LA MARQUE — The La Marque board of trustees gave their final approval to the hiring of Terri Watkins as the district’s new superintendent, and set her salary at $135,000 a year, Monday night.
The trustees unanimously approved hiring Watkins and her contract at their meeting in the high school auditorium.
Watkins is coming to a La Marque district that is struggling financially, academically and continues to deal with plummeting enrollment.
But Watkins said the district is solvent and will follow its financial plan while making improvements academically. Both of those areas are key to retaining and recruiting more students to the district, she said.
“When people see their children being successful, when they see these test scores exceeding the standard, that’s what makes people sit up and say I think I want my child to be a part of this,” Watkins said.
Watkins also announced that she was organizing a committee to help recruit families and students back to the district.
Elected officials, business community representatives and ministers all welcomed and showed their support for the new La Marque school district superintended at a reception before the regular meeting.
La Marque Mayor Bobby Hocking said he was quick to call Watkins and congratulate her when she was named the finalist and that he had high hopes for her.
“I think the board made an excellent choice,” he said.
Texas City Commissioner Thelma Bowie, the Rev. D.N. Benford, the Rev. James Daniels and Texas City-La Marque Chamber of Commerce President Jimmy Hayley joined Hocking in showing their support for Watkins at the reception.
Hayley said it was important to get the district back on the right track and that Watkins would need the support of the community.
“Have patience with Terri and give her your support,” Hayley said.