Our monthly STEM newsletter is designed to communicate upcoming events, important information, ask for help, and share good news. We hope parents will be able to find answers to many of their questions in the information provided. We have updated our website www.utpbstemacademy.org to include past newsletters on the landing page for you to refer to if needed. Please reach out to us by phone or email if you have any questions, we are here to help!
A Message from the Superintendent
Dear STEM Family,
October is here and STEM is rolling into our 3rd month of school! As I look back on last Spring and the unusual start to our new school year, I am proud of how our STEM community came together to provide excellent education in trying times. If we have learned one thing in this experience, I hope it is that educating children takes all of us and when we successfully work together our students/children will thrive! Thank you to our parents for being our education partners, thank you for the sacrifices you made to ensure learning continued from home. Thank you to our teachers for providing great instruction and support to our students and families in the most unordinary circumstances. Our students are blessed to have this wonderful community of caring adults surrounding them. Let's keep the momentum up and together we will continue to create a high-quality learning experience for our children.
UTPB STEM Academy
Click below to fill out the 2020-2021 required documents
Student/Parent Electronic User Agreements
Compensatory Education Funding
With COVID 19, there has been a device shortage across the country as many schools have turned to purchasing devices to issue to students for at-home learning. Here at STEM, we are fortunate enough already to be a one-to-one campus so we had many devices available for students. However, as our inventory changes due to back orders coming in, we have been updating student devices by issuing new devices and/or switching out devices from one grade level to another to ensure every STEM student receiving a working device. We appreciate your patience as we are navigating and updating our device inventory.
To date, all STEM Academy students have been issued a school issued device that must be used while on campus. Personal devices are not allowed on campus and will be held in the front office requiring a parent to pick up the device. The only exception to this is for high school students enrolled in UTPB dual credit courses.
Kinder – 3rd Grade:
Kinder through 3rd grade students have school issued iPads. STEM is still working on updating and switching out some of the current iPads with new iPads so please continue to be patient as we are working this process out.
Things to know about the iPads:
- Students in Kinder through 3rd have either an iPad or iPad Mini.
- STEM is working on purchasing school cases for every iPad to help combat broken screens. Parents will see this process roll out over the next couple of weeks. It is important to remember that the cases are school property and are not be allowed to swapped out for a personal case and are not allowed to have any stickers, paint pens, etc. added to them.
- During the exchange process, if your student has a broken device (beyond insurance repair) payment will be required to be made to the school before a replacement device is issued. Payments for devices can be made online at: https://secure.touchnet.net/C22843_ustores/web/store_main.jsp?STOREID=4.
- If your student is a remote learner and you have received an email to swap out devices, please stop by the front office with the current school issued device and charger to swap them out. If you prefer to keep the students current school issued device, email firstname.lastname@example.org your request and the inventory record will be updated.
4th – 12th Grade:
4th through 12th grade students have school issued Chromebooks.
Things to know about the Chromebooks:
- During our inventory process, if your student has a broken device (beyond insurance repair) payment will be required to be made to the school before a replacement device is issued. Payments for devices can be made online at: https://secure.touchnet.net/C22843_ustores/web/store_main.jsp?STOREID=4.
- If your student was issued a new Chromebook but no charger, that means a charger wasn’t turned in during the exchange. Students can bring the original charger to the office and exchange for the new charger.
- Stickers, paint pens, etc. are not allowed to be added to the Chromebook cases.
- We strongly encourage putting a personal case on the Chromebook to help protect the device from damage.
- If your student is a remote learner and you have received an email to swap out devices, please stop by the front office with the current school issued device and charger to swap them out. If you prefer to keep the students current school issued device, email email@example.com your request so the inventory records can be updated.
This year the STEM Academy is providing insurance on all school issued devices. This insurance is different from previous years and requires a service ticket to be submitted for all claims. Service tickets need to be submitted online at: https://utpbstem.on.spiceworks.com/portal.
Insurance coverage includes, but not limited to:
- Minor screen cracks (payment will be required for major screen cracks)
- Minor external damage (missing keys, mouse, microphone, etc.)
- Connectivity issues while on campus
Once a ticket has been submitted and verified, the student can be issued a loaner device while the school issued device is being repaired. The student/parent will be responsible for ensuring the loaner device is returned in the same condition it was issued, as loaner devices are NOT covered by insurance.
