Katy Texas

The Online Resource Directory for Katy, Texas

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

August 30, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

As the date of Childproof America’s Parent Empowerment Seminar draws closer, local law enforcement agencies are giving the group their cooperation, expertise, and support.

 

 

Tomorrow, August 31, representatives from four local law enforcement agencies will meet local press to answer questions and spread the word about Childproof America’s Back to School Parent Empowerment Seminar on September 8.

 

Present will be Houston Police Department Captain James Dale, Human Trafficking Unit, Vice Division, Constable Wayne Thompson, Fort Bend Pct. 3, Johna M. Stallings, Harris County D.A., and Tyler Dunman, Assistant D.A. Chief of Special Crimes Bureau, Montgomery County.

The briefing will discuss the dangers of domestic child sex trafficking in our area and give information about the prevention seminar. Police are putting the full weight of their support behind organizations like Childproof America to combat child sex trafficking and inform parents of the danger it poses to our community.

 

PARENT EMPOWERMENT SEMINAR

Saturday, September 8, 2018
8:30 – 9:30 a.m.
Wyndham Energy Corridor
14703 Park Row Dr., Houston

Parents and community members are invited a comprehensive overview of an issue recently declared a “public health crisis” by Governor Abbott. Topics include discussions about the definition of sex-trafficking, Six stages of grooming, international vs. domestic trafficking, physiochemical affects of pornography on a developing brain, and more. Guest  speakers include representatives from the Homeland Security Advisory Council, Love People Not Pixels, and more. Register here.

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 KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

August 28, 2018 

Katy Magazine Editors

On August 28, 2018, Katy Magazine received an anonymous letter by U.S. Mail that claims to be from a current Katy ISD teacher.  The letter is an open letter to Sean Dolan, the outspoken Katy ISD critic who launched a social media campaign against Superintendent Lance Hindt, and complains vigilantly at Katy ISD board meetings. The author of the letter expresses fears of retribution by Dolan and his anti-Katy ISD supporters for stating their opinion.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

INTRO LETTER TO KATY MAGAZINE

“Hello,

I am sending the enclosed letter on behalf of many Katy ISD teacher, including myself, who are tired of the negativity being spread by Sean Dolan and his group of followers. I know that many people are following that back and forth that has been going on.

Because of the tactics that Sean Dolan and his group use, I do not feel comfortable commenting on any of his posts of posting my opinion online. Other teachers and staff members that I have talked with feel the same way.

I am sending this letter to a few different Katy news outlets. I thought it might provide some insight into the way that Katy ISD teachers are feeling. If you see fit to publish or post it, great. If not, it was therapeutic to write.

Thank you”

OPEN LETTER TO SEAN DOLAN

Dear Mr. Dolan,

First off, I would like to say that I have been an educator in Katy ISD for the past 12 years and my children attend Katy ISD schools. To be clear and upfront, I am a supporter of Dr. Hindt. I realize that for you and most of your followers the fact that I said that makes anything else I have to say irrelevant, and that you probably already marked me as just another sheep who blindly follows the district, supports bullying, supports plagiarism, and/or any of the other labels that you associate with anyone who disagrees with anything you or your followers have to say, but it is simply not true.

The fact that you and your followers do not see the irony between what you accuse others of doing and the things you are doing is completely mind-blowing.

I cannot believe some of the comments that I read from your followers during the live streaming of Katy ISD board meetings. The name calling, innuendos, and blatant disrespect is reprehensible, especially coming from a group who claims to be trying to bring awareness to bullying. I can only imagine that if the comments that are made about our board members were made about your followers’ own children, they would be on the phone with the school in a heartbeat.

Mr. Dolan, I have heard you claim that teachers are afraid to speak up because they are afraid of backlash from the district. As for me, and a steadily growing number of fellow teachers, I will tell you that the number one reason that we DON’T speak up, is you.

I know that if I were to sign my name to this letter, it would only be a matter of time before my name, salary, direct line, and other personal information would be posted on your page, with your safety net “public information” label.

You are always more than willing to meet anyone for coffee, which is all well and good when there is pure intent behind the invitation, but why in the world would I agree to that? So that our conversation can be recorded and spun into something negative? It is not my district that I am afraid of. Sadly, it’s you.

I hate that I sit here and read some of the comments on your page, KNOWING that they are false, and yet I am too afraid to stand up for something that I believe in. I am afraid to speak my mind or offer my opinion, or many times, clarifying FACTS, because I do not want the backlash from you or any of your followers. It is so sad that you have created such an unsettling atmosphere.

Are there flaws within the district? Absolutely. Are there employees who are unhappy? Absolutely. As I have said, I have worked in the district for 12 years and I also have children who attend Katy ISD schools. Have we had issues? Absolutely, but there is far more good in this district than bad. You have chosen to take the bad, publicly exploit it, and spin it so that you get to look like the hero that is going to single-handedly save the district from itself.

You have created an environment so hostile that anytime there is an issue, no matter the size, it is taken straight to social media as another mark against Katy ISD. It’s apparent, at this point, that you prefer things go wrong. It’s another feather in your election cap. I hesitate to call you an ‘ambulance chaser’ but…

The most recent issue involving transportation was, and still is, a major work in progress. My children were late to and from school every day the first week. I agree that the staggered bell times and shortage of drivers, etc. seems like it was not planned out the best way. While I was irritated and concerned that my children were home late, as a parent, I made sure not to project my agitation onto my children, because I was not going to take away from the excitement of their first day of school.  

I never considered my children “missing” (they were either at school or on a bus) and would have never thought to call the police. I was actually shocked that you would suggest this. I think, in spite of planning issues, a majority of the schools, as well as the transportation offices have done a very good job keeping parents in the loop and I trust that it will get better. As of the second week of school, my children have been picked up and dropped off within 5 minutes of their scheduled times. I saw a post of yours where a mom commented about her children having to walk across a busy intersection and that there were some people that wouldn’t stop so that the children could get safely across. You made a comment about wanting to be “deputized” so that you could write those careless drivers tickets… Why didn’t you offer, with your flexible schedule and big military vehicle, to serve as a volunteer crossing guard so that those kids would be able to cross the street safely?

I’ve heard you question the district’s spending and I saw your “protest” at our teacher convocation. I’m sure that your posters were only meant to stir up emotions, because I would hope that you understand that when it comes to school budgets, money that is designated for salaries cannot be spent on school supplies, just like bond money for a stadium can’t be used to hire teachers or buy more buses.

You question the fact that teachers and staff members have the option to allot a portion of their paychecks to the Katy ISD Education Foundation, and I question why where any part of my paycheck goes is any of your business?  I think it’s amazing that teachers believe so much in what their peers and co-workers are doing that they want to give back to their community. We are, in no way, shape or form, forced to or pressured to give anything. It is a choice that we make because we are proud of the work being done in our district and want to continue to enhance student learning. The Katy ISD Education Foundation is not solely backed by teacher and staff donations, but the fact that teachers and staff members CHOOSE to put a portion of their money into worthwhile projects of their fellow teachers is a GOOD thing.

Whether you want to believe it or not, in the short amount of time he has been here, Dr. Hindt has been an amazing superintendent. I only had the privilege to meet him one time, but I will tell you that many, many teachers were excited about the direction in which our district was going. It was refreshing to have a Superintendent who made himself so available and visited campuses because he wanted to be out and involved, not because it was a photo opportunity. It is truly a shame that he was not given an opportunity to accomplish the things he set out to do for our district.

I write this letter with the support of many teachers and staff members. I do not think anything I have said will change anything that you or your followers are doing.  I tell my students and my children that they do need to speak up if something is wrong and I am an avid supporter of the belief that people should try to be a part of the solution, rather than adding to the problem. As teachers, and most importantly, parents, if we teach our kids to constantly look for the bad and focus on the negative, we are doing them a tremendous disservice, because that is all they will ever find. I don’t think that you are interested in seeing the good, and truthfully, changing board members and Superintendents is not the issue or the solution.

I think you and your followers will find fault with anyone that sits in those seats. the word “legacy” has been thrown around a lot lately, and looking at the list of your followers, there are some recognizable names that have a long legacy of disagreeing with most of what Katy ISD does. Our district, our school board, and our current Superintendent are actually very widely supported.

The sad part is that many of us have allowed ourselves to be bullied into silence because of you. Your initial intent may  have been one thing, but the way you have gone about things is just wrong. I don’t know what you expect to accomplish by tearing down so many different parts of the district. I know that many of your requests and questions could have probably been simply handled without all the publicity but it’s evident that you thoroughly enjoy that part. Our district has so many wonderful qualities. We have devoted teachers. We have amazing students. We have outstanding programs and activities. It’s a shame that none of that seems to matter to you.

A large majority of teachers, staff, parents, community members and students support our district and those leading us, even though their jobs have been made unnecessarily difficult in the last year.

While I am very disappointed in myself for not having the courage to post or comment publicly, I will continue to support the district the best way I can. I will welcome my students eagerly, teach them, support and encourage them, love them and remind them that the most important thing they can be is kind.

It’s important to remember that if you can’t think of something kind to say, you probably aren’t thinking hard enough. “

Mailed to Katy Magazine by a reader claiming to be a Katy ISD teacher and parent who wishes to remain anonymous.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

August 28, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

An ongoing dispute between an iconic Katy grocery store and parents of Katy Junior High students has frustrations running high. Katy Magazine reached out to both sides in hopes of finding a positive resolution.

 

Katy Parents Frustrated
Last week, a Katy Junior High parent Ralph Morales expressed disappointment with Brookshire Brothers Grocery Store after the store manager contacted Katy ISD and asked them to notify KJH parents to stop using their parking lot as an alternate student pick-up area, and invited Katy parents to share their frustration. The notice also stated the police might be involved to rectify the situation which left many parents upset.

The following email was issued to Katy Junior High parents on August 23, 2018.

“Dear Parents/Guardians of Car-Riders,

The district has received a phone call from our neighbor, Brookshire Brothers, and has forwarded it to me. Ms. Fry, the store manager, expressed concern not only for the safety of the students, but the impact her parking lot being used as a pick-up area has had on her business. It has had a negative impact.

I spoke with her this morning, and she has asked that I appeal to you prior to her involving her corporate office and or the Katy Police Department to rectify this challenge. Please refrain from using that area as an off-site parent pick-up area. Thanks in advance for your cooperation.”

Dr. LeBlanc”

According to Tim Tyler with the Katy Police Department, Brookshire Brothers is well within their rights to enforce parking restrictions, and reminds citizens that if they have requested that people do not park there, it could result in a criminal trespass violation. “The parking lot is legally owned by Brookshire Brothers. If they wanted a vehicle to move and called us, than we would ask them to move,” he says.

A Harsh Decision

To Morales and other Katy junior high parents, being banned by Brookshire Brothers feels extreme considering the store that has been heavily supported by the Katy Tiger community for decades.  “The lot helped alleviate additional traffic on the road and allowed for a second secure pickup for the families,” says Morales Ralph Morales who has been a customer of Brookshire Brothers his entire life. “Brookshire Brothers is well within their rights. I just wish they had asked for adjustments before banning car-rider parents from their lot. It was a harsh decision that will affect many families by increasing traffic and wait times,” Morales explains. Other parents concur and feel that there is no harm in parking in an open lot so close to their child’s school, especially since they regularly purchase groceries there.

Student Safety

Several customers posted that they have seen teens pushing each other in carts through the parking lot, running in front of cars, climbing into ice machines, and openly disrespecting patrons and store management. A store employee who wishes to remain anonymous confirmed the students that hang out in the lot and inside the store after school are causing more of a problem than the parents parked and waiting, and the decision was likely more of a safety and liability concern.

“I have been in [Brookshire Brothers] several times when the kids would get out, and one time a kid knocked me down 24 weeks pregnant, and I stood up and he ran off before I could say anything,” says Kylee M., a 2009 graduate of Katy High School and Katy mom.

Another mom, Diane W., feels that both sides have valid points, but that student safety should come first. “As a parent, I believe that it is risky to pick up a kid in a parking lot. I have seen several people pull into Brookshire Brothers at a high rate of speed,” she says.

Statement from Brookshire Brothers Corporate Office

“Thank you for reaching out to Brookshire Brothers for a statement regarding the use of the store’s parking lot in Katy.

The safety of the students, the adults who pick them up, and all of our customers is paramount to us at Brookshire Brothers.

We realize the after-school pick-up practice has been in place for a number of years.  The reason we reached out to the Junior High School principal recently was due to multiple incidents since the start of the school year.

The concerns are three fold:

  •          Motorists using the parking lot as a short cut

  •          Unaccompanied minors without supervision in the parking lot and inside the store

  •          Customer and vendor comments regarding safety for all

When the store leadership reached out to the principal at Katy Junior High, the intent was to come up with a reasonable solution that would safeguard everyone.

It seems that we need to revisit with the Junior High leadership team on this matter and work toward a resolution. “

Trying to Reach a Compromise

Katy Magazine has offered to arrange a meeting between Brookshire Brothers and  parents from both sides to find a mutually beneficial solution for everyone.  Brookshire Brothers PR representative says they will be reaching out to the school to discuss options and alternatives.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 21, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

One week into school and everyone is trying to adjust to new routines. With a new school year comes the need to stay informed, communicate and organize. Katy ISD gives us easy access to all of those things and sometimes it’s just at our fingertips.

 

While it’s all designed to make your life easier it’s important to know your app and tech options. Technology is engrained in our lives. Smart boards assist teachers of our youngest students. While parents recall their school days of heavy, book-filled backpacks, their children access textbooks through websites or Ipads. It’s part of their school experience. Now parents and students can use district run apps and technology programs to stay informed, communicate and organize their educational experience.

HAC- Home Access Center

Who: Every parent with a child in Katy ISD is given an access code and password to their Home Access Center at enrollment.

Here you can view everything about your students KISD experience from teachers, schedules, grades, attendance, and more.

“It’s a system of record and is designed to be a parent’s one stop shop for all their information needs,” explains Kerry Rampelli, Director of Enterprise Systems. This page follows you throughout your KISD journey.

HAC is also updated in real time where the app is updated nightly. This is important to know as older students (or parents) may be anxious to get test scores.

Katy OnTheGo App

Who: Everyone with access to HAC.

This application is everything from the Home Access Center (and more) at your fingertips. From news, calendars, menus, bus routes, the new Bullying Tip Line and everything you had at HAC this app is a must for your smart phone.

“The app has many pieces and can easily be added to based on our needs such as the addition of the Bullying Tip Line this year,” says Maria DiPetta, Manager, Media Relations and Multimedia.

Learn more about how KISD is using technology to report bullying in their new campaign. 

Canvas

Who: Differs based on grade level and campus. All junior high and high schools are using it to some degree. Elementary schools have access to it but only 3rd-5th use it and at some campuses.

Canvas is a learning management system that is accessed through a website and the canvas app. The link is accessed through your HAC page or your instructure, the Canvas software login.  

This a great tool where teachers can post assignments, set to do lists and so much more.

When grading assignments, teachers can grade and post work but with this they can also record comments in audio and video. Teachers can also share a video of them doing a math problem so that students can easily refer to it at home and so parents can better understand the work too.

“Students like it because it gives them a to-do list,” says Darlene Rankin, Instructional Technology Director.  “Students (and parents) can set push notifications for reminders based on when and how (email, text) they want to be reminded about assignments.”

This makes remembering assignments easy after long rehearsals, practice, etc. It’s never been so easy to not forget your homework!

Naviance: Career and College Planning Tools

Who: 6th grade-12th grade

Naviance is an application that evolves with it’s service based on your grade. It inventories your interests and skills and identifies where those area overlap. With this and more information, it helps students with college prep by finding a school and scholarships.

“This really helps our counselors to comb through a bunch of things and help students find what they are looking for,” said Christy Maeker, Director of Counseling Services. The program is tailored and controled by the student. Parents have access but it’s read-only.

 “It really helps us to empower students to see what their future look like,” says Stacie Zimmerman, Counseling Specialist. Each campus varies in how this is introduced but junior highs cover it in social studies and in high school it is discussed in english.

Another great feature to Naviance is that graduated seniors can still have access to it and refer back to lists and interests to help them continue towards a successful future.

What about…

Now these are all the district run applications and resources. There are a lot or resources out there designed to help education communication. Some teachers or programs may use resources such as SeeSaw. Most of the fine arts programs use an application called Charms that helps students and parents stay informed on the many parts of those programs. We are now at the time of year where parents are having their curriculum nights are schools so when applications or sites are introduced, ask your questions and get ready for this academic year.

My Katy: Single Sign-on Environment

To make our lives even easier, Katy ISD gives us one place to sign on and access all of our district applications and educational resources with My Katy. So this isn’t like our social media headache where we have so many passwords to keep up with. In one login we can access all the tools we need to stay informed, communicate and organize…and with a few clicks we’re on our way to a successful academic year.

Which is your favorite application or site? Let us know in the comments.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 20, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

 

Beckendorff Junior High eighth grader Jasial Kalapatu got the chance to interview Houston Astros’  third baseman/short stop and 2018 All-Star Game MVP, Alex Bregman.

 

In the Spring, Jaisal’s mother saw a post on Twitter from SI Kids inviting students to apply to be “Kid Reporters,” and he decided to go for it. “[To apply], I needed to write a 400-word essay about an athlete or sports team in the community making a difference, and then a 200-word essay about why I wanted to be an SI Kid Reporter, and then pitch two story ideas,” Jaisal says.

GETTING ACCEPTED

Kalapatu’s main essay was about the significant impact that the Houston Astros had on the community following Hurricane Harvey. About a month later, he got the news that he made it.

After being accepted, Kalapatu, a baseball and basketball player himself, specifically requested Alex Bregman as his interviewee. “I generally pitch all the stories that I want to do, and my editor (who works for SI Kids) considers them and if she agrees with the approach, she approves them and connects with the right people at the team for scheduling,” he says. To make sure nerves didn’t get the best of him, Kalapatu says he practiced giving the interview on family members so that he would be prepared.

ALEX BREGMAN, THOUGHTFUL AND THOROUGH

When Jaisal got to Minute Maid and met Alex Bregman, he was prepared with his questions for Bregman, who he says was very agreeable to talk with.  “He was nice and gave thorough and thoughtful answers. He seemed to have a lot of self-confidence, but he didn’t come across as arrogant. He was a really good person to interview. I appreciated him spending time with me despite his busy schedule,” he says. Here’s a snippet of the interview with Bregman:

 

How has being the All-Star Game MVP changed your life? Are you recognized more out in public?

I don’t know if I’m recognized more than before in Houston, but definitely more on a national scale. When we’re out on the road, out in the community, more people know who I am.

Where on the road has it happened?
L.A., Seattle—it’s happened in most of the cities that we’ve been to since the All-Star Game.

You grew up in a baseball family. Your grandfather was the general counsel for the Washington Senators, and your father played at the University of New Mexico. Were you always drawn to the game, or did you play other sports as well?

I’ve always been drawn to baseball. Ever since I was five years old, [when] my dad would bring a baseball card home from work, I just fell in love with the game. I’d play in the cul de sac with my mom and him, and it’s been fun.

For Jaisal’s Full Interview with Alex Bregman, CLICK HERE. 

At Beckendorff, Kalapatu is involved in theatre and choir, plays basketball, baseball, and piano, and represents BDJH on the Destination Imagination team. He says if he could interview any one in history, it would be the MLB legend Jackie Robinson, the first African American to ever play professional baseball.

“I’ve always been fascinated by not only his overall game, but his humble personality and the way he never lost his cool, even when people taunted and harassed him. I think that that would be a perfect interview,” he says.

Jaisal doesn’t know what his next interview will be yet, but he’s full of ideas. Follow him on Twitter @SIKids_Jaisal to stay updated.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 14, 2018 

 

Last week, Katy ISD sent out an email about the additional safety and security measures that will be implemented across the district. Below is a breakdown of the updated safety measures at your child’s school.

When students return to school in Katy ISD on August 15, 2018, they will be met with reinforced and updated safety and security procedures that include software for reporting bullying, more strict identification requirements for parents and visitors, mandatory student ID’s and more.

PARENTS & VISITORS

Required for entrance to any Katy ISD campus:

– Valid, current, government-issued picture ID outside of the main entrance at all campuses.

– Utilize the new controlled access camera and intercom system to present their ID.

– Present valid ID to the front desk receptionist and be logged into the tracking system.

STUDENT ID BADGES

Secondary students must now wear their ID badges at all times during school hours, while on District property.  Students in grades PK-5 will continue utilizing their badges during lunch and library times.  Fourth and fifth-grade students are requested to wear their badges throughout the school day, when practical.  At the secondary level, failure to follow the ID badge requirement may be considered a violation of the Student Code of Conduct.?

STANDARD UNLOCK TIMES

Controlled access systems will unlock main entrance doors at a set time each morning.

– Elementary Group 1: 7:35 a.m.

– Elementary Group 2: 7:55  a.m.

– Junior High: 8:10 a.m.

– High School: 6: 45 a.m.

CLEAR BAG REGULATION

To ensure visitor safety, along with quick and efficient entry into our event venues, Katy ISD has instituted a Clear Bag Regulation. This will limit the size and type of bag allowed at sporting events, performances and graduations held at Rhodes and Legacy stadiums, as well as the Leonard Merrell Center (LMC), and the Katy ISD Livestock Show and Rodeo at the Agricultural Sciences Center.

While Katy ISD encourages visitors not to bring bags if possible, the following types of bags are permissible:

  • Clear, plastic, vinyl or PVC bags

  • Clear, plastic, one-gallon, re-sealable, Ziploc-style bags

  • Clutch bags approximately the size of a hand (4 ½” X 6 ½”)

  • Medically necessary items

Visitors who bring bags that do not meet the criteria outlined, will not be permitted entrance into the venue.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ACCEPTABLE BAGS

BULLYING

– Procedures for Reporting Allegations of Bullying

– Bullying and Intervention Programs by Campus 

For a full report of Katy ISD’s increased safety and security measures, visit KatyISD.org.

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KATY MAGAZINE  

August 10, 2018  

By Jennifer Lynn Skelton  

The weekend that every parent and student looks forward to is upon us…Back-to-School Tax Free Weekend. August 10 – 12 is the time for parents to save on items such as school supplies and clothing.

 

The sales tax exemption applies only to qualifying items you buy during the sales tax holiday. Items you buy before or after the sales tax holiday do not qualify for exemption, and there is no tax refund available.

Many retail outlets have adjusted their weekend hours to accommodate the increased traffic including the Katy Mills Mall (see below).

Friday, 8/10   9 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Saturday, 8/11   9 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Sunday, 8/12  10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Qualifying Items

Click the links before to scroll the complete lists.

Special Purchases

School Supplies Purchased Using a Business Account – Exemption Certificate Required

If you buy qualifying school supplies under a business account, you must give a properly completed Form 01-339, Texas Sales and Use Tax Exemption Certificate, to the seller.

“Under a business account” means you are:

  • using a business credit card or business check and not a personal credit card or personal check;

  • being billed under a business account maintained by the seller; or

  • using a business membership at a membership-based retailer.

Items that Do Not Qualify

The following items do not qualify for exemption during the sales tax holiday:

  • items sold for $100 or more

  • clothing subscription boxes

  • specially-designed athletic activity or protective-use clothing or footwear

    • For example, golf cleats and football pads are usually worn only when people play golf or football, so they do not qualify for the exemption.

    • Tennis shoes, jogging suits and swimsuits, however, can be worn for other than athletic activity and qualify for the exemption.

  • clothing or footwear rentals, alterations (including embroidery) and cleaning services

  • items used to make or repair clothing, such as fabric, thread, yarn, buttons, snaps, hooks and zippers

  • jewelry, handbags, purses, briefcases, umbrellas, wallets, watches and other accessories

  • computers

  • software

  • textbooks

  • luggage, framed backpacks, computer bags, athletic bags

Visit the Texas Comptroller’s website for complete details of the Texas tax free weekend.

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Katy Texas News

Katy Texas News

Your Total Footcare Solutions

Living Stones

Las Alamedas

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 13, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

With Katy ISD schools starting this week a lot of parents are looking into before and after school care options, especially with the time changes to some of our schools.

The good news is that Katy offers a lot of options and most of these are not just a childcare program but offer curriculum enriched programs with various topics and homework assistance by certified teachers.

How to find the best program for your child?

All of these programs have their own unique curriculum and play structure. It’s always best to research to see to find the best fit for your child.

Safety- What is their pick-up procedures? What kind of CPR and training is required of the staff?

Ask about transportation- Most of these program provide transportation to local school. Be sure and see if your child’s school is one that they service. Do they use carseats?

Curriculum- Different programs focus on different curriculum. Do you want something STEM based? Language immersion? Play based? Homework assistance?

Take a tour- All of these programs listed below offer tours. This is the best way to get a feel for the program and ask your questions.

“I chose Tigerland because it’s great reputation, the majority of the staff have been there for years and the pricing is reasonable,” says Vicky Hegemeyer.

With so many choices in Katy, with a little research it should be easy to find the best fit for your child.

 

Local Katy Before/After School Programs:

British Private Prep

28031 S. Firethorne Road, 281-394-5889

25935 Cinco Terrace Drive, 281-394-7737

4025 S. Mason Road, 281-828-2000

Childtime Learning Center

170 N Fry Rd, Katy 77449, 281-646-8330

22022 Highland Knolls Dr, Katy 77450, 281-392-2400

Children’s Lighthouse

23060 Westheimer Pkwy, Katy 77494, 281-395-4466

26051 Kingsland Blvd, Katy 77494, 281-392-2211

19607 Clay Rd, Katy 77449, 281-492-2688

 5740 FM 1463, Katy 77494, 281-394-9696

Children’s Learning Adventure

24224 Cinco Terrace Dr, Katy 77494, 281-612-7648

Foundations Academy

20817 Westheimer Parkway, Katy 77450, 281-599-1200

Ivy Kids Early Learning Center

27270 Cinco Ranch Blvd, Katy 77494, 281-574-0395

2707 Spring Green Blvd, Katy 77494, 346-307-6922

19919 Lakemont Bend Ln, Richmond, TX 77407, 832-595-1900

Katy Knowledge Beginnings

6130 S Fry Rd, Katy 77494, 281-693-77494

Katy’s Early childhood Enrichment Center

1407 W. Grand Pkwy, 281-693-1999

 Kids R ‘Kids

19814 Keith Harrow Boulevard 281-859-7300

21955 Westheimer Pkwy 281-828-2273

24007 Franz Road 281-347-5444

25950 Cinco Ranch Blvd. 281–392-1370

10602 S. Fry Road 281-392-1414

4515 FM 1463 281-347-5437

Kindercare

2650 S. Peek Rd, Katy 77450, 281-392-2650

22129 Kingsland Blvd, Katy 77450, 281-392-6770

2202 Fry Rd, Houston 77084, 281-578-1415

19510 Clay Rd, Katy 77449, 281-550-1610

Learning and Beyond

19600 Clay Rd, Katy 77449, 832-464-7787

20144 Morton Rd, Katy 77449, 832-848-0369

My Place Early Learning Center

24034 Cinco Village Center Blvd, Katy 77494, 281-392-5900

2212 Katy Flewellen Rd, Katy 77494, 281-396-4734

Primrose Schools of Katy

1249 FM 1463, Katy 77494, 281-371-0099 (West Cinco Ranch)

1540 Peek Rd, Katy 77450, 281-693-7711 (Cinco Ranch)

21480 Park Row Blvd, Katy 77449, 281-492-7400 (North Mason Creek)

2402 Westgreen Blvd, Katy TX 77450 281-828-1600 (Kelliwood)

Safari Kids Learning Center

24936 Katy Ranch Rd, Katy 77494, 832-583-9700

Scribbles Academy

940 S. Fry Rd, Katy 77450, 281-578-1505

Spanish School House

2944 S Mason Rd, Katy 77450, 832-437-0570

Tigerland

5315 E 5th St, Katy 77493, 281-391-8750

YMCA

Monty Ballard YMCA at Cinco Ranch 22807 Westheimer Pkwy, 281-392-5055

Mark Chapman YMCA at Katy Main Street 1350 Main Street, 281-665-1213

Do you have a Katy before/after school program that you love? Tell us about it in the comments.

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KATY TEXAS NEWS
August 9, 2018 
Ashley Lancaster

College Nannies & Tutors of Katy, a locally owned agency that provides customized childcare and tutoring, was happy to award Katy High School senior Siarah Mazariegos with their first-ever College Test Prep Scholarship.

Siarah is the oldest of four siblings and plays flute for the Katy High School Band as a section leader, serves as student council president and vice president for the National Honor Society. She hopes to attend UT Austin and major in Business, and College Nannies & Tutors of Katy has brought that dream a little closer with a scholarship that will allow Siarah to achieve the highest possible ACT/SAT scores.

 

The scholarship was created by  Franchise owner Doina Berea and Learning Center Manager Rebecca Baker in order to give back to our local community and help a local high school student to improve on their SAT/ACT score.

College Nannies & Tutors of Katy will provide this scholarship to one outstanding high school senior in Katy ISD every year. To learn more about College Nannies & Tutors of Katy, visit www.collegetutorskatytx.com

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 5, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

Katy ISD is gearing up to start school August 15 and part of that prep involves planning how to address and prevent bullying.

Anonymously report bullying on your cell

We’ve seen a world-wide increase in bullying and technology is responsible for a lot of that increase so it’s only fitting that we’re using technology to help combat it.

The Bullying Tip Line is a feature part of the Katy OnTheGo app. To access it simply download the free app. If you already have the app then it will automatically update to include the feature when it launches this month.

 

While the focus will be getting students to use it, parents and teachers can also make use of it. All you need is a cell phone with the Katy OnTheGo app, information to submit (the more detail the better) and a few minutes of your time. “The ease and anonymity is key here,” says Maria DiPetta, manager, media relations and multimedia for KISD. “While other methods aim to be anonymous this truly is. Schools even have designated cell phone times so when a student is on their phone no one knows if they are playing a game, checking a social media account or submitting a tip on the app.”

The new Bullying Tip Line app is being introduced to principals and administrators this week and has been in development as part of the districts strategic planning process since spring 2017. It’s release is right on schedule with the district’s goals. “The initial goal for the app is for users to familiarize themselves with it and feel comfortable using it,” says Maria. INSERT QUOTE FROM PRINCIPAL- The initial feedback is that it’s very simple to use, so much so that elementary students could do it.

The app is part Katy ISD’s Bullying Prevention Campaign. The campaign includes educational videos, events and the observation of National Bullying Prevention month. The app is just another way of reporting in addition to the anonymous boxes placed in all schools. The hope is that when students have felt uncomfortable being seen putting information in a drop box they would feel comfortable using the app. “Again it being so anonymous is key. In fact the anonymous button is always turned on and all tips will go to an inbox where the administrator for the school receives them daily,” explains Maria.

Educating students how to help

Education is key to helping the app be a success and the schools will focus on this educational process this year. This app can be most effective in addressing a bullying act when given as much detail as possible. “For example,” Maria explains, “student XYZ (full name) is bullying student ABC (full name) in 2nd period, Mrs. So-and-So’s class and they posted this on Facebook (share screenshot of social media.) From there the user could say that student XYZ follows student ABC to the parking lot and then proper people will have the information to verify, prove and prevent this incident from continuing.”

The app will also better help administrators to categorize the bullying whether it’s emotional, physical, social or technological. Some tips may require police investigation while other may be simply resolved by scheduling a sit down with the students. This will allow administrators the information to make those decisions and make sure the best solution is in play for each case.

This app will only be used for reporting. It is NOT to be used to report a crisis that would still be to call 911 or the Katy Connect Crisis Line 281-234-2326.

 

KISD is dedicated to addressing, preventing bullying

The district plans to track, record and follow the use and trends of the tips reported. In another step to being proactive in the current culture of bullying, KISD recently hired a Coordinator for Bullying Prevention and Student Support. The position is still new and getting settled but further proof at the seriousness that the district put on the topic.

Parents need to be part of the conversation

While the district is doing their part to address and help prevent bullying parents play a key role at home and these conversations need to start their. “Parents should talk to their children about bullying to help prevent them from partaking in it and becoming a possible victim,” says Nelda Wilson Brooks, a Katy family therapist. Parents should also be aware of their children’s social media presence.

Be sure and download the Katy OnTheGo App for many helpful features including the new Bullying Tip Line.

Are you talking to your child about bullying ahead of the school year? What kind of conversations are you having.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 4, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

Parents can now enter their residential address to view the bus schedule for their child’s grade level and neighborhood.

 

On Friday, Katy ISD informed the public that the most updated bus schedules were available for families.

Parents whose children meet the qualifications for transportation can enter their students’ grade level and street name and find out the time and location for bus pick-up/drop-off. CLICK HERE TO CHECK YOUR CHILD’S BUS INFO.

ONE HALF-MILE RADIUS
Katy ISD will provide transportation to Katy ISD students who live outside a 1/2 mile radius from their campus. Parents with questions about schedules, routes, and bus stop locations can contact the Transportation Call Center at 281-396-6008, Monday – Friday, from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. until August 24, 2018.

 

BUS DRIVERS NEEDED

Katy ISD is still actively seeking bus drivers to transport students to and from their campus. The district will provide paid training, health insurance and family assistance, and on-site childcare for children ages 18 months through fifth grade. Wages start at $16.66 per hour.Find out more here. 

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KATY MAGAZINE

August 2, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton & Ashley Lancaster 

The largest and most comprehensive renovation project in the school’s history is expected to be complete before August 15.

 (Gymnasium)

 

A NEW HOME FOR THE RAMS 

The Mayde Creek Rams will start the first day of their 2018-2019 school year in an almost unrecognizable campus. The renovations were approved in the 2014 school bond, and have a price tag of just over $51 million. According to Mayde Creek High School Principal Ronnie Edwards, they could not have come at a better time.

“Katy ISD has done an excellent job at strategically planning when a campus is in need of updates or renovations, and we were able to see the benefit of that this year,” he says. After taking a certain degree of water damage during Hurricane Harvey in August of last year, the completed changes will give fresh heart to the student body and staff.

A COMPLETE “MAYDE-OVER”

The new and improved learning areas and open spaces are literally designed to foster a positive school culture. “The design of the open spaces and flex seating in the common areas will facilitate more collaboration, and give students more opportunities to have their voices heard,” he says.

The hallways and campus infrastructure have been streamlined as well, with Mayde Creek’s back hallways being updated to connect and help students get to class faster. Additionally, a skybridge connecting the freshman center to the main campus will cut down on walking time.

The school will also integrate updated safety and security measures that are being implemented at campuses across the district. And while the ninth grade campus was not included in upgrades approved by the 2014 bond, Mayde Creek freshman will benefit from new classroom furniture, flooring, and updated paint.

A new “Genius Bar” in the school library will also be available, giving students increased opportunities for the use of technology.

(Genius Bar in the school library)

Overall, Mr. Edwards and the rest of the Mayde Creek staff are proud of the success of the project. “We have kept track and taken photos of the renovations from start to finish. It’s important for the community to get a good picture of just how much has changed and how it will benefit future Rams.”

DETAILS OF MAYDE CREEK’S MAKEOVER

  • Classroom Renovations to meet current program needs in original section of high school – including Science, Fine Arts, CTE, Administration, Library, Kitchen/Commons

  • Modify access to building – review construction of corridors to connect halls

  • Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing upgrades/replacement

  • Elevator replacement

  • Replacement of finishes – flooring, ceiling, carpet

  • Renovations to Softball field to meet Title IX

  • Installation of Walk In Floral Cooler

  • Relocate Lights above Pool

  • Reconstruct access road around Mayde Creek complex

2017 BOND

Every school bond generally has normal upgrades and maintenance for all school campuses Additional items were approved for Mayde Creek High School on the 2017 bond.

  • Roofing

  • Athletic Turf Replacement

  • Scoreboard Replacement in Gyms

  • Technology Retrofit and Tablets

  • Document Cameras

  • Printer Replacements

PREVIOUS UPDATES 

  • Upgrade Electrical System (1999)

  • Renovations & Additions: Library, Athletics, Administration & Music (1999)

  • 9th Grade Center & Performing Arts Center (PAC) (2002)

  • Exterior Door Replacement (2007)

  • Natatorium (2008)

  • Central Plant (2012)

  • Security Vestibule (2012)

(New flexible seating upstairs)


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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

August 1, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

As Katy ISD continues to grow, more staff is needed each year to fill open and newly created positions. For the 2018/19 school year 27 administration staff were hired.

 

 High School employees

Kerri Finnesand, Principal, Seven Lakes High

Amy Frey, AP, Mayde Creek High

Karlyn Fuquay, AP, Taylor High

Michael Gilchrist, AP, Paetow High

Diego Linares, Principal, Raines High

Rebecca Marron, Student Support Administrator, Paetow High

Jerimain Matthew, AP, Tompkins High

Kendra Okeefe, AP, Seven Lakes High

Junior High employees

Todd Abbott, AP, Memorial Parkway Junior High

Rafael Brazo, AP, Katy Junior High*

Michelene Etzel, Student Support Administrator, Morton Ranch Junior High

Steve Guzzetta, Principal, McMeans Junior High

Kristin Harper, Principal, Seven Lakes Junior High

*Rafael Brazo was named one of Katy ISD’s campus teacher of the year for 2017/18school year as well as one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 men of 2018.

Elementary employees

Ridget Aleem, AP, Campbell Elementary

Jennifer Cruz, AP, Franz Elementary

Michelle Gaskamp, Principal, Randolph Elementary

Cheryl Glasser, Principal, Rylander Elementary

Kristin Graves, AP, Nottingham Country Elementary

Anna Hinojosa, Principal, Wolfe Elementary

Candace Hopkins, AP, Cimarron  Elementary

Elizabeth Hull, AP, Memorial Parkway Elementary

Marc Kampwerth, AP, Morton Ranch Elementary

Elizabeth Paz, AP, Sundown Elementary

Erika Rodriguez, AP, Campbell Elementary

Richard Turner, AP, McRoberts Elementary

Jillian Wilke, AP, Rhoads Elementary

Latwanda Wilson, AP, Bear Creek Elementary

The staff is a combination of new hires as well as internal transfers and promotions.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 30, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

Here’s a check-list to ensure that you’re ready for that first day of school.

 

Katy ISD schools start August 15 and with less than a month it’s time to enjoy these last summer days and prepare for a successful academic year. Here’s a check-list to ensure that you’re ready for that first day of school.

 

Registration

This year KISD will welcome around 80,000 students. A fast growing district means evolving to better organize and meet student needs. This year ALL KISD students must register in the new Power Up computer system. New students registration is still going on. Parents of new students will still need to visit their child’s campus to present certain documents like proof or residency and vaccination records. Click here for a schedule of when you can go visit your child’s campus.

On August 1 current students will get an email sent to their parent’s current email on file. This will give parents instruction on how to register and complete annual updates.

And don’t forget to check your school’s website and/or PTA social media to see when your meet the teacher night is scheduled.

Meal Plans
Families who qualify can apply year-round for free and/or reduced meals for their Katy ISD students. Click here to view the FAQ page and fill out an application.

Parents can also open a MyPaymentsPlus Meal account to pre-pay for their students’ lunches.

Immunization Requirements

KISD follows the Texas Department of State Health Services recommendation for immunizations. See which vaccinations are required for your child’s grade level.Students can get vaccinated at their regular pediatricians office or attend one of several vaccination clinics being held around the city. 

Safety and Security

You can view Katy ISD’s safety and security resources here, as well as view a list of anti-bullying programs and initiatives at each campus. As an added safety measure, all Katy ISD students in all grade levels will be required to carry and wear a Student ID badge. Call your campus to find out more.

School Supplies

Some schools make it available to pre-purchase school supplies but that time has passed. Here is a list for all Elementary schools and their supplies requirements for each grade level. For a list of required supplies for secondary schools, Junior High and High School’s, visit their individual websites. 

Tax Free Weekend starts Friday August 10 and ends Sunday August 12, This is a great way to save on supplies and get excited about the new school year.

Kickoff the Fall Sports Season

The start of the school year also marks the start of fall sports. Don’t forget to see the Varsity Football Schedule and mark your calendar to go support your favorite high school.

This year both Rhodes Stadium and Legacy Stadium will only be allowing clear bags into the stadium. Make sure you are in compliance as to prevent any delays in cheering for your team.

Celebrate at Back to School Events

With all the preparation for back to school don’t forget to celebrate the new year with fun and local back to school events. Cane Island is hosting a Back to School event on August 4 12pm-2pm at Cane Island. There will be a book fair, crafts, live music, snow cones and more.

Join the fun at Katy Summer Nights: Back to School Bash hosted by the Mark A. Chapman YMCA and held at No Label Brewery on August 10 6pm-10pm.

Camp West is also hosting a Back to School Bash on August 25 at Lake West at 6pm.

Did we miss a local Back to School event? Include it in the comments below.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 26, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

Here is a breakdown of elementary campuses in Katy ISD by their modified start time, to help you make plans for drop-off/ pick up this year.

 

In order to address rapid growth in the area, increased enrollment, and challenges with bus driver recruitment, Katy ISD released a modified bell schedule for students for the 2018-2019 school year in April. As you prepare to send your kiddos back to school, make sure you know your campus bell schedule.

ELEMENTARY – GROUP 1

Start time: 8 a.m.

Wolfe
5002 Addicks-Howell Rd., Houston

281-237-2250

Katy

5726 George Bush Ave.

281-237-6550

Memorial Parkway

21603 Park Tree Ln.
281-237-5850

Bear Creek

4815 Hickory Downs Dr.
281-237-5600

Cimarron

1100 South Peek Rd.
281-237-8850

Winborn

22555 Prince George Ln.
281-237-6650

Nottingham

20500 Kingsland Blvd.
281-237-5500

Sundown

20100 Saums Rd.
281-237-5400

Hayes

21203 Park Timbers Ln.
281-237-3200

McRoberts

3535 North Fry Rd.
281-237-2000

Alexander

6161 South Fry Rd.
281-237-7100

Williams

3900 South Peek Rd.
281-237-7200

Rylander

24831 Westheimer Pkwy.

281-237-8300

Exley

21800 Westheimer Pkwy.

281-237-8400

Rhoads

19711 Clay Rd.

281-237-8500

Franz

2751 Westgreen Blvd.
281-237-8600

Griffin

7800 South Fry Rd.
281-237-8700

Woodcreek

1155 Wood Creek Bend Ln.
281-234-0100

Stanley

26633 Cinco Terrace Dr.

281-234-1400

Shafer

5150 Ranch Point Dr.
281-234-1900

Randolph

5303 Flewellen Oaks Ln.
281-234-3800

Campbell

3701 Cross Creek Bend Ln.
281-234-4500

ELEMENTARY – GROUP 2

Start time: 8:20 a.m.

West Memorial
22605 Provincial Blvd.
281-237-6600

Hutsell

5360 Franz Rd.
281-237-6500

Mayde Creek

2698 Greenhouse Rd., Houston
281-237-3950

Pattison

19910 Stonelodge Dr.
281-237-5450

Golbow

3535 Lakes of Bridgewater Dr.
281-237-5350

Fielder

2100 Greenway Village Dr.
281-237-6450

Creech

5905 South Mason Rd.
281-237-8850

King

1901 Charlton House Ln.
281-237-6850

Schmalz

18605 Green Land Way
281-237-4500

Kilpatrick

26100 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
281-237-7600

Stephens

2715 Fry Rd.
281-234-0200

Morton Ranch

2502 Mason Rd.

281-234-0300

Holland

23720 Seven Meadows Pkwy.
281-234-0500

Wilson

5200 Falcon Landing
281-234-1600

Wolman

28727 North Firethorne Rd.
281-234-1700

Davidson

26906 Pine Mill Ranch Dr.
281-234-2500

Jenks

27602 Westridge Creek Ln.
281-234-4100

Bethke

4535 E. Ventana Pkwy.
281-234-4200

Bryant

29801 Kingsland Blvd.
281-234-4300

For the district FAQ and list of all grade level start times, click here. 

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ISSUE:

KATY MAGAZINE  

July 22, 2018    

By Jennifer Skelton

The Seven Lakes Spartans received international recognition and won Overall Outstanding program for their participation in the Best Buddies program.

  

Best Buddies is the world’s largest organization dedicated to ending the social, physical and economic isolation of the 200 million people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. They establish global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development.

In July participants from Seven Lakes High School including President Reagan Kallina and Co-Vice President Tania Swain and their buddies flew to Indiana for the 2018 International Best Buddies Conference, where they received international recognition and won Overall Outstanding Program for their school.

This is not the first year that Seven Lakes has taken home awards for their work in the Best Buddies program. In 2016 and 2017, they were awarded Outstanding High School Chapter in Texas. In 2017, the chapter was also awarded the National Pacesetter Award and was ranked in the top 15 chapters in the nation for fundraising.

All Katy ISD high school’s have Best Buddies programs. Both participants and volunteers benefit from the program, with the participants often choosing college and career paths that specialize in Special Education or a related field.

In order for a student to volunteer with the program, they must meet certain criteria along with go through an interview process. If chosen, the commitment is for one school year.

“Receiving these awards is such a testament to the truly life changing impacts of Best Buddies! It is so humbling to be recognized on such a large scale but more than anything, empowering to be able to see how big of a difference our organization can make in the lives of our peers and our community,” states Anna Celeste Fedewa, former President.

You can request information about Best Buddies at your campus by phone.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
July 16, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster 

Cinco Ranch defensive star, inside linebacker David Gbenda, heads into his senior year with over 20 college offers on the table.

Elite college football programs are all clamoring to sign Cinco Ranch High School’s dynamic defensive star, and 4-star Texas recruit, David Gbenda (#33).

AN OFFENSIVE NIGHTMARE

Gbenda, who will graduate in 2019, has received offers from no less than 24 national football powerhouses like Notre Dame, Nebraska, Michigan, and Ole Miss.

The 6’0, 212-pound inside linebacker earned his keep among the top college prospects in Texas last year, with 40 independent tackles, 16 assists, 2 sacks, and a total of 8 tackles for loss throughout the season. In their match up against Seven Lakes, Gbenda stymied the Spartan offense with an incredible 10-yard sack. Even Katy’s elite running game had more trouble than usual moving the ball against #33 and the rest of the strong side defense.

Recently, Gbenda narrowed down his myriad of college offers to a Top 10. On the list are University of Texas, Notre Dame, University of Houston, Michigan, Nebraska, Texas A&M, Washington, Ole Miss, Texas Christian University, and Missouri. He is expected to make his final decision in December 2018.

