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National Foundation Awards Grant to Stell
Stell Middle School will soon receive new musical instruments valued at $32,625 thanks to The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation. An application for support was submitted by Stell and the foundation found the program to be a worthwhile investment, allowing more students to be able to play and experience the benefits of music education. With many school music programs across the country losing vital funding, the foundation helps under-served schools with minimal budgets by donating new instruments, often replacing some that are more than 30 years old. The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation donates musical instruments to under-funded schools in an effort to give youngsters the many benefits of music education, help them to be better students, and inspire creativity and expression through playing music. The organization was inspired by the 1995 motion picture Mr. Holland’s Opus and founded by Michael Kamen, who composed the music for the movie and countless others. In the last 20 years, over 20,000 instruments have been donated to 1,415 schools across the country.

National Bus Awards for Two BISD Students
Two BISD students earned recognition in the 2016 National School Bus Safety Week Poster Contest. Congratulations to Zeus Serrano, Skinner Elementary, 1st Grade, Division I-Second Place, and Luis Rivera, Perkins Middle School, 6th Grade, Division IV – Third Place. This is the first time in several years that a BISD student has won nationally in this poster contest which is sponsored by the National Association for Pupil Transportation. This year’s winning posters will be used to promote the 2017 National School Bus Safety Week.

New Officers
At the BISD Rescheduled Regular Board Meeting held on Friday, November 18, the Board of Trustees elected a new slate of officers. They are: Cesar Lopez, President; Carlos A. Elizondo, Vice-President; Joe A. Rodriguez, Secretary; and Laura Perez-Reyes, Assistant Secretary. The Members are: Philip T. Cowen, Minerva M. Pena and Dr. Sylvia Perez Atkinson.

Notice of Public Hearing
The Brownsville Independent School District will hold a public meeting on Tuesday, December 13 at 5:30 pm in the Administration Building Board Room located at 1900 Price Road. The purpose of this meeting is to discuss BISD’s rating on the State’s Financial Accountability System.

United Way Thank You
BISD employees generously donated $280,108.05 to the 2016 Southern Cameron County United Way Campaign. Campus and department employees contributed so that the United Way can continue providing services to local families in need. Thank you to our BISD families for supporting our community.

BISD Singers Post Top Results
BISD Early College High Schools placed 51 singers or 64% of the entire group in the Region Choir at the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) Region and Pre-Area Auditions held on Saturday, November 5 at Cano Freshman Academy in Harlingen. A total of 29 BISD singers or 73% of the group were selected to advance. These students will compete in January at Rockport-Fulton High School in the final round of the TMEA All-State process. The students who placed as First Chairs in the Region Choir are: Rebekah Modesto, Soprano 2, Hanna ECHS; Emily Guerrero, Alto 2, Veterans Memorial ECHS; David Mejia, Tenor 1, Hanna ECHS; Daniel Ledesma, Tenor 2, Hanna ECHS; Janson Guillen, Bass 1, Veterans Memorial ECHS; and Gustavo Castillo, Bass 2, Pace ECHS. First Chairs for Pre-Area are: Emily Saldivar, Alto 2, Pace ECHS; David Mejia, Tenor 1, Hanna ECHS; Daniel Ledesma, Tenor 2, Hanna ECHS, Janson Guillen, Bass 1, Veterans Memorial ECHS; and Alejandro Cisneros, Bass 2, Veterans Memorial ECHS. Congratulations to all BISD participants and their directors. View the results by campus.

Get Your Santa & Friends Tickets
The BISD Department of Fine Arts will present its annual Santa & Friends Program on November 30-December 2 at the Central Administrative Building (CAB) Theatre. This year marks a decade for this holiday children’s extravaganza. Tickets are $7 cash only, children 2 and under are free. There is a limit of 9 tickets per person. Tickets must be purchased at the Fine Arts Department located at 708 Palm Boulevard. Call 982-3730 for more information.

Honoring Service Men and Women, Past and Present
Brownsville ISD sincerely thanks all the men and women who have served in the United States Armed Services as well as those who are serving today for their bravery, hard work and dedication to our country. All BISD campuses and offices will be closed on Friday, November 11 in honor of Veterans Day. Regular district operation will resume on Monday, November 14, 2016.e

Two BISD Schools Earn TEA Recognition
The Texas Education Agency (TEA) has identified 2 BISD elementary campuses, Castañeda and Longoria, in a group of 300 campuses across the state as high-performing and/or high progress Title I schools for 2015-2016. Title I Schools are defined as campuses with a student population of at least 40% low-income. The identification of high-performing and/or high progress is based on statewide reading and mathematics assessments under the State Accountability System in the 2014-2015 school year and graduation rates. A high-performing reward school is identified as a Title I School with distinctions based on reading and math performance, as well as the highest graduation rates at the high school level. Brownsville ISD was included on a prestigious list of school districts with more than one campus identified as high-performing and high-progress. Congratulations to Castañeda and Longoria Elementary on earning this outstanding recognition. View the TEA media release.

BISD to Host Second Farmer’s Market for Students
To educate students about nutritious, locally grown food, Brownsville ISD will host a Farmers’ Market for Burns and Paredes Elementary 3rd and 4th grade students and Vela Middle School students with perfect attendance on Thursday, November 17, 2016 in the Vela Middle School Gym, 4905 Paredes Line Road, from 9 AM – 2 PM. The students will use BISD “B” Bucks to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables from local farmers. Information about the produce that will be on sale at the Farmers’ Market will be provided before the event so that students can consult with their families regarding purchases and stay within their budgets. Students will each receive a minimum of $3 in “B” Bucks but they can earn additional bucks with good deeds and behavior. For more information, call 956.548.8000.

District Clarification
Brownsville ISD has not applied for a Class Size Waiver in the last 4 years. The last time the district applied for a Class Size Waiver was January 1, 2013.


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