While campuses and departments within a school district are the ones who decide their individual purchasing needs, ensuring that the proper procedures and guidelines are lawfully followed is the responsibility of the Purchasing Department. At La Joya ISD, the Purchasing & Warehouse Operations Department has demonstrated their commitment in following exceptional professional procurement standards, compliant with stringent regulations set by state and federal government agencies.

To support this reputation, La Joya ISD received the 2017 Purchasing Award of Merit (AOM) by the Texas Association of School Business Officials (TASBO). In determining this award, TASBO reviewed various procedures and practices such as organization, contract operations, staff training and certification, use of technology, communication, and warehousing – and La Joya ISD was the ONLY school district in Region 1, and one of 27 in the state, receiving this award. La Joya ISD, as a recipient of this award, is proud to exhibit to the community, its diligence to financial responsibility.

“The staff is committed to providing high quality service in facilitating the procurement function to support student achievement – and we operate by this standard on a daily basis,” said Sylvia G. Zapata, La Joya ISD Director of Purchasing and Warehouse Operations. “It is our goal to secure the goods and services necessary to enhance the educational process in accordance with all laws, policies and procedures established by the Federal Government, the state of Texas, and our school district,” Zapata added.

Additionally, once again La Joya ISD is the recipient of this year’s 2017 Achievement of Excellence in Procurement (AEP) Award, granted by the National Procurement Institute (NPI). This honor “recognizes organizational excellence in public and non-profit procurement. The award criteria are designed to measure innovation, professionalism, e-procurement, productivity, and leadership attributes of the procurement function.”- NPI

La Joya ISD is one of only 50 agencies in Texas, and one of only 26 school districts in the US and Canada, to receive this award – for the fourth consecutive year!

Recently, the Purchasing Department conducted a Vendor Training Session titled “How to do Business with La Joya ISD” where over 56 vendors attended to review the district’s procurement guidelines and requirements, as well as learn the district’s e-Bidding system.

“This was an invaluable training opportunity for the vendor community as the content presented, detailed various essential topics, including: the vendor registration process, bid participation, contract award, contract management, as well as state and federal procurement laws, local policy and administrative procedures,” stated Ms. Zapata. “Participants were provided with useful resources, including a Vendor’s Registration Guide and a “Doing Business with La Joya ISD” handout. These materials are also available on our Purchasing Department’s web page at www.lajoyaisd.com/purchasing.”

Whether it’s earning accolades, or providing essential information to the vendor community, the Purchasing & Warehouse Operations Department at La Joya ISD is definitely doing things right and are a clear example for many school districts to follow.