THROWBACK TO THE GOOD OLD DAYS

As anyone knows, talent can only get you so far – you have to have the work ethic and heart to make plays happen in a district as competitive as Katy. According to Cinco’s head coach Don Clayton, Gbenda has all of that and more in spades.

“His energy, leadership of the team, and his constant commitment to improve are a throwback to the good old days of football, when people played as hard as they could, for as long as they could. He is always striving to perform at his absolute best,” says Clayton.

Gbenda himself is taking all of the attention in his stride. “It’s kind of crazy to be honest. As a freshman and sophomore, I saw others in my grade being heavily recruited and I just thought,  ‘I want that and to be heavily recruited by big name programs.’ It’s so unreal, and a blessing to me,” he says. David says that the coaches at Cinco have been crucial in his success. “With the competition we face, the coaching staff (at Cinco) has helped me learn the game,” he says.

2017 HUDL HIGHLIGHTS

Fans can get their first glimpse of Gbenda’s skill at the scrimmage against Stratford on August 24 at Cinco Ranch High School. See the full Katy ISD Varsity Football Schedule here. 

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ISSUE:

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

July 2, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark & Ashley Lancaster

Minnesota Vikings defensive end Danielle Hunter was named the 2018 Breakout Star, and signed an extension with the team for $72 million last Wednesday.

Katy, Texas’ Danielle Hunter proudly represents his hometown by shining in the big leagues with a new $72 million contract extension from the Minnesota Vikings.

Hunter signed with the Vikings in 2015, and his electrifying performance resulted in a 5-year contract extension for $72 million, with a $15 million signing bonus. These contract terms place him in the Top 10 highest paid defensive players in the NFL – impressive, considering that the DE is only 23 years old. On paper, his 2017 season may not look like much, with 25.5 sacks under his belt in his three seasons – but he hasn’t been a starter. The Vikings began to set him loose on the opposing offense and saw his incredible potential.

 

From Maverick to Tiger and now Viking

Hunter was a football and track and field star graduate from Katy ISD’s Morton Ranch High School. After he graduated from Morton Ranch he attended LSU from 2012-2014 where he was a two-year starter and defensive end. According to the NFL Network’s Peter Schrager Hunter is pegged as a “breakout star” for 2018 because of the talent that the Vikings have along their defensive front Hunter is rarely going to see double teams. He should have the ability to terrorize opposing offenses while only having to beat one guy. The other team can’t double team everyone, so the Vikings’ defensive line should have the ability to make a play on almost every snap. In football terms this is huge.

“I was shaking with excitement,” Hunter told the Vikings’ official website. “I was like, is this real.”

Hunter is an American born in Jamaica but spent his formative years in Katy, Texas where he grew to love football. Many can’t wait to see what the season has in store for this 23 year old.

The Vikings have been praised and noted for being strategic in their deals to open a window into the championship season. Could we see a Katy native in a Super Bowl game this year? From the sounds of the stats it could come to be.

The NFL season opener is September 7.  The Vikings have their first preseason game on Saturday August 11 vs. the Denver Broncos. Their first regular season game is slated for Sunday September 9 vs. the San Francisco 49ers.

With the NFL Football season quickly approaching it’s time to prep your Fantasy Football roster. Are you including Katy’s Danielle Hunter in your roster? What do you think of the Vikings’ strategy to go for a championship? Be sure to let us know in the comments below.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 26, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark

Friends and family of Stephen Papp, 33, are mourning after the history teacher and Morton Ranch football coach was tragically killed in a car accident.

 

News and sorrow is quickly spreading this week of the loss of Morton Ranch’s assistant football coach, Stephen Papp. He passed away Saturday night in a car accident. Details have yet to be released. Even though he was currently on staff at Morton Ranch, Papp influenced many young Katy athletes having spent time at Katy ISD’s Mayde Creek and Cinco Ranch High Schools prior to moving to Morton Ranch.

A cancer survivor, Papp was known for being quiet about his battle and giving his all to his students. Papp was also a World History teacher and enjoyed sharing the love of both athletics and history with his students.

“I enjoyed getting to know and work with Stephen over the past 2 years,” said Wendell Ishee, social studies teacher/Morton Ranch football coach and one of Papp’s coworkers. “He was always a willing worker and loved working with our kids and athletes. He had a brilliant football mind and was always willing to talk about schematics and situations. He worked to get the most out of his football players. He taught them toughness and accountability. I also watched him transform many athletes in pole vault during track season. I am very saddened by his death and my prayers go out to his family and friends,” he says.

 

 

Current Paetow junior and former Morton Ranch freshman football player Alex Elko tweeted Monday night: “Rest Easy Coach Papp …  He was always a constant believer in everyone’s ability to obtain success through hard work and dedication … The world definitely lost a great one . I truly believe he is in a much better place. I pray that his family may find peace and understanding. Again , Rest In Peace Coach Papp.”

Stephen Papp’s funeral is scheduled for this Friday, June 29 3 pm at the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in his hometown, Kingwood.

Do you have a fond memory of Coach Papp? Share it with us below in the comments.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
June 26, 2018

Ashley Lancaster
 

Katy families and businesses affected by Hurricane Harvey will have an opportunity to recover with the approval of the State Action Plan, totaling just over $5 billion dollars.

 Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush announced  on Monday that the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has approved the State Action Plan for a ttotal of $5.024 billions dollars as part of the Community Development Block Grant – Disaster Recovery.

 

Affected areas in Harris County and the City of Houston will receive $2.7 billion in recovery funds, while areas outside Harris County and Houston city limits will get the remainder  of $2.3 to rebuild and restore homes and businesses, and infrastructure. Here is a breakdown in fund distribution and approved programs:

1. Single Family Homeowner Assistance ($1.048 billion)
Provides funding for rehabilitation and reconstruction of owner-occupied single-family homes damaged by Hurricane Harvey.

2. Buyouts and Acquisitions ($275 million)
Eligible homeowners may sell their home to a local government at a pre-storm or post-storm fair market value and move out of harm’s way by relocating outside of a floodplain to a lower-risk area

3. Homeowner Reimbursement ($100 million)

Allows homeowners to be reimbursed for certain out-of-pocket expenses incurred for repairs to their home including reconstruction, rehabilitation or mitigation up to $50,000.

 

4. Affordable Rental ($250 million)
Provides funding for rehabilitation, reconstruction and new construction of affordable multi-family housing projects in areas impacted by Hurricane Harvey.

5. Local Infrastructure ($413 million)
Repairs, enhances and restores infrastructure for local communities impacted by Hurricane Harvey as part of a comprehensive long-term recovery program.

6. Economic Revitalization ($100 million)

Offers interim assistance to small businesses impacted by Hurricane Harvey through deferred forgivable loans and loans in exchange for job creation or retention. Small business within Harris County and the city of Houston will be eligible to apply for this program.

7. Local, Regional and State Planning ($137 million)
The GLO will conduct planning studies focused on disaster mitigation in the impacted areas with the purpose of promoting sound long-term recovery.

Information on Homeowner Recovery Assistance

Source: Texas General Land Office 

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 20, 2018

By Jennifer Skelton

With the opening of two new Katy ISD schools in the 2019/20 school year, a modification of attendance boundaries will be necessary. Three options for elementary and junior high were presented to the board at Monday’s board meeting.

 

Katy ISD Elementary campus #42 located in the northwest quadrant of Katy ISD and Junior High #16 in the southwest quadrant located in the Cross Creek neighborhood will both open in the fall of 2019. Both will relieve overcrowding for many schools in the district.

At last Monday’s school board meeting, three attendance boundary modifications were presented for elementary and junior high.

In the northwest quadrant, the elementary schools with the largest chance of being impacted are Bethke, Hutsell, King and Winborn Elementary schools.  In the southwest quadrant, the addition of Junior High #16 will possibly impact Beck, Cinco Ranch, Seven Lakes, Tays and Woodcreek Junior High. While not all of these schools are currently overcrowded, the modification will re-align many schools to prevent future overcrowding.

Families that could be potentially impacted by proposed attendance boundary modifications will be informed of opportunities to provide input, which will include an electronic survey, email, written correspondence, and by telephone. These communications will begin June 20 and be available until November 20, 2018.

At the September school board meeting, trustees will be given the preliminary results of the survey. In December, the board will receive the final recommendations. Notification to those impacted will begin January 2019.

Katy ISD has created a page to answer questions and provide the community with the possible modifications. Click here for more information. The board was presented aPowerPoint presentation with details.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 18, 2018

Natalie Cook Clark & Ashley Lancaster 

Katy ISD’s  Seven Lakes high school ranked at number 15 in the Greater Houston Area. Keep reading to see where the rest of Katy ISD’s high schools, junior highs, and elementaries ranked.

See the Katy ISD schools that made the top 100 in elementary, junior high, and high school in the Greater Houston Area for 2018.

HIGH SCHOOL

Top 100 (Out of 191)

Seven Lakes – #15

Cinco Ranch – #25

Taylor – #37

Katy – #51

Mayde Creek – #65

Morton Ranch – #90

JUNIOR HIGH

Top 100 (Out of 335)

Beckendorff – #12

Tays – #18

Seven Lakes – #19

Beck – #29

McMeans – #35

Woodcreek – #37

Cinco Ranch – #58

Memorial Parkway – #61

Mayde Creek – # 89

ELEMENTARY

Top 100 (Out of 902)

Pattison – #29

Stanley – #31

Wilson – #37

Griffin – #48

Kilpatrick – #51

Davidson – #56

Woodcreek – #63

Jenks – #68

Holland – #72

Wolman – #73

Exley – #83

McRoberts – #90

Katy – #93

Rylander – #98

Williams Elementary came close at #101

Katy ISD has a total of 8 high schools and many often find themselves on prestigious ranking lists such as this one.

This list evaluates student performance on STAAR Reading and Math tests and campus overall performance as compared to other campuses with similar levels of poverty. It also considers performance through growth, graduation rates, and other college readiness factors.

For 13 years Children at Risk has ranked Texas area schools in hope of promoting dialogue amongst educators, communities and parents. Learn more about how they rank and see how other area schools faired in the 2018 Texas School Guide.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

June 17, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Susie Garza, Assistant Principal at West Memorial Junior High in Katy ISD, passed away on Thursday, June 14, 2018 in New Mexico during her return from a family vacation.

(Photo from West Memorial Junior High in November 2017)

On Thursday morning, June 14, while on the way back to Houston, the family’s car was rear-ended at a high rate of speed in New Mexico. Ms. Garza did not survive the accident. Her daughter, Andrea, who was with her at the time, was air-lifted to the hospital and is expected to survive. Garza’s other daughter, Analicia “Ana”, is by her sister’s side as she recovers.

The family had been on a road trip vacation that began June 2, 2018. Garza and her family visited national parks and other landmarks in Colorado, Idaho, Washington, Canada and California.

Words From The Family

Part of the official statement from her daughters, Ana and Andrea reads:

“Susie had such a passion for people. She loved her work in education, which she began at the age of 21. She would often tell her family that she would do whatever it took to help her students succeed. It was that kind of determination and dedication that she carried with her throughout her entire career.

She had an infectious sense of humor and positivity. Her desire to help others was the guiding force in her life. Her dedication to her students allowed her to change and impact so many lives.

She was such a loving and generous person, a trait she instilled in her children. Susie also instilled in them the desire to serve their community. She always pushed us to achieve our highest potential and encouraged us at every turn.

She was the very best mother and she is and will be remembered for her unwavering love. She loved each of her friends and family fiercely. She always saw the best in people.

It is our hope, as her children, that each of us remember her for her love and try to see the best in others, as she did.”

(Photo from the Garza vacation in Seven Falls, Colorado)

A Longtime Katy Educator

Garza began her career in Katy ISD in 1996 as an ESL teacher at Mayde Creek High School. In 1997, she was promoted to Assistant Principal and has worked at Katy High, Cardiff Junior High and West Memorial Junior High, where she currently worked at the time of her passing.

A Heartbroken Community

As word broke of her passing, tributes began pouring in on social media.

Sharice Wasson-Irons wrote, “My heart is completely broken! What a huge huge loss. Our WMJH family will miss her dearly!!!”

Samantha Decker Ridenhour wrote, “Susie was an amazing AP and an even better person. Praying for comfort for the family.”

Heather Jones wrote, “Mrs. Garza was an amazing AP, she helped my son navigate Jr. High. She genuinely cared about her students. She was an asset to Katy, and West Memorial. She will be deeply missed. My thoughts and prayers go out to her family.”

Katy ISD and West Memorial Junior High have truly lost a loving educator and leader.

Service information will be updated here at a later date.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

June 15, 2018  

By Katrina Katsarelis 

Katy Independent School District Superintendent Lance Hindt appointed Steve Guzzetta as the new principal of McMeans Junior High (MMJH).

 

“I am very excited to continue the success and traditions that have been established at McMeans Junior High,” said Guzzetta.  “I opened the school as a teacher and coach before becoming an administrator there so I already have a deep connection with the community and a passion for the success of the students,” added Guzzetta.

Longtime Katy Educator

Mr. Guzzetta has an extensive level of experience that includes 24 years with Katy ISD.  He began his career in 1994 as a history teacher and a coach at Katy Junior High (KJH).  In 1995, he moved to Katy High School (KHS) and taught geography and coached for five years.  In 2000, he transferred to MMJH where he taught for two years prior to be promoted to assistant principal.  Four years later he was named the curriculum principal at MMJH and he served in that capacity until 2007.  At this time, he was named assistant principal at Taylor High School (THS).  In 2015, he was promoted to associate principal and has remained in that position for the past three years.  Mr. Guzzetta holds a Bachelor of Science from Texas A&M University and a Masters of Education in Educational Administration from Prairie View A&M.

Mr. Guzzetta joins MMJH on June 18. He will be replacing Dr. Susan Rice who will be retiring.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 14, 2018

Congratulations are in order for nineteen local Chick-fil-A Team Members selected to receive a $2,500 Chick-fil-A Leadership Scholarship this fall.

 

Each recipient not only demonstrated professional leadership, teamwork, and positive influence on the job, but also a commitment to volunteer work in our local community for the past twelve months.  In addition, a personal letter of recommendation from the Owner/Operator, Rusty Wylie, was submitted for each of the outstanding award winners.

Mr. Wylie commented, “It’s a tremendous blessing to be able to recruit so many of our communities best and brightest young people.  One of the most fulfilling aspects of owning three locations is the opportunity to provide leadership training at an early age, giving our young people an edge on success that translates to any future career. I’m so proud of each and every one of them.”  The award winners from Chick-fil-A Mason Road, Chick-fil-A Cinco Ranch and Chick-fil-A Katy Green are:

Chick-fil-A Mason Road

Alexis (Lexie) Borowski, Lone Star, Undecided

Sophia Bui, University of Houston, Business/Finance

Nicholas Burnside, University of Houston, Restaurant and Hotel Management

Kandace Dobbs, University of Houston, Communications

Avery Fontenot, University of Arkansas, Business

Brooke Richardson, University of Houston, Communications

Chick-fil-A Cinco Ranch

Jane Akwitti, University of Texas- Austin, Pre Med Track

Savannah Alphin-McPhink, Ashford University, Applied Behavioral Sciences

Avery Connor, Steven F. Austin University, Music Ed

Ellie Farlow, Samford University, Nursing

Aylin (Selena) Morales, Lone Star, History

Fay Walkabout, University of Texas-Dallas, Neuro-Science

 Chick-fil-A Katy Green

Fazeeah Agoro, Texas Tech, Kinesiology /Physical Therapy

David Balderas, Lone Star, Bachelor in Science

Sonya Cadena, Texas State, Physicians Assistant

Destiny Logan, Lone Star, Nursing

Madison Morel, Abilene Christian University, Nursing

Daniel Veillon, Houston Community College & Sam Houston, Criminal Justice

Jake Winegar, Houston Baptist University, Liberal Arts- Political Science

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KATY MAGAZINE   

June 13, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Amy Aguilar, Stephens Elementary 5th grader, passed away suddenly on Friday, June 8, 2018 from an asthma attack.

(Amy and her parents celebrating her last day of 4th grade on May 25, 2018)

Amy was known as a happy, loving child who would have been 10 years old on June 23. She was enjoying the summer before her final year at Stephens Elementary. On Friday, June 8, Amy passed away suddenly from a severe asthma attack.

A Loving Daughter and Sister

Amy’s parents Ivan and Yatchzel Aguilar are devastated by the loss and say Amy was a wonderful sister to her brother Ivan and sister Mia. Amy enjoyed a close bond with her entire family and enjoyed doing “girly” things were Mia and teaching her brother how to read. Amy also loved playing with her dog Luna and her favorite color was purple.

Stephens Elementary Support

Amy enjoyed going to school at Stephens Elementary so much that she wanted to go even when she was sick, according to her parents. One of her favorite teachers was Ms. Monica Melchiorre, who has been visiting with the family daily since Amy passed away. The parents say they are very grateful for her love and care of their daughter and their family. Family, friends and faith are helping the family during this very difficult time.

Children with Asthma

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1 in 13 people have asthma, or 25 million Americans, and it is more common in children than adults. Each day 10 Americans die from asthma with adults being more likely to die from the disease than children. It is said to be the number one reason children miss school.

Services on Wednesday

Amy will be laid to rest today, Wednesday, June 13, at 3 p.m. at Klein Memorial Parklocated at 14711 Cypress North Houston, Cypress, Texas 77429.

Please Wear Purple

The burial is open to Amy’s friends and family. The parents request that everyone wear purple in honor of Amy, as this was her favorite color. “Absolutely NO BLACK!”

How to help

GoFundMe account was set up by a family member to help the immediate family with expenses.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

June 12, 2018 

Good luck to all the young men representing Katy at the Texas Boys State Convention in Austin, Texas!

Thirty-one boys from Katy-area high schools are attending the weeklong Texas Boys State 2018 convention that began June 10 in Austin.

  

The Katy boys are among more than 1,100 from all parts of Texas.  They are learning about various forms of government and are divided into 24 cities, eight counties, and four districts.  The boys are assigned to parties known as The Federalists and The Nationalists and are campaigning for various offices.

Two boys will be selected to represent Texas at The American Legion’s Boys Nation convention in July in Washington.

Members of Jonathan D. Rozier Post 164 of The American Legion in Katy selected the 31 boys after interviews that followed nominations by teachers and school counselors.   The post’s Boys State committee is led by Monte Ikner, with support from Bobby Steph, Ray Downs, Fred Kana, and Henry Thomas.

The boys are seniors-to-be and are listed by high school:

Seven Lakes:
Brody Ameen, Justin Ardis, Jacob DeGeurin, Alejandro Mantilla, Robert Myers, Joshua Shimbashi

Cinco Ranch:
Luke Austria, Nicholas Betts, Joshua Jung, Nicholas Pappas, Matthew Pharis

Katy:
Parker Egan, Dylan Koch, Mark Nicholson, Chandler Scott, Christopher Tucker

Faith West:

Lucas Campbell, Andrew Carrico, Joshua Romero

Mayde Creek:
Steven Garza, Joshua Brian Soriano, Alexis Zepeda

Tompkins:

Vincent Bruce, Michael Han, Sean Koo

Morton Ranch:
Terrell Gray, Alberto Hernandez, Thomas Walters

Taylor:

Michael Arellano, Jared Morris

St. John XXIII:
Thomas Reboli

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

June 10, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Two new Katy companies have opened recently that cater to the special needs community. Inclusive Educational Services focuses on life skills and tutoring for younger children, while Angels Life Skills works with adolescents and adults.

INCLUSIVE EDUCATIONAL SERVICES

Iris Guzman, a long time special education teacher has opened Inclusion Educational services to help children with Austism, Aspergers, Dyslexia, or others struggling with emotional or learning disability. Catering to preschool and school age children, the company offers academic tutoring, life skills and social skills coaching, parents’ rights consultations, guidance and support for special needs families, and other services and programs for special needs families.

Prior to opening IES, Guzman worked in Katy ISD, Spring ISD, and Alief ISD as a special needs teacher. Guzman has over 15 years of experience teaching special needs children and is also the mother of a special needs child. Her 25-year old daughter,  Noriann, is a graduate of Houston Community College’s V.A.S.T. program. The Inclusive Educational Services office is currently located in LaCenterra Cinco Ranch, but the company is building a classroom center at a future location in the Falcon Ranch area. IES offers a free needs assessment. Visit inclusionkaty.com 

SERVING ADOLESCENTS AND ADULTS

Angels Life Skills Center opened in March to provide services for ages 13 to adult.

The center offers Day Habilitation, a person-centered program in which they give participants more choices over their daily activities, also, giving the opportunity to develop interpersonal and communication skills. Life skills training teaches daily activities such as how to do laundry, cooking, gardening, eating healthy, using proper hygiene, balancing finances, how to tell time, the date, and/or the seasons.

Day care, before/after school care and summer care are available Monday through Friday 6am – 6pm. Angels Life Skills is located at 20829 Kingsland Blvd Suite D. They accept volunteers from the community that want to work with special needs individuals. To find out more information, you can contact them at 281-717-4870.

These two organization join others in Katy servicing the special needs community such asWe Rock The Spectrum. Katy ISD has the highest percentage of special needs students (9.9% totaling 7,805 students in the 2017/18 year school year) in the Houston area surpassing Houston ISD, Fort Bend ISD and Cy-Fair ISD due to the exceptional education.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

June 8, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Meet the Katy family behind the heartwarming story of simple, fatherly affection that has gone viral on social media.

 

Jim Porterfield (left) with his children and son-in-law

 “As some know my dad is mentally and physically handicapped and so especially now that he’s older he’s unable to work or earn an income but he’s been saving his pocket change for the past month for some reason and I thought nothing of it until I came home and found this today,” tweeted his daughter Morgan, a graduate of Taylor High School and former THS Expressions member.

 

This sweet, simple act of kindness and fatherly affection has gone viral on social media, being picked up by news outlets across the country. The tweet has gotten over 50K retweets and has been shared by People, DailyMail, and more.  We got in touch with Morgan to find out more about her father and their family.

The Accident

In 1981, railroad worker and Katy father of four children, Jim Porterfield, was in a head-one collision with a drunk driver that almost killed him.

Porterfield spent 6 weeks in a coma and underwent a total of 13 surgeries to treat severe head and bodily injuries that included a subdural hematoma, multiple lacerations, and shattered bones. Skin grafts, pins, and bolts were necessary to keep him alive and repair some of the damage – but nevertheless, Jim was left with severe physical and mental disabilities.

 

 

“He is unable to brush his hair, teeth, or eat with his dominant hand,” says his daughter, Krista on the family’s GoFundMe page, which they started to raise money to help pay for medical expenses.

Defying the Odds

Doctors said that it was unlikely that Mr. Porterfield would live, let alone walk again, but he defied the odds and not only survived, but lovingly raised and cared for his four children, despite his limitations. He worked in a file room at an oil and gas company in Houston for over 30 years, paying the bills, and providing for his kids the way a good father does.

He was laid of from his job in 2017, and the medical bills have become overwhelming for the family to handle. Not yet eligible for medical care, his children are scraping by to make ends meet. It’s been tough, but even during hardship, Jim is finding little ways to show his children how much he cares.

“My dad has always told me how blessed he is, and tried to teach me to help others and do everything for the glory of God…he’s my hero and the most kindhearted and loving man you’ll ever meet,” says Morgan.

 

Morgan will start school at Sam Houston State University in the fall, and her younger brother, Evan attends Memorial Parkway Junior High.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

June 7, 2018

Out of its 67 campuses, Katy Independent School District is proud to announce that this year, 21 were named a Texas Honor Roll School by the Educational Results Partnership (ERP) and the Institute for Productivity in Education (IPE).

 

 

“What a great way to end the school year by receiving this prestigious recognition. This distinction speaks volumes of the great things happening in our schools. It takes a village to educate a child and our superstar staff and students should be proud of the work they have accomplished,” said Christine Caskey, Ed.D., Chief Academic Officer.

The 2017-18 Texas Honor Roll includes…

ELEMENTARY

Alexander Elementary, Davidson Elementary, Griffin Elementary, Holland Elementary, Jenks Elementary, Kilpatrick Elementary, McRoberts Elementary, Pattison Elementary, Shafer Elementary, Williams Elementary, Wilson Elementary, WoodCreek Elementary

JUNIOR HIGH

Beck Junior High, Beckendorff Junior High, Cinco Ranch Junior High, McMeans Junior High, Seven Lakes Junior High, Tays Junior High, WoodCreek Junior High

HIGH SCHOOL

Cinco Ranch High School, Seven Lakes High School

After an extensive analysis of student data, these Katy ISD schools were clear leaders in getting students to grade level and beyond.

 The 2017-18 Texas Honor Roll recognizes public elementary, middle and high schools that consistently demonstrate high levels of student academic achievement, improvement in student outcomes over time and a closing of the achievement gaps. For high schools, Texas Honor Roll recognition includes college readiness.

This year, the program recognized 729 higher performing schools across the state. These schools become an accepted example to other school districts seeking to learn and replicate the best practices employed at these campuses. The Katy ISD schools will be provided with a banner to display at their campus.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
June 2018 

After taking hundreds of nominations over the past several weeks, we are excited to present the 2018 list of Katy’s most prominent, influential, inspirational, successful, and charitable men who are leading the way in Katy. (Consider yourselves all #1 because these are in ALPHABETICAL ORDER.)

 

TOP 100 KATY MEN’S MIXER TUES. JUNE 19, 6-8 PM

Top 100 men and their guests are invited to attend a fun, casual mixer event held at NO LABEL BREWERY.  Free entrance and beer for Top 100 Men. Their invited guests are also welcome but will be charged $10 for entrance (covers up to 3 beers). This is an exclusive event for Top 100 Men and their invited friends/guests. Visit KATY MAGAZINE’S Facebook page event to RSVP or email editor@katymagazine.com for questions or additional details.

1. Monty Ballard, philanthropist and YMCA namesake

2. Tim Barker, pastor of Katy Community Fellowship

3. Justin Beckendorff, Waller County Commissioner

4. Frank Bielec, cast member on TLC’s Trading Spaces

5. Nic Black, good samaritan and Harvey hero

6. Jay Bobo, teacher of the year, Miller Career and Technology Center

7. Tom Bolin, First Baptist Church former pastor and longtime Katy icon

8. Jeffrey Brashear, Municipal court judge, US Naval veteran, Katy native

9. Sgt. Brian Brawner, Harvey hero, Harris County District 4, Blue Light Letters

10. Chuck Brawner, City of Katy Mayor

11. Rafael Brazo, teacher of the year, Seven Lakes High School

 12. Bob Bryant, former fine arts director of Katy ISD and school namesake

13. Doyle Callender, former City of Katy Mayor

14. Bill Callegari, former State Representative

15. Don Clayton, head athletic director, football coach at Cinco Ranch High School

16. Lee Crews, Katy ISD chief operations officer

17. James Cross, principal of Cinco Ranch High School

18. John Curley, teacher of the year, Seven Lakes High School, father of cancer survivor

19. Andrew Derry, principal of British International School of Houston

20. Brett Donaldson, owner of Grand Vision and philanthropist

21. Ryann Donaldson, owner of Grand Vision and philanthropist

22. Duran Dowdle, Mayor pro tem, City of Katy

23. Jerry Edmonson, senior pastor of The Fellowship

24. Don Elder, former City of Katy Mayor, Board of Directors for Metro

25. Keith Garvin, KPRC reporter

26. Andrew Gaston, teacher, LaCrosse coach at Taylor High School

27. Glen Ginter, longtime Katy dentist and community volunteer

28. Stan Goss, executive coach, Visions events leader, and community volunteer

29. Austin Hansen, author, philanthropist, and volunteer

30. Chris Harris, City of Katy council member

 

31. Bill Hastings, City of Katy police chief

32. John “Hawk” Hawkins, 268th District County Associate Judge and former Asst. DA Fort Bend County.

33. Constable Ted Heap, Harris County Precinct 5

34. Lance Hindt, Katy ISD superintendent

35. Dr. Zachary Hodges, President Northwest College, HCC

36. Fabol Hughes, former City of Katy Mayor

37. Ken Janda, founding member and volunteer, Katy ISD Education Foundation

38. Mo Jeloudarzedeh, charitable giver, owner of Mo’s Place

39. Gary Joseph, head athletic coordinator, football coach at Katy High School

40. Sam Jow, teacher of the year, McMeans Junior High

41. Andy Kahan, victims’ rights advocate

42. Bobby Katsabas, owner of Snappy’s and community icon

43. John Micah Kerber, teacher of the year McDonald Junior High

44. Lance LaCour, Katy Area EDC president and CEO

45. Bill Lacy, Katy ISD board of Trustees

46. Jim Leggett, senior pastor of Grace Fellowship UMC

47. David Loesch, Katy Rotary and president of WWBF

48. Kevin Luce, Harvey hero and charitable giver

49. Don Massey, Community volunteer and Harvey hero

50. Don McCoy, Fulshear Chamber of Commerce President

51. Mike McGown, pastor of Parkway Fellowship

52. Andy Meyers, Fort Bend County Commissioner

53. Jose Morrillo, business owner and philanthropist

54. Dan Naef, president of Cane Island

55. Johnny Nelson (posthumously), longtime Katy Icon and namesake of Katy Heritage Museum

56. Sage Northcutt, famous UFC Fighter, outspoken Christian, Katy native

57. Ralph Oliver, Harvey hero, founder of Texans Embracing America’s Military

58. Twaski Parker, teacher of the year, Mayde Creek Junior High

59. Richard (Dick) Phillips, University of Houston

60. Steve Pierson, former City of Katy council member and avid volunteer

61. Richard Piwonka, Teacher of the year, Morton Ranch High School

62. Robert Powell, Harvey hero, Grand Lakes rescue and rebuilder 

63. Zachary Randolph, Katy teen fired for paying for police officer’s dessert

64. Rory Robertson, passionate school, sports, and community volunteer

65. Jay Rodriguez, Morning Show Co-Host, SUNNY 99.1

66. Brian Royo, owner of No Label Brewery

67. James Ross, GM of Katy Mills

68. Ryan Rush, Senior Pastor Kingsland Baptist Church

69. Heath Rushing, Memorial Hermann Hospital CEO

70. Bobby Sanders, OTHS teen leadership teacher and head basketball coach

71. Luis Santiago, Katy ISD police officer and Teddy Cops program coordinator

72. Hank Schmidt, former City of Katy mayor and community icon

73. Mike Schofield, State Representative

74. George Scott, Katy ISD Board of Trustees

75. Matt Schomburg, avid community volunteer and business owner

76. Fred Shafer, lifelong educator and Katy ISD school namesake

77. Dr. Jim Siebert, Chief Meteorologist for Fox 26 News

78. Roman Soto, MCHS grad, professional concert cellist

79. Ernest Stevenson, Teacher of the year, Opportunity Awareness Center

80. Nolan Stillwell, Culinary artist, Owner of Sweet Heat Jam Co.

 

81. James McCoy Taylor, Katy native, musician, contestant on The Bachelorette

82. Cyril Thomas, Entrepreneur and philanthropist

83. Jeff Thompson, Katy rotary

84. Constable Wayne Thompson, Fort Bend County Constable

85. Obra Tompkins, career educator and Katy ISD school namesake

86. Alex Tsounakas , Owner Snappy’s and community icon

87. Lt. Simon VanDyk, PIO, Harris County Emergency Services District #48 Fire Department

88. Downy Vickery, Prosperity Bank and community philanthropist

89. Ted Vierling, assistant superintendent of operations, Katy ISD

90. Hendrik Volschenk, Harvey hero, Texas Game Warden

91. Evan Vourazeris, Katy actor on Netflix’s hit series, Ozark

92. Russell Wilson, Katy Fire Chief and named Texas Fire Chief of the Year

93. Lewis White, Attorney and community philanthropist

94. Robert Willeby, Community advocate and volunteer

95. Tom Wilson, career educator and Katy ISD school namesake

96. Ray Wolman, career educator and Katy ISD school namesake

97. Mark Wiley, President of Hope Impacts

98. Rusty Wylie, CFA franchisee and philanthropist

99. Dr. Ed Young, Second Baptist Church senior pastor

100. Dr. John Zerwas, State Representative and MD

TOP 100 KATY MEN’S MIXER TUES. JUNE 19, 6-8 PM

Top 100 men and their guests are invited to attend a fun, casual mixer event held at NO LABEL BREWERY.  Free entrance and beer for Top 100 Men. Their invited guests are also welcome but will be charged $10 for entrance (covers up to 3 beers). This is an exclusive event for Top 100 Men and their invited friends/guests. Visit KATY MAGAZINE’S Facebook page event to RSVP or email editor@katymagazine.com for questions or additional details.

MORE KATY MAGAZINE STORIES 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

June 5, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

 

Katy families who are struggling financially and have children in the district ages Pre-K through 12th can register to receive free school supplies for the 2018 – 2019 school year.

The first day is school is stressful for all children. For disadvantaged children and families, that stress is magnified when they have to go without essential items like binders, pencils, and backpacks.

Katy Christian Ministries is now taking registration information for Katy ISD students ages Pre-K through 12th grade to receive school supplies for the upcoming school year.

FAMILIES MUST:

– Be active clientele of Katy Christian Ministries

– Live within Katy ISD limits

– Students must be actively enrolled in a Katy ISD school

Call 281-391-9623, Monday – Thursday from 1 to 5 p.m. to register and get more information.

 

SPECIAL INVITATION:

In addition to the Red Apple donation drive, students at Bear Creek, Sundown, Stephens, Mayde Creek, Hutsell, Rhodes, Franz, and Schmalz elementary will receive an invitation to the “Operation Backpack” event at the end of the summer.

DONATE:
For those who  wish to donate to Katy families in need, CLICK HERE. 

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 30, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

 

On Tuesday, May 29 the Katy ISD Board of Trustees held their monthly regular board meeting. Many changes and additions were approved. All agenda items below were approved 6-0, as George Scott was not in attendance.

 

2018-19 Teacher Salary Increase 

School Board Trustees approved a $1,230 pay increase for all teachers, which is an average of 2%.

Non-teacher personnel will receive a 2% increase of the midpoint of the 2017-18 non-teacher pay ranges.

New Assistant Superintendent of Operations & SLHS Principal

Ted Vierling was announced as the new Assistant Superintendent of Operations. Mr. Vierling has 20 years of experience in Katy ISD. His service includes four years of teaching and two years serving as an assistant principal at Mayde Creek High School and two years as an assistant principal followed by five years as the principal at Beckendorff Junior High. For the past seven years, he has served as the principal at Seven Lakes High School.

Mr. Vierling is a graduate of Katy High School.  He holds a Bachelor of Science from Texas A&M University and a Master of Education Leadership from the University of Houston.  Mr. Vierling’s will begin his new position on July 1, 2018.

For those who have not had the pleasure of working with Mr. Vierling, his name might sound familiar as his speech entitled, “Why not? ” , at this year’s Seven Lakes High school graduation ceremony was highly praised across social media.

On Wednesday, Superintendent Lance Hindt appointed Kerri Finnesand as the new principal of Seven Lakes High School (SLHS). Ms. Finnesand has 22 years of experience in education. Her service includes five years of teaching, three years as an assistant principal, two years as an intermediate principal and 13 years as a principal at all three levels. Ms. Finnesand holds a Bachelor of Science from Penn State University and a Master of Education from the University of Houston.

Finnesand will join the Spartan family on May 31.

New Position – Coordinator for Bullying Prevention & Student Support
The Board of Trustees approved a request to create 35 new positions for the 2018-19 school year including a Coordinator for Bullying Prevention & Student Support. This position will be under Ken Gregorski, Deputy Superintendent.

The district has been researching to create this position for the past few months. In looking at Katy ISD needs, HR looked at the entire nation in creating the duties and requirements. Once again, Katy ISD is innovative in this area as not many districts in the United States have this -type of person on-staff. The position open now for applications. Gregorski stated that they are casting a wide-net in order to get the best fit, including but not limited to educators, counselors, and law enforcement.

New Position – Staff Attorney

A staff attorney position was added to work under general counsel. The position will help provide better access to counsel from the campuses, especially for KISD’s special education population.

Families move to Katy ISD for their special education program. Over other area top school districts (Houston ISD, Fort Bend ISD and Cypress Fairbanks ISD), Katy has a higher percentage of special education students, 9.9% that totals 7,805 students in the 2017/18 year school year.

The entire meeting agenda, minutes and video can be found here. The next work study meeting will be on Monday, June 18, 2018 and regular school board meeting will be Monday, June 25, 2018.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 30, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

 

Katy Unites celebrates Katy ISD by using social media avenues to tell positive, encouraging stories.

(Teachers at Kilpatrick show support for Katy Unites)

 

POSITIVE VIBES ONLY 

Katy Unites began as a conversation between community members in mid-May, when people felt that an anti-Katy ISD movement created controversy and attracted  negative, national media attention.” People felt it was time stop the cycle of untenable, counter-productive, and aggressive conversations. The group  felt that, the use of anger and personal attacks to address bullying only increased the bullying exponentially .

“The cycle just had to stop, so we decided to try something different”, says community member and group co-organizer, Melissa Nixon.

 

 

A CLEAR VISION 

In order to be successful, Nixon and other co-founders knew it was important to have a clear vision and goal for the group. Some of their goals include:

  • Celebrate the people and programs in Katy ISD that are making a positive difference.

  • Inspiring others

  • Create an environment that encourages creative, productive talks to address the challenges in Katy ISD.

HOW TO JOIN 

There is not an “official” membership to join. Interested persons only need to follow the group on one of their social media avenues…FacebookInstagramTwitter and awebsite (still under development). The group has periodic face-to-face meetings to organize the direction of the group and plan for the future. Meeting information can be found on Facebook. Katy Unites states “We welcome anyone in our community who wants to help celebrate our successes to join Katy Unites.”

Katy Unites plans to be a consistent and permanent movement celebrating  and sharing moments in Katy ISD and the love many community members have for the #1 district in the Houston area.

“The focus is to put more energy and power in our successes because we believe a positive focus encourages positive results,” says Nixon.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 24, 2018

Katy ISD is proud to announce the top two students from each high school who are ranked highest academically in their respective graduating classes.

 

These students have worked extremely hard from the very first day of their ninth grade year until the last day of their senior year.  Many of them are now moving on to prestigious colleges and universities throughout the nation.  The 2017-2018 valedictorians and salutatorians are:

CINCO RANCH HIGH SCHOOL

Shreya Budhiraja – Valedictorian

 

Subhiksha Srinivasan– Salutatorian

KATY HIGH SCHOOL

Marie-Anne Barron – Valedictorian

Piper Mackenzie Harris – Salutatorian

MAYDE CREEK HIGH SCHOOL

Arman Thomas Yazdian– Valedictorian

David Liu – Salutatorian

MORTON RANCH HIGH SCHOOL

Penelope Nicole Meranio Gadia – Valedictorian

Kelly Tseng – Salutatorian

SEVEN LAKES HIGH SCHOOL

Anusri Dharmendra Shah – Valedictorian

Dennis Liu – Salutatorian

TAYLOR HIGH SCHOOL

Sachi Khemka – Valedictorian

Hachem Bey El-Murhbi – Salutatorian

TOMPKINS HIGH SCHOOL

Viraaj Singh Punia – Valedictorian

Rohit Ramesh Kamath – Salutatorian

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 20, 2018

Katy ISD Superintendent Lance Hindt addresses the school shooting in Santa Fe and what the district does on an ongoing basis to protect our schools.

Dear Katy ISD Parents, Staff and Community,

Today, all of us at Katy ISD are saddened at the senseless loss of lives after the tragic events at Santa Fe High School. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Santa Fe community.

 

As a parent and Katy ISD superintendent, I want to reiterate to our Katy ISD community that we stand in solidarity with the community of Santa Fe ISD.  We also take this opportunity to reiterate to our parents and community that Katy ISD has a robust emergency protocol. Regularly, the Katy ISD Police Department, along with officials from every campus address emergency situations and conduct the appropriate emergency preparedness drills. While classes and activities will proceed regularly, there will be an increased presence of Katy ISD police officers at our schools.

What occurred in Santa Fe is a reminder to parents and teachers of the crucial importance of maintaining an open line of communication with students. We know that the number one deterrent to any threat is an open dialogue between parents, students and staff as they have first-hand knowledge when it comes to keeping our schools safe.

Also, we understand that the students may want to talk. Please know that personnel at our campuses will be available to speak to students who may need to be supported in the wake of the recent events.  Additional information concerning our district-wide safety and security resources can be found here.

Thank you for support,

Lance Hindt, Ed.D.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 17, 2018

Kaitlyn Sheroke, a senior at Katy Independent School District Seven Lakes High School (SLHS), has been awarded the prestigious Gold Medal Scholastic Writing Award for her short story titled Sirenia.

 

Kaitlyn will be traveling to New York City to be recognized during the annual Carnegie Hall ceremony on June 7.

 
“We are over-the-moon proud of our young scholar who has been a student in Katy ISD since her elementary school days,” said SLHS English Department Chair Pam Cannon.  “Kaitlyn’s writing is more than just an assignment, she pours out her heart into each and every one of her pieces.  The SLHS Spartans are proud to see her work receiving the national attention it deserves,” added Cannon.

 

To receive this award, students must first go through regional judging in order to advance to national review.  This year, Kaitlyn along with nine other Katy ISD students became regional Gold Key participants.  The history of the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards is known for its rich notable alumni, like Sylvia Plath and Joyce Carol Oates, who have gone on to write a variety of contemporary works of literature which are read around the world.

After graduation, Kaitlyn will be attending Baylor University.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 15, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

On Monday, Mayor Brawner and the City of Katy passed a resolution for Katy’s Heritage Museum to be named after former Katy mayor and city administrator, Johnny Nelson.

Nelson passed away surrounded by loved ones in January 2018. He served as mayor from 1983 – 1987. 

 

After retiring from his role as city administrator (1994-2014), Nelson became the curator for the Katy Heritage Museum.

The honor, therefore, of having the museum re-named in his honor, is another way that his friends and loved ones keep his legacy alive.

His wife of 51 years, Paulette, was at City Hall to see the resolution pass.

There will be a re-dedication ceremony on Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 10:30 a.m.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 14, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton  

Katy High softball and Tompkins baseball both won their matchups over the weekend and advance in their bids for a state title.

 

As the #1 ranked team in the Texas as well as #8 in the nation, the Katy High School softball team is headed towards another state playoff game for the second time in 4 years. After winning the match up with Ridge Point on Friday in the 6A regional quarter-finals double header,  the Tigers (36-1) will face Kingwood (33-9) in the semi-finals this week.

Game one against Kingwood will be on Thursday, May 17 at 6:00 pm at Katy. Game two is at Kingwood on Friday, May 18 at 6:00 pm. If a third game is needed to break a tie, it will be held immediately following game two on Friday.

No. 7 state-ranked Tompkins (25-8) baseball team, had some ups and downs over the weekend but came out on top over Westside. This is the first time the falcons have advanced to the regional quarterfinals. They will face Cy Ranch (26-6-2), whom they fell to last year.

  

The games will be played on Saturday, March 19 at Tompkins.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

May 11, 2018  

By Jennifer Skelton and Katrina Katsarelis

Superintendent announces retirement and board votes yes to pursuing litigation at last night’s meeting.

Proceeding with Lawsuit

At last night’s meeting, the board of trustees voted unanimously to hire outside counsel to pursue litigation for defamation against the superintendent, board members and other employees of Katy ISD that have been harassed in the last few months.

The school board is going forward with a lawsuit to protect the district’s reputation. Several board members stated that the bullying accusations were debilitating for students, faculty and Hindt even affecting hiring of candidates.

An attorney for the district said it’s for that reason they feel it’s necessary to spend what they need to pay for outside counsel. Attorneys would file defamation lawsuits on behalf of the district.

Hindt Announces Retirement Amid Heckling

Dr. Lance Hindt became emotional as he announced his plans to retire as of January 1, 2019. As he announced his plans to retire, a small group of hecklers began cheering and heckling loudly. One of the hecklers yelled “Merry Christmas!”

While some heckled, there were many supporters in the room appearing dismayed and some even began crying.  Hindt stated that his highest professional honor was to come back to the place he was raised and become superintendent, but he has to put his family first now.

Click to watch video

“In light of an organized and relentless and dishonest smear campaign against me, I cannot remain as superintendent of Katy ISD. My family is now my number one priority. They are innocent bystanders. This malicious campaign against me is hurting them severely and I cannot allow it any further,” Hindt said. “I love Katy. But there is a vicious ugliness in the ruthless attacks that I and others have endured. My prayer is this community, the silent majority, comes together and never allows something like this to happen again.”

“My wife and my children, they need me,” Hindt said. “In light of an organized, relentless and dishonest smear campaign against me, I cannot remain superintendent of Katy ISD while fulfilling those duties and still fulfill my sacred duty as a husband and father.”

See the Katy ISD video recording here.

Each board member addressed Dr. Hindt after his resignation expressing love and respect for Dr. Hindt. Many apologized that these attacks on him and his family have led him to resign but understood his decision. As each address was read in the board meeting, those who support Dr. Hindt were shocked and moved to tears. Those in the community that don’t support him, continued yelling out from the audience and heckling during the entire meeting.

Vendetta Against Hindt

The campaign against Lance Hindt was initiated by a Katy ISD dad and internet marketing professional named  Sean Dolan. Dolan started a social media page called, “A Better Legacy” under the guise to stop bullying but many noticed right away it seemed more like a Lance Hindt hate page. Prior to his accusations against Lance Hindt, Dolan surreptitiously recorded meetings with Katy ISD teachers. One of the recordings that Dolan openly posted on social media involved girls in his son’s class pouring Fruit Loops cereal in Dolan’s son’s backpack. When Dolan didn’t like the outcome of his son’s “bullying” situation, many Katy ISD supporters believe that Dolan, who some has been referred to as a  “media pimp” used his internet and social media marketing background to cyberbully the superintendent to quit. Dolan was in attendance at last night’s meeting

Others in Fear of Cyberbullying

The board members told the story of how people in the community (the board did not give any names) have been scared into silence. Most people in the community support the superintendent and Katy ISD but after seeing how Dr. Hindt and his supporters were relentlessly attacked, they have been scared to come forward with their support.

Supporters of Dolan feel that he is bringing things to light in the district that need to address and the group plans to make as much noise as is needed to have their concerns addressed. Many of Dolan’s social media followers don’t live in Katy ISD but heard about the bullying controversy on social media and on news stations.

One of the overall sentiments stated by the board members was “Enough is Enough” of the attacks and cyber bullying that has cast a negative light on our community. It’s time to take a stand against all forms of bullying.

