Nevada Ed-Watch

The Ed-Watch series is designed to increase access to information on what decisions
are being made regarding public education in Clark County and Nevada.

Washoe County School District Board of Trustees

What is the Board of Trustees & what are they responsible for? The Washoe County School District Board of Trustees are publicly elected decision-makers for the school district. They are responsible for providing oversight to the Superintendent and establishing District-wide policy. Trustees are accountable to work with their communities to improve student achievement.

Click here to learn more and see a list of current Trustees.

How often does the Board of Trustees meet? Trustees meet twice per month (second and fourth Tuesdays) at 2 pm both virtually and at the Central Administration Building Board Room, 425 E. 9th St., Reno, NV 89512.

Click here for a full list of Trustees meetings.

Can community members engage at Trustee meetings? Decision-making bodies benefit greatly from hearing public input and multiple perspectives. Currently, members of the public can submit comments on agenda and non-agenda items through email or voice recording. Public comment can be provided in person or via email. Email comments should be submitted to



Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Washoe County School District Board of Trustees Meeting

Click here to see the meeting agenda.
Watch the meeting playback.


What happened at this meeting?

Trustees Approved the Consent Agenda

Consent agenda highlights include:

Explore the consent agenda here.

Trustees Conducted a Public Hearing on and Approved the Fiscal Year 2024-25 Budget

Staff presented on the final budget, which must be sent to the Department of Taxation by June 8. Changes since the approval of the tentative budget include a decreased to an assumed rate increase for health insurance, a decrease to revenue for special education, the cost of Gerlach housing, providing for one month of universal free meals to ease the transition to paid meals for the 2024-25 school year, and a slight change to budgeted debt service.

Highlights from the budget include additional supports for high-needs schools, supports for academic achievement, expanded Pre-K opportunities, supporting student engagement, and new positions added.

Personnel investments include cost-of-living adjustments; continuation of SB 231 salary matches; step increases, continuation of cash-out of vacation leave, and longevity pay; and a 2.57% health insurance rate increase.

Capital investments include facility modernization of several campuses, including Stead Elementary School, Loder Elementary School, Palmer Elementary School, Mathews Elementary School, Maxwell Elementary School, Debbie Smith CTE High School, and Vaughn Middle School; $50 million in capital renewal projects; and funding for the IT device refresh program.

Explore  the budget presentation.

Trustees Proclaimed May 2024 as Mental Health Awareness Month in the District

Trustees proclaimed May 2024 as Mental Health Awareness Month for the District, encouraging all members of the community to support the mental health needs of youth and staff.

Explore the presentation.

Trustees Heard an Update from the Nevada Association of School Boards

Trustees received an update from Nevada Association of School Boards on the organization and asked for feedback regarding how they can effectively serve school boards in Nevada. Trustees mentioned additional training opportunities in more diverse geographies, legislative advocacy efforts, and priorities ahead of the 2025 legislative session. NASB identified several priorities, including funding, infrastructure, safety, school board composition, and free and reduced meal programs.

Trustees discussed national policy priorities and alignment with District needs, as well as affecting change on a national level and its impact on Nevada policies.

Review supplemental material provided by Trustee Church.

Trustees Heard Updates from Community Partner Organizations

Staff highlighted several partnerships with community organizations:

  • Children’s Cabinet – Providing suicide prevention and SOS screening services since 2018-19
  • Communities in Schools of Western Nevada – Providing an integrated students support model that includes focusing on attendance, student performance, behavior, and social-emotional learning, now offered at 15+ schools
  • Dean’s Future Scholars – Empowering students who are first-generation to graduate high school and achieve higher education with programs beginning in sixth grade

Explore the presentation.

Trustees Received a Presentation to Introduce the New Logo and Mascot for the Cold Springs Early Childhood Center

Cold Springs Early Childhood Center will open in August 2024 and will have nine classrooms to accommodate up to 100 three and four-year olds. The logo and mascot were debuted at the meeting, staying in the same color palette and imagery as Cold Springs Middle School. The mascot will be the Cold Springs Cubs.

Review the presentation.

Trustees Received a Presentation to Introduce the New Logo and Mascot for Debbie Smith Career and Technical Education Academy High School

In January 2024, a committee formed to guide the logo and mascot selection process. A survey on four mascot options was sent to the committee, as well as students and families scheduled to attend the school in August 2025. The winning mascot was the Mavericks.

In April and May, ten logo concepts were created, with the stakeholder group reviewing and revising the concepts. The stakeholder group selected the final logo.

Review the presentation.

Trustees Entered into a Written Employment Agreement Between WCSD and Joseph Ernst

Trustees approved entering into a written employment agreement between the District and new Superintendent Joseph Ernst, to begin July 8, 2024.

Review the employment agreement.

Student Representative’s Report

Report highlights included:

  • Recapping the Student Voice conference held on May 17, noting the productive and collaborative discussion regarding student issues and supporting chapters at different schools
  • Gratitude to Trustees during her tenure as Student Representative

Trustee Reports

Report highlights included:

  • Attending various school events and activities
  • Family recognition and celebrations
  • Looking forward to graduation events
  • Reminder about the primary election and early voting
  • Student success stories
  • Planning for governance training
  • Goal setting and contract negotiations for the new Superintendent

Interim Superintendent’s Report

Report highlights included:

  • Attending the EDAWN board meeting
  • Attending the Student Voice conference
  • Participating in various staff and student development activities and events

Public Comment

  • Public records requests
  • Concerns regarding student data 

The next Meeting of the Board of Trustees is scheduled for June 11, 2024, at 2:00 p.m.

Sign up to receive a notification when a new Ed-Watch post is published