Brazos River

Regional Day School Program for the Deaf

Entire Newsletter of BRAGS!!!!!!!!

Student Brags:

Scholarship winner for the Optimist Communication Contest for the DHH

Finalist for the Optimist Communication Contest for the DHH

Outstanding Student of the Month for Weatherford High School

Another Outstanding Student of the Month for Weatherford High School

Outstanding Student of the Month for WHS North Campus

Outstanding Student in Flyers Biology for WHS North Campus

UIL Art Finalists-Three from Hall Middle School

Staff Brags:

Exemplary Staff- Brazos River RDSPD

Outstanding Optimist- Weatherford Optimist Club

Retirement Announcement After a Decade of Service

Weatherford High School Grassburr - BRRDSPD Featured Teacher

Nominated Teacher for the Month for WHS North Campus

Precious Family Additions

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Ashley Thornton, Scholarship Winner - Optimist Communication Contest for the DHH

Ashley Thornton, (pictured in the middle) Weatherford High School sophomore won a $1000 college scholarship for placing 3rd in the North Texas District Level Contest of the Optimist Communication Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing at the Education Service Center on May 3, 2019. Ashley gave a a speech answering the question, "Is There a Fine Line Between Reality and Optimism?" Ashley presented a fantastic speech ending with, "Optimism is my reality!".

Madison Birchell and Ashley Thornton Compete at North Texas District Finals

We are so proud of our two Brazos River RDSPD finalist who went on to compete in the North Texas District Finals of the Optimist International Communication Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. Madison Birchell is a ninth grader at the Weatherford High School North Campus and Ashley Thornton is a tenth grader at Weatherford High School. The competition was fierce and our participants did a wonderful job representing the Brazos River RDSPD.

Student of the Month- Star Little, Weatherford High School

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Student of the Month - Ashley Thornton, Weatherford High School

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Student of the Month, Michael Nulisch, Weatherford High School North Campus

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Click below to see Michael Nulisch Video by John Tarrant, WISD producer

Outstanding Student in Biology- Michael Nulisch

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Hall Middle School RDSPD Students Excel in UIL Art!!

Brazos River RDSPD Hall Middle School Students with their UIL Medals

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Shout Out to the BEST RDSPD Staff in all of Texas and the World!!!!!

As you know, the staff of the Brazos River was hand picked for their expertise, their compassion for your children, and their tireless work ethic to provide the best possible education for the students of the Brazos River RDSPD!!! The Peer Review Team agreed!! We have an exemplary staff of highly trained, specialist in their field who believe in the achievement of their students. This award winning group of professionals is recognized not just in the field of Deaf education, but also among general education administration. This is exemplified in the on-going recognition received throughout the school years. I couldn't be prouder of the communication assistants, interpreters, our audiologist, our program assistant, and teachers. Even our substitutes are competent in their abilities so that our students continue to learn even when a staff member needs to be out. The lives of these students are changed, improved every day because of these dedicated individuals.

I want to recognize each and every BRRDSPD employee to thank them for another amazing school year!

Kandy Aydelotte, Laura Booth, BJ Brann, Kristal Bullock, Kim Burton, Chelsie Cagle, Samuel Callis, Chloe Cook, Maci Duncum, Whitney Ellis, Christy Fugitt, Chelsea Garrett, Meagan Glass, Emily Heitbrink, Kristie Henry, Madison Hughes, Lindsey King, Rye King, Jim Lamb, Mandy Lashbrook, Addie Little, Melissa Mello, Monica Moore, Hannah Morris, Michelle Murphy, Kim Oleson, Marty Painter, Ashlyn Pape, Samantha Rocha, Chandler Schoonover, Ashtin Smith, Rebecca West, Lauren Tillis-White, Mendi Winn.

Addie Little with Jackie Barrientos

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Addie Little, Beloved Brazos River RDSPD Communication Assistant Retires

Addie Little retired from Wright Elementary as a kindergarten teacher, then spent the next decade serving the elementary students of the Brazos River Regional Day School Program for the Deaf as a Communication Assistant. Addie's expertise as a master teacher served her well as she helped our non-signing DHH students get complete access to the general curriculum and so much more. She instilled in her students a confidence in their abilities, a love for school, and the knowledge they could do anything, including successfully passing STAAR assessments. Addie is a humble motivator, a dedicated teacher, a quality person, and an inspiration to us all. We will miss you greatly, Addie!! We wish you a very happy retirement!!
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Lauren White, BRRDSPD High School Teacher- Honored in WHS Grassburr

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"Life Lessons with Mrs. Lauren"- WHS Grassburr Article by RDSPD Student Julie Jack

Mrs. Lauren Tillis-White is the WHS Deaf Ed teacher and GSA sponsor. Because in the Deaf community it is respectful to call a teacher by their first name, many students call her Mrs. Lauren while others call her Mrs. White. She’s a teacher who cares for her students’ success and their well-being. She worked hard to get where she is now. A strong minded, motivated, and passionate teacher is the best description that fits her.

“I love working with a variety of kids and helping them overcome obstacles. I also love helping the kids who are struggling, it could be academically or with something in life,” Tillis-White said.

Inspired by her ASL teacher, Ms. Wilson, a career was found for Mrs. Lauren. Learning everything about Deaf Culture, the language, and getting involved in the Deaf community, Mrs. Lauren found where she belongs. She graduated from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma, majoring in Deaf Education. She is on her 8th year of teaching, but her third-year teaching here at WHS.

“Mrs. Lauren is an inspiration to me, because she teaches us to be hardworking and patient,” Gage Lockhart said.

She doesn’t just love teaching Deaf Ed; she is also a sponsor of GSA. Being a sponsor of this club opened up a safe place to many LGBTQ+ students. She has helped students embrace who they truly are. Her help gives students a different mindset of life. Mrs. Lauren is a positive influence and she’s given GSA members a memory to keep with them forever.

“I was more than willing to support those students and become their sponsor [of GSA]. I believe that all students need a place to feel safe and know that they have someone on campus who accepts them for who they are. I know how important it is for high schools to have GSAs on campus,” Tillis-White said.

Inspiring other to become who they want to be is what Mrs. Lauren does. Life lesson is what she gives: preparing students for life after high school, for college, and for the future. She works hard to teach students what they need to know whether they are deaf students or GSA members. Mrs. Lauren cherishes her job and is very passionate about it.

“Mrs. Lauren is a person all Americans should become more like. She is a person who teaches and shows us how to become a successful person and inspire many people to know their wants and goals in life,” Jay Keeney said.

Many students here at WHS are very grateful to have Mrs. Lauren as a teacher or a sponsor. Those who are graduating in May 2019, will miss her, but she will have new students to inspire and motivate to become the truest version of themselves.

“Don’t forget that you matter and you are capable of greatness,” Tillis-White said. “Don’t let anything hold you back. Try your hardest and believe in yourself.”

Nominated Teacher of the Month-April 2019 Christy Fugitt, WHS North Campus

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Precious Additions to the Brazos River RDSPD Family 2018-19