In anticipation of the lawsuit, Dolan has started a gofundme page in an attempt to raise legal fees.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
May 5, 2018  

Katy Magazine Editors

Katy ISD has announced the results for the 2018 school board election for position 6 and 7.

 

Congratulations to Dawn Champagne and Susan Gesoff for being elected to represent Katy ISD on the Board of Trustees.

 

About Susan Gesoff (Position 6)

Susan won the position with 3,324 votes versus 2,182 for Scott Martin.

Susan Gesoff is married to husband Glen and they have lived in Katy for 13 years. The couple has three daughters Katie 24, Carly 21, and Kelly 18, who all graduated from Seven Lakes High. Susan is a former Katy ISD teacher (2006-2012) who has also volunteered in her children’s schools and with the theatre and choir booster clubs at Beckendorff Junior High and Seven Lakes High. She also volunteers with the National Charity League. She currently works as an Engineer at BP.

About Dawn Champagne (Position 7)

Dawn Champagne won the position with 3,025 votes versus 2,629 for Don Massey.

Dawn, her husband, Brett, and three children have lived in Katy for 17 years, currently residing in Kelliwood. Their three children attend and/or graduated from Taylor High School. Dawn has volunteered in Katy ISD  for over a decade at the school and district level. She also volunteers at her church, St. Peter’s UMC, and other organizations. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from University of Houston with a Consumer Science Degree and also holds a Masters of Business Administration from University of Houston.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 5, 2018 

Ashley Lancaster

Third through fifth grade members of the Kindness Crew are on a mission to spread joy and friendship to every student at Bryant Elementary through easy, fun, and uplifting weekly challenges.

Once a month, students from third, fourth, and fifth grade meet with the school counselor at Bryant Elementary to talk about what is happening in the lives of Bengals, including setbacks and successes.

  

Each member of the Kindness Crew has input in creating weekly challenges. The entire campus competes, and students can nominate each other to be recognized for showing acts of extreme kindness.

Every Monday, the Kindness Crew greets students showing up for the day with a high-five and a “Good Morning!”

“They line the entry way to the school, getting kids motivated to start their week off right,” says Assistant Principal Lindsay O’Leary.

This month, they created motivational posters for students that will be taking the STAAR test.

“To have the Kindness Crew be models for our younger Bengals has gotten my 2nd grade class excited about completing kindness challenges. When they see those older students are motivated each week to do something kind for others, they want to follow along, which brings our whole school together,” says second grade teacher, Christi Elrod.

One of the favorite challenges so far has been the “Talk to Someone New” Challenge, where kids are encouraged to say hello to a student they have never met.

Bryant Elementary staff hopes that the Bengals’ example will inspire other Katy ISD campuses to join in. “The culture of kindness we have here at Bryant has really been in large part to the intentional importance our counselor and administrators have placed on being kind to others. There is not just a “beginning of the year push” to have students exhibit kindness, but a purposeful, sustained effort to keep kindness on the hearts and minds of our students and faculty,” says Elrod.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 4, 2018

Ashley Lancaster

With over 8,000 special education students currently enrolled at Katy Independent School District, a familiar face will now be the new Director of Compliance for Special Education.

Gwen Coffey’s new role was formally announced to the public by the Katy ISD Board of Trustees during the monthly board meeting.

 

Coffey is currently the principal at Roberta Rylander Elementary. As part of her new endeavors, she will direct the district’s special education program to ensure the provision comprehensive services for students with disabilities. She will also work to individualize educational plans that meet the needs of all students with disabilities and ensure compliance with state, federal and local requirements.

 

“My belief is that our students are our most valuable resource.  Increased student learning and achievement are my passion,” said Coffey.  “I am honored to have the opportunity to work collaboratively with our Katy community to help increase achievement for all students.”

Ms. Coffey’s educational experience extends to several professions within school campuses.  She began her career in 1997 as a teacher in Corpus Christi, Texas.  Two years later she joined the Katy ISD family as a teacher at Golbow Elementary where she taught both general education and special education for six years.  Her next endeavor was as a counselor at Huggins Elementary at Lamar Consolidated Independent School District.  Following that, she was a middle school counselor for one year at Bammel Middle School in Spring ISD, which lead to her taking the assistant principal position at that school.  However, Ms. Coffey knew that Katy ISD was her home and decided to come back as an Assistant Principal at Cimarron Elementary.

 

Ms. Coffey holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, a Master of Science in Elementary Curriculum and Instruction, a Masters of Education in Counseling, and she is currently in obtaining her Doctoral Degree in Educational Leadership from Texas Tech University.  Coffey will begin her new endeavor in June 2018.

Here is the list of prominent, influential, inspirational, strong, and charitable women who are leading the way in Katy. (Consider yourselves all #1 because these are in ALPHABETICAL ORDER.)

 

KATY MAGAZINE  l  MAY 2018

By Katy Magazine Editors

 

1. BEVERLY ALLEN

 Development Manager of Christ Clinic

2. DIANE ALLEN

Anti-Sex Trafficking Champion

3. KATHY ALT
Executive Director of Ballard House

4. YVONNE ARCENEAUX

Parks Director for Willow Fork Drainage District

5. ERIN BALLARD

Philanthropist and Volunteer; Namesake of Ballard House   

6. GIGI BETHKE

Katy Educator and School Namesake

7. REBECCA BLACKMON

VP of Prosperity Bank and First Woman in the Katy Rotary

8. JOY LEE BOLIN

Longtime Katy Resident and Volunteer

9. MARTHA BROWN

Katy ISD KEYS Mentor and Katy ISD Partners in Education

10. FELICE BRYANT

Katy Educator and School Namesake

11. MISSY BUNCH

City Secretary, City of Katy 

 

12. KAY CALLENDER

Keep Katy Beautiful

13. AMY CAMPBELL

 Special Needs Advocate and Katy ISD Namesake

14. Dr. CHRISTINE CASKEY

Chief Academic Officer, Katy ISD

15. KRISTEN COWAN

Founder of Smilin’ Rylen Foundation

16. CHRISTA CLIFTON

Memorial Hermann Executive and Community Volunteer

17. DEYSI CRESPO

Executive Director of Katy Christian Ministries

18. CHRIS CROCKETT

Education Advocate and Community Volunteer

19. CARRA DANIELS

Principal of Beck Junior High

20. KEIKO DAVIDSON

Katy Educator and School Namesake 

21. GINGER DEWBERRY

Katy Search and Rescue Champion in Hurricane Harvey

22. MINDY DICKERSON

Paetow High School Principal

23. PEGGY DIMMICK

Director of Katy’s Fussell Senior Center

24. MARIA DIPETTA

Katy ISD Media Relations and Multimedia Manager

25, FATIMA DONALDSON

Artist, photographer, and arts philanthropist

26. TAMARA DORE

Owner of Katy Budget Books

27. LORI DOUCET ALEXANDER

Nottingham/Kelliwood Fry Road Tree Activist

28. WENDY DUNCAN

President of Willow Fork Drainage Ditch 

29. COURTNEY DOYLE

Katy ISD Board of Trustees

30. DANA DUSEK

Baby Gowns for Eternity

31. DIANA ELDER

Katy FFA champion and volunteer

32. REBECCA FOX

Katy ISD Board of Trustees

33. ANNIE GERHARDT

President of Cinco Ranch Ladies Club

34. KAYE GOOLSBY

Political activist and national grassroots chair for Ted Cruz, and others.

35. SHARON GRAF

Social Media Liaison for Harris County ESD 48 and Search and Rescue at TEXSAR

36. DR. LISA GRAHAM-GARZA

Local dentist and founder of Autism Rescue Angels

37. REBEKAH GREGORY

Boston Marathon bombing survivor, amputee, writer, and speaker

38. DR. ANDREA GROOMS

Katy ISD Chief Communications Officer

39. SALLY GUPTON

Assistant Principal of Creech Elementary

40. ELIZABETH HANSON

Past president of the RWCK and Cinco Ranch Ladies Club

41. SUSAN DENISE HASTINGS

Katy Christian Ministries Crisis Center Director

42.TINA HATCHER

Founder of Hope Impacts

43. PATTY HENSON

Director of the Katy High Bengal Brigade for 34 years

44. KATHRYN HINDT

Teacher and First Lady of Katy ISD

45. LORA HODGES

ELA Instructional Coach at Exley Elementary

46. BONNIE HOLLAND

Associate Superintendent, Administration, Governance and Legal Affairs, School Namesake

47. SAMANTHA HOLSOMBACK 

Entrepreneur and avid volunteer

48. NICOLE ISTRE

Owner and founder of Katy’s Early Childhood Enrichment Center, and early childhood education trainer and consultant

49. LESLYN JACKS

District Wide Elementary Teacher of the Year and Katy Elementary Music Teacher

50. KAREN JAGGERS

Autism advocate and owner of Stokan Jaggers & Associates

51. EFFIE KATSABAS

Co-owner of Snappy’s Restaurant

52. TYLER KAY

Mural Artist

53. MICHELLE LACOUR

First Lady of the Katy Area EDC

54. PATTI LACY

VP of the Board for Katy Christian Ministries

55. GAIL LAND

Retired music educator and avid volunteer

56. KELLY LITVAK

Anti-Sex Trafficking Champion, founder of Childproof America

57. CARRIE LOWERY

Principal at Bethke Elementary

58. EUBERTA LUCAS

Principal of Creech Elementary

59. ANITA MANCINI

Director of Katy Cowgirls

60. ANNIE MEEKS

District wide Rookie Teacher of the Year

61. LISA MARIE

Golf Celebrity

62. DR. DOREEN MARTINEZ

Principal of Memorial Parkway Elementary

63. KERRI MCCURDY

Established Moms to the Rescue during Hurricane Harvey

64. STEPHANIE MCDANIEL

Founder of Graeme’s Superheroes

65. DR. IMELDA MEDRANO

Principal at Seven Lakes JH

66. LINDA MERRELL

Retired educator, avid volunteer, on the board of Katy Cares

67. KRISTIN MILLER

Arts Advocate and Volunteer

68. KATHRYN MILLS

Educator and Hurricane Harvey Book Club Founder

69. ABI MORTON

Founder of Clothed By Faith

70. DAWN MORTUS

Founder of Keep Kids Connected 

71. CHELSEA MUESSE

Widow of Jordan Muesse

72. JOAN MURRAY

Author, missionary, speaker, pastor.

73. ANNE MURRAY-REARDON

Cancer survivor and volunteer

74. SHARI NIGHTINGALE

Founder of Lindsay’s Light, speaker, and relationship violence educator

75. ERICA NOWELL

Cancer survivor and now a Cancer Nurse Practitioner

76. JENNIFER PIERCE

Chick-fil-A Marketing Director and Community Volunteer

77. LARISSA PLUNTO

Community Relations Director for Congressman Michael McCaul

78. KAYCE REINA

Tourism and Marketing Director for the City of Katy

79. LILY ROGERS

Social Services Director, Katy Christian Ministries

80. DR. SUSAN RICE

McMeans Junior High Principal

81. JENNIFER ROYO

Co-Owner of No Label Brewery and Philanthropist

82. CHERYL SAGE

Entrepreneur and Early Childhood Education Expert

83. MANDY SANDLIN

District Wide Teacher of the Year and OTHS Teacher

84. SANDY SCHMIDT

Keep Katy Beautiful

85. ABBIE SCHOMBURG

Special Needs Advocate, Katy Wolfpack coach

86. PATTI SHAFER

Katy Educator and School Namesake

87. SUSAN SMITH

Business owner, philanthropist, and community volunteer

88. MARSHA SMITH

Vice President of KARE (Katy Association of Retired Teachers) and avid community volunteer.

89. PATSY STANLEY

Katy Educator and School Namesake

90. DR. MELINDA STONE

Principal at WoodCreek JH

91. MELANIE SUKOLICS

Business owner, avid volunteer, Harvey hero

92. JANET THEIS

Katy ISD Partners in Education and Katy ISD Education Foundation

93. ASHLEY VANN

President of Katy ISD Board of Trustees

94. RHONDA WARD

Assistant Superintendent, Student Support Services

95. CHAKILA WHITE

VP of DaVita Healthcare and Volunteer

96. TARA WILSON

President of the Board of Directors, Katy ISD Education Foundation

97. CINDY WINGO

President of RWCK

98. JAMIE WOLMAN

Former Katy ISD educator, Keep Katy Beautiful board member, and school namesake

99. DR LORENA ZERTUCHE

Bear Creek Elementary Principal

100. SYLVIA ZERWAS

Wife of Rep. John Zerwas

We solicited nominations from community leaders and readers on social media venues and through email to compile these 100 Top Katy Women of 2018!

During a memorable gathering at the Leonard E. Merrell Center, Katy Independent School District Superintendent Lance Hindt, along with Board of Trustees, honored the “Of the Year” employees.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

May 2, 2018

 

Among those recognized were:  District-wide Campus Teacher of the Year, District-wide Rookie Teacher of the Year, Principals of the Year, Nurse of the Year and Counselors of the Year.

District-wide Elementary Campus Teacher of the Year

Leslyn Jacks is the Music Specialist and Director of the Choir program at Katy Elementary (KE).  Since joining KE her choirs have doubled in enrollment and she has directed more than 30 performances leading to a record number of her students continuing their music courses at the junior high level. This year, her and her students performed just six weeks after Hurricane Harvey spreading joy through music and demonstrating the resilience of the Katy Community. Jacks is one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of Katy in 2018.

District-wide Secondary Campus Teacher of the Year

Amanda Sandlin is a psychology teacher at Tompkins High School (OTHS).  Through her lessons, Sandlin seeks to bring the content alive for her students.  Her greatest goal is for them to gain skills to succeed outside the classroom.  She utilizes the study of positive psychology to help her students lead meaningful and fulfilling lives. Sandlin is one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of Katy in 2018.

District-wide Elementary Rookie Teacher of the Year

Annie Meeks is an English Language Arts (ELA) and social studies teacher at Stephens Elementary (USE).  She may have just begun her teaching career this year but she has made an impression with her tenacity and ability to build relationships.  She believes that in a world full of technology and distractions, it is important to find ways to better maintain students’ focus. Meeks is one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of Katy in 2018.

 

District-wide Secondary Rookie Teacher of the Year

Rebecca Calfee from Mayde Creek Junior High (MCJH) began her career this year as an eighth grade social studies teacher.  Calfee is a product of Katy ISD and she sets her students up for success through detailed lesson planning.  Her preparation and skillset set her apart from others as she gives the impression of a seasonal veteran, rather than a first-year teacher.  She spends her extra time tutoring her students and makes a point of attending student activities outside of her classroom to show support.

District-wide Nurse of the Year

Kim Cromie, from Bonnie Holland Elementary (BHE), moved from California to Maryland and was involved in a Head Start program as the Health and Safety Administrator.  This opportunity ignited her love of working with children and families. That is when she went into nursing school. When she and her husband moved to Katy she was given the opportunity to be the campus nurse at BHE.  She knew she had finally found her calling.  Besides keeping students healthy, Nurse Cromie also mentors other nurses in Katy ISD.

District-wide Elementary Counselor of the Year

Susan Coventon has spent the last 21 years in education at Katy ISD.  Even though she started out as a teacher, she realized her calling was in counseling.  She is currently the school counselor at Nottingham Country Elementary (NCE) where she dedicates her time to guide students in their journey toward healing and success.  Coventon’s experience is widespread and includes training of trainers in crisis prevention & preparedness as well as mental health. You will find her volunteering at Bo’s Place, offering grief-counseling support for children and their families.

District-wide Junior High Counselor of the Year

Jodi Darcey has been a counselor at Katy ISD for six years and a district lead counselor for the past three.  She is currently at WoodCreek Junior High where she uses her skills, coupled with the desire to help others to connect with students and staff.  Through guidance, character building, individual and group counseling coupled with parent education and counselor collaboration, Darcey knows everyone can succeed.

 

District-wide High School Counselor of the Year

Glynn Guynes from Katy High School began his career in Katy ISD in 2007 as a counselor at Katy High School (KHS).  In 2012, Guynes started serving in the roll of KHS Lead Counselor and as District Lead Counselor.  That year he was also named the KHS Support Staff Member of the Year. He serves as a mentor to new counselors and coordinates the new counselor orientation.

 

District-wide Elementary Principal of the Year

Stephens Elementary Principal Stephanie Vaughan has demonstrated great leadership not just at her current campus but also at Sundown Elementary and Franz Elementary where she previously excelled in her passion for education.  In March 2007, Vaughan opened the newly named Ursula Stephen Elementary (USE) as their principal and she has been there for the past 11 years.  Her commitment to educational excellence and student achievement can be seen in the numerous recognitions the campus has received.

 

District-wide Secondary Principal of the Year

Mindy Dickerson currently serves as the principal of Patricia E. Paetow High School.  Her passion is teaching the whole child.  She believes very strongly in both adult and student learning through choice, as well as basing decisions on what is best for learners.  Her career in Katy ISD began as an elementary school teacher. During her tenure as principal at Beckendorff Junior High (BDJH), the campus received the Texas and National Schools to Watch distinction for teaching the whole child and providing a great learning experience tailored to middle school students. Dickerson is one of Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of Katy in 2018. Read about her here.

Congratulations to all Katy ISD “Of the Year” employees!

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 

April 27, 2018 

 

 

The Katy ISD Police Department in partnership with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public an opportunity to safely dispose of potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted prescription medications.

According to the DEA, pharmaceutical drugs can be just as dangerous as street drugs when taken without a prescription or a doctor’s supervision.  Needles or sharp objects will not be accepted and any liquids must be in prescribed containers.  The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

“The majority of teenagers who are abusing prescription drugs usually get these medications from family and friends or simply by taking them from a family medicine cabinet,” says Chief of Police Robert Jinks.  “Through take-back programs people have a better option to dispose of old drugs,” adds Jinks.

Date/Time

Saturday, April 28, 2018
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Drop Off Location

Mark L. Hopkins Law Enforcement Center
20370 Franz Rd.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

April 29, 2018  

by Jennifer Skelton  

 

The groundbreaking ceremony for High School #9 and Junior High #16, located in Cross Creek Ranch, will take place on Monday, April 30 at 11:00 a.m.

 

The new junior high and high school are located a few blocks away from Amy Campbell Elementary opening August 2018. Click here to read about Amy.

Junior high #16 is scheduled to open August of 2019 at a cost of $54,920,468 as voted on by the Katy citizens on the 2017 Katy ISD Bond.

High school #9 is scheduled to open July 2020 at a cost of $206,074,464 as voted on by the Katy citizens on the 2017 Katy ISD Bond. This high school will have the district’s competition natatorium.

The Groundbreaking ceremony is located at 27500 Fulshear Bend Dr, Fulshear, TX 77441. Click here for map.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

April 29, 2018  

by Jennifer Skelton  

The groundbreaking ceremony for High School #9 and Junior High #16, located in Cross Creek Ranch, will take place on Monday, April 30 at 11:00 a.m.

 

The new junior high and high school are located a few blocks away from Amy Campbell Elementary opening August 2018. Click here to read about Amy.

Junior high #16 is scheduled to open August of 2019 at a cost of $54,920,468 as voted on by the Katy citizens on the 2017 Katy ISD Bond.

High school #9 is scheduled to open July 2020 at a cost of $206,074,464 as voted on by the Katy citizens on the 2017 Katy ISD Bond. This high school will have the district’s competition natatorium.

The Groundbreaking ceremony is located at 27500 Fulshear Bend Dr, Fulshear, TX 77441. Click here for map.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 18, 2018

Katrina Katsarelis

 The Katy ISD police is warning parents and students about a recent stranger danger incident.

Police are cautioning parents after a Taylor High School female student was approached by a man on her way to school. The student said the man insisted on giving her a ride.The student says she was walking along Kingsland Boulevard Tuesday morning when an older Hispanic man in a tan truck asked if she needed a ride.

 The student said she told him “no,” but that he wouldn’t give up. The man drove off, then came back around and asked her if she needed a ride again. She called her mother and stayed on the phone with her until she made it to the school safely.

The student said he was driving an older model tan Chevy pickup truck and described the man as hispanic, in his 40s or 50s with slicked black hair, gray facial hair and wearing a black T-shirt and navy blue pants.

If you have information about this case, please contact the Katy ISD Police Department.

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April 19, 2018  

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

Jennifer Skelton  

 

We asked position 7 Board of Trustees candidates Dawn Champagne and Don Massey some questions to help voters learn more about these Board of Trustee candidates.

 ABOUT DAWN CHAMPAGNE

Dawn, her husband, Brett, and three children have lived in Katy for 17 years, currently residing in Kelliwood. Their three children attend and/or graduated from Taylor High School. Dawn has volunteered in Katy ISD  for over a decade at the school and district level. She also volunteers at her church, St. Peter’s UMC, and other organizations. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from University of Houston with a Consumer Science Degree and also holds a Masters of Business Administration from University of Houston.

 

Why did you choose to run?

I feel that this is the next step for me. I am ready to be a voice for our community of students, parents and teachers.  I have spent a vast amount of my time during the last 16 years as a full time volunteer with not only Katy ISD, but also with Scouts, my church, and National Charity League. I am there, nearly on a daily basis, with the people most important to the district: the children and teachers.

What qualifies you for this position?

I have a vast amount of experience working with parents, teachers and children and a broad understanding of our district because of my involvement not only with my kids’ schools but also with numerous community organizations. I would speculate that about 80% of my time is spent working with parents, teachers, administrators or children.  I know these people (parents, teachers and children), and these are the people that the decisions made by the school board affect the most.  I am with the people who are directly involved in the day to day occurrences at our schools. I understand what the people of our district need, because I am with them on a daily basis.

What changes and improvements do you hope to implement?

The Safety and Security of our children is #1. I don’t want our kids being scared to go to school!  I want to help build a stronger relationship with the community at large. The school district is the center of the community, and therefore all community members should be heard.  I want to make sure that all kids are given equal opportunity. I want to make sure that we maintain great communication between parents, teachers and staff. Good communication is key to all problem solving.

Why do you think are you a better candidate than your opponent?

 I think that I am more qualified because I have lived in Katy for 17 years and have volunteered, on a continuous basis, with the schools in Katy ISD, and many other community organizations.  I understand the daily struggles of teachers, parents and students. I know what it’s like to run a carnival, to decorate for 8th grade dances, to raise $60,000 for project prom, to find volunteers for every single event there could ever be at every level of schools, to work with kids in every capacity you could imagine, and much more! And, I know what it’s like working with administration of every level.  I have gotten along with the principals and assistant principals at every level. I am not only experienced, I am passionate, I am knowledgeable, I have a history of leadership within the district, and I have been very active in our community at large for 16 years.

Have you volunteered in the Katy ISD school district before and if so in what capacity?

-Taylor HS: president of the PTO, 2016-present; VP of Project Grad 2017/2018; Counselors’ volunteer coordinator 2014-2016; Project Grad 2014/2015 committee; Choir chaperone to nearly every event since 2011.

-Keys Mentoring 2014-present.

-Katy ISD Bond Committee 2017.

-Secretary Katy ISD Council of PTAs 2016/2017 (5) McMeans JH: PTA Board 2012-2016 (Fundraising VP, Volunteers in Public Schools (VIPS) VP, band director’s aide, choir teacher’s aide, 8th Grade Dance Coordinator; Volunteer of the year 2015/2016.

-Exley Elementary: PTA Board 2008-2013 (President, 1st VP of Programs, VIPS VP)

-PTA Officer Training: 2008, 2014 and 2015.

-Leadership Katy 2010/2011 and 2016/2017.

Any final comments?

I am a Texas native. I graduated Magna Cum Laude from University of Houston with a Consumer Science Degree and I have a Masters of Business Administration from University of Houston as well. When I am on the Katy ISD School Board, I will be an advocate for you.  This is not a stepping stone for me to go on to something else later.  Being on the Katy ISD school board is what I want to do. I will not just go along with the flow.  I will vote and stand up for what the community wants. I am ready to listen to all parents and teachers and am willing to work on behalf of everyone in our community to grow excellence. Please visit me on my FB page at Dawn Champagne for Katy ISD Board of Trustees.

For more information about Dawn Champagne, visit https://www.facebook.com/groups/160538218075918/

ABOUT DON MASSEY

Don and his wife Carrie, married for 12 years, have three children that attend Katy ISD schools.  Don has a Masters degree in Criminal Justice, and was previously a law enforcement officer before becoming General Manager at Kay Mills and now COO at Rothchild Commercial. Don Massey was named one of Katy Magazine’s 2017 People of the Year for his efforts implementing Katy Mills as an emergency station for Hurricane Harvey rescue efforts, pet rescue , and FEMA.

Why did you choose to run?

My family and I have been super blessed by Katy and Katy ISD and we love to serve our community. I have a heart to serve the community and since the position of School Board is a volunteer position, it is a perfect match for my experience and allows me to Serve the entire Community. My goal is to help Katy ISD continue to be the best School District in Houston and Texas.

What qualifies you for this position?

My unique experience as a Law Enforcement Officer and Business Leader gives me the skills needed to address the real issues facing our schools today. Safety and Security along with Financial Accountability are the highest levels of priority for our district. As a former police officer and as the GM at Katy Mills, I have the real life experiences to address today’s issues. As an Officer, I have worn the badge, I have arrested bad guys and I have saved lives. As a COO and GM, I have managed multi-million dollar budgets and built collaborative relationships with many community stake holders. I think this combination will be a great addition to the skills that are already on the School Board.  

What changes and improvements do you hope to implement?

My main focus is on Safety and Security for our Students, Teachers, and Staff. I would address this by challenging the way we use CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) for our schools.  Some of the items that we can explore are:  3M Safety Film, Bollards and Advanced Door Locks. The 3M film will slow down an active shooter offering our emergency responders precious time to save lives.  Using bollards at entrances and raising the fences throughout the district will also slow down active shooters. All of these are items need to be implemented or explored quickly to deter an active shooter in our schools. I also would hold our administration accountable for the policies that are in place. Oversight and governance are the responsibility of the board and I will take that responsibility seriously.

Why do you think are you a better candidate than your opponent?

I have a great deal of respect for my opponent for her volunteer service, but I believe that my community relationships, business strengths, and law enforcement leadership make me the best candidate. With all of the school shootings and violence in schools, my law enforcement background and expertise is a much needed asset to helping the board implement new and innovative programs to protect our children. The world is changing and I want Katy ISD to be forward thinking and proactive. I also have a reputation for “action” and “innovation” and for successfully and quickly implementing programs that make Katy a better place. An example of this is Katy ISD’s Simon Youth Academy, which is a smaller more hands-on learning center at Katy Mills that is helping at-risk Katy teens get their diplomas and graduate. Not every child in Katy ISD learns the same way and we have to meet children where they are so we can help them succeed.

Have you volunteered in the Katy ISD school district before and if so in what capacity?

I spearheaded bringing the Simon Youth Foundation to Katy ISD to help at-risk students graduate from high school and reduce drop out rates. This was only possible by bringing multiple organizations together including Katy ISD, Katy Mills, Simon Property Group, and the Simon Youth Foundation.

I have also volunteered in the following capacities:

– Katy ISD Strategic Design Committee.
– Superintendent’s Round Table.

– Career and Technical Education Advisory Board.

– Miller Career Center Mentor and Internship Host.

– Katy Elementary Advisory Board and PTO.

– Leadership Katy 2014.

– The 2014 Bond Committee.

Any final comments?

I will take my position very seriously and plan to do all I can to take care of our students, teachers and staff and ensure they have the resources and support needed to help prepare our children for the future. I will also be proactive in helping to implement safety and security measures to keep our schools safe from violence; whether it’s violence from outside intruders or other students. It would be my honor to serve the Katy community as a Katy ISD Board of Trustee.  Please Vote Don Massey for Position 7.

For more information about Don Massey, visit https://www.facebook.com/Massey4Katy/

 EDITOR’S NOTE: We ran a similar Meet the Candidates story for Susan Gesoff and Scott Martin, position 6 on Tuesday, April 17. CLICK TO READ 

HOW TO VOTE

EARLY VOTING IS APRIL 23 – MAY 1: INFORMATION HERE CLICK

ELECTION DAY IS MAY 5 – VOTING INFO HERE CLICK

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 16, 2018

Katrina Katsarelis 

 Katy ISD has compiled a great list of camps for Katy ISD students entering 7th to 12th grades. We’ve divided it up by local band camps, University  band camps, and instrument specific band camps.

KATY band CAMPS

Katy ISD Junior High Band Camp – Tompkins High School – July 16-20 

For all Katy ISD band students entering grades 7-9.

The cost of the camp is $130 and will include a T-shirt if registered by June 5.
Email kisdbandcamp2018@gmail.com or click for registration form. 

The Bocal Majority and Operation Oboe – Tays Junior High – June 18-21, 2018 

Full day commuter camp for oboe and bassoon students entering grades 7-12.

 

UNIVERSITY Band Camps

Sam Houston State University Junior High Band Camps—June 10-14, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-9.

Texas State University Summer Band Camp —June 10-15, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-12.

Stephen F. Austin Middle School Band Camp —June 10-15, 2018

Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-8.?

 ?

Baylor Summer Middle School Band and Orchestra Camp—June 24-30, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-9.

University of Houston Cougar Band Camp—July 8-12, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-12.

Texas Tech Band and Orchestra Camp—July 8-14, 2018
Full day camp with housing available for students entering grades 7-12.

Instrument Camps
?As we learn of other instrument-specific camps, we will post information here

Brass Only Band Camp? – June 7-9, 2018

Full day commuter camp for brass students entering grades 7-12.

The Bocal Majority and Operation Oboe—June 18-21, 2018 @ Tays JH

Full day commuter camp for oboe and bassoon students entering grades 7-12.

Floot Fire?—June 25-29, 2018 (Memorial) or July 16-20, 2018 (The Woodlands)
Full day commuter camp for flute students entering grades 7-12.

Tomball Trombone Institute — July 16-20, 2018

Full day commuter camp for trombone students entering grades 7-9.

April 17, 2018  

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

Jennifer Skelton  

 

We asked position 6 Board of Trustees candidates Susan Gesoff and Scott Martin some questions to help voters learn more about these Board of Trustee candidates.  We will be running a separate piece featuring the candidates for Position 7 (Dawn Champagne and Don Massey) later this week.

 

ABOUT SUSAN GESOFF

Susan Gesoff is married to husband Glen and they have lived in Katy for 13 years. The couple has three daughters Katie 24, Carly 21, and Kelly 18, who all graduated from Seven Lakes High. Susan is a former Katy ISD teacher (2006-2012) who has also volunteered in her children’s schools and with the theatre and choir booster clubs at Beckendorff Junior High and Seven Lakes High. She also volunteers with the National Charity League. She currently works as an Engineer at BP.

Why did you choose to run?

I am passionate about public education and children.  Katy is a wonderful place to raise a family, live and retire and I want to serve the community by applying my skills and experience for the benefit of Katy ISD students. I was inspired to run this year in particular, because we became empty nesters which left me with more free time in the evenings and weekends that could be dedicated to a worthy pursuit such as this. 

What qualifies you for this position?

I have over five years of ‘front line’ teaching experience in Katy ISD, so I truly understand what it is like inside the 21st century classroom for students and teachers. I have a 30 year employment history in technical industries where I have developed skills related to safety and compliance, budget management, policy development, and planning and performance. On a personal level, I have successfully raised three high-achieving children who were educated by Katy ISD.

What changes and improvements do you hope to implement?

Katy ISD is a premiere district with a stellar record of achievement, however, safety is a challenge for all districts in America, and I will encourage reasonable and effective solutions to further protect our students and staff from random acts of violence. I am focused on academics and will support continuous improvement around STEM and Career and Technical Education, as well as further differentiation for Gifted and Talented learning. Finally, I will strongly encourage the district’s efforts to address the unfair state finance system and student assessment schemes with a goal to keep more of our tax dollars here in Katy and reduce the testing burden on our students and teachers.” 

Why do you think are you a better candidate than your opponent? 

Respectfully, while each of us brings professional skills and knowledge, I have vastly more hands-on, practical experience in Katy ISD, having been a professional educator and having raised my children through every grade right here. I see the role of board member as one of service to the community, not a stepping stone to a future political career.

Have you volunteered in the Katy ISD school district before and if so in what capacity?

I was a member of the parent/teacher organization at Alexander Elementary, Beckendorff JH, and SLHS for many years.  I volunteered with the theatre and choir booster clubs at Beckendorff and SLHS from 2005 – 2017.  In addition, I volunteered for numerous school events over the many years our girls were in Katy ISD.

For more information about Susan Gesoff, visit https://www.facebook.com/susanmgesoff4KISD/

ABOUT SCOTT MARTIN

 

Scott Martin is a Texan by birth, moving to Katy in 2014. Since that time, he has jumped into the community volunteering his time as a Sunday school teacher in his neighborhood of Nottingham at St. Peter’s UMC. Scott’s wife, Samantha, grew up in Katy in the Bear Creek area attending Bear Creek Elementary and Mayde Creek Junior High and Mayde Creek High schools. The couple has 5-year old twins that will be attending Pattison Elementary in the fall. Scott graduated from University of Michigan Law School and serves as an Assistant Federal Public Defender in the Southern District of Texas.

Why did you choose to run?

I decided to run for the school board because I know we can do better.  I am passionate about our community and focused on the future of KISD.

What qualifies you for this position?

I am a product of a Texas public school.  I am also a proud parent.  In my career as a public defender, I have found great satisfaction in helping others.  I believe that these experiences qualify me to serve the Katy ISD community as a trustee.   

What changes and improvements do you hope to implement?

My priorities include: (1) ensuring more choice, and greater transparency, in any bond election; (2) ensuring that everyone has a neighbor on the Board, through the creation of single-member trustee districts; (3) finding common-sense solutions to our bullying problem; and (4) finding a “two-way immersion” program for bilingual education that is cost-effective and can be made available at campuses across the district.

Voters can learn more about my ideas for KISD on my website (www.scottmartin4kisd.com).

Why do you think are you a better candidate than your opponent? 

My opponent lives in an area that is already represented on the Board by two trustees, and has stated that she opposes the creation of single-member trustee districts. I support the creation of single-member trustee districts because I fully appreciate that many areas of our district are underrepresented on the Board, and that this has to change.

I am also concerned that my opponent has not publicly disagreed with anything the Board as said or done. This tells me that she is not the independent voice that the voters are looking for. I am that independent voice.

Have you volunteered in the Katy ISD school district before and if so in what capacity?

I am a children’s Sunday School teacher at St. Peter’s United Methodist Church.  Recently, I volunteered as a t-ball coach at the Monty Ballard YMCA

Any final comments?

I am grateful to the voters for their many thoughtful questions concerning the issues I have raised during this race. We all want what is best for our children, and for KISD. Together we can make it happen!

For more information about Scott Martin, visit http://www.scottmartin4kisd.com 

 EDITOR’S NOTE: We will be running a similar Meet the Candidates story for position 7 later this week. 

KATY MAGAZINE  

April 11, 2018  

A technical issue, shortly after the STAAR test began on Tuesday, kicked out many students across the state including Katy ISD.

The delay in service persisted for about 20 minutes, the TEA said.

“We believe no student information was lost during this time. We are still collecting data on the issue – there were about 1,000 school systems statewide that had a least one student who experienced the disruption,” said DeEtta Culbertson, with the Texas Education Agency.

More than 1,200 school systems were testing at the time, she said.

Katy ISD released the following statement Wednesday afternoon.

Dear Katy ISD Parents/Guardians,

As you may be aware, STAAR testing began yesterday across the state of Texas including at all our Katy ISD campuses.  Unfortunately, soon after the test administration began, the Educational Testing Services (ETS), which is the state’s vendor for the STAAR exams, reported that a state-wide disruption to its server had caused multiple outages to its online system.  These outages impacted students taking grades 5 and 8 reading, grades 4 and 7 writing, and English I.  As a result, many students were inadvertently kicked out of the testing session and/or were unable to log back into the ETS system.

In addition, some students experienced the assessment “freezing” and had to temporarily log off and log back into the system. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) and ETS were immediately notified of these disruptions. Students impacted by the outages were allowed to have missed time added back to their time limit.

Katy ISD is not currently aware of any students losing their responses.  However, we are working with the TEA and ETS and will be reviewing any testing trends once results are released to the district.

Thank you for your support and patience as we continue to monitor this situation which has impacted districts across the state.  We will update our parents with any additional information that comes to our attention.

Katy ISD

Katy ISD’s Teddy Cop program needs our help to finish out the year with every special needs child having their own Teddy Cop.

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

April 6, 2018

by Jennifer Skelton

Officer Luis Santiago founded the Teddy Cop program in Katy ISD in 2016 and runs the program. The bears (buddies) are purchased from Build-a-Bear with their unique outfit matching our local Katy ISD Police’s uniform. Katy ISD has 36 elementary schools with a special needs program totaling over 1,000 students.

The Teddy Bears, along with the interaction between the officer and the child, builds a trusting relationship as well as building rapport with the parents. Officer Santiago selflessly gives of his time fundraising and interacting with the children but as you can see by the smile on his face, these children give much more to his heart than he could ever give to them. He has a love for people and the children that have helped this program grow and succeed. 

Less than 150 bears (at 4 elementary schools) are left to reach the goal of every elementary special needs child in Katy ISD having their own Teddy Cop.

Donations come from many different businesses, Katy ISD school PTA’s and individual contributors. Teddy Cops is so close to its goal this school year. Click here to make a donation for Teddy Cops to reach each special needs child this year. Donations can also be made to any Katy elementary school as well as Build A Bear at Katy Mills Mall.

Free prom dress event for all Katy ISD girls on Thursday, March 29th at Cinco Rach High School from 2:30 pm – 6:00 pm.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS  

March 28, 2018  

Prom season is upon up and with seven high schools, Katy has hundreds of girls out shopping for the perfect dress.  Prom can be an expensive event and one Katy group is hoping to help parents and teenagers by giving away FREE Prom dresses.

Kim Noska and Jennifer Skelton each began receiving donated formal dresses after Hurricane Harvey devastated much of Katy. Their goal was to make sure that no girl had to miss her homecoming due to finances. During this process, Noska and Skelton joined forces eventually receiving over 1,500 dresses, plus shoes and accessories, as well as some men’s wear.

 In the fall, over 500 Katy ISD girls wore dresses to Homecoming from this effort. The group received over 300 dresses that would be more suited for Prom so the women decided to save the dresses and offer them in the spring.

All of the dresses are in excellent condition and in fact, many have never been worn and still have the tags attached.

This one time event, on Thursday, March 29th from 2:30 pm to 6:00 pm at Cinco Ranch High School is open to ALL Katy ISD students.

If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Skelton.

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 KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

 March 21, 2018

The new elementary will be located in the Cross Creek Ranch subdivision and is scheduled to open in the fall of 2018.

The Katy ISD School Naming Selection Committee presented their recommendation for the naming of Elementary #41 at the Board of Trustees Work Study Meeting this week.

The school is proposed to be named after retired educator Amy Campbell. This campus, located at 3701 Cross Creek Bend Lane in Fulshear, TX.

The public forum will take place today, Wednesday, March 21 at 6 p.m. in the Katy ISD Board Room, located at 6301 S. Stadium Lane. Community members are invited to participate in this forum and provide input regarding the proposed names.

After the forum, the Katy ISD School Naming Committee will reconvene to review input and provide their final recommendation to the Katy ISD Board of Trustees at their regular meeting on Monday, March 26.

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The Online Psychology Degrees national website recently recognized one of the University of Houston-Victoria’s graduate special education programs as among the best in the nation.

 

Katy Magazine News  

March 18, 2018  

The UHV School of Education, Health Professions & Human Development’s Master of Education in Special Education with an applied behavior analysis concentration was ranked 17th nationally in the website’s 2018 Top 30 Master’s in Behavioral Analysis Online list. The applied behavior analysis concentration is one of three options UHV students pursuing a master’s in special education can study.

When choosing programs for the ranking, the website considered programs in applied behavior analysis, human behavior, special education and criminal justice as well as general psychology programs that offer a specialization in behavioral analysis. From there, the website considered accreditation, accessibility, job training and coursework.

The coursework for the program has been vetted by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board, which means students are taking courses that will prepare them for the national certification exam to become board-certified behavior analysts.

In addition, the online accessibility offers an advantage because most of the students are professionals already working in clinics or the classroom. That means many of the students already are in a position where they can get their supervision hours at their current place of employment.

University of Houston Victoria Katy campus, located at 2002 W. Grand Pkwy, offers face-to-face programs as well as many online classes for Bachelor’s and Master’s programs.

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KATY MAGAZINE NEWS

January 22, 2018

Katy ISD announces Jaime Shipley as the new principal for Elementary School #41, which is set to open in Fall 2018 in the Cross Creek Ranch subdivision.

 

 


Ms. Shipley has 19 years experience in education including nine years as a building principal. Her administrative experience began as an instructional facilitator at Carrollton-Farmers Branch in 2006. Shipley became an elementary assistant principal at Goose Creek CISD (GCCISD) in 2008. The following year, she was promoted to building principal in GCCISD and remained there for four years. In 2013, Shipley became the principal of Schmalz Elementary in Katy ISD and has led the campus for the past five years.

She obtained her Bachelor of Science in Education, Elementary and Early Childhood as well as her Master of Science in Education, Curriculum and Instruction from Baylor University.
“I am excited about leading the way for a new school and a new legacy. We, as a staff and community, will build the foundation together so students have unparalleled learning experiences,” says Principal Shipley.

The Katy Tigers gave us the details on what Katy coaches talked about with Jimbo Fisher, Texas A&M’s new head coach on Tuesday afternoon. 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX 

December 6, 2017 

By Ashley Lancaster

 

Aggies in Tiger Land

According to Jon Joseph, new head coach of the Texas A&M Aggies, Jimbo Fisher (formerly Florida State University), stopped by the Tigers’ field house with two staff members at 2:30 p.m.

“They came to say hello to see committed player Seth Small and were able to meet and watch Deondrick Glass,” says Joseph. Glass, now a junior, was offered by Florida State during his freshman year.

Giving Kudos to the Katy Program
While there, the Aggies staff also met all the Katy coaches, but Coach Fisher has visited Katy High in the past. “He says not much has changed, and he commented on how well the Katy program is run and how successful it is, and the plan is to get the Aggies to the championship every year like Katy,” says Joseph.

Talking X’s and O’s

There was a brief meeting between Gary and Jimbo, and a 30-minute conversation with coaches Fisher (A&M), Banks, Price, and Joseph (KHS),” he says. The Tigers say Fisher was incredibly nice and the visit went well. After the meetings, they all went out and watched the Tigers practice for their upcoming playoff matchup against the North Shore Mustangs this Saturday at 2 p.m. at NRG.

Fisher and staff ended the day meeting teachers, people, and coaches at KHS, “He told the coaching staff to come up to A&M to visit, watch practice and talk X’s and O’s whenever they want.”

 

Katy People of the Year Announced in Katy Magazine’s December Issue Launched today at www.katymagazineonline.com 
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KATY TEXAS NEWS  
December 1, 2017  
Katy Magazine’s announced it’s Katy People of the Year for 2017 in the current issue launched today. This year’s honorees will be celebrated at the Katy Area Economic Development Council’s General Assembly Meeting on December 12. The eight Katy honorees include Superintendent Lance Hindt, Don Massey, Katy Police Chief Bill Hastings, and more. VIEW THE ISSUE 

 

Lisa Forney, assistant principal for the Cardiff Colts, has received the title of “Life-Changer of the Year” ” for going above and beyond for her students and community.
Katy Independent School District is proud to announce that Cardiff Junior High (CJH) Assistant Principal Lisa Forney has been nominated by a local business partner as a “Life Changer of the Year” for going above and beyond for her students and community.
 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS 
 
November 30, 2017
 
 
Meeting the needs of struggling faculty and staff
After Hurricane Harvey, Ms. Forney put pen to paper and outlined a comprehensive plan to meet the immediate needs of the Cardiff faculty and staff who were hardest hit by the storm.  Thus was born the “CJH Boots on the Ground Initiative” which consisted of a group of volunteers who cleaned out flooded homes, delivered food to work crews and collected donated items.  She went even further by reaching out to non-profit organizations to sponsor families and support them as they worked to get back on their feet. Because of Ms. Forney’s detailed planning, communication skills and her dedication to the community, many families received the help they needed after the storm.
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Providing a stress-free Thanksgiving to Katy ISD families
However, her work didn’t end when the flood waters receded.  With the help of many staff members, she organized an essential needs pantry that efficiently served over 200 Cardiff families and community members.  Also, as the Thanksgiving season approached, Ms. Forney along with help from Tays Junior High volunteers, many local community partners and non-profit organizations led the coordination of the CJH Thanksgiving Pop-Up Market which provided turkeys and packaged food to over 100 families.  Her goal was to provide a stress-free Thanksgiving!
 
Ms. Forney’s desire to give without expectation has inspired and changed the lives of many.  Together as a school community, let’s help her win the National Grand Prize by visiting the Forney Life Changer of the Year profile and leaving a comment.
 
The Life Changer of the Year is a national program that recognizes K-12 educators and school employees for the positive difference they make in the lives of their students by exemplifying excellence, positive influence and leadership.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX 

Thanks to the SPARK Program and contributions from the local community, this park will be available for public use during non-school hours and on weekends.  It features modular playground equipment, walking trails, picnic tables, outdoor music equipment and learning spaces.

 

 

 

The park will be open for public use during non-school hours and one weekends, and will feature modular playground equipment, walking trails, picnic tables, outdoor music equipment, and learning spaces.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy ISD superintendent Dr. Lance Hindt along with members of the  school board, Katy Elementary School staff, Mayor Chuck Brawner, and State Representative Mike Schofield were among those in attendance for the unveiling of the new historical marker at Katy Elementary School, the site of the first schoolhouse in Katy.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX

November 10, 2017 

By Ashley Lancaster

Katy Elementary, “The Original” 

The original property, a small one-room house, was established in 1898 and slated by the founders of the town to be used for public education. The current Katy Elementary campus was built in 1965, renovated in 1989 and again in 1995. Today, students play on the same location as the original playground. The first school bell from 1909 still hangs in the main entrance of the campus.

 

 

A tribute to Katy’s legacy
All of Katy Elementary’s students and staff were in attendance for a special ceremony that included opening remarks from Katy ISD School Board president Ashley Vann who stated, “The legacy this school has created is why Katy ISD is a destination school district. The legacy started here.”

School principal Beth Grimet introduced and recognized those individuals who were responsible for organizing the event, including the Katy Elementary PTO leadership board including Mrs. Monica Oldham, Stephanie Richter, Carrie Singletary, Brandi Traylor, Jennifer Bradley, Nessa Gutierrez, and Kristel Meadows; assistant principal Ashley Pierce, and Mr. Chris Harris, “without whom,” she states, “today would not have been possible.”

