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Posted August 29, 2013
The White House Comes to Brownsville
The White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics (WHIEEH) and the Brownsville Independent School District (ISD) will hold a Roundtable on Hispanic Educational Achievement with Brownsville ISD Superintendent of Schools Dr. Carl Montoya, WHIEEH Executive Director Alejandra Ceja, and other key leaders at 12:30-1:30 pm, Wednesday, September 4th, at Daniel Breeden Elementary School in Brownsville, Texas. This event is part of the WHIEEH 2013 Back-to-school Texas Tour. The tour is making nine stops throughout South and West Texas to engage community leaders in discussions about education and Hispanics. With over 54 million people, Hispanics are the largest minority group in the nation, and one of the youngest populations. It is clear that America's economic success is inextricably linked with the success of the Hispanic community. We must expand opportunities and improve outcomes for Hispanic students to meet President Obama's education goals - to have the best-educated, most competitive workforce in the world. At the roundtable, you will hear about the President’s education agenda – particularly in Hispanic educational achievement, and also be asked to share your insights about successful efforts in your community and issues of concern to inform education policy-making in Washington. View the media release.

Reporting Allegations of Bullying
Brownsville ISD prohibits bullying on school property, at school-sponsored or school-related activities, or in any vehicle operated by the district. Bullying may be verbal or written expression or expression through electronic means, or physical conduct. Bullying is not tolerated by the district and any student or parent of a student who believes that the student or another student has experienced bullying or that a student has engaged in bullying is encouraged to immediately report the incident. Retaliation against anyone involved in the complaint process is a violation of district policy and is prohibited. Students or parents may report an alleged incident of bullying, orally or in writing, to a teacher, counselor, principal or other district employee. Students or parents may contact the district to obtain an incident report form that may be used to submit the complaint. Please note that after submission of the complaint to the district employee, the district may assign the complaint to a campus administrator to follow up on the submitted complaint and any other important matters pertaining to the complaint. We encourage you to communicate with your designated campus administrator during this time. More information about the district’s bullying policy can be found at http://pol.tasb.org/Policy/ of the campus administration office.

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Posted August 28, 2013
State Award for BISD Volunteer
Eloisa Mireles, a parent volunteer at Burns Elementary and Vela Middle School, has been selected for recognition as a Hero for Children by the State Board of Education (SBOE). Ms. Mireles, who has volunteered in BISD for over 20 years, is one of 15 volunteers who will be honored at the SBOE meeting on Friday, September 20 in Austin, Texas. She will receive a certificate and resolution. Mireles began volunteering while her children attended school and continued after they left. She has served on numerous district and campus committees, assisted as an office receptionist, prepared materials for teachers, recruited new families/volunteers, and performed many other duties that benefit students. Her contagious enthusiasm, responsible attitude, friendly demeanor, and professional manner have made Eloisa Mireles a role model for all volunteers. Congratulations to her and our many other BISD parents who generously donate their time each year.

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Posted August 27, 2013
BISD Open for Labor Day
All BISD campuses and offices will be OPEN on Monday, September 2, Labor Day.

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Posted August 15, 2013
Making History
The South Texas Cubs, composed of several BISD elementary students, diligently worked their way through a series of tournaments to compete at the Pony South Zone World Series in Schertz, Texas on July 24-27. The Cubs won first place and finished with a 32-0 winning record in the Shetland (Tball) Division making Brownsville history by earning two titles. Congratulations to these fine young athletes.


Incentive Pay for Classified Personnel with Degrees
On June 18, the Brownsville ISD Board of Trustees approved an incentive of $200.00 for classified employees who have an Associate’s Degree and $250.00 for classified employees with a Bachelor’s Degree. The incentives will be paid in two increments, December and May. Eligible classified employees may apply for the incentive pay by submitting a completed Salary Credit Enrollment form with an official transcript including degree notation to the Human Resources Department by Monday, September 30 at 5 pm. The Salary Credit Enrollment forms may be picked up in the Human Resources Department.

Brownsville Baseball News
The Brownsville All-Star Team, composed of several BISD students , is competing at the Pony League World Series in Washington, Pennsylvania. View the story.

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Posted August 13, 2013
3 Top State Awards for 21st CCLC
Brownsville ISD’s 21st Century Community Learning Center Program (21st CCLC) was awarded 3 of 5 of the most prestigious awards in the State of Texas at the 3rd Annual Afterschool Centers on Education (ACE) Awards Ceremony held in Austin on August 8, 2013. First and foremost, the program was selected by the Texas Education Agency to receive the 2013 PRIME Award which recognizes the top ACE school districts in the state for their efforts to align their strategies and activities with the Texas ACE PRIME Blueprint. Additionally, the district’s 21st CCLC Program, Cycle 7, received the state’s 2013 Most Innovative Family Engagement Activity Award for the Boys’ and Girls’ Leadership Symposium which were held in Brownsville in Spring 2013. Lastly, Dr. Sylvia P. Atkinson, the Assistant Superintendent for Support Services who oversees this program, received 2013 recognition as the Top Administrator in Texas for her support and leadership of the district’s 21st CCLC Program, Cycle 6. Over the past 5 years, BISD has received almost $20 million in 21st CCLC grants to create and expand out-of-school-time programs. The 21st CCLC program serves approximately 4,437 BISD students at 37 campuses.