Examples of Non-Covered Claims:
Ms. Villarreal's Purposeful Reading (click below)
What a unique year we are having. I can hardly believe that October is here. Below are a few topics I wanted to be in contact on.
The first is I want to draw attention to for secondary students is the importance of class attendance. Part of the process of learning is showing up for the challenge. Students not attending virtually, or in person can struggle to be successful. Ask your student the following questions:
- Did you log in to every one of your classes today?
- What were the topics discussed in (pick a class - English) class today?
- Is there anything in (pick a class – math) that I may be able to help you with?
- What was the most difficult, and the most surprising, topic you learned about today?
These open-ended questions allow for you the parent to gain a lot of information about how your child is doing. They will also help with determining if they are attending.
During the month of October our secondary teachers will be inviting different parents to Zoom meetings on Fridays to discuss how their student is doing. Due to time constraints, not everyone will be called but we will try as many as we can. We hope that you will join those teachers for the conference.
My last topic is the awesome projects our secondary students have completed already this past six weeks. Our 7th and 8th graders took on the task of being graphic designers in Technology Applications and made professional posters for faculty/staff. Another project was the launch of our high schools entrepreneurship with a tour of HTea-O. Our seniors in Biomed also got to interview a Medical Student as part of their launch. These are just a few of the many neat tasks our projects covered this last six weeks.
In conclusion, we look forward to our first newspaper publication at the end of this month. Please be on the lookout.
In Service to others,
Mr. Cody Griffin
Principal STEM Academy Middle/High School
Please send students with the supplies needed (scissors, glue, pencils) for each day. Since we are not borrowing from others or using community supplies, some students are not able to complete their tasks.
Please have your student bring their school supplies to their 1st period teacher. These supplies are very important. Thank you!
11th and 12th Grade Parents,
Herff Jones is wanting to stay in contact with you and your high school student. Herff Jones assists with ordering letter jackets, class rings, graduation announcements, and graduation regalia to name a few. Please take a moment to complete the link below to provide them with your contact information to stay in the know.
Dear Elementary Parents,
What a great start to the year! It has been a joy to have kids back on our campus and see their enthusiasm for learning. Our teachers have been doing an excellent job providing your child with rigorous and engaging lessons virtually, in the classroom, and in outdoor classroom settings. Make sure to follow us on twitter (@STEMLeader, @UTPBSTEMAcademy), Instagram, and FB to see pictures of our students engaged in their learning. Most recent are pictures of 5th graders building rollercoasters in their outside learning environment! In September, Coach Mathis began XC season for 4th and 5th graders. Their first meet is this Friday, October 2 at 5pm in Sherwood Park. We'd love to have you come out and support our team.
Our annual parent/teacher conferences are occurring this month and will be held virtually. Please look for an email from your child's teacher. I want to give a shout out to all of our 5th grade students for their great attendance. While all of elementary is doing quite well, no student in 5th grade has more than 3 absences! Please remember that if your child is feeling under the weather but still able to do their work from home, he or she will be counted present. Thank you to all who are using the Dr. Owl app each morning to screen your child for any Covid symptoms prior to drop off. Not only does this help keep our STEM family healthy, it also helps our entrance onto campus run smoothly and efficiently. To aid in the health of all, please remember to frequently wash jackets and backpacks.
Lunches are going quite well. I want to give a shout out to Mr. Roesner's kindergarten class for the healthy choices they are making. Not only are these very young scholars eating their protein, fruit, and vegetables before they eat their dessert, but they are also eagerly replacing soda's with water. I am so proud of them. If you are looking for a hot lunch option for your child, check out the flyer regarding food services provided by Elegante.
As always, thank you for choosing STEM to be your partner in your child's education. I look forward to a great year!
Monica Elizondo, M.Ed.
The University of Texas Permian Basin STEM Academy
"Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire."
-William Butler Yeats
Please click on each picture to view the entire flyer.
Substitute Teachers Needed!
Click the flyer to apply.
Bring $3 (exact change) to your 1st period class on October 7th! Please wear school appropriate attire. No pajamas please.
Email Mr. Vann for more information!
For more information email:
High school: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cross Country Meet
Sherwood Park Saturday, October 2nd at 5pm. Come support STEM Athletes!