 

 

Former Katy Elementary teachers and staff, Katy ISD namesakes, and Katy ISD legacy families and children were also recognized. Chris Harris, who did the research and footwork to have a marker placed at the school presented an informational slideshow for kids and adults, giving everyone present a history of the site where Katy Elementary now sits.

State recognition
Mayor Chuck Brawner read the proclamation, while Texas state representative Mike Schofield read the offical historical marker, said a few words as well, “In a growing city like Katy, its important to be mindful of our past. The Beckendorffs, Mortons…these aren’t just names on roads, they are the people who built this place. This school is where education in Katy began, and it has gone from a few dozen families in 1898, to over 300,000 people. We received from them, and future generations will received from us.” Superintendent Dr. Lance Hindt closed the ceremony.

Those Katy kids
The ceremony ended with a fun, campus-wide performance of the school song, “Katy Kids”, before students were released to their classrooms, and invitees were led outside for the unveiling ceremony and reception to follow.

Katy ISD Police Department is sponsoring the 15th Annual Santa Cops Program, aimed at helping families that may be experiencing hardships by providing gifts and clothing for their children during the holidays.  This year, the program anticipates an increased number of families in need due to the devastation caused by Harvey.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX 

November 13, 2017 

 

As in the past, generous sponsors are needed.  Every year students, community organizations as well as district employees make this program a success.  The Katy ISD Police Department welcomes any and all who would like to participate.  If you or someone you know would like to donate and help children this year, please send an email to santacops@katyisd.org.

Sponsor information will be sent out around the third-week of November.  After Harvey, the outpouring of love and generosity has been heartwarming and the Katy ISD Police Department would like to continue the community’s support throughout the upcoming holiday

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX
November 9, 2017

The Katy ISD Partners in Education’s 15th Annual Food for Families has launched and the community is invited to support Katy ISD families in need this holiday season. Food for Families is an annual campaign that since 2003 has helped thousands of Katy ISD students and their families with grocery gift cards. Every Katy ISD campus identifies students in need of assistance, and the gift cards are given to those students before winter break. This long-standing program has helped thousands of families and Katy ISD Partners in Education hopes to this year touch even more.

Donations of any amount are welcomed and appreciated. The deadline to donate is December 7. To make a contribution online please click here. To donate via check, please remit to “Katy ISD Food for Families” and mail to Partners in Education: Katy ISD ESC, 6301 South Stadium Lane, Katy 77494.

 

Food for Families, a Katy ISD Partners in Education yearly initiative, unites our Katy ISD staff and community in holiday support for select students and their families.  To learn more, visit Partners in Education under the “Community” tab at www.katyisd.org or contact Tammy Stringer, 281-396-2645, tammyrstringer@katyisd.org.

Katy ISD’s original elementary campus, built in 1965, will receive a historical marker on Friday, November 10, 2017 to celebrate it’s history and the many Tigers who have pass through it’s hallways. 

 

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX 

November 6, 2017 

Historical marker being given 
Katy Elementary (KE), along with its community and students, is honored for being recognized with an historical marker as the first schoolhouse site in Katy.  The original property, a small one-room house, was established in 1898 and slated by the founders of the town to be used for public education. 

Educating Katy students since 1909…
The current Katy Elementary campus was built in 1965, renovated in 1989 and again in 1995. Today, students play on the same location as the original playground. The first school bell from 1909 still hangs in the main entrance of the campus. 

<<< MORE KATY NEWS 

 

Katy ISD Election Day is November 7, 2017, with a $609M bond referendum on the ballot. Read on for polling locations by county, early voting results, and bond details. 

 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX 

November 7, 2017 

By Jennifer Skelton 

Election Day is Tuesday, November 7, 2017. Katy ISD has a bond on the ballot for $609,204,553 that includes six new schools (one high school, two junior highs and 3 elementary schools) to alleviate overcrowding and to keep up with growth in the southwest and northwest quadrants of the district. The full bond includes…

  • 74% – Six new schools

  • 9% – Component replacements

  • 5% – Technology

  • 4% – Buses, portables, fuel tank replacements

  • 3% – Fielder Elementary comprehensive renovation

  • 3% – Safety and security

  • 2% – Expansions for Raines and Katy High

Katy ISD was recently voted the #1 school district in the Houston metro area and is 2nd in growth in the state of Texas adding 2,800+ new students yearly.

Early voting numbers shows 7,374 votes were cast towards the bond broken down by 4,177 from Fort Bend County; 2,880 coming from Harris County; and 188 coming from Waller.

Polling Locations

Polling Location Map

 Check Your Voter Status

Katy students hold fast to their faith, share testimonies, and pray over the district and their community at Rhodes Stadium on October 15. 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, Tx

October 16, 2017 

Ashley Lancaster 

On October 15, approximately 200 high school and junior high-aged Katy students participated in Fields of Faith, a youth-led event where students invite, pray for, share with, and challenge their peers to read the Bible and follow Jesus Christ. An athletic field provides a neutral rally point where a community can come together.

Fields of Faith 

In Katy, the familiar and historic Jack Rhodes Memorial Stadium served as the meeting place for what was to be a truly touching and inspiring night for young people and adults alike. 

 

Youth in prayer

The kids, who come from different schools and churches all over the city, prayed for our country, for our national, state and local leaders, for unity in the nation, for all of our schools, teachers and administrators. They also shared their personal testimonies and encouraged and shared their faith with each other. There was a live band to lead them in worship, and volunteers and pastors from Powerhouse, First Baptist Church of Katy, and Fellowship of Christian Athletes all came together to organize the event and make hot dogs for the kids to eat, provide an inspirational message, and close the evening in prayer. 

“It is so important for young people people to be encouraged to live their faith and share their faith with others,” says Pastor Robert Burdette. 

<<< MORE KATY NEWS 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX 

September 26, 2017 

Ashley Lancaster 

The family of Taylor High School’s injured star defensive end and Texas A&M commit, Max Wright, opens up about surgery, recovery, and plans for college.

An injury late in the third

During last week’s match up against Fort Bend Austin, Mustang defensive end and A&M commit Max Wright left the game late in the third quarter complaining of a “muscle cramp” and did not make a reappearance. 

Late Saturday, an MRI confirmed that Wright had suffered a torn ACL in his left knee, an injury that will keep him on the sidelines for the remainder of the season. 

True to form, the faithful football player encouraged his friends, teammates, and followers on Twitter with inspirational bible verses. And faith will play a huge role in the months to come while Max prepares for his big comeback with the Texas A&M Aggies. 

Surgery on the books

“Honestly, we are heartbroken that he will miss his senior year but are seeking to believe and trust that God has bigger and better things in store for Max down the road,” says his mother, Cydney Wright. 

According to Cydney, Max’s surgery is scheduled for October 5 by Dr. Walter Lowe, and he is already working out and attending physical therapy at Memorial Hermann Ironman. “He is ready to tackle this head on and feels incredibly strong!” says Wright.

Continuing to lead 

As a team captain, the 6’4″, 270 lb. athlete will continue to lead his team from the sidelines while continuing to focus on rehab and recovery and preparing to play college football for the Aggies. 

The Wright family would like to thank the Katy ISD community for their outpouring of love, support, and prayers.

 

(Photo by Sara Isola) 

We are truly grateful for all the love , prayers and support from the Texas A&M coaches and families as well as all our family and friends! Max is amazingly strong and his determination has proven that he can handle adversity and with God’s help he will be back stronger than ever and ready to hit Kyle Field when he reports to College Station after graduation. Setbacks bring amazing comebacks! Thank you for your continued prayers! Gig’em and Go Mustangs!” 

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, TX 

September 20, 2017

From Katy ISD Communications: 

On Tuesday, September 19, 2017 parents and guardians of the Taylor High School Football Team were notified that their head coach was placed on administrative leave till further notice. The leave is unrelated to his role with students.

In his absence, Katy ISD Assistant Coach Joe Sheffy will be taking his place in leading the Taylor High School football team this season.  Sheffy is a certified, highly experienced individual who is well versed on the needs of the team.

 

Katy ISD is committed to its students and will do everything necessary to ensure their continued success during this period. Because this is a personnel matter the District is unable to provide additional information.

KATY MAGAZINE NEWS – Katy, Texas

September 11, 2017

Harris County Fire Chief says, “Thank You” to Katy ISD for their relief and rescue contributions. 
 

All of Katy Stepped Up 

In a recent press release expressing his sympathies and to all families and residents who suffered water and wind damage from Hurricane Harvey, Harris County Emergency Services Fire Chief (Dist. 48) Jeffrey S. Hevey gave his sincerest thanks to several local organizations who stepped up to help rescue people from flooded areas in both HCESD No. 48 and FBESD No. 1. 

Among those listed were the Katy ISD Police Department, Katy ISD campuses, and Katy ISD Department of Transportation (school buses). 

Katy ISD Stands Out 

During the six days of the storm and continued flooding, the district opened it’s doors at Cinco Ranch High School and Morton Ranch High School to accept 4,000 displaced residents and donations for families in need. Katy High School served as the main operating headquarters for U.S. National Guard and other military while they carried out rescue and relief missions all over south Texas. Katy ISD bus drivers bravely volunteered to drive district vehicles into high water to rescue 450 people trapped by flood waters. Katy ISD police officers faithfully, dutifully served their community in every necessary capacity during the storm.  During a time when roughly 15,000 students and 2,600 Katy ISD employees were directly impacted by the storm and subsequent flooding, the impact that the district had on relief and rescue efforts is truly inspiring. 

Below is the full list of the partners and agencies named by Chief Hevey: 

– Powerhouse Church (Shelter)

– Katy ISD Police Department

– CrossPoint Church (Shelter) 

– Westlake Fire Department

– Harris County Sheriff

– Harris County Fire Marshal’s Office

– Harris County Office of Emergency Management

– Fort Bend County Sheriff

– Precinct 5 Constables (Harris County)

– Precint 3 Constables (Fort Bend County) 

– Texas Department of Public Service (State Troopers)

– MIdland, Texas Police

– Webb County Sheriff

– Dallas County Sheriff

Katy, TX News (September 8, 2017) – Neighborhoods surrounding Bear Creek Elementary suffered severe flooding last week.  While the school was left intact, the local service provider has placed restrictions on water usage, as nearby lift pumps, along with the waste water treatment plant were compromised by the storm.

These restrictions will limit the school’s access to water and waste treatment.  As such, Bear Creek Elementary students and staff will be transferred to Paetow High School, located at 23111 Stockdick School Rd., Katy, TX, for the reopening of schools on September 11.  Paetow is Katy ISD’s newest high school which opened its doors this fall to two grade levels – freshman and sophomore classes.  The elementary students will be housed in the east tower of the campus, currently unoccupied by secondary students.

Transportation for all Bear Creek Elementary zoned students will be provided, should they need it. Information regarding routes, pick up and drop off times/locations will be emailed to parents before Monday.

In the meantime, operations crews have completed their mechanical and electrical assessments, which met all standards.  Since there was no flood water intrusion within the building, Bear Creek students and staff will be returning to a safe and secure learning environment once restrictions are removed by the local service provider.

“Students and staff are our highest priority during this recovery process,” said Superintendent Lance Hindt.  “Though the relocation for Bear Creek students is temporary, multiple Katy ISD departments are working vigorously to make this a smooth transition for everyone, both now and when students and staff are able to return to their school.”

Katy ISD closed the district on August 25 in anticipation of Hurricane Harvey.  Following the storm, the District announced that 16 campuses had been impacted by flooding in surrounding neighborhoods. One campus, Creech Elementary took on several feet of water and arrangements have since been made for students and staff to be relocated to the University of Houston Cinco Ranch campus while repairs are being made at the school.  Bear Creek Elementary will be the second school to relocate as a result of Tropical Storm Harvey.  The remaining 14 schools have cleared building assessments and will reopen in their home locations this Monday.

Schools reopen across Katy ISD on September 11.

Katy, TX News (September 7, 2017) – Local dance studio will donate 100% of proceeds to Creech Elementary and Beck Junior High teachers. 

 

On Thursday, September 7 Connolly Dance Arts will host a Dance – A – Thon event from 5 to 10 p.m. to give Katy families a chance to dance out all the stress caused by Hurricane Harvey and connect with their neighbors. The best part? One-hundred percent of the proceeds from the event will benefit teachers at Creech Elementary and Beck Junior High, who lost so much when their schools were affected by the flooding. 

Registration is from 4 to 5 p.m., and the cost is $20 per contestant and $60 per family. They also accept $20 gift cards to Target, HEB, and Amazon. There will be a DJ, bake sale, and refreshments. 

K.T. Connolly, owner of Connolly Dance Arts, says, “Even if you don’t want to participate, we invite everyone to come out and support these amazing Katy teachers!”

Connolly Dance Arts is located at 22760 Westheimer Pkwy., #300
281-693-1232

KATY MAGAZINE – Katy, Texas News
September 5, 2017
An update from the district on affected campuses and needed repairs.

 
Sixteen Katy ISD schools were impacted by flooding that took place last week in the surrounding neighborhoods.  Two district campuses, Creech Elementary and Beck Junior High, saw more extensive damage than other campuses. While Bear Creek Elementary sustained minor water intrusion.  The damages and repairs include:

Beck Junior High
The campus is being assessed by operations crews and is being evaluated and remediated for damage due to water intrusion through the building’s roof, skylights and a construction site within the building.  Mechanical and electrical systems, as well as air quality and mold testing, are being conducted throughout the building.  These tests will determine if the school is ready to reopen on Monday, September 11.
Creech Elementary
Operations crews have begun the building assessment, which includes air quality/mold testing and a number of other safety reviews.  Conditions near and around the campus have prevented our crews from fully assessing the building.  Katy ISD is working on a plan to relocate students and staff and will notify families of the alternate campus site by the end of the day on Wednesday, September 6.

Bear Creek Elementary
The campus sustained minor water intrusion within the building. Operations crews are testing mechanical and electrical systems to ensure a safe return for students and staff. Evaluation and repairs to the damaged structure are expected to be completed by the end of the week, in time for the return of students on Monday, September 11.
The safety of our students and staff returning to their campus is our number one priority.  Your patience and understanding is greatly appreciated.  Parents and staff will be updated as conditions evolve and new information is received.
 
Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (September 1, 2017) – The Katy community of Cane Island has opened its Amenity Village event center, converting it into a temporary dorm for Katy first responders, some of whom had been sleeping in a nearby parking lot.

Beds have been set up and showers in the community’s fitness center are available.  Meals also are being served.  The Cane Island Amenity Village is located at 2100 Cane Island Parkway, just north of Interstate 10.   On Site Contact: Dan Naef, 702-581-1956.

 

 

Katy, TX News (August 31, 2017) – Due to limited personnel as a result of the aftermath of Tropical Storm Harvey, it is projected that Katy ISD schools will reopen on Monday, September 11.  Staff who can safely commute to work are asked to return to their campuses or office on Wednesday, September 6.

Only two Katy ISD campuses, Creech Elementary and Beck Junior High, sustained severe water damage which will require a significant amount of time to repair and restore.  Fourteen Katy ISD campuses are located within neighborhoods directly impacted by flooding, though the school buildings remain intact.  Nevertheless, there is a tremendous amount of work ahead for Katy ISD over the coming days, weeks and months as the District prepares to welcome back students and restore facilities and structures impacted by the storm.

During this catastrophic weather event the Katy ISD community, staff, parents and even students spent countless hours volunteering and caring for those who may have lost access to their homes and/or possessions due to the storm.  Katy ISD bus drivers rescued hundreds from flooded areas and several of the Katy ISD campuses opened their doors to state emergency agencies staging operations.  Superintendent Lance Hindt released a letter to parents and staff today notifying them of the district’s closure and reflecting upon the kindness and unity of the Katy community.

Click here for Dr. Hindt’s letter of appreciation.

Katy, Texas News (August 29, 2017) – Peli Peli Restaurant is stepping up in the chaos created by hurricane Harvey to fuel first responders as they attempt to save families affected by the devastation of the flood. 

Their Cinco Ranch restaurant, located at 23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd. in LaCenterra at Cinco Ranch and directly across from Torchy’s Tacos, is currently open and working to prepare hot meals for rescuers. 

“Basically, we’re going to cook every bit of food on our shelves to feed Katy’s finest,” says Thomas Nguyen, co-founder and partner. If they run low, Nguyen says that they are asking Katy families who want to help to swing by with food for them to cook and prepare for Coast Guard, National Guard, FEMA, firefighters, volunteers, police, EMT, and others. “If we run out, we invite residents to donate food for us to prepare – our kitchen is ready and our doors are open. We’ll even make sandwiches.” 

For first responders in a hurry, Nguyen says not to worry about coming inside. Just call 281-257- 9500 or 832-259-2448 and someone will run a hot meal out to the curb. 

Today only, they will also be offering hot meals to first responders at their I-10 and Campbell location. 

If you know of a Katy business offering assistance, supplies, or services to those in need, email us!

 

Katy, TX News (August 27, 2017) – Here are a few important advisories, alerts and notes from Harris County.

 

HIGH WATER LOCATIONS 

There are over 177 high water locations across Harris County on Houston Transtar. Click link for more info.

Check out their Flood Warning System to see what we see. Click “channel status” on the left and you will see that most of our bayous and creeks are RED and out of bank.

Red= out of banks
Yellow= near top of bank
Green=still ok

TURN AROUND DON’T DROWN – SAUMS ROAD RESCUE 

You can get swept away in as little as six inches so it’s not worth driving through.

Here is a rescue that took place last night at Saums Rd. Driving to your drowning is one of the most common ways flood deaths occur. It’s not worth it. Stay put! 

USE 911 ONLY FOR EMERGENCIES

First responders are being dispatched to over 1,000 (and growing) rescues at this time. Some water inside is better than being outside. So, please stay put. If water is rising to Stay safe, this is seriously nothing to joke with!

DO NOT GO INSIDE ATTIC- GO ON YOUR ROOF

Please heed to the advice emergency officials. It’s devastating sitting in this emergency operations center listening to the thousands of calls coming in to get rescued. DO NOT attempt to leave, just stay put. TRUST US you wont get very far. More rescue boats are coming but the list is long. DO NOT go into attics, you will get TRAPPED! Get on roofs. As soon as day breaks it will be easier to rescue you!

If waters are rising and it’s absolutely necessary, please go onto your roof. We will get to as soon as we can. DO NOT GO IN YOUR ATTIC. 

IF WATER IS IN YOUR HOME 

We understand water is in homes, but only call 911 with life-threatening emergencies. Our 911 call center is inundated with requests, not allowing true emergencies to get thru. If you are dialing and it is a true emergency, STAY ON THE LINE. A dispatcher will get to you ASAP.DO NOT LEAVE YOUR HOME. Stay put.

Harris County Flood Control District 713-684-4000

Red Cross Houston 713-526-8300

 Katy, TX News (August 26, 2017) – Sites you should be checking while hunkering down in Katy

1. Road Closures
2. River/Creek Flood Gages
3. Electricity Outage Tracker
4. Harris County Rainfall Map

5. Houston Traffic Map


Here’s the latest on the hurricane as it pertains to Katy 

Although it’s been downgraded to a CAT 1 Hurricane, we are definitely not out of the woods. Street and flash flooding expected for the next few days. 

Meteorologists are expecting 12″ inches of rain today with a total of 30″ over the next few days.

Harvey is expected to stay on Hurricane status through Saturday night and high winds may happen through Sunday. 

Flooding expected around bayous and river basins Brazos, Colorado,etc. 

Harvey is a tornado-happy Hurricane and we may have on/off tornado watches until 1 PM today or later.  TORNADO PREPARATION LINK


WHAT TO DO NOW

  • Stay put. Don’t be on the roads. 

  • If you must be on the roads, don’t drive in water. Cars have been carried away in just six inches of water. 

  • Use 911 only for emergencies. 

Katy Kindness Tip: It’s a great idea to check on your neighbors and friends who may be shut-ins, single moms, or senior citizens. 

Thank you to David Thelan for sending us these important links

 

Katy, Texas News (August 25, 2017) Overnight, Harvey slammed ashore and has downgraded to a Category 1 hurricane. But that doesn’t mean Katy is out of the woods. Reduced wind speeds and persistent rain mean that we are still in for potentially disastrous flooding and possibly fast moving tornadoes.


POSTED:  9:00 AM.
 

UPDATED SAT 8/26, 7:00 AM 

Weather stations reported up to 6″ of rain in the last 12 hours, with the Mayde Creek area at Greenhouse Road overflowing at its banks.

Water in this area will feed into the Barker/Addicks Reservoir, and it’s a possibility that roadways nearby could flood.

PRELIM Rainfall Reports for Katy area: 

*Fort Bend County* 

SSE Katy 4.47 in

SE Katy 3.41 in

*Harris County*

Katy 1.0 NNE 3.62 in

NE Katy 2.68 in

E Katy 2.00 in


SPORTING EVENTS 

HOUSTON TEXANS are discussing playing next Thursday’s game against the Cowboys in Arlington.

DYNAMO & DASH games have been cancelled for the week.

HOUSTON COUGARS are practicing in Austin in preparation for the season.


UPDATED 9:30 PM

*Prelim High Wind Reports from NWS Houston* 

SSW Katy 24 MPH
NE Fulshear 24 MPH 
ENE Stafford 22 MPH 

ENE Fulshear 21 MPH
NNW Pecan Grove 21 MPH
First Colony 20 MPH
SSE Katy 17 MPH 
W Mission Bend 17 MPH
NW Richmond 17 MPH
SE Katy 16 MPH 
N Pecan Grove 16 MPH 
W Mission Bend 16 MPH
SE Katy 13 MPH
ENE Brookshire 32 MPH 
W Katy 23 MPH  


– Harris County – 

NWS is showing “potentially devastating” flood threats and intense rainfall amounts as Harvey inches closer.  If you haven’t already, please take last minute precautions for water, shelter, and food.

UPDATED 6:20 PM According to the National Weather Service, Hurricane Harvey is now classified as a Category 4. 

WATER ? available at Brookshire Bros on Franz Rd. as of 6:30 pm.


UPDATED 12:15 PM

COLD PLAY CONCERT HAS OFFICIALLY BEEN POSTPONED – ANNOUNCED 12:00 Noon.  

WATER PALLETS AT SHELL STATION – Shell Station at Avenue D and Franz has water pallets for $7.99 as of 10 AM

ALL YOUTH SPORTS POSTPONED- All KYF events and activities are cancelled due to the storms this weekend.

WATER AT HEB – Highland Knolls and Mason Rd. Possibly just restocked. (8:55 AM.)

KROGER 99 & MORTON RESTOCKING –  A reader reported that Kroger at Morton and 99 is restocking water and other items that are out right now. (8:40 AM).

WATER AT TRADER JOE’S – LACENTERRA

A reader reported that there is water at Trader Joe’s, LaCenterra as of 8:20 AM.

THE LATEST UPDATE – FLASH FLOOD WATCHES 

As Hurricane Harvey heads toward the Texas coast, the National Hurricane Center is warning Texans to be ready for “life threatening flash flooding”.  Katy will not be impacted by surges because we have no coastal areas, but will need to be on alert for flash flooding. Katy could also experience heavy winds and rains. Flash flood watches are in effect possibly through Monday. Heavy rain is projected and the hurricane is reported to be “very close to reaching Category 3”.

WATER AT HEB AND SOUTH FRY 

There was a lot of water stocked at HEB South Fry Road as of 6:30 AM. Lines already forming. 

KATY ISD AND AFTER SCHOOL ACTIVITIES CLOSED

All Katy ISD campuses and school facilities are closed today. According to a statement from the school district, “While Hurricane Harvey has yet to touch ground in the Katy area, the National Weather Services is predicting an extreme weather event. As such, we have chosen to err on the side of caution to ensure the safety and security of our students, families, staff and community.” 

HUNKER DOWN KATY AND CHECK ON EACH OTHER 

If you do not have to drive, stay put. Make sure you have water and rations for a few days. Don’t forget to check on your neighbors, seniors, and shut ins! 

IMPORTANT REMINDERS

– Charge your phones now.

– Stay put during the storms.

– If you must drive, DO NOT drive through water.

– Never bypass road closure signs. The roads have been closed because of serious danger or flooding. 

KATY MAGAZINE will continue to update this page specifically for Katy as new events take place. 

Katy, TX News (August 22, 2017) –  With a unanimous vote of 7-0, the Katy ISD Board of Trustees called a November 2017 bond election for the 239-project bond package presented by a community-led committee this past July.  The total bond package is $609.2 MM and would have no impact on the school tax rate.

The Community Bond Advisory Committee’s (CBAC) package focuses on meeting existing and near-term needs as the District continues to grow by 2,800 student annually and older campuses show signs of aging.  It’s a growth bond that directly affects students, with 74% of the bond allocated for new schools.  The improvements proposed for existing campuses will ensure that classrooms adequately support the curriculum and meet legislative requirements across the district.

The bond package is comprised of six new schools, a comprehensive renovation of Fielder Elementary, repairs and replacements for components like school kitchens, roofs, floors and intercoms at 61 campuses and facilities, facility expansions at two schools, and safety and security upgrades at 40 campuses.  Students across the entire district will likewise benefit from technology network improvements.  The CBAC also included funds for new buses as well as fuel tanks and portable buildings to replace existing aging ones.

The bond touches every quadrant of Katy ISD, from the far northeast to the lower southwest.  The last day to register to vote is October 10 and Election Day is November 7.  Click here for more information on the bond package.

Katy, TX News (August 16, 2017) – VLK Architects and Katy ISD are pleased to celebrate the opening of Bryant Elementary School. The new school, designed for 1030 students, is located in the Young Ranch Subdivision, south of I-10 at Pederson Road and Kingsland Boulevard. The facility was designed to allow for ease of student circulation while providing a safe and secure learning environment. The school was named after Robert & Felice Bryant. Robert Bryant, who retired in 2015, started his career as the director of bands and fine arts department chair in 1983. Felice Bryant, who retired in 2012, started her legacy at KISD in 1987 as a kindergarten and first-grade teacher. The couple collectively dedicated nearly 60 years to the Katy Independent School District.
“It was an honor to work with Katy ISD and an added bonus to have this facility named after our friend Bob Bryant and his wife Felice who served the district for so many years” commented Todd Lien, VLK Partner.

Each classroom pod contains eight classrooms, an activity center, restrooms, and a teacher planning space. The design allows for exceptional flexibility, providing multiple learning environments. This two-story prototype elementary has classroom wings (pods) that are organized around the media center to promote collaboration. The school promotes outdoor learning between classroom wings by incorporating green spaces and grade level appropriate visuals. The learning stairs and student gallery are also part of the centralized common space for student use and activities.

Katy, TX News (August 7, 2017) – Seven Lakes High School Best Buddies President, Anna Celeste Fedewa, and co- Vice President, Reagan Kallina, represented their chapter at the 2017 Best Buddies Leadership Conference in Indiana this summer.

The SLHS chapter was awarded Outstanding High School Chapter in Texas for the 2nd year in a row, the National Pacesetter Award and was ranked in the top 15 chapters in the nation for fundraising. Fedewa and Kallina were also only of 9 students chosen to have a position on the Friendship Walk committee where they brainstormed with others and will aid in planning next year’s fundraising walk.  “Founded in 1989 by Anthony K. Shriver (pictured), Best Buddies is a vibrant international organization that has grown from one original chapter at Georgetown University to more than 2,300 chapters worldwide, positively impacting the lives of over 1.1 million people with and without intellectual and developmental disorders. Best Buddies programs engage participants in each of the 50 United States, and in over 50 countries around the world.”

 

Courtesy of Seven Lakes High School 

Katy, TX News (August 2, 2017) – Parents, students, staff, and other community members, as well as media outlets, are invited to join Katy ISD Superintendent Lance Hindt and the Board of Trustees for the official dedication of Mike Johnston Field and Legacy Stadium.  Katy ISD namesakes and local officials will also participate in the celebration.   

Photo by Bob McSpadden

The Mike Johnston Field at Legacy Stadium was approved by voters as part of the 2014 Katy ISD bond.  The facility will provide students and the community with a state of the art multipurpose second stadium to serve more than 77,000 students, and community members, across the district.  This year, athletic and fine arts teams from eight high schools will benefit from this new facility.

The dedication ceremony will include special performances by all high school bands and choir directors.

Where:           Legacy Stadium

1830 Katyland Drive

Katy, TX 77493

When:            Thursday, August 17

2:30 – 4:45 p.m.  – Community & Media Tours

(Call to schedule a tour)

7:30 – 8:30 p.m.  – Stadium Dedication Ceremony

MEDIA CREDENTIALS REQUIRED FOR TOURS AND CEREMONY ACCESS.

Katy, TX News (August 1, 2017) – Texas Education Agency (TEA)  has released SAT scoring data for Houston area high schools in 2015, and three Katy ISD high schools ranked within the top 10 highest overall performance scores in the region.

The schools and their combined SAT scores from 2015 are listed below:

7. Seven Lakes High School: 1689 

  • Katy ISD
  • Math: 585
  • Reading: 558
  • Writing: 546

8. Taylor High School: 1662

  • Math: 569
  • Reading: 552
  • Writing: 541

9. Cinco Ranch High School: 1656

  • Math: 578
  • Reading: 547
  • Writing: 531

Also mong the top 10 were schools from Clear Creek, Houston, Spring Branch, and Fort Bend ISD.

 

This information can be verified on the Texas Education Agency website.

 

Katy, TX News (July 28, 2017) – Teachers and staff of Katy’s ISD’s new Bryant Elementary School pause for a group photo during a recent get-together at the Cane Island Amenity Village Event Center.  Residents of the Katy master-planned community of Cane Island will attend the all-new school located at 29801 Kingsland Boulevard.

 

Katy, TX News (July 25, 2017) – Katy ISD’s head athletic director, Debbie Decker, was recently appointed president of the Texas High School Athletic Directors Association (THSADA). Decker is the first person from Katy ISD to serve in this capacity.

In addition to overseeing the day-to-day business of the Texas High School Athletic Directors Association, Decker will also be responsible for writing columns for quarterly newsletters, appointing committees and committee members, and serving on the special events committee, among other tasks.

 

Courtesy of Debbie Decker via THSADA:

“My vision as President of the THSADA is to engage, encourage and support athletic administrators in the development of knowledge and skills necessary to be successful leaders in educational based athletics.

Goals:

1. Promote the role of the athletic administrator in the state.
2. Continue developing athletic administrators to their highest level of competency by providing resources through trainings including the state conference.
3. Expand on professional development and leadership training opportunities.
4. Build on the current relationship with the UIL, THSCA and TGCA.
5. Collaborate with THSADA members on how to continue to grow our association.”

 

Katy, TX News (July 20, 2017) – Katy ISD is pleased to welcome Dr. Doreen Martinez as the new principal for Memorial Parkway Elementary, and Mr. Rashan Smith at McRoberts Elementary.

Dr. Martinez has worked in the field of education for 28 years.  She began her educational career in 1989 as a teacher in Pasadena ISD.  She has also work in Angleton ISD, Clear Creek ISD and as a grant/technology coordinator in Royal ISD.

She came to Katy ISD in 2001, where she served as an instructional technology facilitator, technology training supervisor, Parent & Patron Center Coordinator and then as an assistant principal at Morton Ranch Junior High.  In 2015, Dr. Martinez returned to Angleton ISD as Principal of Angleton Junior High.  However, it’s the District’s pleasure to have her back home at Katy ISD where she will lead the Memorial Parkway Elementary family.

“Coming back to Katy ISD is such a proud honor and a dream come true,” says Principal Martinez. “My goal is to work to build trust, establish relationships and create a positive environment where our Panthers can excel and achieve their dreams.  Working together as a team we will be ‘the best school in the land!’”

 

Mr. Smith has worked in the field of education for 17 years.  He began his career with Houston ISD in 2001 as an elementary teacher, serving as a literary specialist and intermediate classroom teacher at JFK Elementary.  He also worked with Pre-K students at Gabriela Mistral early Childhood Center and as a student behavior specialist at Fondren Middle School.

He came to Katy in 2012 and served as an assistant principal at Mayde Creek Junior High, a principal for Katy Summer Academic Term in 2016 and 2017 and before moving to McRoberts Elementary, he was an assistant principal at Seven Lakes High School.

“To become the principal of McRoberts Elementary is truly an honor,” says Principal Smith. “It is a reflection of the Katy community.  A community that is built on integrity, honor, kindness, relationships and success.  As the new principal of McRoberts Elementary, one of my main goals will be to establish a rapport with each and every one of my students and help them to reach their highest potential.  Go Dolphins!”

 

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (July 18, 2017) – Katy ISD’s 2017 District-wide Elementary Teacher of the Year Kristal Parrish and Secondary Teacher of the Year Phuong Nguyen have been selected as finalists in the Region 4 Teacher of the Year program.

Ms. Parrish is a fifth grade teacher at WoodCreek Elementary where she teaches reading, writing and social studies.  Since 2013, Ms. Parrish has also been the fifth grade team Curriculum and Instruction Leader.  She’s a dedicated teacher that inspires her students to make an impact in the world.  She does this by teaching them to be critical readers and writers, and deep thinkers who are compassionate.  Her philosophy surrounds the ideal that “there is no program, no app, no curriculum that can replace the tremendous power and essence of an effective and passionate teacher in the life of a student.”

 

Ms. Nguyen teaches 10th – 12th grade students in the area of Principles of Health Science, Health Science Technology and Clinical Rotations at Taylor High School.  As a teacher, she creates an environment where curiosity is cultivated, learning is collaborative and students develop skills to be successful in every endeavor.  Her philosophy is one of adaptability and emphasis on the importance of a moral compass.  Ms. Nguyen also initiated the Katy Students Run program at her school to create another platform in order for her to mentor and teach the necessary skills to be successful in life.

The Region 4 Teachers of the Year event is part of the Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA) Texas Teacher of the Year program and is the initial step into the National Teacher of the Year selection process.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (July 12, 2017) – More than 7,500 Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) members, advisers, and guests from across the country gathered in Nashville, TN for the 2017 National Leadership Conference.  The meeting provided MRHS FCCLA members with the opportunity to attend leadership and program training, hear national speakers, and explore colleges and careers. Kyle Triplett, an 11th grader  and Michael Hurley a 9th grader at Morton Ranch High School in Katy, Texas, were among the members and took part in STAR Event competitions at the conference.

FCCLA offers over 30 STAR [Students Taking Action with Recognition] Events. These events, which include Early Childhood Education, Job Interview, and Sports Nutrition, among others, represent college and career readiness skills taught in Family and Consumer Sciences classroom. Members compete at the Regional, State and National level. This year, Kyle and Michael were among over 4,200 STAR Event participants who competed in Nashville, TN. They competed in the Promote and Publicize category. Their project focused on showcasing all the benefits FCCLA offers our community. Their presentation consisted of a 10 minute speech, 30 page portfolio with documentation, and an 8 x 4 foot visual display. During their presentation they explained each community service activitiy that the chapter’s 124 members participated in. Activities completed by chapter members this year included; mentoring of elementary reading students, breast cancer awareness, food drives, purchasing Christmas gifts for needy children, book drive, heart disease awareness, promoting physical activity among the family, and programs to promote cultural awareness and acceptance. Triplett and Hurley received a gold medal in the event by scoring highest among their competitors. Hurley stated that he has learned confidence, public speaking skills and the importance of hard work while competing this year.

About FCCLA

Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) is a dynamic and effective career and technical student organization that helps young men and women become leaders and address important personal, family, work, and societal issues through Family and Consumer Sciences education. FCCLA has more than 164,000 members and more than 5,300 chapters from 49 state associations, in addition to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

FCCLA: The Ultimate Leadership Experience is unique among youth organizations because its programs are planned and run by members, and it’s the only career and technical in-school student organization with a central focus on careers that support families.  Participation in national FCCLA programs and chapter activities helps members become strong leaders in their families, careers, and communities.

Courtesy of Kelsey Jozwiak, MRHS

Katy, TX News (July 7, 2017) – YMCA Operation Backpack, an initiative of the YMCA of Greater Houston, is one of Texas’ largest back-to-school supply drives. In its 13th year, YMCA Operation Backpack is expecting to reach its highest goal to date by giving school supplies and/or a new backpack to 120,000 youngsters whose families struggle to make ends meet. Last year, the YMCA delivered backpacks and supplies to more than 105,000 children. Thirty-six school districts in the Houston area will benefit from the event.

This initiative is not possible without donors, however. Required school supplies can cost up to $200 per student, yet more than 25 percent of Houston-area children ages 17 and under live in poverty. The month-long school supply drive will run from July 11 to August 11, 2017.

How you can help:

  • Make a monetary donation or purchase pre-packaged school supplies and a backpack at any participating H-E-B at the checkout stand. Your donation will directly support your local YMCA.
  • Text the word SCHOOL to 91999 to make a monetary donation.
  • Visit ymcaoperationbackpack.org to make a monetary donation.
  • Visit ymcaoperationbackpack.org for a list of school supplies if you wish to purchase them individually. Supplies and backpacks can be dropped off at any YMCA or at designated sites specified on the YMCA website.
Courtesy of YMCA of Greater Houston 

For information on the Katy Tailgate event that will make donations to Operation Backpack at Katy YMCA’s, click the link here: www.katymagazine.com/katy-summer-tailgate-2/.

 

Katy, TX News (June 15, 2017) – Schmalz Elementary was recently selected to participate in the 2017 Raising Family Partnerships Fellowship.  The school is one of 20 from across the state selected to redesign and transform their family engagement plan based on best practices, personal experiences and lessons learned from other participants.

The year-long fellowship kicks off in the summer of 2017 with a design camp where school leaders will turn research into practice and engagement opportunities for their campuses during the upcoming school year.

Raising Your Hand Texas Leadership Program consists of an elite network of 1,000 Texas school leaders who contribute to creating a high-quality public school system that supports the success of all students.  Following the design camp, participants will remain connected, working together to implement and improve their plans and to collaborate and provide feedback on ways to strengthen partnerships on their campuses. Congratulations to the staff at Schmalz Elementary School.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (June 13, 2017) – Three Katy ISD teams classified in the “Top 10 Teams” during the Global Destination Imagination Tournament, which took place in Knoxville, Tennessee on May 24-28.

More than 1,400 teams representing 45 states and 14 countries competed in the event to showcase their innovative challenge solutions.  In total, five Katy ISD teams attended the tournament, including students from Griffin Elementary, Hayes Elementary, Beckendorff Junior High and Katy High School.

In the Improv Challenge, 3-Peat, the Katy High School “Tie Di ers” finished in 10th place.  This placed them as the highest ranking team in the state of Texas, who was in attendance.  Participating in the Scientific Challenge, Top Secret, the Hayes Elementary team “It’s Classified” finished in third place.  The “Altos Kryptos,” from Griffin Elementary won second place in the same category.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX (June 7, 2017) Taylor High School student Max Wright has been nominated to play in the 2018 U.S. Army All-American Bowl presented by American Family Insurance. In total, 400 football players are nominated, but only 100 are selected to participate in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, the nation’s premier high school sporting event, held every January.


Wright was nominated by the U.S. Army All-American Bowl Selection Committee, which consists of All American Games, its national network of coaches and scouts, as well as 247Sports. This nomination recognizes the versatility and adaptability Wright possesses both on and off the field.

The U.S. Army All-American Bowl is a unique event designed to showcase and recognize the talents of America’s youth while celebrating the team that makes a difference every day for the nation – the U.S. Army.

 

 

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX (June 6, 2017) By Christine Hall

Kids can invent the darnedest things—and the TMC Young Inventors Forum is an example of just how creative they can be.

For the past three years, the British International School of Houston and the Texas Medical Center have partnered on the TMC Young Inventors Forum, an eight-week program for 7- and 8-year-old students to learn the fundamentals of innovation and how to apply them to health care.

Monday’s event was the culmination of the program, when 14 teams pitched their health care solutions to parents, teachers and a judging panel of community leaders at the TMC Innovation Institute.

“This is exciting because we started this program not just for fun, but because invention and entrepreneurship are  skills that should be learned early on in life,” said William McKeon, president and CEO of the Texas Medical Center. “Every child can be a CEO of a company, and every child can have an idea that is a breakthrough.”

In addition, eight teams of fifth-graders, who were part of the inaugural Young Inventors Forum, came back to pitch new ideas and display a new level of entrepreneurship by adding financial information to their products, including cost, profit margins, pricing and marketing.

The curriculum was led by Katharine Forth, Ph.D., CEO of iShoe, which creates products to measure and track balance. iShoe was part of the first TMCx Accelerator class.

Judging the inventions were Julia Andrieni, M.D., vice president of population health and primary care at Houston Methodist Hospital and president and CEO of Houston Methodist Physicians’ Alliance for Quality; Karen Bell,  consul general of the United Kingdom; Houston Council Members Dwight Boykins and Amanda Edwards; and Bernard Harris, M.D., CEO of Vesalius Ventures.

Each of the participants walked away with a medal, a goody bag and a T-shirt.

In addition, five teams were awarded lightbulb-shaped trophies in the categories of:

  • Strength of Pitch: Staying Alive T-shirt – a T-shirt that shows hand placement for CPR.
  • Marketability: DriveMe Chair – a self-driving wheelchair.
  • Quality of Prototype: Fluffy Crutch Helper – making crutches softer and more comfortable to use.
  • Degree of Impact: Eye Help You – a computer that helps patients with ALS communicate through eye movements.
  • Innovativeness: Sunshine Cast – a cast that aids in vitamin D absorption.
Courtesy of The Medical Center News

Katy, TX News (June 6, 2017) – Close to 5,000 Katy ISD seniors walked across the stage at the Leonard E. Merrell Center during this year’s graduation ceremony. Katy ISD congratulates all graduates and wishes them the best of luck in their future endeavors.


The District is proud to announce the Top 10 graduates from each of its comprehensive high schools. They are:

Cinco Ranch High School:
• Valedictorian: Trisha Neha Madhavan
• Salutatorian: Tiffany Cheng Yu
• No. 3: Alyssa Shuang Wu
• No. 4: Nirmit Shah
• No. 5: Sarah Kyoko Halvorsen
• No. 6: Aidan Roy Gettemy
• No. 7: Amol Milind Patil
• No. 8: Sabrina Clare Hodgins
• No. 9: Sean Bao Ngo
• No. 10: Jamie Liang Tan

Katy High School:
• Valedictorian: Holly Grace Meier
• Salutatorian: Bryan Daniel Marin
• No. 3: Kendrick Tan Mendoza
• No. 4: Brandon Jay Komplin
• No. 5: Sophia Nicole Carmen Lecher
• No. 6: Jacob Michael Clayton
• No. 7 : Sabrina Pereira Ghelardi
• No. 8: Alexandria Helen Woodward
• No. 9: Thanh Tam Thi Vo
• No. 10: Denali Evangeline Ibbotson

Mayde Creek High School:
• Valedictorian: Kunal Shailesh Jain
• Salutatorian: Wahibah Hannan
• No. 3: Juseung “Chris” Park
• No. 4: Shourya Kashyap
• No. 5: Thy Nguyen
• No. 6: Joseph Ola
• No. 7 (tie): Andrew Duong
• No. 7 (tie): Kassem Abusnineh
• No. 9: Justin Ngov
• No. 10: Vivian Lam

Morton Ranch High School:
• Valedictorian: Alejandro Guadalupe Gaona
• Salutatorian: Pranav Jayaraman
• No. 3: Uche Ogochukwu Okwo
• No. 4: Nicholas Alexander Rose
• No. 5: Victoria Belen Baltazar
• No. 6: Alyssa Patricia Chuidian
• No. 7: Alexander Octavio Viteri
• No. 8: Alyssa Ann Catoc Reyes
• No. 9: Jeremy Sander See Bayangos
• No. 10: Isra Rehman

Seven Lakes High School:
• Valedictorian: Naveen Chokkar
• Salutatorian: Jessica Shu
• No. 3: Jingze Yu
• No. 4: Thomas Xiong
• No. 5: Helen Zhou
• No. 6: Eva Patel
• No. 7: Rohan Sura
• No. 8: Justin Zhang
• No. 9: Sharon Xu
• No. 10: Moniish Elanchezhian

Taylor High School:
• Valedictorian: Maria Sturzu
• Salutatorian: Shujian “Scott” Lin
• No. 3: Irena Wan
• No. 4: Oishik Saha
• No. 5: Sheel Yerneni
• No. 6: Ananya Subraman
• No. 7: Angela Lin
• No. 8: Jessica Rao
• No. 9: Alissa Nguyen
• No. 10: Vincent Liu

Tompkins High School:
• Valedictorian: Kavya Chandran
• Salutatorian: Lucy Haoyue Chen
• No. 3: Saloni Patel
• No. 4: Brett Lawrence Dolotina
• No. 5: Tanaya Pampattiwar
• No. 6 (tie): Sudarshan Gopalakrishnan
• No. 6 (tie): Tanvi Jadhav
• No. 8: Audrey Liu
• No. 9: Brian Bandaranaike
• No. 10: Venkata Ravila

Katy, TX (June 6, 2017) Children at Risk releases annual school rankings based on four different measures: Student Achievement Index, Campus Performance Index, Growth Index, and College Readiness Index.

“The Gold Ribbon sub-lists highlight high-performing, high poverty schools that are traditional neighborhood campuses; magnet schools and charter schools are not included in the Gold Ribbon sub-lists. High poverty schools are identified as campuses that are more than 75% economically disadvantaged. Those campuses that receive an A or a B in the CHILDREN AT RISK rankings are considered high performing despite high levels of poverty.”

The Houston Region rankings include schools in the following counties: Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, and Wallis.

