the staff this year and become familiar with the staff before the beginning of the next school year,” Street said. “He’ll be here to work with us on our budget, our staffing and planning for next school year.”
In a 5-0 vote Wednesday, school board members extended a three-year contract to Terrier. The act was met with applause from those who attended the meeting. Terrier attended the meeting with his wife and one of two daughters.
Following the meeting, district staff and board members took time to welcome Terrier and his family to the district, and the family was presented with welcome bags from the Pilot Point Chamber of Commerce.
According to Terrier’s contract, he will receive an annual salary of $138,000, distributed in installments, and an $8,000 relocation payment to be paid May 24. Under the contract, the district agrees to “pay for reasonable expenses,” including attendance membership fees and dues for professional and civic organizations at the local, state and national levels, and it agrees to pay or reimburse the superintendent for expenses related to district business including gas, hotel and accommodations, meals, rental car and airfare.
Terrier, 43, said he’s excited to join Pilot Point.
“The community and the board have been wonderful as far as making me feel welcome and a part of the team,” he said Wednesday. “I look forward to joining a very good district and working with the team to make it an exemplary district.”
Once in the superintendent role, he said, he intends to look at all district programs. One thing he said he’s experienced in the districts he’s worked for is taking career and technology education programs “to the next level,” and that in Pilot Point, he would like to work with area colleges, universities and businesses to provide more certifications for students.
“Basically, we want to have four exemplary campuses, an exemplary district,” he said. “In all programs, we want to be exemplary in all areas. We don’t want to set goals to be mediocre or acceptable but exemplary.
“When students graduate from Pilot Point ISD, we want to equip them to be able to make the decision to go into [a] college/university or the workforce.”
Terrier said it’s important to prepare district staff for the potential influx of students and potential changes in demographics Pilot Point could face. The district needs to develop a long-range facilities plan and demographics studies to determine the growth changes the district could face, and administrators have to be prepared for those changes, he said.
Terrier currently serves as deputy superintendent of administrative services with Goose Creek Consolidated, a district of nearly 22,000 students in Baytown.
While at Goose Creek Consolidated the past four years, Terrier said, he experienced a growing district. Goose Creek has grown by more than 5,000 students in the past eight to 10 years, he said. Terrier has led the facilities committee in developing a bond proposition that goes to voters on Saturday in which Goose Creek will ask residents to approve a bond package of more than $267.5 million for school district improvements, and he’s also helped the district through multiple rezoning projects, he said.
Salvador Cavazos, who’s served one academic year as Goose Creek superintendent, said Terrier is a “collaborative leader” who works well at bringing people together. He said Terrier is a part of the district’s executive team that has worked toward Goose Creek’s vision of becoming an exemplary district. Cavazos said he’s confident Terrier will be a “great addition” to Pilot Point.
“He’s demonstrated a strong work ethic, integrity and has a strong belief in the impact that public education has on today’s youth,” Cavazos said of Terrier. “I think he’s going to do a great job as superintendent. I wish him the best.”
Throughout his 20-year career, he’s served as superintendent with the Buna school district, an assistant superintendent, high school, junior high and elementary principal, athletic director and a high school science teacher. Terrier earned his bachelor’s degree in kinesiology, a master’s in education administration, a superintendent certification and a doctorate in educational leadership, all from Lamar University in Beaumont.
He said he has first-hand experience in all levels of education and he believes the district can look at every department and determine ways for moving it to the next level.
Coming from a coaching background, Terrier said he relies on the team-building skills he acquired.
“Everything is about building a team and getting buy-in from stakeholders,” he said.
The incoming superintendent said he intends to involve district stakeholders in the decision-making process.
“When they have a say in the goals, the goals are a lot more easier to achieve,” he said.
Terrier said he intends to move to the Pilot Point area next week, and his family will join him once their house is sold in the Houston area.
Street said she looks forward to Terrier joining the district.
“We’re very privileged to have Dr. Terrier as our new superintendent, and we’re excited and looking forward to working with him,” she said.
Under the amendment to Barber’s contract, he will continue to receive his salary and benefits until Aug. 30. All terms of the original contract and amendments will remain in effect and in full force, according to the amendment. The contract amendment states that Barber voluntarily agrees and the school board consents for Barber to use all accrued leave, and once his leave has been exhausted, he will take a board-approved leave with pay until his retirement. As part of the contract amendment, Barber has agreed to assist the Pilot Point with district matters until the time of his retirement, Aug. 30.
BRITNEY TABOR can be reached at 940-566-7676 and via Twitter at @BritneyTabor.