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Meet Your Social Workers

TINA FLEET, LMSW - Lead School Social Worker

Hello! I am Tina Fleet, Lead Social Worker for AISD Student and Family Support Services. It is a privilege to serve students, families and school personnel as we navigate the academic environment together.

I obtained my education from Abilene Christian University with a bachelor’s degree in Human and Professional Administration (2011) and a master’s degree in Social Work (2017). I worked 16 years in higher education serving students from diverse backgrounds, including students who are first-generation, economically disadvantaged and have learning or physical differences.

My passion is to help students achieve their personal best in all areas of life. I believe students can reach their greatest potential when we work together to identify individual strategies and resources to address barriers that impact social and academic outcomes.

As the Lead Social Worker, I serve students at Ward Elementary school. In conjunction with our social workers, we serve students at the middle and high schools based on the elementary feeder schools so that one social worker is coordinating services for siblings in the same family unit. I look forward to knowing you and your student.

ALICE DELAGARZA, LMSW - School Social Worker

Hi! I’m Alice DeLaGarza and I am excited to serve the students and families as a Social Worker for Abilene ISD. I graduated from McMurry University with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Sociology in 2009. I earned my master’s degree in Social Work from Abilene Christian University in 2014.

My passion is helping children heal after experiencing trauma. Before joining AISD, I was the Program Director for the STAR Program at New Horizons where we served children and families by providing counseling and skills training. I hope to continue to make a difference in the lives of children and their families by meeting them where they are and helping them to grow and overcome the obstacles they are facing.

I serve Reagan and Taylor Elementary schools. As a program, we serve students at the middle and high schools based on the elementary feeder schools so that one social worker is coordinating services for siblings in the same family unit.

During my down time and to practice self-care, I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, and gardening. My husband and I enjoy traveling and camping with our children and friends.

DIANA HALL, LMSW - School Social Worker

My name is Diana Hall and I am excited to serve as a School Social Worker for AISD. I graduated from Hardin-Simmons University with a bachelor’s degree in Social Work (2017) and the University of Texas at Arlington with a master’s degree in Social Work (2018). Before going to school, I served 20 years in the Air Force, retiring as a Master Sergeant from Dyess AFB in 2013.

My passion is curtailing the school-to-prison pipeline and promoting restorative education. I was fortunate enough to intern at the Jefferson Center Disciplinary Alternative Education Program, promoting restorative practices.

It is an honor to be part of a team that helps students realize their potential. This includes supporting parents, school staff, and community agencies who champion for the success of our students.

I serve Lee and Johnston Elementary schools. As a program, we serve students at the middle and high schools based on the elementary feeder schools so that one social worker is coordinating services for siblings in the same family unit. I look forward to serving you and your family.

SONJA BESSENT, LMSW - School Social Worker

Hello! I am Sonja Bessent and I am excited to serve students and families as a School Social Worker for AISD. I have a bachelor’s degree in social work from Hardin-Simmons University and Masters in Social Work from University of Texas at Arlington.

I have lived in Abilene for 21 years and have four children who attend elementary, middle school and high school in AISD! I am a big fan and supporter of Abilene schools and am honored to have the opportunity to serve in AISD!

I have worked with children for many years and love getting to be a part of watching a child learn, grow and succeed! I believe that every child has hope, possibility and deserves a chance to experience the best education possible. I also love to work with families and help provide them with the tools they need to support and help their children succeed!

I serve Austin and Bowie Elementary schools. As a program, we serve students at the middle and high schools based on the elementary feeder schools so that one social worker is coordinating services for siblings in the same family unit.

I am looking forward to a great year with AISD!

SARA REILING, LMSW - School Social Worker

My name is Sara Reiling and I am a Licensed Master Social Worker. I received my Bachelor’s in Social Work from Tarleton State University (GO TEXANS!) in 2014. I then received my Master’s in Social Work specializing in Children and Families Studies from The University of Texas at Arlington in 2018 and received my license in 2019. Previously, I worked for The Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) in Abilene for 6 years in a variety of roles. With that, my passion is to identify needs and proactively serve our children and families in a positive way to prevent future involvement with DFPS.

I serve Bassetti, Dyess, and Thomas Elementary Schools. As a program, we serve students at the middle and high schools based on the elementary feeder schools so that one social worker is coordinating services for siblings in the same family unit.

I have a passion for serving the children and families of Taylor County and am excited to do so through my role at AISD. Some fun things about me is that I love my pets (2 dogs, 2 cats and a horse)! My favorite things to do are go horseback riding and binge Netflix.

EMILY GURLEY, LMSW - School Social Worker

Greetings! I am Emily Gurley, School Social Worker for AISD. I earned my Bachelor of Social Work degree from Hardin-Simmons University in 2018 and my Master of Social Work degree from Baylor University in 2019.

As an individual passionate about education, I am honored to partner with students and families in AISD. My focus and commitment is to support students to achieve their personal, social, and academic goals. My professional background has centered around connecting community resources dedicated to serve individuals in substance abuse recovery.

As human beings we all undergo hardships that make life difficult. My hope is that the Student and Family Support Services team will bring help and support to families by connecting them to resources and services within the school district and Abilene community.

I serve Bonham and Jackson Elementary Schools. As a program, we serve students at the middle and high school levels based on their elementary feeder schools. The goal of this strategy is to keep one social worker with a family unit throughout their education in the district. I look forward to serving you and your family.

I am proud to be in Abilene ISD!