Top 5 Elementary Schools

Buckalew Elementary (Conroe ISD)
Commonwealth Elementary (Fort Bend ISD)
Creekside Forest Elementary (Tomball ISD)
River Oaks Elementary (Houston ISD)
Cornerstone Elementary (Fort Bend ISD)

Top 5 Middle Schools

Fort Settlement Middle School (Fort Bend ISD)
Lanier Middle School (Houston ISD)
Houston Gateway Academy-Coral Campus (Houston Gateway Academy Inc.)
Beckendorff Junior High (Katy ISD)
Sartartia Middle School (Fort Bend ISD)

Top 10 High Schools

Debakey High School for Health Professions (Houston ISD)
Challenge Early College High School (Houston ISD)
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (Houston ISD)
Eastwood Academy (Houston ISD)
Carnegie Vanguard High School (Houston ISD)
Clear Horizons Early College High School (Clear Creek ISD)
Kerr High School (Alief ISD)
Harmony School of Innovation-Sugar Land (Harmony School of Science-Houston)
Clements High School (Fort Bend ISD)
Seven Lakes High School (Katy ISD)

Top Gold Ribbon Elementary Schools

Park Place Elementary (Houston ISD)
Lyons Elementary (Houston ISD)
De Chaumes Elementary (Houston ISD)
Field Elementary (Houston ISD)
Anderson Elementary (Conroe ISD)
Burbank Elementary (Houston ISD)
Sutton Elementary (Houston ISD)
Ed White Elementary (Houston ISD)
Youngblood Intermediate (Alief ISD)
De Zavala Elementary (Houston ISD)

Top Gold Ribbon Middle Schools

Crenshaw Elementary and Middle School (Galveston ISD)
Burbank Middle School (Houston ISD)
Pilgrim Academy (Houston ISD)
O’Donnell Middle School (Alief ISD)
Stevenson Middle School (Houston ISD)

Beckendorff Junior High School is in the Top 5 Middle Schools and Seven Lakes High School is in the Top 10 High Schools.

Courtesy of Children at Risk

Katy, TX News (June 1, 2017) – Katy ISD is proud to announce the top two students from each high school who are ranked highest academically in their respective graduating classes.  These students have worked extremely hard from the very first day of their ninth grade year until the last day of their senior year.  Many of them are now moving on to prestigious colleges and universities throughout the nation.  The 2016-2017 valedictorians and salutatorians are:

Cinco Ranch High School:

  • Trisha Madhavan – Valedictorian
  • Tiffany Yu – Salutatorian


 

Katy High School:

  • Holly Grace Meier – Valedictorian
  • Bryan Daniel Marin – Salutatorian


Mayde Creek High School

  • Kunal Shailesh Jain – Valedictorian
  • Wahibah Hannan – Salutatorian


Morton Ranch High School

  • Alejandro Guadalupe Gaona – Valedictorian
  • Pranav Jayaraman – Salutatorian


Seven Lakes High School

  • Naveen Chokkar – Valedictorian
  • Jessica Shu – Saluatorian


Taylor High School

  • Maria Sturzu – Valedictorian
  • Shujian Lin – Salutatorian


Tompkins High School

  • Kavya Chandran- Valedictorian
  • Lucy Haoyue Chen – Salutatorian


Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

Katy, TX News (May 30, 2017) – The Katy ISD Board of Trustees and Superintendent Lance Hindt will be joining staff and community members as the district breaks ground on Elementary #41.  This new educational facility is being made possible in part from savings out of the 2014 bond package and will serve to address growing enrollment that is taking place in the southwest quadrant of Katy ISD.   The school is expected to open in Fall 2018. The new school will be located at 3701 Cross Creek Bend Ln. The groundbreaking will take place May 31, 2017 at 9 a.m.

Katy, TX News (May 30, 2017) – The Katy ISD Board of Trustees unanimously voted to name Dr. Dawn Carlson-Scruggs as the Assistant Superintendent for Elementary School Leadership and Support.

Dr. Carlson-Scruggs has worked in the field of education for 25 years.  She began her educational career in 1992 as a teacher in Lubbock ISD but she also worked in Austin ISD, Round Rock ISD and Fort Bend ISD.  She served as an assistant principal from 2001-2005 in Austin ISD and Round Rock ISD, respectively.  While in Fort Bend ISD she served as a principal, coordinator of Leadership Development, Director of Special Education and most recently as Director of Student Affairs.

Dr. Carlson-Scruggs holds a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education and Special Education from Peru State College, a Master of Education in Special Education from Texas Tech University, a Master of Education in Educational Administration from the University of Texas at Austin and a Doctorate of Education in Educational Administration from the University of Texas at Austin.

Courtesy Katy ISD 

Katy, TX News (May 23, 2017) – During the Regular Board of Trustees meeting, Katy ISD Superintendent, Dr. Lance Hindt, announced Christopher Morgan as the new principal for Taylor High School.  Mr. Morgan will be replacing Jeff Stocks, who recently accepted the position of Assistant Superintendent for Instructional and Administrative Support – Area 2.

 

Mr. Morgan has worked in education for 22 years.  He began his educational career in 1995 as an elementary teacher in Irving ISD.  In 1998, he was promoted to Assistant Principal at Paul Keyes Elementary.  In 2006, his career moved him to Fort Bend ISD, where he served as an elementary, junior high and high school principal. Mr. Morgan has served as Principal of Kempner High School since 2014.

Mr. Morgan holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology from Stephen F. Austin State University and a Master of Education in Administration Degree from Texas Women’s University.  Mr. Morgan will begin his new role as principal of Taylor High School on July 1, 2017.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (May 22, 2017) – For the second year in a row, Katy ISD’s Volunteers in Public Schools (VIPS) program reached an unparalleled milestone by donating an extraordinary 1,056,073 hours to the district’s students and staff.  Although the number is impressive unto itself, the greater impact lies in the thousands of personal stories it reflects.  Each one of those million+ hours represents a person who lovingly donated the gift of time to better the lives of Katy ISD children.

 

 

Katy, TX News (May 17, 2017) – Five Katy ISD teams will be headed to Knoxville, Tennessee for the Destination Imagination Global Tournament on May 24-27.  Students from Griffin Elementary, Hayes Elementary, Beckendorff Junior High and Katy High School are preparing to compete against teams from across the United States as well as groups representing many other countries throughout the world.

On April 11, nineteen Katy ISD Destination Imagination teams traveled to Lubbock, Texas to compete against more than 370 teams where they showcased their creativity and problem solving skills.  The hard work of these students has paid off.

Destination Imagination is a world-wide creative problem solving organization that teaches students the skills needed to succeed in school, career and beyond.  Teams use the creative process to turn their ideas into reality.

For more information about Destination Imagination visit www.idodi.org and to learn about the Destination Imagination program in Katy ISD, contact Nancy Hess at nancyshess@katyisd.org

Katy, TX News (May 11, 2017) – The Katy ISD Education Foundation is committed to helping teachers create extraordinary classroom experiences for their students through grants. The foundation has awarded approximately $1 million dollars to Katy ISD teachers in their first five years. This year, $284,000 in grants were awarded to schools at the elementary through high school lever. The a few of the lucky grant recipients are listed below.

Wolfe Elementary –  $4,997
The Write Path…Bright Future!
Lead teacher Christine Storms and team members Beth Morrow and Jenna Hill

Lead teacher Christine Storms, Beth Morrow, and Jenna Hill

Mayde Creek Junior High –  $4,923
No, You Can’t Use Wikipedia: Teaching Gen Z How to Research 
Lead Teacher Rebecca Calvert and team members Elizabeth Etter,  and Stephanie Nicole Varga


Mayde Creek Junior High – $4923
Pavlov’s Teach-nology
Lead Teacher Crystal Ragbirsingh, team members Jennifer Britt and Toni Hicks


Mayde Creek Junior High – $4, 995
Let the Force Guide You
Lead teacher Marissa Salls and team members Lashaun Wright and Mary Grace Hearnsberger

 

Courtesy of Katy ISD Education Foundation. For more information, visit katyisdeducationfoundation.org.

Katy, TX News (May 9, 2017)  – This year Katy Magazine “Women’s Issue” included “Katy’s Top 100 Women” and over 30 Katy ISD women, including teachers, principals, district staff and namesakes, were recognized.

The list was generated through community nominations and remained a secret until the magazine hit the stands and when social media posts started circulating the final list.

“We get the pleasure of seeing the passion of many of these women first-hand and the love they have for school children so we have a very high regard for local educators, principals, trustees and namesakes,” says Kirsten Cornell, lead associate editor for Katy Magazine. “There were so many other educators and staff that we want to include and will continue to find ways to celebrate and recognize these hardworking women.”

Katy ISD is very happy to work with Katy Magazine on a daily basis to recognize the positive stories taking place in our district. Next year Katy Magazine is working on an even bigger and better surprise for Katy women.  Those interested in nominating a Katy ISD woman, may email editor@katymagazine.com with the person’s name and a paragraph as to why she is so special.

Congratulations to all the Katy ISD women who made “Katy’s Top 100 Women” list!

Courtesy of Katy ISD

View Katy Magazine’s Top 100 Women of 2017.

 

Katy, TX News (May 8, 2017) – Katy ISD voters elected new members to serve of the Katy ISD Board of Trustees on Saturday, May 6, 2017.

  • Ashley Vann won Position 3 with a total of 2,279 votes.
  • Courtney Doyle won Position 4 with a total of 2,364 votes.
  • William “Bill” Lacy won Position 5 with a total of 2,451 votes.

For full election results by precinct, please view the Katy ISD Board Election Tabulation.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (May 3, 2017) – Alec, a year 13 student at the British International School of Houston has been awarded one of the world’s most prestigious scholarships, the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship at the University of Toronto. The school is located in Katy off of Westgreen Blvd. and Franz Rd.

Alec Toronto

 

The University of Toronto is currently ranked No. 1 in Canada and No. 16 in the world. This is University of Toronto’s most prestigious and competitive scholarship for international students and includes tuition, books, incidental fees, and full residence support for four years.

The scholarship provides an unparalleled opportunity for outstanding international students to study at one of the world’s best universities, in one of the world’s most multicultural cities.  Alec will complete his International Baccalaureate studies this summer and enter University of Toronto’s Computer Engineering program this fall.

The scholarship program is intended to recognize and attract the world’s brightest students who demonstrate exceptional academic achievement and creativity and who are recognized as leaders within their school. A special emphasis is placed on the impact the student has had on the life of their school and community, and their future potential to contribute positively to the global community.

Andrew Derry, Principal of BISH commented, “I am extremely proud of all our graduates who have collaboratively been awarded over $1 million in scholarships this year, the equivalent of $100,000 per student. And in-particular, Alec, who received the coveted Lester B. Pearson Scholarship and exemplified the qualities of the scholarship. Our students are inspired to discover and realise their passions, we have ensured that BISH is a leader at the forefront of innovative education and that our students leave us fully prepared to compete and thrive on a global scale.”

Students at the BISH have access to the very best education including taking the International Baccalaureate (IB) programme that can lead them to some of the highest-ranking universities around the world, with successful pathways to scholarships. This is a demanding academic program and is widely recognized to be the most rigorous course of study for students. The IB is considered the framework for an international education that goes much deeper in meeting the needs of the changing world and is attributed to student academic success extending to the university application process. The BISH Class of 2017 are also celebrating university offer successes including Columbia University, Cambridge, Southampton, Newcastle, University College London, University of Glasgow, University of British Columbia, Baylor and University of Tulsa amongst others.

Courtesy of British International School of Houston

Katy, TX News (April 28, 2016) Information for students who will be attending Paetow High School for the 2017 – 2018 school year and are interested in being a part of the band or color guard

  • Color Guard Auditions for the 2017 Paetow High School Guard will take place on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday; May 2nd, 3rd and 4th from 5 – 7 PM at Morton Ranch High School. Anyone interested is welcome to attend, no experience is necessary. Please bring athletic attire and a good attitude. For additional questions please contact Greg Redner or access paetowbands.com.
  • Students planning to be a part of the band program at Paetow High School are expected to attend our first mini-camp on Wednesday and Thursday; May 3rd and 4th  from 4 – 7 PM at Morton Ranch High School. Make sure to bring your personal instrument, athletic attire and water. For additional questions please contact Greg Redner or access paetowbands.com
  • All percussion students or piano players attending Paetow High School need to attend our percussion technique days Thursday, May 4th and Wednesday, May 10th from 4 – 6 PM at Morton Ranch High School. For additional questions please contact Greg Redner or access paetowbands.com

Katy, TX News (April 24, 2017) – Early voting for the May 6, 2017 election starts Monday, April 24 and ends on May 2. The Harris County Clerk’s office will conduct elections for eight political subdivisions serving over 900,000 registered voters in Harris County. Fifty-four additional political entities in Harris County will also conduct elections on the same day. The deadline to submit an application for a mail ballot is April 25.

Voters residing in the political entities in which the County Clerk is running the election can find sample ballots, the early voting schedule, and the election day polling locations at www.HarrisVotes.com. The County Clerk’s office is conducting elections for the City of Humble, City of Pasadena, Houston Independent School District, Humble Independent School District, Northgate Crossing Municipal Utility District 2, Northwest Harris County Municipal Utility District 28, Oakmont Public Utility District, Harris County Water Control & Improvement District 91.

Voters in the other political subdivisions within the county may visit the www.HarrisVotes.com website to find out if there is an election taking place in their area by searching via the “Find Your Poll” search engine. Over half of the county’s 2.2 million registered voters are eligible to vote in a May 6 election.

“Contact information for the political entities is provided via the “Find Your Poll” search engine on www.HarrisVotes.com.” said Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart, the county’s chief election officer. “Voters should communicate directly with political entities conducting their own elections to obtain more information about their elections and voting locations.”

For more information about the acceptable forms of photo identification and other means to vote at the poll, the requirements to vote by mail, the early voting period and voting on election day in the upcoming May elections, voters may visit www.HarrisVotes.com or call 713.755.6965.

 

Courtesy of the Harris County Clerk’s Office

 

Katy, TX News (April 20, 2017) – The Katy ISD Volunteer Celebration will be held in the Merrell Center on Friday, May 12th from 8:30-10:30 a.m. Hosted by Partners in Education and the Volunteers in Public Schools Executive Board, this annual event honors the thousands of school district volunteers who donate their time and talents to our students and teachers.


This year’s guest speaker is former NFL player and sportscaster Spencer Tillman. A graduate of the University of Oklahoma, Tillman was part of the 1985 National Championship team and won MVP of the Orange Bowl that year. He went on to have a successful career in the NFL, playing for the Houston Oilers and the Super Bowl Champion San Francisco 49ers. Tillman is now the Color Analyst for Fox Sports 1 alongside Tim Brando. He can be seen just about every College Football Saturday on FS1 and every NFL Sunday on KTRK, giving expert analysis on our Houston Texans. Off-camera, Spencer Tillman has been the featured keynote speaker at some of the country’s most notable companies.

The VIPS Celebration entertainment will include students from every high school, the West Memorial Junior High Theater Troupe and a surprise performance from one of the district’s principals. The morning will also honor the 2016-2017 Campus Volunteers of the Year and debut this year’s principal video homage to volunteers.
All Katy ISD volunteers are invited to attend and should RSVP no later than May 9th by visiting the “Community” page at www.katyisd.org and clicking “Partners in Education.” Doors will open at 8:15 a.m. and the program will begin at 9:00. For more information about the event, volunteers should contact their campus VIPS Liaison or marthabrown@katyisd.org.
Volunteers in Public Schools, a Katy ISD Partners in Education program, offers moms, dads, family and community members a wide variety of volunteer opportunities at their chosen campus. To learn more, visit Partners in Education under the “Community” tab at www.katyisd.org or contact your campus Volunteer Coordinator.

SurveyMonkey Link to RSVP to the VIPS Celebration

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (April 19, 2017) – The dates for early voting and election day for the 2017 Katy ISD Board election have been announced. The Board is comprised of seven members who are elected at-large to fill available positions. In accordance with the provisions of the Texas Education Code, a person may not be elected as a trustee of Katy ISD unless the person is a qualified voter.

An individual seeking election as a member of the Board of Trustees must have been a resident of the state for 12 months and a resident of the District six months prior to the last date on which the candidate could file to be listed on the ballot. The following persons have filed as candidates for the upcoming election.

Dates, candidate information, polling information, and more below.

EARLY VOTING DATES & LOCATIONS

Monday, April 24, 2017 – Tuesday, May 2, 2017 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

  • Cinco Ranch High School
    23440 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
  • Morton Ranch High School
    21000 Franz Rd.
  • Seven Lakes High School
    9251 S. Fry Rd.
  • Taylor High School
    20700 Kingsland Blvd.
  • Leonard Merrell Center
    Rooms 143 – 144
    6301 S. Stadium Ln.

ELECTION DAY POLLING LOCATIONS

Election Day is Saturday, May 6, 2017 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

  • Precinct 1 – Seven Lakes High School
    9251 S. Fry Rd.
  • Precinct 2 – Cinco Ranch High School
    23440 Cinco Ranch Blvd.
  • Precinct 3 – Katy City Hall
    901 Avenue C.
  • Precinct 4 – Katy Municipal Court Building
    5432 Franz Rd.
  • Precinct 5 – Hayes Elementary
    21203 Park Timbers Ln.
  • Precinct 6 – Taylor High School
    20700 Kingsland Blvd.
  • Precinct 7 – Maurice Wolfe Elementary
    502 Addicks-Howell
  • Precinct 8 – Morton Ranch High School
    21000 Franz Rd.
  • Precinct 9 – Mayde Creek Junior High
    2700 Greenhouse Rd.
  • Precinct 10 – Bear Creek Elementary
    4815 Hickory Downs
  • Precinct 11 – Pattison Elementary
    19910 Stonelodge Dr.
  • Precinct 12 – Shafer Elementary
    5150 Ranch Point Dr.
  • Precinct 13 – Beck Junior High
    5200 S. Fry Rd.

Click here to locate your precinct based on county boundaries.


CANDIDATES & POSITIONS

Position 3 Candidates 

  • Candice Perkins
  • Ashley Diehl Vann
  • Dr. David Velasquez

Position 4 Candidates

  • Courtney Doyle
  • Carlos Young

Position 5 Candidates

  • Henry Dibrell
  • William E. “Bill” Lacy

Courtesy of Katy ISD. Visit katyisd.org for more information .

Katy, Texas News (April 17, 2017) – Theatre Under The Stars (TUTS) will hold auditions in Houston on May 6th and 7th for the upcoming production of PIPPIN, slated to run at the Miller Outdoor Theatre this summer. PIPPIN will be directed and choreographed by Michelle Gaudette who directed MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET for TUTS last summer at Miller Outdoor Theatre.

“We are so looking forward to our annual summer shows at Miller Outdoor Theatre. Our relationship with our friends and colleagues at Miller Outdoor Theatre provides us with the opportunity to remember our beginnings there nearly 50 years ago. Our lineup for this summer, which includes PIPPIN, will build upon our tradition of providing access to some of Houston’s best musical theatre. We are delighted to be working with our long-time collaborator Michelle Gaudette and our immensely talented local actors to create a summer line-up that inspires, entertains, and celebrates all that is great about Houston and the Houston arts scene,” said Hillary Hart, Executive Director of Theatre Under The Stars.

PIPPIN, a circus inspired production, features a troupe of acrobatic performers led by a very charismatic Leading Player. The performers’ main purpose is to tell the story of Pippin, a young prince who is longing to find adventure and passion in all areas of his life. PIPPIN, with book by Roger O. Hirson and music & lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, will play at Miller Outdoor Theatre July 11-16, 2017.

The Houston auditions will take place at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts in the Administration Building, located at 800 Bagby St., Houston, Texas 77002, and the schedule for the days will be as follows:
Saturday, May 6, 2017
2-6 p.m.
Combined EPA / ECC
7-11 p.m.
Combined Male / Female Dance Call


Sunday, May 7, 2017 
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
By Appointment ONLY
3-7 p.m.
Callbacks
Anyone interested in this audition should come fully prepared. Auditioners should be aware that TUTS complies with all Actor’s Equity Association guidelines, and that all rehearsals for the production are held in the daytime during normal business hours.
To schedule an appointment or for any questions about the auditions, please email auditions@tuts.com. Rehearsals for PIPPIN will begin on June 23rd. For more information, visit www.TUTS.com/auditions.


SEEKING:
Leading Player: Male/Female, Any Ethnicity. The ultimate ‘ring leader.’ Masterfully charming and manipulative, the Leading Player is a chameleon of sorts. Guides Pippin through his own story and tries to intervene at the end. Excellent dancer. Obsessed with putting on a great show for the audience. Ab4 – Db3

Pippin: Male, Any Ethnicity, 16 – 25, our story’s young and confused protagonist. He is longing to find his purpose in life. Naive, innocent, and discontent. Eventually finds love, and meaning in life, with Catherine and Theo. Ab4 – G2

Charles: Male, Any Ethnicity, 55 – 70, Pippin’s demanding father. As the King of the Holy Roman Empire, Charlemagne is more comfortable wielding a sword than breaking bread. He wears his years with great pride. E4 – G2
Lewis: Male, Any ethnicity, 25 -35, the son of Charles and Fastrada. More brawn than brains. The perfect soldier, who loves Lewis above all else.
Fastrada: Female, Any Ethnicity, 35 – 55, Pippin’s conniving stepmother. A seductress, who is no stranger to deceit and betrayal, she is both sexy and smart. Skilled at using her sexual appeal to benefit her and her son. F5 – A3
Berthe: Female, Any Ethnicity, 60 – 80, Pippin’s saucy grandmother. A brassy broad full of wisdom, grace, and sass. She tries to help Pippin and encourages him to live his life to the fullest. C5 – E3
Catherine: Female, Any Ethnicity, 25 – 40, a widow and mother. She is a beautiful and a hopeless romantic, who possesses graceful elegance. Encounters Pippin at his lowest point and eventually falls in love with him. Db5 – F#3
Ensemble: Male/Female, Any Ethnicity, All Ages. Strong Dancers. Charlemagne’s Army, Monks, Nobility, Peasants, The Players.
The Theatre Under The Stars production of PIPPIN is sponsored in part by Wells Fargo, The Brown Foundation, Inc., The Wortham Foundation, Inc., the Miller Theatre Advisory Board, Inc., the George and Mary Josephine Hamman Foundation and the Texas Commission on the Arts.

Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital is the official healthcare partner of Theatre Under The Stars and the official sponsor of the 2016/17 Season. United Airlines is the official airline partner of Theatre Under The Stars. KTRK ABC13 is the official media partner of Theatre Under The Stars.

*Theatre Under The Stars is committed to diversity in casting, and will not discriminate against any Actor or applicant for a part in a cast by reason of race, color, creed, sex, national origin, sexual or affectional preference, age, handicap, political persuasion, or belief.

For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit www.tuts.com. Theatre Under The Stars is Houston’s leading Musical Theatre Company since 1968, with a focus on education and community engagement. TUTS is a 501(c)(3) Non Profit Organization that relies on the generous support of our donors to deliver first-rate theatre experiences.

Katy, TX News (April 14, 2017) – Phaneendra Kondapi, a veteran engineering educator who helped develop the nation’s first subsea engineering program at the University of Houston, has been named founding director of engineering programs at the University of Houston at Katy.

Kondapi is returning to the University after serving as director of subsea engineering at Texas A&M University for the past year.

The UH Cullen College of Engineering began offering two energy-focused engineering courses at the Houston Community College (HCC) Northwest-Katy Campus last fall, in advance of the planned opening of a new UH System facility in Katy in 2018. The UH System site will be home to UH Katy and the University of Houston-Victoria at Katy. The graduate-level course offerings are focused on areas in high demand in Houston’s Energy Corridor, including petroleum, subsea, electrical and environmental engineering.

Five graduate-level classes will be offered at the HCC Katy campus this fall, in electrical engineering, subsea engineering and environmental engineering. Kondapi will teach one of the subsea courses, flow assurance.

“Dr. Kondapi was vital to developing the first subsea engineering program in the U.S. here at the Cullen College. I am tremendously proud that he will now help to bring our top-ranked engineering programs to the Katy community,” said Joseph. W. Tedesco, Elizabeth D. Rockwell Dean of the Cullen College of Engineering.

Kondapi taught the UH subsea engineering program’s inaugural course, flow assurance, in 2011, and has worked on to standardize global subsea education through the UH-led Global Subsea Education Alliance.

Formerly an adjunct professor of subsea engineering, Kondapi has more than 20 years of experience managing engineering projects at energy industry giants FMC Technologies and KBR.

He said he wants students to learn not just the technical material but to gain an enthusiasm for the field. “My motivation is to make my students successful by encouraging them to get ready for industry,” Kondapi said.

Kondapi was awarded the 2013 SPE Teaching Excellence Award from the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) International, which recognizes petroleum engineering faculty who have demonstrated innovative teaching techniques and creative pedagogy methods in the classroom.

The HCC building in Katy is easily accessible for Energy Corridor professionals pursuing degrees or certificates to enhance their skills. “We are here in Katy to serve both the community and the industry to improve their technical and engineering careers,” Kondapi said.

Courtesy of the University of Houston and the Katy Area EDC

Katy, TX News (April 13, 2017) – Katy Independent School District has again received the “Best Communities for Music Education” designation from the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation for its outstanding commitment to music education for the 14th year.  Katy ISD is one of 4% of school districts across the nation to receive this prestigious award.

Katy ISD is leading the way with music learning opportunities as outlined in the federal education legislation, Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).  The District understands the importance of providing music education as part of the curriculum and knows the vital role music plays in the overall success of students in school and in life.

The Best Communities for Music Education designation honors school districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement in their efforts to provide music access and education to all students.

Courtesy of Katy ISD 

Katy, Texas News (April 11, 2017) – Katy High School invites you to celebrate the inaugural class of the Tiger Hall of Honor, which recognizes the efforts and contributions of former student athletes, athletic teams, coaches and special merit individuals who have brought distinction, honor and excellence to themselves and to the District.  Honorees include Clint Black, William Haskett, Patricia Wardlaw, Nancy Wilson, Renee Zellweger, Andy Dalton and Darren McPherson.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017 7:00 p.m.
Katy High School Performing Arts Center (PAC)
6331 Highway Blvd.

Courtesy of Katy ISD 

Katy, TX News (April 6, 2017) – Hard work and determination pays off for two Katy ISD students whose artwork advanced to the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo art auction.

McMeans Junior High eighth-grader Charles Jang’s artwork competed in the Grand Prix judging and won first place against students from over 100 districts. His project was a drawing titled “A Rare Connection.” This was the first year that a junior high student became auction eligible at this level. Jang’s artwork earned “Class Champion” recognition and auctioned off for $65,000.

Charles Jang - larger

The detailed work on Fatemeh Ebrahimi’s “Reserve Class Champion” three-dimensional sculpture caught the attention of buyers, who were out-bidding each other to purchase the unique piece. The Taylor High School eleventh-grader’s artwork is titled “The Spirit Within.” Only two entries for the three-dimensional category advanced to the art action where Ebrahimi’s work broke a world record and sold for $102,000.

Fatemeh Ebrahimi 1 - larger

Katy, Texas News (March 27, 2017) – The CRHS Engineering Club competed in its first ever Regional competition event as an affiliated member of the TSA (Technology Students Association). Students competed in a wide variety of events ranging from digital video production to structural engineering and biotechnology. The CRHS team advanced four students to the state level competition in Waco in April. Please congratulate the following students on their outstanding effort and success:

Music Production
Nikhil Baliga-1st Place and State Qualifier

Architectural Models
Aishani De & Shinjini De-3rd Place and State Qualifiers

Fashion Design
Alicia Morales-3rd Place and State Qualifier

Biotechnology-4th Place
Monica Raumaker
Addie Hervey
Ryan Dyson

Engineering Computer-Aided Design
Michael Weeks

Digital Video Production
Aishani De

Dragster Design
Christian Parrish
Jake O’Neill

Flight Endurance
Frederick Bayeh

Technology Bowl
Aleena Ilbeig
Maggie Weeks

This is the first year of existence for the CRHS Engineering Club TSA Chapter. Our immediate goals are to expand our membership, acquire sponsorship, and establish a tradition of excellence at TSA events. The club is open to all students who have an interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Teacher sponsors are Maria Scott, Jay Patel, and Rafael Villarreal.

Courtesy of Cinco Ranch High School 

Katy, Texas News (March 24, 2017) –  Congratulations to the faculty and staff at McRoberts Elementary School for being recognized as a Demonstration School by the Texas Alliance of Black School Educators (TABSE).  During the TABSE 32nd Annual State Conference in Houston, Texas, Mayor Sylvester Turner acknowledged the McRoberts Elementary School educators who work tirelessly to support and advance their students.

032417_Kwabena Mensah_TABSE

McRoberts Principal Dr. Kwabena Mensah also accepted the 2017 TABSE Principal of the Year Crystal Award.  He dedicated the award to his students, parents and staff who he says “continually set high expectations for everyone who walks through their school doors.”

Each year, TABSE recognizes distinguished individuals who have made local and state contributions to the education of African-American educators and learners.

 

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, Texas News (March 23, 2017) – After months of practice, 19 teams from Katy ISD have qualified to compete at the Texas Destination Imagination Affiliate Tournament held at Lubbock ISD on April 7-9.

desintation

The Gulf Coast Regional Tournament was held on Saturday, March 4th at Seven Lakes High School.  Schools representing the Cy-Fair, Fort Bend, Pasadena, Friendswood and Alvin Independent School Districts along with area private schools attended the annual event.  Approximately 375 teams competed in eight different challenges.  The following Katy ISD schools are preparing to compete against more than 400 teams from districts throughout Texas:

Elementary

  • Alexander, Griffin, Hayes, Holland, Katy, Stanley, Williams and WoodCreek

Junior High

  • Beckendorff, Cinco Ranch, Seven Lakes and Tays

High School

  • Katy and Seven Lakes

The Destination Imagination program fosters students’ creativity, courage and curiosity through open-ended academic challenges in the fields of S.T.E.M (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), fine arts and service learning.  Participants learn patience, flexibility, persistence, ethics, respect for others and their ideas and the collaborative problem solving process.  In Katy ISD, Destination Imagination teams form at participating campuses each September.

Katy, TX News (March 24, 2017) – Katy ISD has released their pre-registration dates for Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten, and new first grade. Pre-registration for the 2017-2018 school year will be held on the following dates:

  • Thursday, April 6, 2017
    Kindergarten and new first grade
  • Tuesday, April 11, 2017
    Pre-Kindergarten

Registration will be open from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m., and 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. on both days. Attendance zone information for all Katy ISD schools can be found by using the Student Assignment by Residential Address (SARA) application or mobile app.  This app provides the ability to search by a specific address or you can select any campus to see what subdivisions and apartment complexes it serves.  Visit katyisd.org for more information.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

Katy, Texas News (March 23, 2017) – Theatre Under the Stars has announced the nominations for the 15th annual Tommy Tune Awards, honoring the best in Houston’s high school musical productions, actors, and artists. Seven Lakes High School’s Studio VII is nominated in several categories for their production of the popular musical “Big Fish” including:

TTA

  • Best Leading Actor, Ben Heintz as Edward Bloom
  • Best Scenic Design
  • Best Lighting Design
  • Best Stage Crew & Technical Execution
  • Best Musical Direction
  • Best Orchestra

The winners in each category will be announced on April 18, 2017 in a special ceremony.

Katy, TX News (March 2, 2017) – Katy ISD has launched a strategic design process to create a community-inspired road map for its schools over the next three to five years.  Recently, a series of stakeholder meetings were held to gather baseline data from parents, business leaders, principals, teachers, clergy and students on where the District is currently and where the community hopes for the District to be in the near future.  The next steps in the strategic design process begins this week as Katy ISD hosts two of four education summits to provide the community an opportunity to share their highest hopes and aspirations for their children. The dates, times and locations for all of the education summits are listed below.

Wednesday, March 22

  • Education Support Complex
    6301 S. Stadium Lane
    11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • Morton Ranch High School
    9th Grade Commons
    21000 Franz Rd.
    6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Thursday, March 30

  • Education Support Complex
    6301 S. Stadium Lane
    11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • Cinco Ranch High School
    Main Commons
    23440 Cinco Ranch Blvd
    6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Katy, TX News (March 16, 2017) – Club SciKidz Houston, a franchise of Georgia-based, Club SciKidz, LLC is proud to announce its expansion into Katy, TX. With two Sugar Land, TX locations at Faith Lutheran Church and Fisher’s of Men Lutheran Church, Club SciKidz Houston is currently accepting Summer Day Camp registrations for its CrossPoint Community Church location at 700 S. Westgreen Blvd.

Club SciKidz Houston features in-school field trips, after school programs and summer day camp sessions for grades PK – 8 (or ages 4 – 15). While the week-long summer day camps are at churches, Club SciKidz also provides its other services at both public and private schools and day care centers.

2015-06-11 11.23.47

Club SciKidz was founded on the principle that parents want to provide their children with exciting, challenging and life impacting academic enrichment experiences. The company is committed to demonstrating how science works in the real world by providing activities in veterinary medicine, robotics, forensics, video game creation, food science, paleontology, engineering, chemistry and biology.

Club SciKidz Houston believes every child is a scientist and that we can make them even better scientists. All Club SciKidz Houston programs are focused on dramatic science demonstrations accompanied by hands-on/minds- on experiments and projects that meet or exceed National Science Education Standards and College and Career Standards.

For Summer 2017, Club SciKidz Houston will feature many more enhanced programs. Introduction to Java, Little coder, and Dash and Dot camps allow early experiences with computer coding. Additionally, camps Tech machines, Jr. Meteorology, QuadCopter Aerial Robotics, Mobile Game Design, and Water Robotics will immerse students in engineering and robotics. All of these camps can now be found in either Katy or Sugar Land, TX.

Club SciKidz Houston is the most unique provider of science enrichment programs for children. It offers authentic, immersive, and application based experiences. Parents of previous Club SciKidz Houston participants said, ” I like the variety of experiments my kids were exposed to and how actively engaged they were!” and “your summer programs are excellent!”

Club SciKiz Houston is “Where Science and Technology Connect!” With over 40 offerings, we’re sure there is a camp for your little scientist or engineer! Please check our website for all options.

Club SciKidz Houston will be featured at the Kids Directory booth at the McDonald’s Children Festival on April 1 – 2 from 10AM – 2:30PM. To learn more, stop by booth or feel free to contact us via the information found below:

Katy, TX News (March 10, 2017) – The British International School of Houston (BISH) varsity boys’ soccer team played an impressive game  and won the 2017 TAPPS Texas Division III State Soccer Championship title against Dallas Covenant with a final score of 5-2. The team notably played 21 matches over four months before winning this coveted title. Over the last six years they have been district champions four times and state champions twice.

Screen Shot 2017-03-08 at 5.25.47 PM

TAPPS, Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS), has a membership of 230 schools throughout Texas who regularly compete with one another in athletic events. TAPPS commits to building leadership, fellowship, fair play and sportsmanship of students enrolled in the organization’s member schools in the areas of academics, athletics and fine arts by providing wholesome competition for young men and women.

 

Andrew Derry, Principal of BISH commented, “I am extremely proud of our team and our students’ success, which was achieved through determination and resilience, epitomizing our core values of unity, respect and pride. At BISH we believe all children are ambitious by nature and can achieve their greatest aspirations with support and access to an exemplary global education.”

BISH provides a nurturing environment with a world-class learning approach that is grounded in each student’s unique experiences, capabilities and interests. This combined with a brand-new campus, purposely designed to support student achievement, allows the school to extend learning beyond the classroom through a wide variety of academic and athletic activities.

About British International School of Houston

The British International School of Houston (BISH) is an independent school catering to local and international students from Pre-K to 12th Grade. Part of Nord Anglia Education Inc., the school offers a challenging, broad course of study that culminates with the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IB). Student learning is supported by collaborations with The Juilliard School in New York and MIT. Our new Katy campus spans 34-acres and features purpose driven technology supported by Apple, customizable maker spaces, state-of-the-art science labs, four athletic fields, an aquatic center, two NCAA regulation size gymnasiums, and a 550-seat performing arts theater designed in collaboration with Juilliard. Conveniently located off IH10 at N. Westgreen Boulevard and just minutes from the Grand Parkway, the school is accessible to families residing in major cities across the Greater Houston Area, including Houston, The Woodlands and Sugar Land. Visit www.houston.nae.school to learn more.

 

About Nord Anglia Education, Inc.

Nord Anglia Education (NYSE: NORD) is the world’s leading operator of premium international schools, serving students from kindergarten through the end of secondary school (K-12).  We teach over 37,000 students at our 43 premium schools in China, Europe, the Middle East and Southeast Asia and North America. We are driven by one unifying philosophy – we are ambitious for our students, our people and our family of schools. Our schools deliver a high-quality education through a personalized approach enhanced with unique global opportunities to enable every student to succeed. Nord Anglia Education is headquartered in Hong Kong. Our website is www.nordangliaeducation.com.

For further information, please contact:

Jo Turner, Communications Manager

Tel: 832 248 0581

Email: jo.turner@houston.nae.school

Katy, TX News (March 6, 2017) – Katy ISD will host the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus for a special one-day event.  The tour bus is a state-of-the-art mobile audio and HD video recording and production facility.  It allows students to write, record and produce songs, music videos and documentaries among other digital media projects – all in one day.

John Lennon Educational Tour Bus

Selected students from the Miller Career & Technology Center will have the opportunity to create an original student project, while they also remember the legendary singer-songwriter, John Lennon.

Monday, March 6, 2017 8:15 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Miller Career & Technology Center
1734 Katyland Dr.

Over 400 Katy ISD students will have the chance to record in the state-of-the-art mobile audio and HD video facility, and will form a human peace sign, paying homage to the legendary John Lennon of The Beatles.

 

Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

 

Katy, TX News (February 28, 2017) – Katy ISD welcomes Todd McVey as the new Head Football Coach/Campus Athletic Coordinator at Obra D. Tompkins High School. Coach McVey is currently serving as an Assistant Athletic Director for Katy ISD, and the Interim Head Coach at Tompkins. He has been the Head Coach and Athletic Coordinator at McKinney HS and Killeen Harker Heights.  He was also a member of the staff at Texas City High school when they won the 4A state championship in 1997. The Falcons will introduce Mr. McVey to the Tompkins community at 7 p.m. in the Main Commons on Thursday, March 2.

Mcvey

Katy, TX News (February 27, 2017) – With a unanimous vote of 7-0, the Katy ISD Board of Trustees approved tonight “Legacy Stadium” as the new name for the Student Activity Facility:  Second Stadium.  Additionally and as part of public recommendation, the field will be named after former coach Mike Johnston.  This state of the art, cost efficient, multipurpose school facility will open up Fall of 2017, thanks to the 2014 voter-approved bond program and it will be part of the Academy Sports + Outdoors Complex.

Legacy Stadium

“It’s an honor to recognize all the former legacies which continue to inspire our students,” says Rebecca Fox, Katy ISD Board President.  “Coach Johnston is a perfect example of an individual who continues to pour out his love and dedication for the future generation.”

This February, the Second Stadium Naming Advisory Committee was tasked with identifying a suitable name for the Second Stadium, which would align with the values and core believes of Katy ISD.  The committee began with a solicitation of name nominations from the Katy ISD community, which was open from February 8-17.  After careful review, a recommendation was presented during the Board of Trustees Work Study Meeting on Tuesday, February 21.  District officials were happy to see dozens of attendees at the public forum offered for parents, teachers, staff and community input.

The Second Stadium is being built not just for the districts 75,000+ Katy ISD students, but for the entire community.

Click here to see photos of recent Second Stadium construction.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

KATY, TX News (February 27, 2017) – Texas PTA President Lisa Holbrook recently visited Pattison Elementary, one of six Katy Independent School District (KISD) schools whose Parent Teacher Associations (PTAs) were awarded the 2015/2016 Voice for Every Child Award.

Voice for Every Child Visit

Texas PTA’s most prestigious membership award, the Voice for Every Child Award honors PTAs that strive to have one voice (one member) for every child on campus.  The Pattison Elementary PTA was recognized at the Platinum level for recruiting at least one member per enrolled student, or 100% of student enrollment.  The PTAs at Alexander Elementary, Holland Elementary, Kilpatrick Elementary, Rylander Elementary and Stanley Elementary were also recognized.

During Holbrook’s visit and tour of Pattison Elementary, she lauded the PTA for being the “lifeblood of the campus.”

“On behalf of Texas PTA – thank you,” said Holbrook. “We truly appreciate all you do to support and engage the teachers, staff, students and their families, and the community as a whole.”

The Pattison Elementary PTA also is a recipient of Texas PTA’s 2015/2016 Head Start Award, Golden Apple Award, Men Are Really Super Award and Student Membership Award.

For more information on Pattison Elementary’s PTA, visit www.pattisonpta.org.

Katy, TX News (February 21, 2017) Katy ISD had 30 high school students win awards at the 2017 Farrington Contest and Awards, sponsored by the Houston Area Teachers of Foreign Language. This included six students who took home first place prizes in Spanish Advanced, Spanish Intermediate, German 2, German 3 and American Sign Language.

More than 200 Houston-area students participated in the language competition and schools were allowed to send three students from each language level. Participants completed a language exam including reading, writing, listening and speaking.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (February 17, 2017) – The Cinco Ranch High School String Quartet have the privilege of joining the professional actors on stage to add an element of orchestral texture to “In My Life,” the musical retelling of the Beatles story. The musical, told through the eyes of manager Brian Epstein, features the live music of renowned tribute band Abbey Road.

CRHS4tet

Cinco Ranch High seniors Aidan Gettemy and Daniela Melo, junior Janet Li and sophomore Joshua Jung will join the band for the songs “Eleanor Rigby,” “Yesterday,” “A Day in the Life,” “Hello Goodbye,” and “Hey Jude.” In a special touch, “Yesterday” is played as a scene in which the Paul McCartney character plays the song for the first time for Beatles producer George Martin, with the songwriter explaining that he envisioned a string-quartet accompaniment.

The smash hit production performs at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts – Zilkha Hall on March 17 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $33- $64, plus applicable ticket fees, and may be purchased online at www.thehobbycenter.org, by phone at 713.315.2525 or at the Hobby Center Box Office. The show is appropriate for all ages.

 

Katy, TX News (February 16, 2017) – Katy ISD recently announced that McRoberts Elementary Principal Dr. Kwabena Mensah and Mayde Creek Junior High Principal Dr. David Paz, were chosen for Katy ISD’s Region IV Principal Recognition.

Mensah and Paz were selected by their peers for their ability and willingness to make meaningful contributions to education, their desire for continuous personal and professional growth, and their ability to inspire Katy ISD students and staff.

They will be recognized along with campus administrators from school districts in the surrounding area at the Region IV Principal Recognition ceremony on Wednesday, April 5, 2017 at Hotel ZaZa.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (February 15, 2017) – The Conservatory of Music at Cinco Ranch is proud to announce that it has been selected as the new Assessment Center of the Royal Conservatory Music Development Program for the greater Houston area.


The Royal Conservatory Music Development Program provides a recognized national standard of musical success through an effectively sequenced course of study from beginner to advanced levels. The Music Development Program was developed by the acclaimed Royal Conservatory of Music in Canada, and was created in response to feedback from parents and teachers throughout the US, requesting a top-quality nationally-recognized system to track students’ musical progress, celebrating their accomplishments.

The Program centers on periodic assessments for students—one-on-one adjudicator-to-student performance evaluations that also function as valuable teaching and learning opportunities. In each practical assessment, a certified professional adjudicator evaluates a student’s performance of repertoire, studies (etudes), and musical proficiency skills. Assessments are offered for keyboard, string, woodwind, and brass instruments; voice; and the academic subjects of music theory, music history, and pedagogy.

“It was an honor to have been named as a Founding School of the Music Development Program back in 2012,” says Dr. Michael Guevara, manager of the The Conservatory of Music at Cinco Ranch. “Now, having been selected as the Assessment Center for the Music Development Program in the Houston area, this honor further solidifies our desire to offer access to the finest in music education within our community. Students who participate in this program will be provided with experiences and skills that will benefit them now and into the future.”
Assessments are held several times a year at locations across the US. For a list of upcoming assessment session dates and registration information, please visit www.MusicDevelopmentProgram.org.

Katy, TX News (February 9, 2017) – Katy ISD is now accepting nominations for the naming of the Student Activity Facility: Second Stadium, set to open Fall 2017.  Katy ISD will be providing its community with a state of the art, cost efficient, multipurpose second stadium as part of its 2014 Bond.

Individuals interested in submitting a name are asked to review the Katy ISD Board Policy CW (Local) for specific facility naming guidelines, and submit a completed Nomination for Naming a New School or Facility Form.  Click here for guidelines and form.
Katy ISD Stadium

The public may submit the Nomination for Naming a New School or Facility Form and all supplementary materials in the following manner:

Communications Department

P.O. Box 159

Katy, TX 77492-0159

  • Personal delivery to Education Support Complex (ESC)

Communications Department

6301 S. Stadium Lane

Katy, TX  77494

 

Submissions must be received no later than 4 p.m. on February 17.

Courtesy of Katy ISD Communications

Katy, TX News (January 31, 2017) – National Letter of Intent Signing Day is February 1, 2017. Several Katy ISD high school athletes, accompanied by their family, friends and Katy ISD staff, will be signing a binding letter of intent offered by distinct college teams from across the United States.  Below are the times for signing day at each school:

Cinco Ranch High School – Conference Room 1210 7:00 a.m.
23440 Cinco Ranch Blvd.

Katy High School – Field House Team Meeting Room 2:45 p.m.
6331 Highway Blvd.

Mayde Creek High School – Library 7:00 a.m.
19202 Groeschke Rd., Houston, TX  77084

Morton Ranch High School – Field House 8:00 a.m.
21000 Franz Rd.

Seven Lakes High School – LGI 7:00 a.m.
9251 S. Fry Rd.

Taylor High School – PAC 7:00 a.m.
20700 Kingsland Blvd.

Tompkins High School – LGI 7:00 a.m.
4400 Falcon Landing Blvd.

Katy, TX News (January 31, 2017) – Dr. James M. Jacobs and Associates with Your Total Foot Care Specialist, are pleased to announce two $1,500 “Stepping into the Future” scholarships for 2017 KISD graduating seniors. Applications must be submitted to the offices of Your Total Foot Care Specialist by March 31, 2017, 5:00 p.m. A third party committee will select the two winning applicants.

“We are proud to be a part of the Katy community and are honored to be able to give back to the community by encouraging future generations to reach and accomplish their dreams”, says Dr. James Jacobs. Your Total Foot Care Specialist has been proudly serving the Katy area for over 25 years to help resolve their patients foot care needs.

The “Stepping into the Future” scholarship program is available to seniors graduating with GPA’s ranging from 2.5 to 3.7. Our doctors were able to graduate from undergraduate and then podiatric medical school through the use of scholarships, grants, and loans. The two “Stepping into the Future” scholarship recipients will be announced at the Katy ISD Awards Ceremonies during May.

Katy, TX News (January 30, 2017) – The Katy High School varsity swimming and diving team had a record-breaking weekend at the district meet located at Tompkins High School last weekend.

The team took third place over all in what was one of the fastest district meets Katy ISD has seen in a long time. Diver Chloe Ceyanes was crowned the district champion while fellow diver Hollie Schaper took fourth. In boys diving, Jacob Adkisson was fifth and John Salder placed sixth.

