Cougar Community Newsletter

November 8, 2021

COVID-19: Back-to-School Plan

For latest protocols based on guidance from the Texas Education Agency

COVID-19 Dashboard

Updated statistics on positive cases

A message from Toni Hicks, Ed.D.

Hello Cougars,

Our community is celebrating several major achievements that highlight the talent here in Jarrell -- Jasmine Benavidez represented Jarrell ISD extremely well at the State Cross Country Meet (and finished 8 seconds faster than last year!). The Jarrell High School band earned Sweepstakes for the 7th consecutive year, advancing to Area Competition, and the Jarrell High School drumline placed first in their class at the Drums Along the Brazos in College Station. The Jarrell FFA Radio Team (Gabby Dunnam, Cody Dotson and Rylee Kilpatrick) competed in the Texas State CFFA virtual invitational last week and ranked first!

Congratulations to these students, their teachers, coaches, directors, and their parents on a job well done.

These activities are an integral part of the total school experience, giving students avenues to make lasting friendships and compete while learning teamwork and sportsmanship. We are proud to share this year Jarrell High School is home to 21 clubs, giving students even more avenues to be connected and engaged on campus. As we gear up for the seasons of winter sports, holiday performances, and more, we invite our community to come out, celebrate and cheer for our talented students at every opportunity. We are stronger with your support.

Before I close, I want to thank everyone who participated in the climate surveys. We had great participation. We will use this data to guide future improvement.

Let’s continue to work together to ensure our campuses are focused on success for all.

Go Cougars,

Toni Hicks, Ed.D.

Cougar Celebrations

Jasmine Benavidez Competes at State Cross Country Meet

Jasmine Benavidez represented Jarrell High School at the State Cross Country Meet on Saturday, Nov. 6. Jasmine faced some tough competition, and improved her state time to a 12:40.5! We are so proud of you, Jasmine!
The Perfect Play

Staff Spotlight - Coach Mike Maldonado

Staff Spotlight - Mike Maldonado
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Jarrell Middle School Half Time Cheer with Dads!

Important News and Information for Families

Use ANONYMOUS ALERTS to Report Negative Behavior at Jarrell ISD Campuses

Jarrell ISD is reminding all students, parents and community remembers to report all negative behavior through the Anonymous Alerts. Reports may be made through the district and campus websites, or through the Anonymous Alerts app (free and available for download).

The Anonymous Alerts anti-bullying and safety app reporting system helps combat bullying and other negative activity in schools by empowering students to speak up. Social and peer pressure are some of the hardest obstacles for students to overcome.

The system allows for 1-way or 2-way anonymous encrypted communications between submitters (students, parents or community members) and district administration and/or school staff. Users of the system have the option to remain anonymous or reveal their identity when submitting a report.

Report from your phone:

  • Download the Anonymous Alerts® app for free from the Apple Store, Google Play store, or the Chrome store
  • Start the App, enter activation code: jarrellisd
  • Send important reports to school officials
  • Add a screenshot, photo or video about the incident


Report from the Web/Internet go to:

Jarrell Food Bank Volunteer Meeting

The Jarrell United Methodist Church is having a meeting for any volunteers interested in learning more about supporting the food bank Monday, Nov. 15 at 6:30 p.m. at the JUMC.
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Reimaging Education Committee Seeking Volunteers

Jarrell ISD is seeking volunteers for its Reimagining Education Committee. Members of this committee will explore how we can work together and better serve students and support teachers in the years ahead.

Teachers, staff, parents, and students are invited to attend. The first meeting will be Nov. 9, from 6:30-7:30 p.m. at the Admin Annex. Future meetings will be planned at a later date.

SmartTags Required for Bus Service

In August of the 2021-22 school year, Jarrell ISD implemented the SmartTag system for bus riders. The SmartTag system is designed to ensure authorized ridership on district buses and improve the safety and security of students who use bus transportation.

SmartTag provides live monitoring of where and when students load onto and unload off of their school bus. This information keeps transportation staff, school administrators and parents up-to-date with accurate information.