11 Schools Earn State’s Highest Honors
A total of 11 BISD campuses that recently achieved the Met Standard rating in the new state accountability system also earned a triple distinction designation in 3 potential areas: top 25 percent student progress, academic achievement in reading/english language arts, and academic achievement in mathematics. Only 759 schools out of 3,600 across Texas that Met Standard earned this designation. The BISD schools are:

Brownsville Early College High School
Resaca Elementary School
Faulk Middle School
Sharp Elementary School
Stillman Middle School
Victoria Heights Elementary School
Ortiz Middle School
Vermillion Elementary School
Paredes Elementary School
Yturria Elementary School
Pullam Elementary School

BISD’s number of triple designation campuses places it at the top of the Rio Grande Valley. Brownsville ranks higher than several large Texas school districts including Alief (9), Corpus Christi (5), El Paso (8), Fort Worth (7), Northside (10), San Antonio (8), and Ysleta (10). Brownsville tied with Austin ISD at 11 campuses. Congratulations to the students, parents and employees at these 11 schools. View the list of all 759 Texas schools.

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Posted August 8, 2013
54 BISD Schools Earn Top Rating
The Texas Education Agency (TEA) officially released the 2013 state accountability ratings today bringing good news for 54 BISD schools. This is the first year that the state is using its new, performance index-based approach to academic accountability. The 2013 ratings generally apply one of two labels to district and campus performance, “Met Standard” or “Improvement Required.”

All BISD campuses, with one exception, earned the higher “Met Standard” rating by meeting three applicable index targets at the elementary and middle school levels and four targets at the high school level. Brownsville ISD earned a district designation of “Met Standard” by meeting index targets in all four areas. The four index targets are: Index 1-Student Achievement, Index 2-Student Progress, Index 3-Closing Performance Gaps, and Index 4-Postsecondary Readiness. Porter High School missed the Index 2-Student Performance target earning the campus a “Improvement Required” performance rating.

“We have worked hard to make the transition to this new system. These ratings indicate that we are on the right track. We will use this performance data to continue to make improvements in our system,” stated Superintendent Dr. Carl A. Montoya. “We are dedicated to one goal, improving student academic performance and preparing students to be college and career-ready.”
View the entire release. | View the campus ratings.

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Posted August 7, 2013
Trustee Resignation
With regret, the Brownsville ISD Board of Trustees accepted the resignation of Dr. Christina L. Saavedra, Board Assistant Secretary, at the August 6 regularly scheduled meeting. Saavedra has assumed a full-time principal position at St. Margaret Mary Catholic School in San Antonio for the 2013-2014 academic year. “Dr. Saavedra has been an invaluable school board trustee. We have all benefitted from her extensive knowledge and expertise in education, especially in the area of curriculum and instruction. Her positive attitude and wise counsel will certainly be missed by everyone in our district. We know that she will be extremely successful in her new position,” said Superintendent Dr. Carl A. Montoya. In other action, the Board approved Cesar Lopez to serve the remainder of Saavedra’s term which expires in November of 2014. Lopez is currently employed as the Mercedes ISD purchasing agent. He is a former BISD employee having served as a bid control accountant in the Purchasing Department for 3 years.


Back to Back Presidents
A Veterans Memorial High School student, Crystal Sandoval, has made history by recently being elected as the national SkillsUSA President. Sandoval replaces Sergio Cavazos, another Veterans Memorial student, who was elected SkillsUSA President last year. Never before has this organization had “back to back” presidents from the same state, school district and high school. SkillsUSA is the largest student organization in the country with over 330,000 members. SkillsUSA’s mission is to help its members become world-class workers, leaders and citizens. The Veterans Memorial program advisor is Joe Valdez.

Texas Tax Free Weekend
Tax Free Weekend in Texas is scheduled one week earlier this year on August 9-11. Check out the details and fine print here.

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Posted August 6, 2013
Early College Expansion
Brownsville ISD will significantly expand early college opportunities to 9 secondary campuses this year thanks to a multi-million dollar Investing in Innovation (i3) Grant. The grant will fund an Early College Expansion Partnership (ECEP) with Educate Texas and Jobs for the Future. This partnership will prepare thousands of students at Hanna, Pace and Rivera High Schools and Garcia, Manzano, Oliveira, Perkins, Stell and Vela Middle Schools for college and career success over the next 5 years. To learn more about this bold and effective new program which begins Monday, August 26, contact Dina Chavez, ECEP (i3) Curriculum Specialist, at (956) 698-2123 or email dachavez@bisd.us.

Great News!
All Career and Technical Education students who registered for the Pharmacy Technician National Certification Test passed and are now certified technicians. Congratulations to:

Hanna High School Students:
Nancy Aldape, Angelica Alston, Harold Averill, Jorge Blanco, Ricardo Camargo, Catherine Diaz, Joe Espinoza, Heather Glover, Miguel Hernandez, Amanda Ibarra, Jonathan Inskeep, Martin Ramirez, Mario Rivera, Luis Stinson, Jose Suarez, Sabrina Vasquez, Alexis Longoria, Bryan Martinez, Ozkar Michi, David Ramirez, Kristian Zamora, Jasmin Santibanez

Porter High School Students:
Fabi Flores, Daniel Hernandez, Maria Moreno, Priscilla Rodriguez, Martha Villalpando

Pace High School Students:
Jacqueline Montiel

Lopez High School Students:
Cynthia Cardenas, Diana Cardona, Selena Garza, Queana Ibarra, Karina Rodriguez

Rivera High School Students:
Ariaza Alonso, Gonzalo Barrera, Adriana Contreras, Alan Cooper, Andrea Mireles, Elizabeth Sosa

Veterans Memorial High School Students:
Dora Loera, Ashley Ruiz, Karen Vasquez

Brownsville ISD is very proud of these students and their teachers on this outstanding achievement.

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