In swimming, their team broke two school records and received numerous medals. All six relay teams advanced to regionals, along with numerous individual swimmers. Massimo Gasponi broke the Boys 100 Fly record previously set in 2004 and Kaloyan Bratanov broke the Boys 100 Free record previously set in 2003.

Here are the Results from District Swimming Prelims & Finals:

 

Girls 200 Medley Relay  

– 3rd Place Bronze Medal – Fernanda Gamez, Haley Watters, Marissa Watters, Kaelyn Lance

Girls 200 Free Relay

– 3rd Place Bronze Medal – Rachael Sanders, Jamie Morgan, Fernanda Gamez, Kaelyn Lance

Girls 400 Free Relay

– 4th Place Ribbon – Rachael Sanders, Jamie Morgan, Haley Watters, Wednesday Hunter

Boys 200 Medley Relay

– 2nd Place Silver Medal – Kaloyan Bratanov, Jonathan Tucker, Massimo Gasponi, Nathan Einarsson

Boys 200 Free Relay

– 4th Place Ribbon – Massimo Gasponi, William Irwin, Kyle Hendon, Nathan Einarsson

Boys 400 Free Relay

– 4th Place Ribbon – Jonathan Tucker, David Freeman, Kyle Hendon, Kaloyan Bratanov

 

Girls 200 Free

– Breanna Cuzzocreo – 11th

– Heather Matthews – 12th

– Mimi Bratanova – 14th

– Maddie Cotton – 16th

Boys 200 Free

– William Irwin – 18th

– Ben Erickson – 19th

– Alex Hernandez – 20th

Girls 200 Individual Medley

– Haley Watters – 4th Place Ribbon

– Wednesday Hunter – 8th Place Ribbon

– Shivani Kapoor – 14th

Boys 200 Individual Medley

– Kaloyan Bratanov – 1st Place Gold Medal

– Kyle Hendon – 15th Place

Girls 50 Free

– Kaelyn Lance – 5th Place Ribbon

– Rachael Sanders – 7th Place Ribbon

– Alyssa Basaldua – 15th Place

Boys 50 Free

– Nathan Einarsson – 5th Place Ribbon

– Massimo Gasponi – 7th Place Ribbon

– Drake Rosser – 15th Place

– David Freeman – 17th Place

Girls 100 Butterfly

– Marissa Watters – 3rd Place Bronze Medal

– Jamie Morgan – 7th Place Ribbon

– Maddie Cotton – 14th Place

Boys 100 Butterfly

– Massimo Gasponi – 3rd Place Bronze Medal

– Drake Rosser – 12th Place

– Vito Kiselev – 20th Place

– Alex Hernandez – 21st Place

Girls 100 Free

– Wednesday Hunter – 3rd Place Bronze Medal

– Kaelyn Lance – 5th Place Ribbon

– Rachael Sanders – 11th Place

– Heather Matthews – 13th Place

Boys 100 Free

– Kaloyan Bratanov – 1st Place Gold Medal

– Jonathan Tucker – 9th Place

– Nathan Einarsson – 12th Place

– Christopher Perry – 24th Place

Girls 500 Free

– Jamie Morgan – 3rd Place Bronze Medal

– Fernanda Gamez – 4th Place Ribbon

Boys 500 Free

– David Freeman – 15th Place

– Ben Erickson – 16th Place

Girls 100 Backstroke

– Fernanda Gamez – 4th Place Ribbon

– Mimi Bratanov – 9th Place

Boys 100 Backstroke

– William Irwin – 15th Place

Girls 100 Breaststroke

– Haley Watters – 2nd Place Silver Medal

– Breanna Cuzzocreo – 11th Place

– Alyssa Basaldua – 15th Place

– Shivani Kapoor – 16th Place

Boys 100 Breaststroke

– Jonathan Tucker – 8th Place Ribbon

– Kyle Hendon – 19th Place

– Christopher Perry – 20th Place

– Vito Kiselev – 22nd Place

 

Katy, TX News (January 30, 2017) – Dear Katy ISD Parents/Guardians, Staff & Community Members,

It’s no secret that Katy ISD is considered one of the most successful school districts in the country due to a robust curriculum and the wealth of opportunities available to our students.  Likewise, our parents and community members take great pride in supporting our kids and schools and value the role we all play in building the legacy.

As we have all seen, with great success comes rapid growth.  For the past several decades Katy ISD has been planning for it and closely monitoring student projections presented by our demographers.   Trustees have been engaged in ongoing discussions focused on how best to continue providing the education our students need for a successful future, in light of the fast flow of development in this area.  This is especially true in the southwest and northwest quadrants of the District.  Earlier this month, the Board approved a charter for a Community Bond Advisory Committee that would be responsible for developing and providing a proposed 2017 bond referendum for the Board’s consideration.

However, for a bond package to effectively meet the needs of students and families, it has to be community driven, as we hope this one will be.  Remember, Katy ISD and its future belongs to you!

If you would like to serve on the Katy ISD 2017 Community Bond Advisory Committee, the Board and I invite you to complete a Committee application, which will be available online at www.katyisd.org, beginning Wednesday, February 1, 2017.  As members of the Katy community, let’s continue to play an active role in supporting the children of the next generation.  Join me and Katy ISD, as we continue building our legacy!

Lance Hindt, Ed.D.
Superintendent

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (January 18, 2017) – Katy ISD is pleased to announce the addition of Ron Counter and B.J. William Gotte as our new Campus Athletic Coordinator/Head Football Coach’s for Morton Ranch High School and Paetow High School.  Both positions were approved unanimously during the Katy ISD Board of Trustees Work Study meeting tonight.

Coach Counter comes to Morton Ranch High from Stafford High where he was the head football coach and athletic director for the last four years. During his time at Stafford, Coach Counter led the program into the playoffs four years in a row.  Prior to Stafford, Coach Counter made coaching stops at Strake Jesuit High, Round Rock Westwood High, Spring Woods High, Alief Hastings High and Klein Oak High. Coach Counter has also received several “Coach of the Year” honors.

For Coach Gotte, moving to Paetow High School means staying close to home.  Growing up he attended Cimarron Elementary, West Memorial Junior High and graduated “class of ’97” at Katy High School, which is where he also began his career in 2001.  Coach Gotte made stops at Deer Park High, La Marque High and Flower Mound Marcus High prior to returning to Katy High in 2009. His role as an Offensive Coordinator at Katy High School has played an integral part in winning three state championships.

The Katy ISD Athletic Department is excited to welcome both coaches to these new endeavors within the Katy ISD family.  Both coaches will begin this new journey on February 1st.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (January 17, 2017) – The Galleria and Katy Mills are once again proud to help a deserving graduating senior pay for college. Simon Youth Foundation, a national nonprofit that provides educational opportunities for at-risk high school students, is now looking for qualified applicants who live near The Galleria, Katy Mills and the surrounding community.

Each year, Simon Youth Community Scholarships are awarded in every community across the country that is home to Simon, Mills, or Premium Outlets malls. The application period has begun and ends on March 1, 2017. Students can apply online by visiting syf.org/scholarships.

SYF will award 25 scholarships to students graduating in the class of 2017 who live in communities surrounding any Premium Outlets mall nationwide. No more than one scholarship will be awarded per property. Recipients will receive up to $1,500 to enroll in an accredited college, university, vocational or technical school.

In addition, an “Award of Excellence” will be given to the top candidate from among the scholarship applicants that represent the nationwide Premium Outlets locations. That student will receive a $10,000 award ($2,500 for up to four years).

In 2016, the Simon Youth Foundation awarded $1.2 million to 300 students nationwide.

“The cost of college continues to rise, and SYF is proud to partner with The Galleria and Katy Mills to award scholarships that will remove some of the financial obstacles that could otherwise prevent a student from achieving the dream of a college education,” said Dr. J. Michael Durnil, SYF President and CEO.

The 2017 SYF Community Scholarship recipients will be selected by International Scholarship and Tuition Services, Inc. (ISTS), a third-party administrator. Students are selected based on a variety of criteria, including financial need, academic performance, leadership skills and participation in school and community activities. Those students who are the first in their family to pursue a post secondary education will also be given close consideration.

Recipients will be notified in May.

Courtesy of the Simon Youth Foundation 

Katy, TX News (January 13, 2017) During a tournament in College Station this week, the Mayde Creek High School men’s JV soccer team showed that there is more to competition than points on a scoreboard. When the players learned from their coach that one of the opposing team members had down syndrome, they banded together to show a level of sportsmanship that is seldom seen in competitive tournaments. Read the story below:

Boys soccer 2017 at College Station

Rams soccer coach Ryan Allred says, “I was notified ahead of time that the team we were playing had a young man with down syndrome on their team. The coach told me that he was going to be putting the young man in the second half, and that he would be wearing the #17 jersey. Before the game started, I went over to our team and I asked them if they would be willing to let this young man score a goal while he was in the game. Without hesitation, all of them answered yes. As the game started, all of that had kind of gone to the back of our minds. With a few minutes remaining in the game their coach put this young man into the game. I yelled to our players that he was on the field. With one minute left to go in the game this young man had received the ball and started dribbling towards our goal. One by one our players started diving to the ground as if he had dribbled around them, and they had missed trying to take the ball away from him. Our goalie even did the same thing. I wish you could’ve been there to see the look on this young man’s face as he scored the goal. His hands quickly shot in the air while running to the sideline and then jumping into the arms of his coach. Meanwhile, all of our players were clapping and cheering him on. And to top that all off, as we were driving away his car was closely parked to our bus and our boys started chanting his name and telling him great game. I felt like we had won more than just a game today. These young men displayed something that most young men would not do for fear of embarrassment or ridicule. They truly set an example as some of the great students we have here at Mayde Creek.”

Courtesy of Mayde Creek High School 

Katy, TX News (January 12, 2017) Texas Dance Educator’s Association is proud to announce the invitation from the Texas State Society to perform at the Black Tie and Boots Inaugural Gala in Washington D.C. on January 19, 2017.  The 2017 Ball promises to live up to its spectacular reputation as the “hottest ticket in town” during Inauguration weekend, and far exceed expectations.  The Black Tie & Boots Inaugural Ball will be held at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in the banks of the Potomac River. This facility is the largest and most elegant facility in the entire DC Metropolitan area. Guests include Texas state officials, dignitaries, thousands of guests from all over the United States.

Only 25 All-State members will be performing at this prestigious event. The following Students are thrilled to be selected from Katy ISD:

Katy ISD DC Performers
Students with their directors, pictured left to right: Cougar Stars Asst. Director Christine Deci, Cougar Stars Colonel Teagan Schmidt, Bengal Brigade Asst. Director Alison Lowrey, Bengal Brigade Colonel Sarah Dwyer, Bengal Brigade Director Patty Hyatt-Henson

Performers will learn a piece choreographed by Eve Robinson, director of the Alvin High School Jacketters. The piece will be performed at several venues and times during the ball. Performers will be wearing their School’s traditional dance team uniform with a sash representing their hometown.

While in Washington D.C., the All-State members will be visiting the National Mall, Smithsonian Museums, Arlington National Cemetery, historical landmarks and a Night tour of the City.

Courtesy of TDEA 

KATY, TX News (January 11, 2017) According to the Girl Scout Research Institute’s (GSRI) report, The Power of the Girl Scout Gold Award: Excellence in Leadership and Life, Girl Scout Gold Award recipients receive greater lifetime benefits than their peers with regard to positive sense of self, life satisfaction, leadership, life success, community service, and civic engagement thanks to their experience in Girl Scouting, including earning their Gold Award.

Chloe Bartine, a senior at Seven Lakes High School, has earned the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest honor in Girl Scouting.  The award recognizes girls in grades 9 through 12 who demonstrate extraordinary leadership through sustainable and measurable community service projects that require a minimum of 80 hours to complete. Less than five percent of Girl Scouts earn the award.

chloebartine

To earn the award, Bartine designed and built two Little Free Libraries for Neighborhood Kidz Club in the communities of Western Pines and Trinity Hunters Place located in Katy, Texas. Bartine’s goal was to address the learning gaps that occur over the summer or holiday breaks when children do not have access to books.

“The Little Free Library is open all the time and the books are free,” said Bartine. “It is a way to promote literacy and nurture the love of reading through sharing.”

To stock the libraries with books, Bartine also hosted a book drive and led more than 15 volunteers to complete this project.

Bartine has served as a volunteer for Neighborhood Kidz Club’s summer reading program the past few summers and said that the kids love having access to books to read during that time.

“I have always loved to read and feel that books can take you places you have never been, help you find the answers to questions you may have and give you opportunities to dream and explore,” said Bartine. “I wanted to give the kids an opportunity to be able to read any time.”

Through earning the Gold Award, Bartine learned the importance of leadership and how it directly affects the success of the project, patience and how to be more organized and attentive to the needs of the project.

After graduation, Bartine will attend the University of Alabama to pursue a Bachelor of Arts in dance.

To learn more about the Girl Scout Gold Award, visit www.girlscouts.org.

Katy, TX News (January 6, 2017) In a letter to parents, Dr. Lance Hindt, Ed. D., Superintendent of Katy ISD, addressed the validity of the unofficial letter grade ratings released by the TEA.

“Dear Katy ISD Parents and Community,

Today, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) will release unofficial letter grades for every campus and district throughout the state — a requirement of House Bill 2804.  This unofficial ratings report is considered a trial run for the new 2017-18 accountability system and is designed to provide districts with a benchmark to track progress and make improvements ahead of releasing the official August 2018 ratings.

It is no secret that Katy ISD is one of the best school districts in the state, consistently earning TEA’s highest accountability rating year after year.  In addition, our community is highly regarded for its family values and business growth.  However, I and many others believe that TEA’s new methodology for calculating ratings does not accurately reflect where we are as a district and community. In fact, the unofficial ratings show that our district and some of our schools have received less than average ratings in one or more areas (see FAQs for more information on House Bill 2804).

new-lance-hindt-picture-larger-file

Please know that our Board and staff is committed to ensuring that all students are provided exceptional learning opportunities, programs and facilities.  While we will continue to use data to drive student achievement, we are also mindful of the flaws that communities across the state have pinpointed in the current and future accountability systems.  Nevertheless, we are encouraged that the TEA will use this preliminary data to continue refining its methodology for calculating letter grades before releasing the official August 2018 A-F accountability reports.

As you may have seen in the 2016-17 Legislative Priorities adopted by the Board, we believe that the educational needs of our children and community would be better served if school districts were allowed greater local input and control. Over the course of the school year, we hope that our parents and community will join the Board of Trustees in advocating the legislature for an accountability system that streamlines the Texas Essential Knowledge & Skills and suspends the punitive components of the flawed ratings system.

Our parents, staff and community, are the key ingredient behind the success of our students.  Thank you for your ongoing support as we continue to navigate and work through the 2017-18 accountability system and its new measures.

Should you have any additional questions, please contact your campus or the Parent and Patron Assistance Center at (281) 396-2441/ ppac@katyisd.org.

Remember, our shared goal is to prepare Katy ISD students for a successful future.  The part of our mission statement that reads, “…together with family and community,” means that we all play an important role in reaching that goal.”

Be the legacy!

Lance Hindt, Ed.D.
Superintendent

Courtesy of Katy ISD 

Katy, TX (December 14, 2016) The Katy ISD Education Foundation recently launched its fifth Inspiring Imagination teacher grant application process, which will fund Katy ISD teacher grants for the 2017-2018 school year.  Community support for the grants is led by the Foundation’s Cornerstone Investor, BP America, Inc.  This year, BP contributed $40,000 for S.T.E.M.-related teacher grants.  “The Katy ISD Education Foundation’s partnership with BP represents the best of our community,” said Katy ISD Superintendent, Dr. Lance Hindt. “Our district is grateful to both BP and the Katy ISD Education Foundation for providing these opportunities for our teachers and students.”

bp-check-presentation-11-4-16-2

BP’s three years of support for the Foundation has helped fifty different classroom projects all over Katy ISD, reaching multiple campuses, subject areas and grade levels. Projects have included GEMS Club (Girls Excelling in Math and Science) at Hayes Elementary, West Memorial Junior High’s Robotics Club and a library S.T.E.A.M. Makerspace project at Mayde Creek High School.  “BP is pleased to continue its support of this outstanding program that provides Katy ISD teachers additional resources needed to further inspire their students,” said Marta Vasel, BP Vice President Strategic Cooperation. “This donation reaffirms BP’s commitment to S.T.E.M. education and to the communities in which we live and operate.”

In its first four years of operation, the Katy ISD Education Foundation has awarded more than $725,000 in grants to Katy ISD teachers across the district. All Katy ISD educators directly involved in classroom instruction are invited to apply for a grant. Applications are due April 4, 2017.  To learn more, contact us at 281-396-6031 or visit www.katyisdeducationfoundation.org.

 

About the Katy ISD Education Foundation – The Katy ISD Education Foundation serves as a catalyst for extraordinary teachers to create extraordinary classroom experiences for their students. The Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit for which contributions are deductible to the extent allowed by law.

About BP:

Over the past 10 years, BP has invested more than $90 billion in the U.S. – more than any other energy company. BP is a leading producer of oil and gas and produces enough energy annually to light nearly the entire country for a year. Employing about 14,000 people across the country, BP supports more than 130,000 additional jobs through all of its business activities.

Courtesy of Katy ISD Education Foundation

Katy, TX (December 13, 2016) Katy Independent School District (ISD) announced that Academy, Ltd. (d/b/a Academy Sports + Outdoors), a premier sports, outdoor and lifestyle retailer, will receive exclusive naming rights to the school district’s Student Activities Complex, as part of a new ten-year deal. The complex is home to Jack Rhodes Memorial Stadium and a second football stadium to be completed in summer 2017.

“As the Houston area’s hometown sporting goods retailer, this partnership is especially meaningful to our team, as Katy is home to more than 3,000 of our team members, our corporate headquarters, two of our store locations, and one of our distribution centers,” said J.K. Symancyk, President and CEO, Academy Sports + Outdoors. “Academy has partnered with Katy ISD for over 25 years, and we are proud to extend our support in the Katy community over the next decade.”

Under the terms of the deal, Katy ISD Student Activities Complex will be named “Academy Sports + Outdoors Student Activities Complex.” The state-of-the-art facility will host district-wide athletics, fine arts and extracurricular activities, as well as non-Katy ISD events at the local and regional level.

“We are grateful for Academy’s support of Katy ISD’s students and community and are proud to be able to grant the organization the naming rights for the Student Activities Complex,” said Rebecca Fox, Board of Trustees President, Katy ISD. “This is an exciting time for our school district and we look forward to our long-term partnership with Academy on a complex that will be a destination for local residents to enjoy for many years to come.”

The 10-year, $2.5 million naming rights agreement will take effect on July 1, 2017.

“I want to commend the administration, staff and community members who worked so diligently with the Board to make this partnership a reality,” said Lance Hindt, Superintendent, Katy ISD. “Community partnerships contribute largely to our legacy of excellence, and we couldn’t be more excited to join forces with Academy.”

Headquartered in Katy since 1990, Academy Sports + Outdoors is dedicated to supporting the community, particularly youth athletics. Through sponsorships, equipment donations and volunteer efforts, Academy supports more than 120 Houston-area youth sports organizations, serving more than 80,000 area kids.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX (December 13, 2016) During the Regular Meeting, the Katy ISD Board of Trustees approved the attendance boundary modifications (ABMs) presented to them on December 5, in preparation for the opening of Bryant Elementary, Stockdick Junior High and Paetow High School.

The approved ABM maps, which are designed to help balance enrollment at overcrowded campuses and ensure all students have equal access to a high quality education, were updated based on the feedback provided by the public through the survey and other reviews of campuses that are currently overcrowded.

These ABMs will impact Morton Ranch High School, Katy High School, Katy Junior High, McDonald Junior High, Katy Elementary and Wolman Elementary. A letter will be mailed directly to all the impacted families by the end of January 2017.

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For more information and FAQs regarding ABMs, click here.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

Katy, TX (December 1, 2016) This month, 181 community and business members from across Katy came together to bring the love of reading into almost 400 Katy ISD classrooms during Promise to Read.  The annual initiative is part of a 19-year-old tradition led by Katy ISD’s Partners in Education.  Promise to Read affords the community a unique opportunity to reacquaint themselves with the world of children’s literature by spending 30 minutes reading to a classroom of excited elementary students. Each November the program is offered over the course of two weeks at various elementary campuses.

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This year’s Promise to Read was hosted at Bear Creek, Hutsell, Exley, Randolph, Williams, Davidson, Morton Ranch, Kilpatrick, Pattison and Wilson Elementary Schools.   Host campuses rotate each year so that, over a four-year period, every Katy ISD elementary has an opportunity to participate.

Readers represented a cross section of local companies and organizations including:  Aberdare Business Solutions, ABM Industries, Academy Sports + Outdoors, Altitude Katy, AmCap Mortgage, American Kids Athletics, AXA Advisors, Bass Pro Shops, Big Frog, Bolli Bros Pizza, Books Alive, Brainy Learning Club, Brazos Valley Schools Credit Union, Bridges of Healing, CenterPoint Energy, Chick-fil-A, Christian Brothers Automotive, Citgo, City of Katy, Community Health Choice, Cross Creek Ranch, Dahl Team Properties, Dignity Memorial-Katy Funeral Home, Duffey and Grissom CPA’s, marriott-energy-corridor dr-lance-hindt-katy-isd-superintendent-at-morton-ranch-elementary-2GNA Inspections, Goddard School, Grand Vision Center, HCC Northwest, H-E-B, Herff Jones Houston, Heritage Texas Properties, Homewood Suites Katy, Houston Community College, Houston SPCA, Junior Achievement, Katy Council PTA, Katy Independent School District, Katy Magazine, Keep Katy Beautiful, Kind Bars, Listl Translating Services & More LLC, LPL Financial, Marriott Energy Corridor Hotel, Maude Marks Branch Library, Members Choice Credit Union, Memorial Hermann Hospital System, Must See Katy, Nutty Scientists Fort Bend, Omni Houston Hotel at Westside, PBK, PDQ, Pepper Lawson, PrimeLending, Prosperity Bank, Pump It Up, Second Baptist Church, Signarama Katy, Sovereign Wealth Advisors LLC, Spring Creek Barbeque, Stanley Signature Signs, Star Learning, State Farm Insurance, Sylvan Learning, Target, The Glaser Group McDonald’s, The Shady Lady Window Covering, The Tutoring Center Katy, Tilt Studio, Times Square Entertainment, Wee Kare Pediatrics, Which Wich, Whole Foods Market Katy/Sugar Land, Wood Group, Yellow Rose Properties and YES Youth Fitness and Sports Performance.

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“Promise to Read has become a treasured community event thanks to hundreds of devoted community volunteers, many of whom join us every year, and our Katy ISD host campuses,” says Janet Theis, Katy ISD’s Director of Community Partnerships. “Promise to Read continues to open the door for our business community to embrace and inspire the love of reading and share that magic with classrooms across the district.”

 

About Katy ISD Partners in Education – Through programs like Promise to Read, Katy ISD Partners in Education creates school-support opportunities for parents, businesses and the community by offering a wide variety of options amenable to every schedule, talent and expertise.  We bring volunteers into Katy ISD classrooms at each campus and all grade levels.  To learn more, visit Partners in Education under the “Community” tab at www.katyisd.org.

 

Courtesy of Katy ISD Partners in Education

Katy, TX (November 30, 2016) Rotary Club of Katy and City of Katy, sponsors of the 24th Annual Katy Triathlon at Firethorne, are doing a virtual “victory lap” to celebrate the record number of participants and the $25,000 net funds raised in 2016.  The success of the competition, whose registration was up 20 percent over last year, enabled the club to increase its Katy Independent School District 2017 college scholarships from $1,500 to $2,000.

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“We are thrilled that this year’s Katy Triathlon success allows the Rotary Club of Katy to make such a significant increase in the scholarship monies they give the students,” said Janet Burkett, Director of Marketing for Firethorne, home to the Katy Triathlon for the past nine years.  The event drew 600 athletes, up from 500 last year, with 1,500 spectators coming out to cheer them to the finish line.

Celebrating its 70th anniversary this year, the Rotary Club of Katy has raised more than $445,000 for its community service projects since taking over the Katy Triathlon in 1998. The Club’s philanthropic and outreach programs reflect Firethorne’s community support, such as funding college scholarships and essential health, recreation and educational services for Katy ISD students.

img_82542016 race sponsors included Firethorne, Memorial Hermann Katy and Methodist Hospital West, ER Katy, Suzanne Bruce & Associates Dermatology, Loesch Luxury Properties, Courtyard Marriott, No Label Brewing Co., Fort Bend County Commissioner Precinct 3, Kovach KW Signature, Great Harvest Bread Co., Your Total Foot Care Specialist, Bike Barn, Circle B Veterinary Hospital, Growler USA America’s Microbrew Pub, Residence Inn Marriott, Prosperity Bank, Vicki Rao, CPA, Bob Nelson, CPA, Loretta and Dan Dienst and Beverly and George Yeiter.

The Rotary Club of Katy organizes more than 50 of its own member-volunteers, plus helpers from such service clubs as Rotary Interact Club, Katy West Houston Rotaract Club, Boy Scouts and Katy VFW.

Courtesy of Firethorne

Katy, TX (October 20, 2016) The Katy ISD Communications Department was recognized by MarCom Awards, an international competition that recognizes outstanding achievement by creative professionals involved in the concept, direction, design and production of marketing and communication materials and programs, as a Gold Winner in the category of E-Newsletter.

The Katy ISD Update, a monthly publication created by the Department and delivered via e-mail to nearly 20,000 subscribers, was recognized for its creative design and concept.

The Department was also awarded Honorable Mention by MarCom in the category of Information Video for its video feature on K9 Officers Marcel and Juno, four-legged heroes that sniff out trouble to keep Katy ISD safe, which was produced to honor the Katy ISD Police Department during the District’s Police Week from August 28 – September 3.

Nearly 6,000 entries are submitted every year from corporate marketing and communication departments, advertising agencies, PR firms, design shops, production companies and freelancers from across the United States and other countries.

The mission of the MarCom Awards is to honor excellence and recognize the creativity, hard work and generosity of marketing and communication professionals.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

Katy, TX (October 7, 2016) – The Katy ISD Education Foundation, a southwest region finalist for 2017 Chick-fil-A True Inspiration awards, invites the entire Katy/West Houston community to rally in support of its campaign. One of four non-profit organizations competing for the prize, the Foundation could potentially gain up to $75,000 for its Inspiring Imagination teacher grant program.  The winning organization will be determined in part by number of votes received. Voting ends at midnight, Monday, October 17.cfa-katy-isd-ed-foundation-true-inspiration-vote

 

Chick-fil-A’s True Inspiration awards recognizes community organizations that align with the Chick-fil-A Foundation’s mission to support and inspire youth.  The Katy ISD Education Foundation rewards teacher inspiration of students by funding innovative classroom projects that go beyond district budget limitations. The Foundation was nominated by local Chick-fil-A operator, Rusty Wylie and is the only organization in the Greater Houston Area under consideration. True Inspiration awards are a national contest; therefore voting is open to everyone regardless of location.

Votes are cast exclusively through the Chick-fil-A One app, one vote per person. To vote on the app, select “Vote” on the home screen, then “Southwest Region,” “Katy ISD Education Foundation,” and “Confirm Vote.”

 

Courtesy of the Katy ISD Education Foundation

Katy, TX (September 30, 2016) Katy ISD is seeking proposals from businesses for the exclusive naming rights of the Katy ISD Student Activity Facilities Complex, which is comprised of the Jack Rhodes Stadium and the future Student Activity Facility: Second Stadium.

The minimal term for this agreement will be 10 years, and the final negotiated price can be paid in yearly increments.

This Complex will not only be the home base for Districtwide athletics, fine arts and extracurricular activities, but will also host non-Katy ISD events at the local and regional level.

Jack Rhodes Stadium opened in 1982 and is located at 1733 Katyland Drive in Katy. The stadium is home for seven high school varsity teams with the eighth high school to open its doors in the fall of 2017.  The 2014 bond referendum provided funding to construct the second stadium, which is also located on the same grounds as Rhodes Stadium, thus creating the Katy ISD Student Activity Facilities Complex.

This Complex will create a unique experience for fans, students, parents and the community as sporting and fine arts events can be played concurrently thanks to the infrastructure and new road construction that will allow spectators and game participants easy access in and out of the Complex. Another exciting element of the second stadium is a multi-purpose room that can also serve as a venue for various community events such as banquets, receptions and recognitions.

Businesses interested in submitting proposals can do so by mail to the Katy ISD Purchasing Department at 5364 Franz Road, Katy, Texas 77493 by October 10, 2016 at 2 p.m.  All proposals are to be submitted in a sealed envelope and clearly marked: 2:00 PM., OCTOBER 10, 2016 – RFCSP #1609 – NAMING RIGHTS FOR KATY ISD STUDENT ACTIVITY FACILITIES COMPLEX.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

Katy, TX (September 27, 2016) The Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) has reelected Henry Dibrell of Katy ISD to a three-year term on the TASB Board of Directors, representing TASB Region 4, Position E. Dibrell currently serves as sergeant-at-arms for the Katy ISD board. He joined the board in 2011 and has held the positions of vice-president, treasurer, and secretary.

A graduate of Leadership TASB and a current fellow with the Center for Reform of School Systems, he also invests time volunteering with the Katy High School Band Booster Club and mentoring and coaching flag football athletes. Dibrell is the owner of Campaign Crate, a political consulting firm.

Dibrell is a licensed minister who holds a bachelor of science in marketing from Northwestern State University. He is also a member of the Blue Key National Honor Fraternity, where he received the Dean Nicolus Award, and serves on the board of the Katy Pachyderm Club.

TASB is a nonprofit association established in 1949 to serve local public school boards. School board members are the largest group of publicly elected officials in the state. The districts they represent serve more than 5.3 million students.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

Katy, TX (September 22, 2016) Parents and students are invited to explore post-secondary opportunities.

Representatives from more than 200 colleges, universities, and career training programs from all over the country will be available to answer questions and provide information about their programs. Click here for a list of participating colleges and organizations.

The event is being held at the Merrell Center on Wednesday, October 5 from 6 to 8:30 p.m.

For more information, contact the Katy ISD Communications Office at 281-396-2298.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX (August 26, 2016) Keep Encouraging Youth toward Success – KEYS – the Katy ISD mentor program, will kick off another successful year of mentoring on Thursday, September 22, from 8-9:30 a.m. in the Merrell Center.

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Katy ISD campuses will host tables for their mentors along with any community members who might be interested in becoming a mentor.

KEYS is a relationship, not a tutoring, program that matches a caring adult with a student on the brink of success. Mentors make a one-school-year commitment and meet with their students for up to one hour each week, on campus, during the school day, during the school year.  KEYS survey results from the 2015-2016 school year showed that 88% of KEYS students increased grades, 80% decreased absences and 87% decreased discipline referrals.

Over its 20-year-history, thousands of mentors have changed the trajectory of their KEYS student’s lives.  As school starts this year, hundreds of Katy ISD students are waiting for a mentor of their own.  If you have ever thought about becoming a mentor, or if you are already a KEYS mentor, please join us at the KEYS Kick Off.  To RSVP or to complete a KEYS application please go to www.katyisd.org and click on “Partners in Education” under the “Community” tab.

For more information please contact Martha Brown at 281.396.2468, or marthabrown@katyisd.org.
About Katy ISD Partners in Education – Katy ISD Partners in Education creates school-support opportunities for parents, businesses and the community by offering a wide variety of options amenable to every schedule, talent

and expertise.  We bring volunteers into Katy ISD classrooms at each campus and all grade levels.  To learn more, visit Partners in Education under the “Community” tab at www.katyisd.org.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

Katy, TX (August 11, 2016) The Katy ISD Communications Department sent an email regarding the closure of all campuses on Monday, August 15th.

Please be aware that all Katy ISD campuses, including the Education Support Complex (ESC) located at 6301 S. Stadium Lane, will be closed to the public on Monday, August 15, 2016 while staff attend the Superintendent’s Convocation from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Merrell Center.

There will also be increased traffic in the area as nearly 100 school buses transport staff to and from the Merrell Center that day.

If you had planned to visit a campus or the ESC on Monday, we urge you to reschedule for tomorrow or Tuesday during regular business hours.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

 

Katy, TX (August 1, 2016) Katy ISD is changing the way students and parents fill out the First Day Packet. Instead of having to sign and fill out multiple pages, parents will be able to update their child’s or children’s information electronically.

Starting on August 8th, all parents and guardians will receive a unique SnapCode for each child currently enrolled in Katy ISD to their email address on file. If you do not have an email address on file, a letter will be mailed to you. A returning student is defined as any student that is currently enrolled in Katy ISD. You are a returning student even if you have moved within the Katy ISD boundaries and are attending a new campus in 16-17 or if you are attending a new school due to promotion (i.e. moving from 5th grade elementary to attend 6th grade Junior High or moving from 8th grade Junior High to attend 9th grade High School).

What is a Returning Student Update?
This electronic, online process will replace the First Day Packet where many various forms had to be filled out manually and returned to the campus. With InfoSnap, you will be able to update all of your child’s information in one spot and electronically review and sign all documentation. All parents will be updating their student’s information, yearly, using InfoSnap.

If your child(ren) is(are) currently enrolled, you will receive a SnapCode the week of August 8th, you will be directed to the Katy ISD website to begin the updating process.

Starting August 8th, if you have any questions about the Returning Student Update, you can contact your child’s campus during business hours. For after hours (5 p.m. – 8 p.m., Monday through Thursday) you can call 281-396-7663.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX (July 29, 2016) Katy ISD delivered a statement regarding the recent arrest of Robert Milton, an art teacher at Katy High School.

At Katy Independent School District, we are committed to providing a safe learning environment for all of our students.  Yesterday the district was informed that the Harris County District Attorney’s Office filed criminal charges against, Robert Milton, a Katy High School teacher, for allegedly engaging in an inappropriate relationship with a student.

As soon as the District became aware of the concern an investigation was launched. Milton was immediately placed on administrative leave.  Several days later, the teacher resigned from Katy ISD.  The District is cooperating fully with prosecutors with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office during this investigation and will continue to do so.

Courtesy of Katy ISD Communications

Katy, TX (July 27, 2016) Simon Youth Foundation (SYF), a national leader in dropout recovery and prevention, has begun building classrooms inside of Katy Mills mall that will be open to students this fall. The non-profit is partnering with the Katy Independent School District to build Simon Youth Academy at Katy Mills and to adopt Martha Raines High School into its network. A Grand Opening Ceremony will be held on September 22.

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SYF, a non-profit founded by Simon Property Group employees, partners with public school districts to build dropout recovery academies inside shopping malls. SYF provides the space rent-free and funds the construction of the Academy. Katy ISD will staff the school and refer students who are not on track to graduate. Long-time educator Heather DeVries will serve as the Coordinator of the Academy.

“We’re thrilled to be entering the Katy community,” SYF CEO Michael Durnil said. “Every school district has students who are struggling in the traditional classroom setting. Katy ISD does a wonderful job meeting the needs of all students, and we hope our partnership will allow them to do even more.”

Simon Youth Academy at Katy Mills and Martha Raines High School will be the 27th and 28th programs in the SYF network. SYF provides ongoing support for these schools by providing professional learning opportunities for teachers, annual enhancement grants of up to $5,000, and enrichment opportunities for students.

Additionally, SYF provides scholarships each year to Academy graduates, worth up to $40,000.

“Having SYF as a partner will take our alternative education programs to the next level,” Chief Academic Officer Dr. Christine Caskey said. “We’re grateful for the support we’ve received from the foundation and Katy Mills as we strive to help every student graduate.”

“People in Katy already come to the mall for outstanding shopping, dining, and entertainment. Soon, students will be able to come here to complete their education,” Katy Mills General Manager Don Massey said. “It’s an educational opportunity we’re proud to provide to our community.”
About Simon Youth Foundation
Simon Youth Foundation, a national nonprofit, exists to help at-risk students who are on the verge of dropping out of high school stay in school. Through 26 Simon Youth Academies in 12 states and Simon Youth Scholarships, and in partnership with local public schools, SYF has maintained a 90 percent graduation rate at its Academies since inception, graduated more than 14,000 students, and awarded more than $16 million in scholarships. Learn more at syf.org.

 

Katy, TX (July 20, 2016) For Chardai Grays, her second stint shadowing healthcare professionals at Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital was more focused, allowing her to glean practical ideas to apply to teaching students in her Algebra I class at Heights High School. Grays, along with a contingent of Houston Independent School District’s (HISD) instructors, spent a week in the hospital as part of the district’s “Teacher Externship” program.

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“The professionals at Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital are incredible,” Grays said. “I learned how teams and departments organize, communicate, collaborate and use data. I also learned how I would use these skills for a number of student projects.

“For instance,” Grays continued, “the students can do surveys and create dashboards about trends in the neighborhood surrounding the school to learn about the number of homeless people in the area, or learn how many people in the community are eating healthy foods in their homes, or if they’re eating at all. So, I learned a lot that I plan to use during the school year.”

This marks the third year that Memorial Hermann Greater Heights has partnered with HISD to host high school teachers as part of its summer “Teacher Externship” program – designed for teachers of math, science, English, social studies, and career and technical education to learn about industries related to their campus programs.

The idea of the program is to get teachers out of the classrooms and into the real world where they can learn about different industries and associated careers to better able them to craft curriculum that is meaningful and relevant to students.

“I was able to interact with several departments,” said Jonez Harlan, who teaches anatomy, physiology and biology at Heights Hight School. “I could literally visualize my students working in each of them. Unfortunately, many students are not aware of the many job opportunities available that require no degree others require certification, or an associate, bachelor’s or higher degree. Fortunately, doing the Externship program afforded me the opportunity to learn about the many jobs in health care and so I can take this information back to my students.”

During their visit, the teachers rotated and shadowed hospital personnel in departments such as engineering, lab, business office, food and nutrition, emergency, imaging and the pharmacy among others. Joining Grays and Harlan from the Heights High School Health Science Academy was: Nestor Corpuz, Algebra II, Ellen Prestage, geometry and LaTrondria Preston, health and science. Mellonie Lowery, a teacher at Westbury High School, also joined the group.

“As a community hospital, we are committed to connecting with students and the families in our footprint,” said Susan Jadlowski, Sr. Vice President & CEO, Memorial Hermann Greater Heights. “We want to be not only their hospital of choice, but we want to also open our doors for learning opportunities that will help to cultivate future healthcare professionals. What better place to start than in the schools? So, we welcome the teachers to our hospital to learn about the incredible work being done here as well as what healthcare jobs they should be preparing students to pursue as a career.”

After their weeklong rotation, the teachers expressed their appreciation to the Memorial Hermann Greater Heights staff – applauding their professionalism and passion as caregivers. They also expressed their thanks for the staff taking time to give them real world experiences about the healthcare industry.

“The program has exposed me to healthcare career options that you don’t hear about unless you know someone in health care,” said Grays. “Not all of our students want to attend a four-year college. Some want to go to a community college for two years and pick up skills so they can begin working. This program has exposed me to those jobs in health care that are readily available to those who want to enter the workforce with some education under their belt.”

Each teacher echoed Grays in saying they learned useful information that equipped them to better craft meaningful and relevant curriculum for their students.

“We want the teachers to get the full spectrum of healthcare roles and how it takes a team to run a hospital,” Jadlowski said. “We hope their experiences at Greater Heights will help motivate and inspire their students to consider health care as a profession.”

Courtesy of Memorial Hermann Hospital

Katy, TX (July 7, 2016) Cardiologist Dr. Randeep Suneja believes a quality, exceptional educational experience is the greatest gift the Katy community can give its children, and he’s taking steps to support that effort. Inspired by his own teachers from elementary through medical school, Suneja is a passionate advocate of education. As a result, Suneja is using his participation in the annual Katy Half-Marathon to rally the Katy community in support of its teachers. “As a 25 year resident of Katy and former Katy ISD parent, I have seen firsthand the quality of Katy ISD’s educational system. I believe our community can enhance that system and significantly impact a tremendous number of students by providing resources for their teachers,” declared Suneja.

Dr. Randeep Saneja 2016 Katy Half-Marathon

Dr. Suneja is setting his sights high, establishing a record-setting $100,000 goal raised for the Katy ISD Education Foundation and its Inspiring Imagination teacher grants. Of the funds raised by Dr. Suneja’s campaign, 75% will support STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) classroom projects and 25% will fund student health awareness initiatives. “I believe this is very important, “states Suneja.

All Katy ISD teachers are invited annually to apply for Katy ISD Education Foundation grants. In its first four years, the Foundation has awarded more than $725,000 in Inspiring Imagination grants to teachers at campuses all over Katy ISD.  The Foundation exists to raise support for and manage the grant program, generating funding for innovative classroom experiences not possible within the parameters of a school district budget.

Raised in India, Dr. Suneja contributes his desire to become a cardiologist to all his teachers, but calls both his parents, “the greatest teachers of them all.” This is his second year to raise funds for the Katy ISD Education Foundation. The Katy Half-Marathon is slated for February 4, 2017, the date Dr. Suneja’s campaign will end.

To support Dr. Suneja’s campaign, go to www.myreason2race.com/RandeepSuneja/KatyHalf5K2017. All contributions, which are tax deductible, are welcome. To learn more about the Katy ISD Education Foundation, visit www.katyisdeducationfoundation.org or contact foundation@katyisd.org.

Courtesy of Katy ISD Education Foundation

 

Katy, TX (June 15, 2016) St. John XXIII Swim Coach Dana Abbott was recently chosen as the TAPPS 4A Male Coach of the Year for 2015-2016 and received the organization’s Edd Burleson Leadership Award.

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In the ten years Abbott has been at St. John XXIII College Preparatory, the girls’ team has placed in the top 3 at State nine out of the last ten years, and the boys’ team has been in the top 6 at State seven out of the last ten years. Most recently, the Sea Lions captured both boys’ and girls’ championships at Regionals, and the girls won their third State Championship in the last five seasons while the boys had their highest State finish ever as Runners-Up.

“This award is really a testament to the kids and a team effort,” says Coach Abbott. “I am blessed with tremendously hard working athletes.” In his typical self-effacing manner, Abbott remarked, “It’s nice to be recognized for all their hard work.”

Abbott’s coaching history in the Katy area is legendary. Prior to his tenure at St. John XXIII, Abbott was head swim coach at Katy High School (1980-2005), where his teams garnered multiple honors. Coach Abbott’s accolades during that time include being named the UIL Regional Swimming Coach of the Year three times and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Texas Interscholastic Swimming Association (TISCA). In 2008, he received the International Swimming Hall of Fame’s Paragon Award form Competitive Swimming. He has given swim clinics and been a speaker at various state, national, and international sports symposiums.

In addition to coaching at St. John XXIII, Coach Abbott currently coaches the Katy Tiger Swim Club summer team, a developmental group of 10- to 14-year-olds, and coaches swimming to a USA Triathlon group. He lives in Katy surrounded by his beloved rescued pets.

Courtesy of St. John XXIII College Preparatory School

 

Katy, TX (June 15, 2016) The Katy ISD Education Foundation recently announced its fourth year of Inspiring Imagination teacher grant recipients. Two hundred Katy ISD teachers at 33 different campuses were chosen for grants this year. Grant activities range from school gardens to robotics and extend to all subjects and grade levels. Funding will be provided for the 2016-2017 school year.

 2016-2017 Katy ISD Ed Foundation Grant Recipients

In its first four years of activity, the Katy ISD Education Foundation has awarded more than $725,000 in Inspiring Imagination grants to teachers at campuses all over Katy ISD. The Foundation exists to raise support for and manage the grant program, an initiative created by the Foundation’s Board of Directors to provide funding for innovative classroom experiences not possible within the parameters of a school district budget.

Grants are made possible by annual pledges from business and community investors, one-time contributions and events. The Foundation hosts two major fundraising events every year: Fireflies and Foodtrucks, slated for September 15, 2016, and its spring GROOVE jazz event. BP, the Foundation’s Cornerstone Investor, funded multiple grants for its BP STEM Grant Program. The Katy ISD Education Foundation is an independent 501(c)(3) organization for which donations are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law. To learn more, contact foundation@katyisd.org, 281-396-6031 or visit www.katyisdeducationfoundation.org.

Recognized at May 23 Katy ISD Board of Trustees meeting, this year’s grant recipients and their projects include:

Individual Grants – One teacher for up to $1,000

Bear Creek Elementary, Novel-ty Bookstore, Second Edition, Karen Baker; Bethke Elementary, Constructing More Than Just Cities and Towers, Christina Dismuke; Cardiff Junior High, Arduinos for Inventing and Programming, Stephen Bennett; Creech Elementary, One Brick at a Time, Donna Parker; Fielder Elementary, SPRKing Innovation Through Coding, Erica Foster; Golbow Elementary, Books, Bands, and Bundles Oh My!: A Third Grade Read Aloud Library, Stephanie Watt-Johnson; Katy Elementary, Astronomy Field Trip in a Box, Rose Marie Sager; Mayde Creek High, Fearless Readers of Life-Changing Novels, Frances Ohanenye; Shafer Elementary, Visualizing and Verbalizing, Brette Kuretsch; Taylor High; Traumatic Brain Injury Stations Lab, Lisa Estill; West Memorial Elementary, Skillastic-tastic Learning, Brittany Brehm.