How SmartTag works:

  • When a student enters a school bus, the student scans their SmartTag card using the card reader (installed on the bus).
    The SmartTag tablet confirms the student is board the correct school bus.
  • When the student has arrived at his/her stop and gets ready to exit the bus, the student again scans his/her card ensuring it's the correct stop.
  • Information is gathered by the bus driver and shared in real time using secured cloud technology.
  • Parents are able to use the SmartTag portal for up-to-date information on their child's bus. Parents may also download the app and get notifications on their child's bus.

Student protocols
All students who ride a Jarrell ISD bus should have a SmartTag. New students will have a 2-day delay for processing.

What happens if a student forgets their SmartTag?

  • Students will be allowed to board the bus in the morning and come to school.
  • Once at school, the Jarrell ISD transportation department will contact the school and inform the school the student did not have a SmartTag.
  • The campus will contact the parent or guardian to inform them that the student will not be able to ride the bus home without a SmartTag.

If a student does not have a SmartTag, parents may:

  • Make arrangements to pick up their child from school that day
  • Deliver the child's SmartTag to school so the student may ride the bus.
  • Pay for another SmartTag through RevTrak for $5. With this new SmartTag, the student may ride the bus home.
More about SmartTags
Make a Donation to the Jarrell Education Foundation

Your donation will go to support innovation and academic excellence in Jarrell ISD.

We Rise By Lifting Others - Donate to the Jarrell Education Foundation

The Jarrell Education Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit founded to enhance student learning through innovative opportunities that promote academic excellence.

In their first-ever grant awards cycle, the Foundation distributed more than $19,000 in grants to Jarrell ISD teachers. This year, the Foundation hopes to have even greater impact. To do that, we need your help!

Foundation programs promote educational excellence and enhance lifelong learning. Currently, the Foundation is funding classroom grants that implement imaginative and progressive teaching initiatives.

The Foundation solicits, manages and distributes funds for enrichment purposes in program areas not funded by tax dollars. Funding is supplemental and does not replace or alter the use of tax-based revenue.

Donations are tax-deductible. 100 percent of every dollar donated goes directly back to Jarrell ISD schools for the benefit of Jarrell ISD students.

Donate today!

Reminder: November 10 is a Student Holiday/Staff Planning Day

Wednesday, Nov. 10 is now a student holiday and staff planning/workday. The Board of Trustees approved this change to provide teachers and instructional staff with additional planning time.

Jarrell ISD Superintendent Dr. Toni Hicks said. "The feedback we have received from staff is they need more time to plan. I sincerely appreciate the Board of Trustees for responding to this need and providing additional time for staff."

Upcoming Events

Nov. 6 - State Cross Country Meet

Nov. 7 - Standard Time Begins

Nov. 8-10 - National School Psychologists Week

Nov. 10 - Student Holiday/Staff Planning Day/Workday

Nov. 11 - Veterans Day

Nov. 15-19 - American Education Week

Nov. 17 - Education Support Professionals Day

Nov. 18 - National Parental Involvement Day

Nov. 19 - Substitute Educators Day

Nov. 22-26 - Student & Staff Holidays

Nov. 30 - Special Education Parent Advisory Council Admin Annex Training Center, 5:30 p.m.

Community Flyers

Jarrell ISD is consolidating flyers for local organizations and posting them on our website. If you would like to post a flyer, please email

About Jarrell ISD

Jarrell ISD is located in northern Williamson County. The mascot is The Cougars. It has four campuses: Jarrell High School, Jarrell Middle School, Igo Elementary School and Jarrell Elementary. The district is home to more than 2,800 students. Enrollment is projected to double in the next 10 years.

Got celebrations to share? Send them to Thank you!

We are proud to showcase excellent students and staff. To see more, follow us on Twitter @hicksJISD ; @Jarrell_ISD; @JES_cougars; @IEScougars; @jarrell_ms; and @JarrellHS.