 

Team Grants – Three or more teachers for up to $5,000

Alexander Elementary, Digital Learners are MOTIVATED Learners!, led by Stephanie Rainosek; Enriching all Learners through STEM, led by Terra Palmer; Beckendorff Junior High, Standing Desks: An Innovative Classroom Seating Solution, led by Tricia Gragnano Reyes; Cimarron Elementary, Young Engineers Ready to Build Bots!, led by Angela Plut; Cinco Ranch Junior High , LASH on Tech! (Language Arts, Science, History), led by Yolanda Hiller; Exley Elementary, Growing Readers and Writers, led by Bethany Paetow; Franz Elementary, Going Green, led by Tracy John; Hayes Elementary, Full STEAM Ahead! led by Sara Hernandez; Holland Elementary, Eco-Kids, led by Stephanie Nady; Itinerant Teams (multiple campuses), Dyslexia Intervention, led by Luis Villanueva; Early Childhood Intervention Groups – Ready, Set, Grow!, led by Denise Cloyes; Katy Junior High, Biomass Breakdown: It’s Getting Hot, Hot, Hot, led by Candice Thomas; CBR Motion Detectors, led by Elizabeth Flowers; Mayde Creek Elementary, Let’s Read Aloud and Play Along, led by Rhea Marsh; Mayde Creek High, Fatal Vision Impairment Goggles, led by Ashley Griffiths; Giant Triangles for Geometric Experiences, led by Sara Bauler; Library STEAM MakerSpace, led by Kathie Fry; Microbiology in the Digital Age, led by Mary Lee House; Operation Collaboration, led by Amber Allen; Thinking Outside the Box, led by Mary Miron; McRoberts Elementary, Field Researchers for a Day, Scientists for a Lifetime, led by Jeanna Bruno; Memorial Parkway Junior High Got Katy Grit?, led by Yasmina Walker; Morton Ranch High, Today I Will Read, Tomorrow I Will Write, Then my Children and I Will Change the World, led by Myrea Schmidt; Pattison Elementary, Connecting School and Community Through Non-Fiction, led by Christi Elrod; Seven Lakes High, Inspiring Learning, led by Chad Meyer; Navigating Geometry, led by Robert Perkins; Navigators, led by Karl Burford; TI-Navigator System, led by Nick Flora; Shafer Elementary, Mentoring Minds to See The World!, led by Hillary Bartee; Focus to Learn, led by JeanAnn Naumann; Giving Kinder Kids Nonfiction Opportunities, led by Kim Forbes; Stephens Elementary, 3D Real STEMing, led by Meghan Jones; Sundown Elementary, Morning Tinker Time: MakerSpace, led by Leah Miller; Taylor High , Giant Triangles, led by Nicole Brayton; Journey to the Edge of Space, led by Ryan Nutt; Seeing Electricity in a Whole New Light, led by Elizabeth Trader; Tompkins High, Theatre Under The Stars: The Literature Experience, led by Ryan Culver; West Memorial Elementary, Movement in the Classroom, led by Lisa Al-Saedi; West Memorial Junior High, Math Nspired, led by Tina Dycus; Williams Elementary, PBIS Pros, led by Virginia Stout; Project Milo, led by Kara Lowery; Step-Ball-Change, led by Brenda Pennington; Winborn Elementary, Building Language with Legos, led by Whitney Jackson; Wolfe Elementary, Enhancing Summer Reading with a Mobile Book Library, led by Megan Barnett.

Courtesy of the District

 

Katy, TX (June 3, 2016) The 3rd Annual ER Katy Medical Scholarship Awards ceremony was held at ER Katy where five Katy area high school seniors were awarded scholarships ranging from $300 to $1000. This year ER Katy received 48 applications up almost 3x from last year. With such a great collection of essays and outstanding resumes, the scope of the scholarship was expanded to five winners and two honorable mentions.

ERKaty_Medical Scholarship Winners_2016

Scholarship winners and their respective schools were as follows:

First Place $1000

Angelika Kurpan  – Cinco Ranch High School

Second Place $500 each

Alyssa Ontiveros – Katy High School

Madison Zapata –  Katy High School

Third Place $300 each

Carly Luzac –Cinco Ranch High School

David Roy – St John XXXIII College Prepatory

Honorable mention $100 each

Shehla Syed – Katy Taylor High School

Madeleine Geiger- Tompkins High School

ER Katy - Medical Scholarship Students Standing

Students were joined by their families for the ceremony and got the chance to meet ER Katy staff and tour their facility. ER Katy looks forward to continuing this scholarship giveaway for Katy area high school seniors who look forward to a future in the medical field.

Courtesy of ER Katy

Katy, TX (May 31, 2016) Tom Wilson Elementary in Katy, Texas was recognized today as the 750th Common Sense Digital Citizenship Certified School. Tom Wilson joins 146 schools in Texas and 17 others in the Katy Independent School District in Common Sense Education’s award-winning program that prepares kids to address critical issues related to using technology at home and at school — from creative copyright and protecting student privacy to cyberbullying and sexting.

Launched in 2012, the Common Sense Digital Citizenship Certification program helps educators, schools and districts create a coherent, community-oriented approach to teaching kids (and grown-ups) the dos and don’ts of the Internet. Common Sense’s K-12 curriculum corresponds to what kids are doing online at each developmental stage from kindergarten to high school and includes community resources for parent and caregivers in English and Spanish. Certified schools and districts are qualified by Common Sense and awarded the designation on an annual basis.

“Every time we hear about an incident with cyberbullying or basic privacy concerns, we are reminded that digital citizenship is an essential component to 21st century learning and student safety,” said Hailey Schmidt, librarian at Tom Wilson Elementary School. “By certifying our school, we are showing our community just how important this is, and enabling our students, families, and community members to make smarter choices. The material provides different ways for students to express their concerns and sometimes uses humor to help them manage the issues they deal with everyday.”

The Common Sense Digital Citizenship curriculum has been adopted by all 59 campuses  in the Katy School District, reaching over 70,000 kids, and is taught by school librarians or classroom teachers. Digital Learning Manager, Jay Sonnenburg, said: “In Katy ISD we encourage the use of technology in- and outside our classrooms. It’s our job along with the families, to make sure our students are productive, positive, and safe when working and living in this digital landscape.”

“By becoming a certified school, Tom Wilson Elementary has demonstrated an important commitment to the safety and development of their kids and communities,” said Rebecca Randall, vice president of Education Programs for Common Sense.  “As more schools integrate technology, often providing kids devices to take home through 1:1 programs, the responsibility of schools to teach digital citizenship continues to grow.”

Common Sense Education’s K-12 Digital Citizenship Curriculum was launched in collaboration with Dr. Howard Gardner of the GoodPlay Project at Harvard Graduate School of Education in 2010. Instructional materials match the maturity and development of students and range from traditional hand-outs to online, interactive games, which engage kids in exploring the possibilities and outcomes of different online behavior. Over 109,000 schools are registered to use Common Sense Education materials. For more information about the Common Sense Digital Citizenship Certification Program for educators, schools and districts, visit: https://www.commonsensemedia.org/educators/certification

Courtesy of Common Sense Education

Katy, TX (May 19, 2016) Faith West Academy announced its valedictorian as Jamie Coalson (GPA 4.74), and two co-salutatorians for the Class of 2016. Salutatorians Rebecca Lockyear and Allison Klimple shared a four-year GPA of 4.70.

FWA Val Jamie Coalson

Jamie is the daughter of James and Beth Coalson of Katy. During her high school years, she has been a member of the National Honor Society, the Science National Honor Society (secretary), Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and Mu Alpha Theta. She is a member Lady Eagle Volleyball Team and the Varsity Swim Team. Jamie was named Academic All-State for TAPPS Volleyball and All-District First Team.  AP Physics and AP Chemistry are her favorite courses and have created some of her fondest memories, including the physics excursion to Galveston’s Pleasure Pier.

In the fall, Jamie will attend Harding University’s College of Pharmacy in Searcy, Arkansas.

FWA Sal Rebecca Lockyear

Rebecca is the daughter of Laura and Alan Lockyear of Katy. During her high school years, she has been a member of the National Honor Society, a member of the Science National Honor Society, and Mu Alpha Theta (president). Rebecca is a gifted art student and has several state fine arts awards for her paintings and drawings.  Her favorite classes are AP Physics and art. One of her most memorable experiences has been touring the Houston Medical Center, where the class observed open heart surgery.

Rebecca will attend University of Colorado in Boulder to study neuroscience.

FWA Sal2 Allison Kimple

Allison is the daughter of Sherryl and Joe Klimple of Katy. During her high school years, she has been team captain of the FWA cheerleaders, a member of National Honor Society (chairperson of honors recognition), the Science National Honor Society (president), Fellowship of Christian Athletes (president), and Mu Alpha Theta (treasurer). She was the parliamentarian for the Class of 2016.  Allison is a gifted athlete and has won several cheerleading competitions.  Her favorite class is AP Chemistry, and her favorite memory from Faith West is the Senior Trip to the Cayman Islands.

Allison will attend Texas A&M in the business honors program.

All three of these young ladies exemplify the character and virtues expected of the prestigious positions of valedictorian and salutatorian. Commencement ceremonies for sixty-nine graduating seniors will be held Friday, June 3, 7:00 p.m., at Cross Point Community Church, 700 Westgreen Blvd, Katy, Texas 77450. The Class of 2016 received a cumulative total of 3.4 million dollars in scholarship money.

Courtesy of Faith West Academy

 

Katy, TX (May 9, 2016) The British International School of Houston (BISH) is now accepting applications to award two rising Grade 11/Year 12 students a full-tuition scholarship to its International Baccalaureate (IB) Programme beginning in the 2016-17 academic year. Each scholarship, good for two years of study, is valued at more than $55,000.

The application deadline is May 26. For more details and to apply, visit the BISH website.

Over the past three years, examination scores for BISH students in the IB Diploma Programme have placed them in the top 3 percent in the world, the top 1 percent in the United States and first in Texas and Houston. BISH credits these successful outcomes to its highly personalized learning and interdisciplinary curriculum that encourages students to be ambitious.

The IB Programme is widely recognized worldwide as the most rigorous course of study currently available to students aged 16 to 19. Leading universities praise IB graduates for their critical thinking, communication and research skills, intellectual curiosity and global perspectives.

“The IB program is a good fit for our style of learning at Johns Hopkins University, because research is at our core,” said Adam Ortiz, assistant director of admissions during a recent presentation about the IB program hosted by BISH and featuring Dr. Siva Kumari, director general of the International Baccalaureate Organization®.

“Success in an IB program correlates well with success at Harvard,” added Marilyn McGrath Lewis, assistant dean of admissions. “We are always pleased to see the credentials of the IB Diploma Program on the transcript. GPA is not nearly as important a factor in university admission as the IB Diploma.”

The IB Programme encourages students to think independently and challenge assumptions. Students take courses in various subject areas, conduct research and engage in community service. Curriculum details are at ibo.org.

BISH will award the IB Programme scholarships to two highly motivated students, at least 15 years of age, who demonstrate intellectual curiosity and independent thinking, respect for other views and a desire to make a difference in the world.

About the British International School of Houston

The British International School of Houston, a Nord Anglia Education school, is a private international school catering to the needs of local and international students from Early Years through Grade 12. The school will move to a brand new 270,000 sq. ft. facility this summer, conveniently located off Texas Interstate I-10 at Westgreen and Franz, between the Energy Corridor and Katy. This state-of-the-art campus sits on 33-acres with world-class facilities for 2,000 students including modern learning spaces, numerous science labs, design technology labs, an aquatic center, extensive sports facilities and a performing arts center. The school offers a challenging, broad course of study that culminates with the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program (IB). For more information on the British International School of Houston, visit www.bishouton.org, call 713.290.9025 or email admissions@houston.nae.school.

Our international curriculum is designed to inspire, motivate and engage students to take control of their own learning. Our personalized approach is designed to offer just the right balance of challenge and support so that every student makes exceptional progress.

Courtesy of British International School of Houston

 

Katy, TX (April 26, 2015) Last night during their monthly meeting, the Katy ISD Board of Trustees selected the namesakes for Elementary School No. 40, Junior High No. 15 and High School No. 8, which will open in fall 2017, thanks to the 2014 voter-approved bond program.

The Board unanimously voted to name Elementary School No.40, located in the Young Ranch Subdivision, after Robert and Felice Bryant.  Robert began his career in Katy ISD in 1983 as director of bands and fine arts department chair for Katy High School before being promoted to executive director of fine arts for Katy ISD in 2000.  During his tenure he was named the 2006 Texas Tech University Distinguished Educator, the 2007-2008 Texas Music Administrator of the Year, and the recipient of the 2015 Jacob L. and Sophia Meyer Farb School Bell Award for Lifetime Achievement in Music Education, among other awards. His wife Felice devoted 24 years teaching kindergarten and first grade students in Katy ISD, and was named the Katy Elementary Teacher of the Year in 1997.  She also served as a Keep Encouraging Youth toward Success (KEYS) Mentor and continues to impact students after her retirement through tutoring and mentorship.  Together this couple dedicated nearly 60 years of service to Katy ISD schools.

The Board also named Junior High No.15, located at 4777 Peek Road, in honor of the Stockdick family who have contributed to public education in Katy for more than a century.  In 1895, the Stockdick family was among one of the first families to arrive in Katy and played an instrumental role in opening a one-room schoolhouse on what is now known as Stockdick School Road. Since then, several generations of Stockdicks have attended Katy ISD schools and have served as teachers, coaches, counselors, administrators and board members.  They have also devoted countless hours as volunteers in our schools.

The Board also voted to name High School No.8, located at 23111 Stockdick School Road, in remembrance of Patricia E. Paetow, a lifelong educator who dedicated nearly 30 years to Katy ISD before losing her battle to cancer in July 2015.  Mrs. Peatow began her career in Katy ISD in 1987 as an educational diagnostician.  She then spent the next three decades working in different capacities, including assistant principal, principal, and director of campus administration and support, before retiring as Katy ISD’s assistant superintendent of administrative support.  During her tenure, she led Wolfe Elementary to be recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School by the United States Department of Education for the 1989-1990 school year, and opened Betty Sue Creech Elementary in 2000.

Katy ISD’s namesakes have more than just years of education experience.  Living namesakes and their families mentor our students, participate in community projects, and volunteer their time and resources to continue to make Katy ISD the leader in educational excellence.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX (March 23, 2016) In an exciting kick off to the 2016 qualifying tournament season, FIRST® Robotics Competition Team 624, CRyptonite, from Cinco Ranch High School, advanced to the finals of the Alamo Regional, winning a heart-stopping third and deciding match 116-106 in an extremely close best-of-three semifinal.

CRHS-CRyptonite-D2730-Alamo Regional

While many of teams at the tournament hailed from Texas, this was an international event, with three teams from China, along with one each from Canada, the Dominican Republic, and Turkey.

After an intense day and a half of qualifying matches, CRyptonite ranked fourth in the 66 team field, and was chosen by the second ranked team, Team 3005, RoboChargers, from Dallas to compete along with Team 3579, Rattlers, from San Marcos as the second seed Alliance during the tournament’s elimination round of eight Alliances.

“Watching our robot on the field is as exciting as watching a game of football. I helped build the robot, so I want it to succeed on the field,” said a spectator, Kate Evans, a member of Team 624 CRyptonite.

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Brimstone fires a shot and scores; members of the CRyptonite team cheer on their team

Teams of students and adult mentors worked hard to design, prototype, and build competitive robots during the six week build season, which started January 9, when teams received the rules of the 2016 game, and ended February 23, one week before the start of the seven-week qualifying tournament season. In this year’s game, Stronghold, two alliances of three robots each score points by breaching the opposing defenses, launching balls, called “boulders”, into the opponent’s tower, scoring points and weakening the tower’s defenses.

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Drive team manipulator, Justin Kleiber, and driver, Christian Pawlowicz, concentrate on maneuvering their robot

The team’s hard work showed in the semifinals as Team 624 played in a series of close matches that had the audience completely enthralled.

In an incredibly close best-of-three semifinals, against a strong Alliance led by Team 2468, Appreciate, from Westlake HS in Austin  CRyptonite’s Alliance won the first match by only four points, 99-95, but lost the next 107-100, causing a sudden death round to take place.

Fans and team members cheered and screamed as the game got more tense, but eventually CRyptonite’s Alliance pulled ahead, winning by 10 points, 116-106, sending them to the finals.

Playing a tough Alliance, headed by Team 148, Robowranglers, from Greenville, in the finals made for continuous action and aggressive defenses, including much robot-on-robot contact, as Robowranglers and their Aalliance partners pulled out ahead, eventually winning the final match.

While fans were on the edge of their seats as they watched to see who would win the finals and qualify to compete at the World Championships in St. Louis in April, this week-two tournament was also the first time most, if not all of the teams had competed in the new game with their new robot.

For CRyptonite, it was a chance for the new four-person drive team to see how they and the rest of the team worked together under pressure and see how the other teams’ robots compared to their robot, nicknamed Brimstone.

While there were issues with Brimstone’s shooting accuracy and vision aiming (robots can use an on-board camera to calculate on the fly, the distance and angle to make shots on field targets which are outlined with reflective tape.), shooting accuracy improved as the team learned how best to work with the new robot.

CRHS-CRyptonite-DSC_6007-Alamo Regional CRHS-CRyptonite-DSC_6006-Alamo Regional

The CRyptonite robot, Brimstone

“I felt that the regional was a good example of working hard to improve; we were able to improve enough over the course of the regional to compete with one of the best teams in the world,” said Jack Sampson, drive team field coach and the team’s president, speaking about Robowranglers, a former world champion team.

“We plan on adjusting our shooter to make it faster and more consistent, incorporate vision aiming, and add a climbing mechanism”, added Sampson.

The team’s next tournament will be March 25-26 at the Rocket City Regional in Huntsville, Alabama, where they will have the chance to see how their improved robot competes.

“I feel with vision up and running our shooting will drastically improve and give us a huge performance boost,” said Alex May, head of scouting and team vice president

The Alamo Regional was an learningexperience for Team CRyptonite, even though they did not win the finals. “I felt our team performed very well. Obviously, it would have been great if we won, but given how our performance was inconsistent, but improved as the tournament went on, I felt placing second was very solid,” said May.

Courtesy of  the CRyptonite Robotics Team

Katy, TX (March 22, 2016) Three Katy ISD student artists recently earned top honors in the 2016 Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo School Art Competition. Taylor High School’s Allyson Bishop was selected as the Class Champion for all 3D artworks. Cinco Ranch High School’s Ashley Coleman won the Reserve Class Champion award for all mixed media art pieces. Tompkins High School’s Lucy Chen won the Reserve Grand Champion award for all high school art and broke the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo record for highest auction amount, $220,000. As a whole, Katy ISD student art brought in $468,000 in this year’s art auction. Additional Katy ISD students were selected for the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Art Award finals.

Congratulations to the following:

Western Art Academy:
Allyson Bishop, Taylor HS
Erica Smolik, Katy HS
(Intensive four-week workshop held in Kerville, Texas under the direction of Schreiner University focusing on oil painting/drawing and activities including field trips to local art studios)

Glassell Junior School of Art Workshop Winners:
Carys Burnette, Cimarron Elementary
Bernadette Hanselman, Taylor HS
Claire Bai, Tompkins HS
(120 positions are awarded to students K-12 grade selected for one session in the summer or fall in the medium they wish to study.)

 

Auction:

Lucy Chen, Reserve Class Champion

Allyson Bishop, 3D Class Champion

Ashley Coleman, Mixed Media Reserve Class Champion

Iris Lee, Taylor HS

Megna Arya, Tompkins HS

Allyson Su, Seven Lakes HS

Ben Graham, Tompkins HS

Rachel Bai, Tompkins HS

Christine Jeong, Tompkins HS

Renee Josse de Lisle, Tompkins HS

Amy Yang, Seven Lakes HS

 

Premium 3D Winners (these winners also received a $2,500 instant premium):

Joel Contreras, Cinco Ranch HS

Fatemeh Elbrahimi, Taylor HS

Flora Hu, Seven Lakes HS

Lauren Santamaria, Mayde Creek HS

Courtesy of the District

Katy, TX (March 4, 2016) Pattison Elementary is proud to highlight their 2015/2016 PTA Reflections winners for this year’s theme “Let your Imagination Fly”.

PattionElem Reflection Winners

Visual Arts:  Luciana Aguilar, Melissa Huang, Kevin Kim, Austin Li, Yana Park, Abby Grace Propes

Dance Choreography:  Selena Mori, Iris Shin

Photography:  Jeffery Liu, Parks Mulkey, Gracie Wu

Literature:  Kevin Kim, Anika Rakkhit

Film Production:  Adam El Omrani

Pattison has 2 students, Selena Mori & Jeffery Liu, that have advanced to State-Level judging!  It is a wonderful achievement as nearly 60,000 students participate in the program annually and less than 3% of those advance to Texas PTA.

Patt Reflections 2015b Patt Reflections 2015a

Courtesy of Pattison Elementary PTA

 

Katy, TX (March 4, 2016) On Saturday, February 27th, 8 teams from Michael Griffin Elementary participated in the Gulf Coast Destination Imagination (DI) Tournament held at Seven Lakes High School.  DI is a world-wide creative problem solving competition for students in grades K-university.  The competition is divided into “challenges” which enable students to showcase their research and creativity while learning about science, fine arts, engineering and community service.  The teams began to work on their solutions to their challenge in early October.

Griffin was well represented at the tournament bringing home several awards and advancing 4 teams to the state tournament to be held the weekend of April 1st and 2nd in Anna, Texas.  Winners from the state tournament will go on to compete in May at the Global Tournament held in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Teams advancing to state include: The Six Benz, Creative DI Cookies, Salsa Balsa and the DI Champions.  Two of these teams won awards for placing first in the Instant Challenge room.  The Golden Badge team received a third place trophy.  Students were recently recognized for their achievements on the Griffin morning announcements.

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Pictured: The Six Benz – Jacob Haven, Shane McCollam, Arjum Bhowmik, Sean Marchelli, Juan Martin Sandoval, and Andy Ko; Salsa Balsa – Aashrita Pantina, Nancy Hess,Sophia Owens, Mirai Drennon,Anita Kumar, Vishal Surya, Jacqueline Keithan, Avik Choudhary with Ms. Hess and Mrs. Keithan

 

3 4

 

Pictured: DI Champions – Sydney Hanscom, Madeleine Stegall, Jaisal Kalapatapu,Zaahir Sharma, David Doan, Sameer Chakraborty, Madison Huang; Creative DI Cookies – Raymond Xu, Trevor Wegmann, Christopher Watson, Maya Mammen, Joe Dootson, Rebecca O’Rear
Courtesy of Michael Griffin Elementary

 

 

Katy, TX (February 17, 2016) Magician Chad Chesmark performed at Odessa Kilpatrick Elementary School’s annual Bluebonnet Bash.  In order to attend the Bluebonnet Bash, students had to read eight books from the Texas Library Association’s current list of books nominated to receive the Texas Bluebonnet Award.

DSC01529
Pictured: student Luke DesJardin and Magician Chad

Katy, TX (February 17, 2016) The PTAs of Beck Junior High, Beckendorff Junior High, and Seven Lakes Junior High partnered to showcase the award winning presentation “Keeping You and Your Family Safe Online–Public & Permanent.” The presentation, created by Richard Guerry, focused on the reasonable use of technology and internet safety. This program received the 2010 & 2011 Exemplary School Safety Program Award by the School Safety Advocacy Council. Mr. Guerry has appeared as an internet safety expert on CNN, Radio Disney, and MTV’s Thin Line Campaign.  The event was held at each junior high for students as well as a parent only presentation in the evening.

IMG_8631
Pictured: BDJH VP of Programs Carrie Zamora, Richard Guerry, BDJH PTA President Cindy Cruz-Davis, and BDJH Principal Mindy Dickerson

Katy, TX (February 17, 2016) Beckendorff staff and parent volunteers, led by Principal Mindy Dickerson and PTA President Cindy Cruz-Davis, celebrated the school’s bus drivers during the recent Bus Driver Appreciation Week.  Bus drivers were given gift bags filled with goodies from the PTA and BDJH as a token of thanks for their hard work and dedication.

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Pictured:BDJH Prinicpal MIndy Dickerson, PTA President Cindy Cruz-Davis, BDJH staff/administration, BDJH parent volunteers, and members of the BDJH bus driving team.

 

Katy, TX (February 18, 2016) The Beckendorff Junior High PTA hosted the Annual Carnation Fundraiser around Valentine’s Day. Proceeds will be used for the BDJH 8th grade dance to be held in May. This is one of BDJH’s most popular events/fundraisers.

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Pictured: Principal Mindy Dickerson with BDJH PTA parent volunteers

Katy, TX (February 16, 2016) Katy ISD’s Morton Ranch Junior High is celebrating its second year of a unique partnership with Wood Group Mustang via the company’s Founders Legacy program.  Launched in 2007 in honor of the company’s 20th anniversary, Founders’ Legacy honors Mustang founders -Paul Redmon, Bill Higgs and Felix Covington – and fulfills a company core value of giving back to its community.  The program encourages Wood Group Mustang employees to become personally involved in campus activities throughout the school year.  “The Founders Legacy program focuses on middle school youth because of their impressionable age and the critical crossroads they face in terms of future education and career choices,” said David Jackson, community support program manager at Wood Group Mustang.

Wood Group Mustang   BP Trailblazer

The Wood Group Mustang initiative features a multi-faceted approach, helping teachers and students at their partner school through financial support and face-to-face volunteer efforts. The Morton Ranch Junior High partnership began with a generous contribution of funds (that helped the school purchase iPads) then quickly turned into a generous contribution of time, talents, and resources.  Of the 18 Wood Group Mustang KEYS mentors who work with students in Katy ISD, nine of them mentor at Morton Ranch Junior High. The “Journal Pals” initiative helps students improve STARR reading scores by writing in a journal then sending it to their Mustang journal pal.  Mustang also sponsored an innovative contest giving students the opportunity to create their own interpretation of Wood Group Mustang’s core values, each of which has an icon graphic.  A student favorite activity is when the 40-foot trailer “Trailblazer” made a trip to campus.  A one-of-a-kind museum on wheels, this scientific behemoth is used by young Mustang engineers to teach kids about weather, energy, aerodynamics and biotechnology.  It’s a hands-on experience that allows students to learn much and dream big.

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The Morton/Mustang partnership has transcended to a true friendship, giving everyone involved an opportunity to help kids be better students and citizens.  Principal McCord described the relationship by saying “The Wood Group Mustang employees have become a part of our MRJH family.  Their values, commitment, and heart for students are a perfect match for our campus.”

About Katy ISD Partners in Education – Katy ISD Partners in Education creates school-support opportunities for parents, businesses and the community by offering a wide variety of options amenable to every schedule, talent and expertise.  We bring volunteers into Katy ISD classrooms at each campus and all grade levels.  To learn more, visit Partners in Education under the “Community” tab at www.katyisd.org.

Courtesy of  the District

 

Katy, TX (February 16, 2016) The PTO and staff of McDonald Junior High School hosted a dance which also acted as a community service project. There were 275 students in attendance who donated approximately 1,000 mom-perishable food items for the Katy Food Pantry.

MDJH dance 2016

Courtesy of MDJH PTO

Katy, TX (February 8, 2016) Keep Encouraging Youth toward Success (KEYS), the Katy ISD mentor program, hosted the Men Who Mentor Breakfast on January 22nd.  Comprised of existing and potential mentors, this annual event served as networking and encouragement for men who already mentor and information and recruiting for those interested in becoming a mentor.

The West Memorial Junior High Trash Can band provided exciting and invigorating entertainment, after which Superintendent Alton Frailey shared his personal thoughts on the impact a mentor can have in a child’s life.  Area Superintendents Dr. Steve Robertson, Lee Crews and Dr. Tory Hill gave campus perspectives on the KEYS program and how they’ve seen first-hand how mentors change lives.

DSC_0745 MWM Resize

This year’s event also included a new format where principals and KEYS liaisons traveled from table to table, discussing topics such as what do you talk about, what does a KEYS liaison do and finding time to make it work.  Facilitators included Dr. Jake LeBlanc, Katy Junior High Principal; Scott Rounds, Cardiff Junior High Principal; Jeff Stocks, Taylor Principal; Greg Little, Mayde Creek Junior High KEYS Liaison; Darryl White, Katy High School KEYS Liaison; James Cross, Cinco Ranch High School Principal; Ted Vierling, Seven Lakes High School Principal and Dan DeYoung, Beck Junior High Assistant Principal.

Boys across the district are waiting for mentors because KEYS needs men.  If you’re a guy who has ever thought about being a mentor please go to www.katyisd.org/dept/pie to learn more about the KEYS program.

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About Katy ISD Partners in Education – Katy ISD Partners in Education creates school-support opportunities for parents, businesses and the community by offering a wide variety of options amenable to every schedule, talent and expertise.  We bring volunteers into Katy ISD classrooms at each campus and all grade levels.  To learn more, visit Partners in Education under the “Community” tab at www.katyisd.org.

 

Courtesy of Katy ISD Partners in Education

Katy, TX (February 8, 2016) February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month. Awareness education for students is part of the Texas Education Code Section 37.0831. This week, the CRJH counseling staff will promote healthy relationships by: ?

  • Providing information about healthy relationships and respect during morning announcements ?
  • Wearing orange February 9, 2016 to promote respect and healthy relationships ?
  • National Respect Announcement on February 12, 2016. ?
  • Displaying information regarding healthy relationships throughout the school

The counselors would like to encourage parents to start having conversations with their kids about healthy relationships.

FACTS:

  • 3 in 4 parents have never talked to their kids about domestic violence or sexual assault. ?
  • 44 percent of all students have been in an abusive relationship by the time they graduate college. ?
  • Talking about what it means to have a healthy relationship is the first step to preventing dating violence and abuse. ?

For more information/resources, please visit the following website: http://www.loveisrespect.org/

Katy, TX (January 30, 2016) The members of the Cinco Ranch High School Future Business Leaders of America came together to make dog toys for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty of Animals during a school holiday.

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Two students from Katy recently had the opportunity to introduce some students from India to the world of FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) robotics.

On a family vacation during winter break, Abhishek Routray, a 2015 graduate of the Cinco Ranch HS FIRST Robotics Competition Team 624, CRyptonite, and currently a Mechanical Engineering major at UT Austin, along with his brother, Anuraag, an eighth grade student on the Beck JH FIRST LEGO® League team, Naturally Beck, presented a robotics workshop to students of the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya (JNV) school (http://www.jnvkhurdaorissa.org/ ), in Khordha, Orissa, on the east coast of India. Their mother, Chetana Samal, a Mentor and for both the CRyptonite and Naturally Beck robotics teams, is originally from this part of India.

CRHS-CRyptonite-India_Workshop-DSC_0081

A four-year veteran of the CRyptonite FIRST Robotics Competition team which ended the 2015 season ranked as one of the top teams in the world, Abhishek was used to describing the FIRST robotics concept of building and competing with robots in fun and exciting robotics programs to build engineering and technology skills and inspire young people in kindergarten through high school to be STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) leaders.

CRHS-CRyptonite-India_Workshop-DSC_0029

The workshop portion of the event ended with the room full of students intently watching a demo of the LEGO Mindstorms robot the group had created. They were hooked.

CRHS-CRyptonite-India_Workshop-DSC_0020

“These kids were listening intently,” Abhishek said. “They paid attention even well past their dinner time. I couldn’t help but think about how right Dean Kamen, the founder of FIRST, was when he thought that robotics could be made into a sport in order to excite young people about STEM like they get excited about football.”

After the robot demo, Abhishek and Anuraag presented a LEGO Mindstorms robot kit to the school – a gift from the CRyptonite robotics team.

CRHS-CRyptonite-India_Workshop-DSC_0068

Katy, TX (February 1, 2016) Congratulations to Ethan Le (2nd from the left), a senior at Cinco Ranch High School, for winning First Prize at the Schmidbauer Young Artist Competition at Stephen F. Austin State University on January 30, 2016.  As its first prize winner, Ethan received $2,000 and an appearance as guest soloist with the Stephen F. Austin Orchestra of the Pines on March 7, 2016.

Schmidbauer Competition Results 2016

 

Katy, TX (January 26, 2015)

Dear Katy ISD Parents, Guardians and Community Members,

You may be aware of recent changes in Texas law that went into effect on Jan. 1, 2016, regarding carrying firearms in open view in some locations. We would like to reassure you that Katy ISD has never allowed handguns or other prohibited weapons to be carried into any of our campuses or school facilities.

We would also like to assure you that the safety of your child is our top priority, and we are taking every precaution to keep them out of harm’s way.

School grounds have been considered “gun-free” zones under the federal Gun-Free Schools Act that was enacted more than 20 years ago. Texas law also does not permit handguns or certain other weapons to be taken into any school buildings or carried anywhere that school-sponsored activities are taking place. Handguns and firearms are not allowed at any school-sponsored activities, regardless of whether the events or activities take place on or off school property or on school passenger vehicles like school buses.

 

District officials are continuing to review the new Open Carry Law, and we will keep you informed regarding the implementation of this new law in Katy ISD. You can also view our FAQs online for more information.

Meanwhile, should you see any suspicious activity on or around your child’s campus or anywhere in the district, please call Katy ISD police at 281-237-4000 (24 hours a day) or call 911. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call the Parent & Patron Assistance Center (PPAC) at (281) 396-2441.

Katy ISD

Katy, TX (January 26, 2016) Houston Community College (HCC) has the largest international population of any community college in the country. In no small part by the efforts of HCC president Dr. Zachary Hodges to attract foreign students.

The World Chamber of Commerce recently recognized Dr. Hodges’ innovative thinking with the International Pioneer award.

“Houston Community College is an inclusive institution and is only strengthened by the diversity of our students,” said Dr. Hodges. “The programs that we implement are meant to help students grow in a 21st century economy and it’s wonderful that students around the world see the benefits of attending school in Houston, one of the most diverse cities in the country. I am pleased to accept an award recognizing the hard work HCC puts in to grow the next generation of workers, entrepreneurs and innovators.”

Students from nearly 150 countries come to HCC for quality education. More than 900 from Vietnam and more than 500 from Mexico. Others are from as far away as Japan, Congo and India. As of fall 2014, 5,850 international students enrolled at HCC. That’s up 2.6% from fall 2012.

HCC students in the U.S. also have the opportunity to study abroad and attend a global seminar in Salzburg, Austria.

“It is programs like these that attract students to West Houston and enrich our communities,” said Victoria Bryant, World Chamber of Commerce Texas president. “Dr. Hodges is instrumental in attracting international students to the Houston area with his global mindset. We couldn’t think of anyone more deserving of 2015 International Pioneer award.”

 

Stop Hunger Now is a nonprofit organization that works to end World Hunger by delivering meals, building hospitals, irrigation systems, wells, and much more in developing countries.

Wahibah Hannan and Huma Baig, juniors at Mayde Creek High School, are organizing a meal packaging event at their school. Wahibah has spent three months raising funds that are needed to pay for the food to pack the meals; $1,000 of which she saved herself.

On Saturday, February 6, 2016 at 10:30 a.m., Mayde Creek High School will be open to volunteers who would like to help package 10, 152 meals for Stop Hunger Now. These meals will be sent to a developing country to feed the hungry. For some of these people, this is the only food they get. The students ask for any time that you can give for this campaign.

If you would like more information about Stop Hunger Now, please visit stophungernow.org.

Katy, TX (January 21, 2016) Muralist George Bevill shares his illustration, inspired by Chris Van Allsburg’s book The Polar Express, during Odessa Kilpatrick Elementary School’s annual Polar Express Day.

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Pictured Front row: Alyssa Clutter, Timmy Hutchins, Brianna Cabral, Elizabeth Mower, Gonzalo  Garcia, and Brianna Cabral Back row: OKE Principal Malynn Rodriguez and Muralist George Bevill

Katy, TX (December 5, 2015) Cinco Ranch Junior High was filled with the sound of cheering as Cinco Ranch High School’s CRyptonite Robotics Team hosted their fourth annual FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) LEGO® League Katy Qualifier robotics tournament.

For the second year in a row, Team 9066 (Naturally Beck) from Beck Junior High won the First Place Champions Award as the team with the highest combined score from all elements of the competition, beating out 23 other teams  from all over the Houston Metro area.

FIRST LEGO League is a robotics competition for 4th to 8th grade students in teams comprised of two to ten members. Every year, the teams, working with adult mentors build a LEGO robot to compete in a specific challenge designed by FIRST. In addition to organizing and running the tournament, Cinco Ranch High School robotics Team 624, CRyptonite, has been sending student mentors to help adult volunteers work with teams from Creech Elementary and Beck Junior High.

Robots are built of LEGO and LEGO MINDSTORMS products including sensors, attachments and motors. This seasons’ game is called Trash Trek. In Trash Trek, teams are challenged to explore the world of trash, from collection, to sorting, to smart production, and reuse. They must create their own LEGO MINDSTORMS robot to accomplish trash-themed missions on a tabletop playing field.

In addition to building a robot, teams also create a project solution to present to a panel of judges. This year’s project was to make less trash or improve the way people handle the trash they make. On the competition day, students present their solutions, and the top three teams also receive a Golden Ticket to the Championship.

To learn more about FIRST Robotics Competition: http://www.usfirst.org/roboticsprograms/frc

For more information on Team 624:  http://team624.org/

CRHS-CRyptonite-FLL_Tourney-LH2537

 

Katy, TX (January 18, 2016) Students from Katy High School, Morton Ranch High School, and Taylor High School, participated in the Houston Marathon this past weekend.

Houston Marathon

 

Content courtesy of Phuong Nguyen

Katy, TX (January 18, 2016) After 3 years of opening the doors at Tompkins High School, the Falcon wrestlers took first place at the 2016 Seven Lakes Hall Of Fame Invitational. This is their first year with seniors, and was a huge moment for the team.

THS Wrestlers

 

Content courtesy of Sonia Cerza

 

Katy, TX (January 12, 2016) Katy ISD Superintendent, Alton Frailey, announced on Tuesday that he would be stepping down from his post this August. Frailey has been a public school educator for 33 years, nine of those are as the Superintendent with Katy ISD. He made the announcement early so the Board of Trustees would have ample amount of time to recruit and select the best possible replacement.

Frailey acknowledged that there are still five months of the school to complete and he is dedicated to remain working to continue fostering learning environments beneficial to student success.

While in office, Frailey was a part of the vast achievements received by school in Katy ISD.  The eight consecutive years of sustaining the Texas Education Agency’s highest ratings, to being ranked this year by Niche as the number one school district in the Houston area, to students consistently outperforming the state in SATs and ACTs, the highly regarded fine arts departments, FFA and athletic programs, to two successful community developed bond referendums, to working with advisory councils such as the Superintendent’s Student, Employee, Parent and Community Roundtables, and the enhanced financial picture, and  becoming a national leader in the implementation of technology innovations.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           KM Oct Nov 15 Notes and News_Superintendent Frailey Named to Board of Regents

In his letter to Katy ISD, Frailey thanks the Board members, parents, faith leaders, business partners, and volunteers for all of their hard work. He sent out a special thank you to the principals and office staff saying he respects and admires them and all the hard work they provided during the past nine years.

 

 

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (November 25, 2015) – The British International School of Houston today announces that they will become one of the first schools in the world to benefit from an innovative new collaboration between Nord Anglia Education and The Juilliard School in New York. Starting September 2016, students at the school will use an enhanced embedded arts curriculum developed by specialists from Juilliard, along with continued support from, and engagement with, Juilliard alumni and affiliated artists.

The collaboration between Juilliard, the world-renowned performing arts conservatory, and Nord Anglia Education, the world’s leading premium schools organization, is designed to enhance the British International School of Houston’s performing arts offering with its innovative structure, design and approach. The new embedded arts curriculum, which focuses first on music, was developed by curriculum and music experts at both Juilliard and Nord Anglia Education.

 

Andrew Derry, Principal of the British International School of Houston, said, “This collaboration is incredibly exciting. An already vibrant and creative music department will be invigorated by our exclusive collaboration with Juilliard, and everyone involved is eager to begin the program and offer our students a world-class musical experience of the highest quality.”

The music curriculum is designed for all students, not just those who are serious about learning an instrument or musical performance. It is based around a repertoire of 12 core works covering a wide range of cultures, genres and historical periods, each of which has been carefully chosen by Juilliard to open the door to categories of music and fundamentals essential for all young people to know and experience. Ultimately, the curriculum aims to nurture cultural literacy and develop key skills in students, such as discipline, creativity and confidence that will enable them to succeed anywhere in the world once they’ve left school.

Joseph W. Polisi, President at the Juilliard School, said, “In collaborating with Nord Anglia, we have a unique opportunity to share our expertise, offering those studying at Nord Anglia schools the chance to learn from the best that our two institutions can offer. We believe that the performing arts should have a significant role within today’s global educational environment. By working with Nord Anglia, we can reach students from around the world to cultivate their skills and help guide them in their future growth.”

Katy, TX News (November 25, 2015) – Katy ISD’s mission is to work with families and our community to provide students with unparalleled learning experiences. To that end, the District is sharing information about upcoming Attendance Boundary Modification proposals that are intended to provide long-range solutions to manage student enrollment growth as we see 2,000+ new students and their families move into the district on an annual basis. Successful ABMs are achieved through campus capacity reductions, capacity increases or a combination of both.

Each year, the District engages in studies of growth, development and school and program enrollment capacity projections conducted by Population and Survey Analysts (PASA). On October 26, 2015, new enrollment projections were presented to the Katy ISD Board of Trustees. The study estimates continued growth for Katy ISD, particularly in the northwest and southwest quadrants with the addition of more than 47,000 new housing units (multi-family and single family) during the next 10 years.

Please click here to take the survey. (Please note this survey link will only work once. If you have any problems accessing the survey, please email us at ResearchK12E@k12insight.com)

The purpose of this survey is to share information about how growth in the region is being addressed by Katy ISD, to gather information about how your family may be impacted and to share information about ABM processes.

Your participation is anonymous, unless you choose to provide your contact information at the end of the survey. The data from this survey will be used as a part of a broader analysis and discussion with the Katy ISD Board of Trustees. Your feedback is very much appreciated.

Katy, TX News (November 20, 2015) – Katy ISD’s newest high school campus, Tompkins High School, recently held their first-ever signing day for student athletes.

  • Drew Guthrie, Harding University, Baseball
    Guthrie
  • Nick Hutchison. Texas A&M – Kingsville, Baseball
    Hutchison
  • Marissa Langer,University of Texas-Dallas, Golf
    Langer
  • Brittany Panetti,University of New Mexico, Basketball
    Panetti
  • Kendall Rollins, University of Mary Hardin Baylor, Basketball
    Rollins

 

Congratulations to these awesome young athletes for their success and hard work, and to Tompkins High School for their first signing day in school history.

Katy, TX News (November 16, 2015) – As Katy ISD prepares to open two elementary schools and one junior high next year, the Board of Trustees will begin considering attendance boundary modifications to help balance enrollment numbers.

District administrators will review the ABM process, present preliminary ABM proposals, and discuss options for landlocked schools exceeding 125% capacity.

Elem39

Katy, TX News (November 11, 2015) – Katy ISD’s Beck Junior High, located in Cinco Ranch, recently celebrated its annual “International Day” festival for sixth students. The event was chaired this year by PTA volunteer Usha Machiraju and supported by more than 30 parent volunteers.

Machiraju, who also helped to represent India at the event, commented that “This annual event allows Beck students to enjoy the culture, history and food from many countries in one setting hosted by student parents who proudly and playfully engage the students in a “trip around the world”. This year, more than sixteen different countries were represented.”

Beck JH International Day (15)

According to Beck Junior High Principal Carra Fleming, “International Day is such a valued tradition at Beck Junior High because it truly embraces the many international cultures represented here. I also love the way it brings in volunteers we might not normally see because they truly feel valued and have so much to contribute in this area. I learn and grow as much as the kids do through this event each year.”       

 

Katy, TX News (October 26, 2015) – Katy ISD’s new mobile app, SARA (Student Assignment by Residential Address), enables parents to find their school assignment according to their residential address. In order to determine which school your child is set to attend, simply visit, katyisd.or/pages/sara.aspx or download the SARA app on your mobile device. From there, select the student’s grade, enter your address, and click the “Find Address” button.

 

Katy, TX News (October 12, 2015) – According to American School & University’s (AS&U) Top 100 Report issued each year, Katy ISD has jumped 38 spots since 2007, and currently ranks 57th nationwide. Rankings in the Top 100 Report are based on enrollment in public school districts across the nation.

The report also shows that many of the districts that have grown significantly in the last 25 years are in suburban areas, and 20 of the 100 largest school districts in the nation are in Texas.

Since 1928, AS&U has been the information source for education facilities and business professionals — serving the nation’s K-12 and higher-education administrators responsible for the planning, design, construction, retrofit, operations, maintenance and management of education facilities. Click here for more information.

Katy, TX News (September 24, 2015) – In recognition of September as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, various Taylor High School football, band, Pacesetters, cheer squad and flagmen will wear the color gold to help raise awareness.

“It’s been great to have the support of the community to help spread awareness of childhood cancer,” said Kay Curry, mother of Lilli, a 9th-grade freshman at Taylor HS who has been battling cancer for four years. Curry has been working with neighbors to spread awareness of childhood cancer. “That the staff and students at Taylor would rally around the effort in Friday’s game is amazing.”

While Taylor’s main color – blue – won’t change, the Taylor teams will add gold to their uniforms in the game Friday vs. Katy:

  • The football team will wear gold arm bands.
  • The coaches will wear gold visors.
  • The cheer squad will wear gold bows in their hair and gold ribbons on their socks.
  • The band will wear gold armbands.
  • The Pacesetters will use gold pompoms.
  • The flagmen will wear gold socks.

Earlier this month, the THS cheer squad and several local citizens wrapped gold bows around the trees in the median of Kingsland Blvd, the street that runs in front of Taylor High School and neighboring Nottingham Country Elementary.

“Currently, THS has students fighting Childhood Cancer and we also have current cheerleaders who have lost siblings to Childhood Cancer,” said Reyna Wagner, THS varsity cheerleading and flagmen coach. “That is why when this awareness and opportunity came up, the Cheerleading Program at THS wanted to spread awareness, because it has affected us at ‘home’.”

Curry is appreciative, “It’s so heartwarming to have the support of friends and neighbors for those of us impacted by this horrible disease. Childhood cancer is a lot less rare than most people think. Unfortunately, in our journey, I’ve become aware of other children impacted by cancer in the Katy area. The statistics on childhood cancer are sad.”

Those stats include:

  • Every three minutes, a child is diagnosed with cancer
  • 1 in 285 children will get cancer before the age of 20
  • Every year, the parents of approximately 16,000 children in the US will hear the words ‘your child has cancer’
  • Of all the federal funds earmarked for cancer research, only 4% is directed toward childhood cancer research

Curry and neighbors also have worked this month with other schools to help spread awareness of childhood cancer in one way or another (faculty/staff wearing gold ribbons, distributing fact sheets about childhood cancer, wearing gold shirts to school, posting a message on the marquee, etc.). Some of those schools include Nottingham Country Elementary, Memorial Parkway Elementary, Memorial Parkway Junior High, Bonnie Holland Elementary and Beck Junior High.

Katy, TX News (September 2, 2015) – From KPRC Local 2 – A 15-year-old Taylor High School student was taken by Life Flight after being struck by a vehicle in Katy Wednesday morning.

According to Harris County deputies, a blue Mini Cooper struck the boy on Kingsland and Provincial Boulevard around 7:25 a.m.

Witnesses said the boy was alert when the student was transported by Life Flight to Memorial Hermann Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The Katy Independent School District released the following statement:

“Katy ISD would like to take this time to remind all parents and students to be mindful of school zones, and to keep an eye out for children when driving past campuses and neighborhood bus stops. This is also a good time for parents to remind their children about safety precautions at bus stops and while walking to and from school. We ask our community to join the District in keeping our students safe.”

According to authorities, the student is expected to be OK.

Katy Magazine’s thoughts and prayers are with this student and his family. Please, do not text and drive, and remember to mind the speed limit signs in the mornings and afternoons when students are traveling to and from school. 

Katy, TX News (August 6, 2015) – Katy ISD’s 2015 District-wide Elementary Teacher of the Year Christina Dismuke was named the Region IV Elementary Teacher of the Year last night at the annual awards ceremony. Dismuke was selected out of 94 nominees from 47 area school districts.

Dismuke

Dismuke teaches second grade at Morton Ranch Elementary and is a master teacher, second grade Team Leader and Lead Mentor on campus. She is not only involved in the classroom, but also in the community where she spends time volunteering for her church and regularly attends her students’ extracurricular activities.

“Mrs. Dismuke is truly one of the most gifted teachers with whom I have worked in my sixteen years in education,” said Deb Hubble, principal at Morton Ranch Elementary. “It is no exaggeration to say that teachers of all age levels flock to her classroom to observe and learn from her. She masterfully exemplifies what elementary education should be about.”

Dismuke is one of four Katy ISD teachers to be named a Region IV Teacher of the Year in the past 30 years, including Barbara Sue Walker (1989), Theresa Fallwell (2008), and Janie Spies (2014). She will move on as the Region IV Elementary Teacher of the Year to compete against the other Education Service Centers for a finalist spot at the state level, and ultimately an opportunity to be named Texas Teacher of the Year.

Katy, TX News (July 28, 2015) – Plans of comprehensive renovations are set to begin at Memorial Parkway junior high in fall 2015. The project, with an estimated budget at $23.5 million dollars, will provided comprehensive reconfiguration of the campus and will add classrooms, upgrade and replace mechanical, electrical, and plumbing components, and more.KL Learning MPJH Reno Photo

Modifications and upgrades to the 148,627 sq. ft. campus are expected to finish in August 2017 and will be the largest project funded by the 2014 Katy ISD bond measure. For updates on projects funded by the Katy ISD 2014 bond, visit katyisd.org.

Katy, TX News (July 15, 2015) – Katy ISD Trustee Henry Dibrell has earned the designation of Master Trustee upon completion of Leadership TASB, a program sponsored by the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB).

Henry Dibrell

During the fifth session from June 18 to 20, school board members in the 2014–15 Leadership TASB class made presentations of their team’s findings following year-long research focused on topics such as statewide inequities, changing demographics, challenges to traditional public school models, achievement gaps and transformational education.

The Leadership TASB class met in conjunction with TASB’s Summer Leadership Institute in Fort Worth. More than 1,000 new and veteran school leaders received extensive training on every facet of effective board governance, heard keynote addresses from renowned education experts, and picked up valuable ideas from district showcases and networking opportunities.

After the graduation ceremony on June 19, participants joined the ranks of more than 800 school board members statewide who are Leadership TASB alumni.

The 2015 Leadership TASB class, composed of 35 school board members, represents Texas school districts of all sizes. Participants who completed all required elements of the study program earned Master Trustee status, the highest designation recognized by TASB.

TASB is a nonprofit association established in 1949 to serve local public school districts. Texas school board members are the largest group of publicly elected officials in the state. The districts they represent serve more than 5.1 million students.

Katy, TX News (July 12, 2015) – Katy ISD’s 2015 District-wide Elementary Teacher of the Year, Christina Dismuke, was selected as a region IV Teacher of the Year finalist this week out of 94 nominees from 47 area school districts.

Dismuke Headshot

One elementary and one secondary teacher will be chosen from the finalists to represent the area and compete against the other Texas Regions at the state level.

Dismuke teaches second grade at Morton Ranch Elementary and is a master teacher, second grade team leader and lead mentor on campus. She is not only involved in the classroom, but also in the community where she spends time volunteering for her church and regularly attends her students’ extracurricular activities.

Information courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (June 30, 2015) – A total of 696 students from the Katy ISD graduating Class of 2015 received more than $21,023,000 in academic and/or athletic scholarships.

The total amount of academic scholarships earned is $17,117,850 and athletic scholarships totaled $3,957,489.

Total scholarships accepted per campus are as follows:?

Campus Academic Scholarships Athletic Scholarships Total
Cinco Ranch HS $4,066,372 $830,332 $4,896,704
Katy HS $1,966,436 $852,619 $2,878,855
Mayde Creek HS $1,912,439 $122,458 $2,034,897
Morton Ranch HS $3,952,073 $887,480 $4,727,790
Seven Lakes HS $2,486,270 $641,720 $3,127,990
Taylor HS $2,732,260 $622,880 $3,355,140
Raines HS $2,000 N/A $2,000

 

Katy, TX News (June 17, 2015) – Seven Lakes High School would like to welcome their newest addition to the Spartan family — Kaitlyn Eidson, the new Varsity Girls’ Soccer Coach.

news_4adc773b627a3Kaitlyn is a graduate of Cinco Ranch High School, and served as a team captain for the SMU Mustangs Women’s Soccer Team.  Following a brief stint as a professional soccer player overseas, Coach Eidson returned to Texas to serve as an assistant coach at Lake Highlands High School, near Dallas.  Coach Eidson is excited about the opportunity to coach the Seven Lakes girls’ soccer team and is eager to begin working with the kids, coaches, and parents.  Please welcome Coach Eidson to Seven Lakes High School!

Katy, TX News (June 15, 2015) – The National Weather Service (NWS) is anticipating heavy rain and a possible tropical storm early this evening. In response, Katy ISD has elevated its readiness level to Readiness Level 3.

As such, the District is taking the following steps to prepare for possible inclement weather:

  • Fuel vehicles and equipment and, if needed, refill storage tanks
  • Remove debris and anchor items used or stored outside District facilities
  • Issue advisories to staff to begin personal hurricane preparations
  • Move valuable items and critical documents into interior rooms and elevate those items at least three inches above the floor
  • Inspect roof and yards to prepare for high winds
  • Inspect flood control features to ensure outfalls are clear of debris
  • Participate in state conference calls
  • Place key staff on standby
  • Confirm emergency communications are working

As the storm makes its way closer to the Gulf Coast and weather forecasters have a better idea of where landfall will occur, Katy ISD officials will determine when and if to move to Readiness Level 2 or Maximum Readiness Level.  Parents, staff and community will be notified of any changes to summer school or the use of facilities the evening before or the early morning of, the anticipated weather event.  Please check here for information on how the District notifies the community about inclement weather.

Katy ISD reminds families to prepare for expected rain and possible high winds as well by checking their family emergency plan, updating emergency kits and staying informed.

Harris County Homeland Security & Emergency Management has a number of tools for families to use, including a brochure on Hurricane Preparedness and an emergency supply checklist. The Ready Houston regional preparedness page also has helpful information on how to prepare for disasters, including hurricanes.

Information courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (June 12, 2015) – Eight Katy ISD campuses recently received the No Place for Hate® designation for 2014 to 2015 through the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) of Houston.

maxresdefaultThis initiative helps to create and sustain inclusive school environments where all students feel valued and have the opportunity to succeed by promoting respect for individual difference.

The following Katy ISD campuses received the No Place for Hate® designation for 2014 to 2015:

  • Cimarron Elementary
  • Fielder Elementary
  • Franz Elementary
  • Stephens Elementary
  • Wilson Elementary
  • McMeans Junior High
  • Seven Lakes Junior High
  • Mayde Creek High School

No Place for Hate® provides educators and students with the resources to ensure that anti-bias and diversity education are an integral part of the school curriculum.

 

Information courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (June 10, 2015) – Concordia University (Austin, TX) Head Volleyball Coach Nicole McCoy announced the signing of Faith West Academy’s Ashleigh Wostarek to the American Southwest Conference Tornados.

Ashley W signing cropped coaches


Team Captain Ashleigh led the Lady Eagles as middle blocker. She posted several honors for 3-A Division TAPPS Volleyball; 2014-2015  1st Team All-District, 2014-2015 All-State Honorable Mention, 2013-2014  1st Team All-District, and 2012-2013 2nd Team All-District. Outside hitter/defensive specialist Ashleigh was first team for Skyline Juniors of Houston’s club volleyball players.

Concordia is a privately-held, accredited, liberal arts university, and is under the auspices of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. It is a member of the highly respected Concordia University System in which more than 36,000 students are enrolled nationwide.

Ashleigh is the daughter of Mr. Thomas Wostarek of Fayetteville, TX and Ms. Pam Wostarek of Katy, TX.

Katy, TX News (June 1, 2015) – There are now options for new purchases when it comes to buying Varsity Football season tickets for the 2015 school year.

  1. Tickets may be purchased online at katyisdtix.com on Tuesday, June 2, 2015 at 8:00 am until the first football game at Rhodes Stadium of your school’s season.
  2. Tickets may be purchased in person at the Leonard Merrell Center Box Office on Tuesday, June 2, 2015 from 8:00 am to 11:00 am or 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm and Thursday, June 4, 2015 from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm.

The Box Office phone number is 281-396-6390. (Leonard Merrell Center is located at 6301 S. Stadium Lane, Katy, TX 77494).

Katy, TX News (May 27, 2015) – Due to the rain, we are rescheduling the May 26 groundbreaking ceremony for Elementary School No. 38 for Tuesday, June 9 at 10 a.m.

We apologize for the inconvenience but hope you will still join the Katy ISD Board of Trustees, Superintendent Alton Frailey, and fellow staff and community members for this celebration.
This will be the fifth campus the District breaks ground on as part of the six new schools to be built thanks to the 2014 voter-approved bond package.

Located in the Cinco Ranch Northwest area, this school will provide enrollment relief to Wolman and WoodCreek elementary schools when it opens in fall of 2016.

News courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (May 26, 2015) – For the second time in Faith West Academy’s thirty-three year history, the honor of valedictorian is being awarded to two graduating seniors, as both have been named co-valedictorians for Faith West Academy’s Class of 2015. Ashley Coalson and Emma Estephan shared a four-year GPA of 4.73.

Ashley Coalson

Emma Estephan

Ashley is the daughter of James and Beth Coalson of Katy. She is a member of the National Honor Society, charter member of the Science National Honor Society (president), Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and Mu Alpha Theta. She was a member of the Lady Eagle Volleyball Team and the Varsity Swim Team. Ashley was named Academic All-State for TAPPS Volleyball. She was named “Most Representative Female Student” at the 2014 Homecoming and received the 2015 FWA Athletic Booster Club Scholarship.

 

In the fall, Ashley will attend Texas A & M and intends to study mechanical engineering and pursue biomedical research.

 

Emma is the daughter of Jacques and Donna Estephan of Katy. During her high school years she has been a member of the National Honor Society (secretary), a charter member of the Science National Honor Society, International Club, and Mu Alpha Theta. Emma is a gifted art student and has several State Fine Arts Awards for her paintings and drawings. With an interest in the martial arts she has earned a second degree black belt-level 3 from Katy TaeKwonDo Academy.

 

Emma will attend University of Texas to study medical science.

 

Both young ladies exemplify the character and virtues expected of the prestigious position of valedictorian. Commencement ceremonies for thirty-three graduating seniors will be held on Friday, June 5, at 7:00 p.m., at Cross Point Community Church, 700 Westgreen Blvd, Katy, Texas 77450.

Katy, TX News (May 20, 2015) – Seven Lakes High School was named to the Superintendent’s ABCD Club today for going Above and Beyond the Call of Duty. This honor recognizes campuses and departments that excel by providing enriching experiences for our students and improving their campus and community.

Seven Lakes was nominated by a parent whose child suffers from Duchene Muscular Dystrophy. The Seven Lakes High School administrators and staff joined forces to ensure this student’s needs were met and encouraged him to participate in extracurricular activities such as Science Olympiad. Because of their support, the student is graduating seventh in his class and attending Rice University in the fall.

“Principal Ted Vierling and his staff set a great example,” said Lisa Wu, Seven Lakes High School parent. “They are encouraging, supportive and always there to help.”

 

News courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (May 18, 2015) – Rhoads Elementary teacher Morgan Dear was recently selected as one of only 155 teachers across the country to attend the 2015 Mickelson ExxonMobil Teachers Academy.

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The Academy is a one-week, all-expense-paid intensive professional development program that provides teachers with the knowledge and skills necessary to motivate students to pursue careers in science and math.

Dear will be joined by math and science experts from the National Science Teachers Association and Math Solutions, who design the curriculum and manage the daily activities and logistics of the Academy.

News courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (May 15, 2015) – Beginning March 2016, College Board will be administering a redesigned SAT, which was developed to support college readiness and success for students by focusing on the knowledge and skills that current research shows are most essential for college and career success.

In an effort to help the community better understand the changes, students, parents and community from any area of the District are invited to attend any of the following Redesigned SAT Community Information Sessions.

DATE: SCHOOL: ADDRESS: TIME:
May 20 Katy High School 6331 Highway Blvd. 6:30 p.m.
May 26 Tompkins High School 4400 Falcon Landing Blvd. 6:30 p.m.
May 27 Taylor High School 20700 Kingsland Blvd. 6:30 p.m.

The first administration of the redesigned PSAT will be October 2015, while the first administration of the redesigned SAT will be in March 2016.

Katy, TX News (May 8, 2015) – A high school student from James E. Taylor took top honors in this year’s Congressional Art Competition hosted by Congressman John Culberson (TX-07).

“This is one of my favorite events,” said Congressman Culberson during a reception held for the finalists at his Houston office. “I’ve been hosting this event for 13 years, and this is one of the closest competitions we have ever had. The level of talent in our area is truly impressive.”

Rep. Culberson With Congressional Art Competition Finalist 4

Each spring, the Congressional Institute sponsors a nationwide high school visual art competition to recognize and encourage artistic talent. Students from each congressional district in America submit their work to their Representative’s office, and panels of local artists select the winning entries. This year, Culberson’s office received 49 entries from nine schools.

First place went to Amber Wang of James E. Taylor High School for her oil painting “Tiny Roper.” Her painting will be displayed for one year at the United States Capitol. Miss Wang will also receive a trip to Washington, D.C. to attend a reception honoring winners from each district, courtesy of Southwest Airlines.

Katy, TX News – Thanks to a partnership with the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office, Katy ISD students gained real-world experience to careers in the field of forensics and crime scene investigation this week during Katy ISD’s first-ever Forensics CSI Day at the Robert R. Shaw STEAM Center.

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Students were able to tour FBCSO’s mobile investigation unit, speak directly with CSU investigators, and utilize skills such as finger printing and blood splatter analysis to solve a crime scene created by the Katy ISD forensic science teachers and instructional specialist Mariam Manuel.

 

Katy, TX News – More than 1,400 certified teachers gathered at the Leonard E. Merrell Center for the Katy ISD Teaching Job Fair on April 25, hoping to acquire a new job at one of the fastest growing districts in the nation.

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The hiring fair was hosted in response to the rapid growth of the district and representatives from every school gladly welcomed both current Katy ISD employees applying for transfer and new applicants with a valid Texas teaching certification.

To find out more on how to become a teacher in Katy ISD, visit www.katyisd.org/dept/hr/Pages/Becoming-a-Teacher-in-Katy-ISD.aspx.

 

 

Katy, TX News (April 22, 2015) – Courtesy of KHOU – For Kim Karns, a junior at Cinco Ranch, her cell phone is her lifeline. “I was on Twitter or texting someone,” said Karns.

She was sitting by the pool with her family on Sunday. Her head was down, fingers typing away on a text that likely saved her life.

“I looked down at the right time,” said Karns. That’s when she felt it. “I felt something hit me in the back of the head, thought it was a baseball or something,” said Karns. “It stung.”

No one knew what it was or where it came from. But Karns was hurt. “When I pulled my hand back, it was covered in blood,” said Karns.

“We were immediately jumping up, going okay let’s get to the emergency room,” said Yvette Karns, Kim’s mother. Her parents drove her to Memorial Hermann hospital in Katy where a CAT scan surprised even doctors.

“It was like all the life in me just drained,” said Kim’s mother. A bullet was lodged inside Kim’s head.

“I should be dead,” said Karns. An ambulance rushed her to the Medical Center where doctors removed the bullet stuck between her scalp and skull.

“I was pretty much like bring it on, get it out of me,” said Karns. “I was ready to go home. I told them I’ve got school tomorrow and a volleyball tournament this weekend.”

Investigators with the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office say this was a stray bullet. Someone nearby fired it up into the air and that is a crime.

“It’s going to come down somewhere,” said Karns. “There’s going to be a consequence for that.”

It’s a crime that Kim’s mother says could have cost her daughter her life.

“Am I upset? Yes,” she said. “Would I like to wring their neck and say what were you thinking? Yes.”

Most people can’t say they survived a bullet to the head.

“She had an angel on her shoulder that day,” said Kim’s mother.

But now Kim has the stitches to prove it. “If I would have been one inch in any other direction, it could have gone differently,” said Kim. “I’m just really grateful to be alive.”

According to investigators, the caliber of the bullet has yet to be determined. Detectives believe the bullet was shot from south of the victim’s home from a distance of up to a mile. If you have any information about this incident, call the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office at 281-341-4665.

Katy, TX News (April 20, 2015) – Morton Ranch Junior High Science Teacher Kim Thompson, and eighth-grade student Patrick Schumacher were selected this week as two of only 28 individuals nationwide to participate in the JASON National Argonaut Adventure.

As JASON Argonauts, Thompson and Schumacher will embark on a seven-day journey to Cape Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas this summer to experience hands-on research with scientists working on a range of marine science projects.

JASON Learning is a non-profit organization that connects students to real science and exploration to inspire and motivate them to study and pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). Funded by Chevron, students and teachers in Katy ISD are able to access JASON Learning materials including inquiry-based labs, videos, lesson plans, assessments, and comprehensive professional development programs.

Click here for more information on JASON Learning.

Katy, TX News (April 16, 2015) -Dear Parents, Staff and Community Members,

Beginning March 2016, College Board will be administering a redesigned SAT, which was developed to support college readiness and success for students by focusing on the knowledge and skills that current research shows are most essential for college and career success.

On Monday, April 20 a representative with College Board will be presenting a thorough overview of the redesigned SAT during the Katy ISD Board of Trustees Work Study meeting at 6:30 p.m. at the Education Support Complex.  Parents and students are encouraged to attend to learn more about these changes and how it will impact students.

The first administration of the redesigned SAT will be March 2016; however, the first administration of the redesigned PSAT will be in October 2015.

Click here to view the Frequently Asked Questions regarding the redesigned SAT.  For additional information on the changes to the SAT, to view sample questions, and sign up for updates, parents and students are encouraged to visit the College Board website.

Information courtesy of Katy ISD Communications Department

Katy, TX News (April 16, 2015) – Seven Lakes High School seniors Brianna Aheimer and Oluwatofe Alimi are the recipients of a $2,500 Achievement Scholarship through the National Achievement Scholarship Program. Aheimer and Alimi are among only 800 seniors nationwide to receive this scholarship.

More than 150,000 students from across the country were considered in the 2015 National Achievement Scholarship Program after taking the 2013 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test as high school juniors.

From that pool of students, the National Achievement Scholarship Program selected approximately 1,600 Semifinalists. The winners were selected based on their record of accomplishments and greatest potential for academic success in college.

The National Achievement Scholarship Program was established in 1964 to honor scholastically talented Black American youth and provide scholarships to the most outstanding participants in each annual competition. These awards, totaling more than $2 million, are financed by grants from 30 corporate organizations and professional associations, as well as the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

Katy, TX (April 14, 2015) – The Katy Independent School District was recently ranked second among large school districts in the Center for Digital Education’s and National School Boards Association’s 10th anniversary Digital School Districts Survey. This the second year in a row that Katy has been named one of the top ten digital school districts in the nation.

The Digital School Districts Survey showcases exemplary school boards’ and districts’ use of technology to govern the district, communicate with students, parents and community, and improve district operations.

Katy ISD’s second-place rank in the large student population category demonstrates how the District is adapting curriculum, communication and collaboration by embracing digital technologies.

The top 10 rankings are awarded to the school boards and districts that most fully implement technology benchmarks in the evolution of digital education, as represented in the survey questions.

Katy, TX News (April 8, 2015) – The Katy ISD School Board recently passed a resolution calling for the elimination of state high-stakes testing beyond federal mandates, which includes those assessments that are required for graduation, also known as STAAR.  This message is really resonating with members in our community and many at the national level! We do not know of any teacher, parent or educator who believes the STAAR test to be a true test of a child’s ability or the STAAR test to be the right Accountability and Assessment system. There has been no measurable improvement in college readiness.

Sadly, we have heard over and over again that this is not getting enough attention from our legislature or from the media and that it’s only from our group that they have heard this.  We are thrilled to be a part of Katy ISD and helping to lead the charge.  Our hope was that this would be something that the community could rally behind and fight for together and that’s exactly what’s happening.  We are making news in education circles around the country!  We posted a story on our Facebook feed yesterday and we have been thrilled to see this post reach over 40,000 people in less then 24 hours!  We have had hundreds of shares and lots of reposts on many other group sites in the last few days.  Parents and Teachers are very passionate about this topic and we pledge to do our best to make changes with the support of Katy ISD Board of Trustee Members.

See below for just some of the links in groups around Texas and in national circles that have shared Katy ISD’s Resolution and have expressed concern over the STAAR:

Article courtesy of One Katy PAC

Katy, TX News (April 8, 2015) – Seven Lakes Junior High held a world premiere of a special video titled “Celebrating Diversity” at a recent PTA meeting. Seven Lakes Junior High students speak over 34 languages and their families come from countries all of the world.
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The campus was very excited to showcase the wonderful diversity present on the campus. The video was a project created by the SLJH Diversity Committee. Students volunteered to participate in the filming of the video and the majority of filming and production was completed by students. The world premiere of the video was a very special event with speeches by Dr. Medrano, Principal, and a few of the students that participated in creation of the video. Visit the Seven Lakes Junior High Website to see the “Celebrating Diversity” video.

Katy, TX News (March 27, 2015) – Houston Christian High School students have recently participated in several reading and writing competitions with outstanding results. We are proud to announce high honors achieved in the literary arena  through the Library of Congress Letters About Literature competition and WordWright.

In writing, freshman Jake Fritsche and sophomores Richard Hansen and Jeremy Mitschke, were in the top 15 out of 1500 in the state of Texas to achieve high honors in the Library of Congress’s Letters About Literature competition. Additionally, Houston Christian was the only high school to have three finalists in the competition nationwide. Letters About Literature is a reading and writing contest for students in grades 4-12. Students are asked to read a book, poem, or speech of their choosing and write a letter to the author (living or dead) expressing the impact the author’s writing had on them personally.

In reading, a team of HC sophomore students were recently honored at the third annual meet for this year’s WordWright Challenge. Bryce Ott and Will Bates won high individual honors in the meet. The WordWright Challenge, supervised by Mrs. Hannah Bailey, English teacher at HC, is a national competition for high school students requiring close reading and analysis of many different kinds of prose and poetry.

Houston Christian continues to exemplify its high academic standard through these notable literary honors.  Houston Christian is a private college preparatory high school in West Houston at 2700 W. Sam Houston Pkwy. N., near I-10 and Beltway 8. For additional information visitwww.houstonchristian.org. Campus tours are available to prospective students and their parents through the Admissions office. Contact Admissions at 713-580-6020 or admissions@houstonchristian.org.

Katy, TX News (March 13, 2015) – Cinco Ranch High School’s robotics Team 624 (CRyptonite) punched their ticket to the FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition (FRC®) World Championship by winning the 2015 Dallas FRC Regional Tournament. The tournament marked the first week of the seven-week world-wide FRC qualifying tournament season, which culminates in the World Championship at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis.

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After 10 matches in the qualifying rounds and making their way through five quarter and semi final matches, CRyptonite, along with their Alliance partners, Team 118 (Robonauts) from League City and Team 2613 (Protobot) from Van Horn, won a thrilling best-of-three final, 2-1 against Alliance opponents Team 148 (Robowranglers) from Greenville, Team 987 (High Rollers) from Las Vegas, Nevada and Team 3802 (Robopop) from Carrollton.

“Winning the first regional tournament we competed in this season was fantastic,” said CRyptonite Student President and Cinco Ranch senior, Dylan Bray. “We struggled in the qualifying matches with a new robot, new game and new Drive Team, but, with the help of our Alliance partners, we really pulled it together in the elimination rounds. Qualifying for the World Championship the first week of the season takes a lot of the pressure off.”

CRyptonite also won the tournament’s Imagery Award, which celebrates attractiveness in engineering and outstanding visual aesthetic integration of machine and team appearance.

The organizers of the Dallas Regional had a surprise in store for everyone on the final day of the event – a visit from inventor, entrepreneur and FIRST founder, Dean Kamen, along with Dallas Cowboys safeties, Barry Church and J.J. Wilcox. They were joined by four Cowboys cheerleaders and the team mascot, Rowdy.

Regarding this year’s challenge and how FIRST robotics helps prepare students for a future in science and technology, Kamen told the audience, “We wanted to really push the concept of team work.” He said that technologic breakthroughs, no matter in what industry, will require teamwork across engineering disciplines, because “all the easy stuff’s been done…(so) “team work is absolutely critical.” Addressing the students, Kamen said, “All the teams, all the players are winners because of the effort you’ve put in and what you’ve learned.”

Katy, TX  News – On April 25, 2015, Katy ISD will host a massive job fair for certified teachers to fill open positions in all grade levels throughout the rapidly growing district.

The fair will be held at the Leonard E. Merrell Center (6301 S. Stadium Lane, Katy, TX 77494) from 8 to 11 am for junior high and high school positions, and 1 to 4 pm for elementary positions. Applicants must bring a copy of their certification and/or TEA/SBEC content exam scores in order to be admitted, and the fair will be open to current Katy ISD teachers who meet transfer eligibility requirements.

All Katy ISD campuses will be represented at the fair, so applicants should bring enough resumes to share with representatives from 35 elementary schools, 13 junior high schools, and eight high schools.

Visit katyisd.org for more information and directions.

 

Katy, TX News (January 28, 2015) – After being placed on leave, possibly for linking to a Christian website in the Seven Lakes Junior High e-newlsetter, Principal Imelda Medrano has returned to her job. Katy ISD officials were not able to say exactly why the principal was suspended, but stated that Medrano had not been accused of any criminal activity nor any conduct that would risk the safety of the students.

The article included in the newsletter was a warning against the dangers of social media apps and how they can be used by sexual predators to target children.

“Sexual predators can target your children even when your child is in the room down the hall,” it read. “And sexual predators aren’t the only problem. Cyber-bullying and exposures to sexually inappropriate content are additional concerns.”

Katy ISD immediately sent out a mass email to parents, telling them to ignore the article and refer to the district’s policy on bullying, at which time Medrano was placed on leave for sharing content that had not been approved by the district first. Concerned parents started a Facebook page to show support of Medrano and call for her reinstatement.

After an administrative review, the district sent out another email advising that Medrano would return to work the following week.

Superintendent Alton Fraily said, “I appointed Dr. Medrano to open SLJH in 2012 and since then, she has demonstrated successful leadership capacity at the school. She has my full support and confidence as she continues as principal at SLJH.” KM

Katy, TX News (January 26, 2015) – Brittany Bowles, Elena Irvine, and Amanda Stoner from St John XXIII College Preparatory in Katy, Texas are three of more than 500 high school cheerleaders and dancers from across the U.S. who performed in the world famous London New Year’s Day Parade, now in its 26th year.

Amanda Brittany and Elena on Parade Day

The individuals invited to perform in the parade qualified for the trip after being selected as an All American at one of the summer camps hosted by Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA), National Cheerleaders Association (NCA), United Spirit Association (USA), Universal Dance Association (UDA) and National Dance Alliance (NDA).  All Americans are selected to try out based on superior cheerleading skills at camps across the country.

Varsity has been hosting camps since 1974. Since then, they have been leading the way by combing high energy entertainment with traditional school leadership. Each year Varsity Brands trains over 325,000 cheerleaders at over 5,000 camp sessions.

Only the top 12% of the cheerleaders who attend Varsity summer camps earn the chance to march in the holiday spectacular.  In addition to performing in the London parade, the All Americans had a chance to tour London during their seven-day trip.

“This is the 26th year we’ve been able to bring talented cheerleaders to London, where they can showcase their skills to a very enthusiastic international audience,” says Mike Fultz, the Varsity International Event Coordinator.

Katy, TX News (January 7, 2015) – With ongoing community growth and development spurring a nearly 3,000-student annual increase in enrollment, Katy ISD’s student transportation system is facing mounting pressure. To address this growing problem, district leaders are searching for a more sustainable solution and need the community’s help to identify the best path forward.

Katy ISD is asking all parents and community members to take its transportation survey to provide the district feedback on current use and potential changes like new bus route modeling and modified school bell schedules. The survey will be available from Wednesday, January 7 to Wednesday, January 21.

“Our community and our families remain our greatest resource when it comes to issues that impact people’s daily lives,” Superintendent Alton Frailey said. “It’s important that we understand their experiences and preferences, so we can build a sustainable transportation system that considers these values and that can effectively serve our students now and into the future.”

The transportation survey covers four topics: current transportation methods, utilization of district transportation, transportation preferences, and school start and end times.

The survey will be open to all Katy ISD parents and community members. Every person with a current email address on file will receive a personal survey invitation. Paper surveys will be available upon request, and surveys in Spanish will be sent home with students at select schools across Katy.

“Community feedback is an important component of our decision-making process. I encourage everyone to participate,” Frailey said. “It is only by working together that we will be able to make Katy ISD the best educational experience for every student.”

Katy ISD’s enrollment surpassed 70,000 students this year and is projected to top 90,000 by 2023, causing district leaders to characterize the current transportation system as unsustainable.  The key variable for providing transportation services is the availability of drivers.  This is a challenge many school districts face, as it is a well-documented problem across the region, state, and country.

Once the survey closes on January 21, district leaders will use the results to provide transportation recommendations. Their recommendations will be presented to the Board of Trustees in February or March.

Potential changes include new bus route modeling and multi-bell schedules.

Take the survey here!

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (November 24, 2014) – Community members, businesses and organizations across Katy came together over the past two weeks to bring the love of reading into nearly 500 Katy ISD classrooms. The annual reading program is part of a 17-year-old tradition lead by the Katy ISD Partners in Education department that brings the community into the classroom. Through Promise to Read, the program provides the business community a unique opportunity to reacquaint themselves with the world of children’s literature by spending 30 minutes reading to a classroom full of excited elementary students. The program currently runs for two weeks at 13 elementary campuses each year in November.

This year’s Promise to Read event was hosted with Partners in Education at: Hays, Holland, Katy, Memorial Parkway, Schmalz, Shafer, Stanley, Stephens, Sundown, West Memorial, Wolfe, Wolman and WoodCreek elementary schools. Host campuses rotate each year so that, over a three year period, every Katy ISD elementary has an opportunity to participate.

Promise to Read has become a treasured community event thanks to hundreds of devoted community volunteers, many of whom join us every year, and our Katy ISD host campuses,” says Janet Theis, Katy ISD’s Director of Community Partnerships. “Promise to Read continues to open the door for our business community to embrace and inspire the love of reading and share that magic with classrooms across the district.”

Readers represented a cross section of local companies and organizations including: H-E-B, Brazos Valley Schools Credit Union, AXA Advisors, McDonald’s, Tradition Bank, Second Baptist Church, Katy Memorial Hermann Hospital, CenterPoint Energy,  Members Choice Credit Union, The Shady Lady Window Coverings, Children’s Lighthouse, Pepper Lawson Construction, Omni Hotels, Christian Brothers Automotive, Pump It Up, Junior Achievement, Herff Jones Graduation Center, Firethorne, Bicycle World, Spring Creek Barbeque, Katy Fire Department, Mar-Mar’s Candy Jar, KCC Orthodontics, HCC NW, Edward Jones, Johnny’s Pizza House, Two Forks Catering, Adams Law Firm, Sylvan Learning, Harris County Public Library, Houston SPCA, Schakolad Chocolate Factory, Chick-fil-A Mason Road and Chick-fil-A Cinco Ranch, KVPAC, Dignity Memorial Katy Funeral Home, Houston Museum of Natural Science, PUPS – Prevent Unwanted Pets, Tutor Doctor, Katy Area Chamber of Commerce, St. Peter’s United Methodist Church, Texas Taxi, Cross Community Church, Cotton Holdings, Costco Wholesale, Thomas C. Harrison, DDS, Inc., Amegy Bank, Westpark Springs Hospital, Spectra Energy, City of Katy Senior Center, Keep Katy Beautiful, Marriott Energy Corridor Hotel, PBK Architects, Grand Vision Center, Gina Cornelius Swim Academy, Krenzien, Krenzien & Associates, Tista’s Fine Furniture and many other Katy community members and area businesses.

Promise to Read is one of several community involvement programs offered by Katy ISD Partners in Education and essentially fulfills the mission of bringing the community into the classroom.  Find more information about Partners in Education on the Katy ISD website.

Katy, TX News (November 5, 2014) – Katy ISD community voters approved the $748 million dollar School Bond Referendum that will provide new schools and student activity facilities, address growth trends, and improve existing campuses.

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In response to the election results, Superintendent Alton Frailey offered a letter to Katy ISD parents and staff thanking them for their participation in the 2014 Katy ISD School Bond election:

“Dear Katy ISD Community, parents, and staff,

On behalf of the Board of Trustees and the entire Katy ISD community, thank you for passing the Katy ISD 2014 Schools Bond that will address growth, safety measures, renovation and student activity facility needs. I am heartened to report that the bond referendum passed tonight with an unofficial count of 28,509 votes “FOR” the bond and 23,146 votes “AGAINST,” for a 55.2 percent approval rating.

We recognize that you have placed a tremendous amount of trust and confidence in your district’s servants to provide unparalleled learning opportunities for the tens of thousands of students that are here today, as well as those to come. This bond represents an investment in the future for our students and our community. You can rest assured that as project implementation begins, the Board of Trustees and staff will continue to efficiently manage bond funds to ensure the construction of carefully built learning spaces that will have the most significant and positive impact on our students and community for years to come.

This referendum reaffirms our community’s commitment to Katy children—a commitment that could not have been realized without the work and time of more than 200 volunteers representing the entire Katy ISD. These individuals spent tireless months and hours developing a bond package that will meet short- and long-term needs. Likewise, our staff and community members who notably went above and beyond to educate residents and voters about the bond through community meetings, media engagements, and campus-based informational sessions, are to be commended for their efforts.

Moving ahead, we welcome all community members to be a part of the next phases of the bond process. Over the coming months, you will be hearing about meetings, discussions, and opportunities for community members to attend and join in the work.

Again, thank you for your continued support of the students in Katy ISD.”

 

Sincerely,
Alton Frailey
Superintendent of Schools

Katy Magazine would like to thank Superintendent Frailey for his dedication to the growth and success of Katy ISD. For more information on the Katy ISD School Bond Referendum, visit katyisd.org.

Katy, TX News (September 23, 2014) – Last night, the Katy ISD Board of Trustees approved both the Debt Service and Maintenance and Operations tax rates for 2014-2015, which have remained the same for eight consecutive years. The tax rates combined equal a total school tax rate of $1.5266.

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The Debt Services tax rate was approved at $0.40 per $100 valuation and provides funds to service the District’s debt for the 2014-2015 fiscal year. The Maintenance and Operations tax rate was approved at $1.1266 per $100 valuation and provides funding for the District’s daily operations cost for the 2014-2015 fiscal year.

For more information on school tax rates for the District, visit the Katy ISD website.

Katy, Texas News (September 8, 2014) – Large crowds attended the first Taste of Katy Tailgate on Aug. 20 in Old Town Katy where tailgaters had a chance to sample the fine food and drink of 17 Katy restaurants, pubs and food/drink companies. Tailgaters were asked to donate a backpack and/or school supplies for needy youth in Katy ISD.

Participating restaurants included D’Amico’s Italian Market Cafe, Babin’s Seafood House, Baker St. Pub & Grill, Hasta la Pasta, Crawfish Café, Da Vinci Ristorante Italiano, The Cellar Door, No Label Brewing Co, Zoe’s Kitchen, What’s Poppin Popcorn, Chick Fil A, Los Cucos, Midway Barbeque, Wright’s of Texas Salsa and the Snowdog Ice Cream truck.

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Live music entertainment were provided by the Rankin Twins and the Justin Van Sant Band and Johnny B from KSBJ radio was broadcasting live from the tailgate party. There were inflatables, face painting, games and balloon artists, for the kids, and several Katy ISD student groups helped out at the different booths.

Underwritten by the Matt Schomburg State Farm Insurance Agency, and generously funded by the participating local restaurants and businesses, the event was completely free to the public. The only request was that attendees would provide a backpack filled with school supplies for less fortunate families in Katy ISD.

Taste o Katy Tailgate plans for next year are already underway. Over 220 backpacks and several boxes full of school supplies were donated. Schomburg matched the number of backpacks with a personal donation. “Next year we will be able to help even more children start the school year off right with the school supplies they need,” said Schomburg.

 

Katy, TX News (September 4, 2014) – The Taylor Lacrosse Club, established in 2003, is the oldest high school lacrosse club in the Katy, Texas area. A number of players have gone on to play lacrosse at the college level at schools such as Marymount, Oklahoma, UT Austin, Texas State, Texas A&M, North Texas, Shenandoah College, Rollins and Sam Houston State.

Since lacrosse is not a UIL sport in Texas, it is considered a club in Katy ISD. Taylor club is looking to change its name to the Katy Kings for the 2016 season due to the wide range of players that come from schools all over the district, and many consider lacrosse to be the perfect off season sport for football players. Practice starts in September and the season runs from late January to late April.

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JetLax plays at the Division II level and has had players from Taylor, Cinco Ranch, Morton Ranch and Katy High Schools that play under the direction of the Texas High School Lacrosse League. Division opponents are Fort Bend, Lamar, St. Thomas, Stratford and Westside. The Texas High School Lacross League has 27 different lacrosse teams across the Houston metropolitan area, and has clubs for female as well as elementary and junior high players.

If you are interested in coaching or playing for JetLax, visit www.taylorlacrosse.com.

Katy, TX News (September 3, 2014) – This past school year, eight outstanding Katy ISD students were selected to participate in Education in Action’s 2014 spring break and summer camps. Lone Star Leadership Academy camps took place in Dallas/Fort Worth, Austin/San Antonio, and Houston/Galveston depending on the students’ grade level. Selection for the Lone Star Leadership Academy was based on each student’s demonstrated academic success and leadership ability, an educator recommendation, and involvement in school and community activities.

During the Lone Star Leadership Academy camps, selected students joined delegations of other distinguished students from across the state to develop leadership skills while learning about the great state of Texas. They also completed problem solving and decision-making simulations, exercised creativity, and practiced presentation skills in leadership groups.  Participants experienced what they are learning in school through visits to historically, politically, scientifically, and environmentally significant sites.

Katy ISD students who participated in the 2014 Leadership Academy are:
Beckendorff Junior High: Caleb Oneal
Cinco Ranch Junior High: Jake Dickson
Holland Elementary: Ashlee Ballard, Eduardo Diaz, April Feng, Elena Yu and Grace Zhang
Seven Lakes Junior High: Jake Wilson

For more information about the Lone Star Leadership Academy or to nominate outstanding students for 2015 programs, visit www.educationinaction.org.

Katy, TX News (August 19, 2014) – Last night at the monthly Work Study meeting, the Katy ISD Board of Trustees unanimously voted to place a $748 million bond referendum on the November ballot, as recommended by the community-led Bond Committee.

The bond package, designed primarily to address the District’s rapid growth, includes six new campuses, six comprehensive renovations and improvements to nearly 50 existing campuses. Additionally, it includes technology retrofits, safety and security updates district-wide, and new student activity facilities.

“Essentially, every student in Katy ISD would see the benefits of this bond,” said Katy ISD Board President Bryan Michalsky. “This is a bond package constructed by our community with the students’ best interest at heart.”

With student enrollment growing by almost 3,000 students every year, many campuses are already facing challenges resulting from overcrowding and aging facilities. By building six new campuses, this proposed bond package would add nearly 9,000 seats in classrooms across the District and provide enrollment relief to more than 10 campuses.

“The area’s exponential growth is exciting for the District, but we must continue to plan and accommodate for that growth,” said Katy ISD Superintendent Alton Frailey. “As families and businesses continue to move to the area, it is imperative that we adequately serve the educational needs of current and future students.”

As recommended by the Bond Committee, nearly 50 percent of the total bond referendum will go towards new facilities and another 30 percent to existing facilities, impacting nearly 70,000 students. Meanwhile, the impact to the tax rate would only be zero to a maximum potential increase of a half cent.

The average homeowner with a home value of about $200,000 would pay $10 more annually, and residents 65 and older would remain exempt from any school tax increase.

The 227-member Bond Committee was comprised of parents, staff, students, principals, business professionals and senior citizens who engaged in 13 meetings over the course of four months to review the District’s Long-Range Facilities Plan, visit impacted campuses and reach a consensus on the $748 million bond package.

For detailed information including a cost breakdown, projects by campus and the potential tax rate impact, visit www.katyisd.org/sites/bonds.

 

Katy, TX News (August 18, 2014) – Beckendorff Junior High recently welcomed incoming sixth graders at Cub Camp. Students toured the campus, enjoyed a pizza lunch, and met with school staff.

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Sixth-grade principal Eric Netherly gave parents an overview of daily life at the campus, and volunteers Shani Matheson and Sheila Paxton greeted parents. A parent panel (Shani Matheson, Carrie Zamora, and Cindy Cruz-Davis) gave an overview of what to expect in the coming school year. ericnetherly

Katy, TX News (August 6, 2014) – For the tenth consecutive year, YMCA Operation Backpack joins the forces of local churches, businesses, and other community partners to touch the lives of Katy area children and their families this school year.

OPERATION BACKPACK PHOTO

The Katy Family YMCA is collecting brand new backpacks filled with school supplies to help students in the Katy, Sealy and Royal ISDs. Thousands of supplies will be collected for children who might otherwise start school unprepared. Last year the Katy YMCA helped 2,500 kids and the goal this year is to help close to 4,000.

Connie Stirgus, Outreach Coordinator for the Katy Family YMCA, has the task of securing donations of needed school items from community partners and individuals. She also heads up the effort to recruit volunteers to help in the sorting, packaging and distributing of the supplies.

“Many of us remember going to the store with our parents and picking out a brand new backpack and supplies for the school year,” said Stirgus. “With the current state of the economy, many parents just don’t have the money to buy the supplies their kids need to start the school year. That can be disheartening to the parent and also to the child. The YMCA wants to help those families help their kids have a successful year. I have been in schools delivering supplies and it puts a smile on my face to see all kids, regardless of their parents’ financial situation, have all the supplies they need to start the year off right.”

Many times Stirgus goes out and approaches prospective donors when there are special classroom needs, such as unique supplies that the teachers like for the kids to have.  An example of this is a composition book which costs about $2.50 each. The Y uses cash donations from individuals and companies for these requests, such as BP, which recently donated $500.

“HEB stores in Katy put together bags of supplies, ranging in price from $2.50 to $7.00, and backpacks that their customers can purchase. “We pick these up and deliver them to the different schools,” says Stirgus.  Drop-off locations included: Tradition Bank, HEB, New Hope Presbyterian Church, Sphier Emergency Room, Dagley Insurance, Choice ER, Connect2health Wellness, Whole Foods Market and the Katy Family YMCA.

YMCA Operation Backpack continues through August 10, but it’s never too late to donate supplies and backpacks to the Katy Family YMCA. All collected backpacks and school supplies will be distributed to children in need within the Katy YMCA service area. If you are in need of backpack(s) for school, please contact your child’s school counselor.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (July 23, 2014) – It was standing room only Monday night at the Board of Trustees Work Study Meeting as more than a hundred community members attended to support the Katy ISD Bond Committee’s presentation recommending a $748 million bond package to include new campuses and student activity facilities, district-wide renovations, technology retrofits, and safety and security updates, among other items.

“Katy is a magnet for families from all over the nation because of its successful schools, communities, and businesses.  We know this area is going to continue growing and with it, the District too,” said Katy ISD Bond Committee Chair Keith Carmichael.  “Managing growth and planning for the future is a priority we cannot underestimate or ignore, and this Bond Committee recognizes this.”

For nearly four months, more than 200 Katy parents, seniors, students, and other residents came together to form the Bond Committee to review more than a hundred projects, study the District’s Long-Range Facilities Plan, assess enrollment projections and even tour campuses currently slated for renovation to determine the District’s current and future needs.

On July 16, the Committee reached a consensus on a $748 million bond which could potentially result in a one cent tax rate increase.

The Board of Trustees will have until Aug. 18 to consider the Bond Committee’s recommendation, as well as call for a Nov. 4, 2014 bond election, if approved.

For more information, visit www.katyisd.org/sites/bonds.

Katy, TX News (July 23, 2014) – After spring auditions, “Sensations”, the Seven Lakes Show Choir, selected their members for the 2014-2015 school year.  Members include Samantha Pedrosa, Cameron Connolly, Shreya Kaul, Stone Tejada, Nataley Lucas, Gabriel Prevallet, Mindy Keahey, Emily Sanders, Benjamin Calarco, Lyndsey Burton,  Corey Standley,  Stephanie Neff, Alex Chung, and Rabiaa Nguyen.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (July 21, 2014) – Recent Morton Ranch High School graduate, Leema Weilein, recently earned a silver medal in the STAR Event Competition at the 2014 FCCLA National Leadership Conference in San Antonio. Weilein competed in the Job Interview category, which involved developing a portfolio, honing interviewing skills, and communicating in a professional manner. Weilein made school history by being the first Morton Ranch High School FCCLA member to advance to the national level.

FCCLA offers more than 30 Family and Consumer Sciences-related events, also known as STAR (Students Taking Action with Recognition) events. Members compete at the district, state, and national level. This year, Weilein was among more than 4,200 STAR Event participants who competed at the conference. Click here for more information on the 2014 STAR Event Competition.

Courtesy of Katy ISD

Katy, TX News (July 14, 2014) – Morton Ranch Junior High Principal Mark McCord was recently named a finalist for the 2013-2014 Texas PTA Outstanding Educator Awards for secondary principals.

Each year, the Outstanding Educator Awards recognize teachers, principals, and superintendents from across the state who have shown that strong family-school partnership encourages student success.

The winners will be announced in late July at the Summer Leadership Seminar. For more information on the Outstanding Educator Awards, visit the