Timely Information and Resources for Region 11 Schools

October 26, 2016

ESC TODAY is published twice a month on the first and third Wednesdays throughout the school year.

ESC 11 STEAM Carnival 2016

Crowley and Birdville Teachers Recognized by State Social Studies Organization

Two Region 11 teachers received outstanding teacher awards from the Texas Council for the Social Studies (TCSS) at the organization's fall conference in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Kristina Allen, North Crowley High School, Crowley ISD, was named Outstanding High School Social Studies Teacher of the Year, and Elizabeth Cumbie, Watauga Middle School, Birdville ISD, received the Betty Barringer Outstanding Middle School Social Studies Teacher of the Year award.

Read more and see photos here.

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TEA Seeks Input on ESSA Implementation in Texas

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) has launched an online survey offering parents, taxpayers, and the general public a way to provide input on the state’s implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

ESSA, the new federal law governing K-12 education and replacing the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, returns to the states a significant amount of education policy decision making. As part of the process, each state is required to establish a strategic vision for public education and develop an overall plan to achieve those goals.

TEA is the lead agency developing the Texas state plan, which must determine how the new federal law will affect accountability, funding, school improvement, and grant-making systems.Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath noted that input regarding ESSA implementation coincides with work on a state strategic plan for education that had already been underway.

The online ESSA survey, which will take less than 10 minutes to complete, is available through Nov. 18. Take the survey here.

Connect2Texas: Bringing Learning to Life!

Connect2Texas providers understand the demands placed on teachers, so they strive to deliver innovative programs that motivate and inspire. And, teachers appreciate those efforts! Here's some feedback about the programming from one teacher:

“The first graders at Glenhope Elementary loved learning about the life cycle of the Monarch butterflies from the Texas Wildlife Association. They wanted to go outside immediately to see if they could find any. We took a walk around the school and did not see any milkweed. We plan to ask our principal if we could plant some to attract the butterflies, and then plant some more plants to provide the needed nectar so monarchs will stay here and not migrate. The Connect2Texas program provided some great conversations and a passion in the students which lead to creating an action plan to try and get some Monarchs here.”
Tiffani Griffard, first-grade teacher at Glenhope Elementary, Grapevine-Colleyville ISD

Connect2Texas programs supplement various content areas and/or target specific TEKS that need extra attention. Connect2Texas providers currently offer more than 500 programs aligned to TEKS for grades k-12. See our upcoming program schedule.

Distance Learning - You and Your Students Are Invited to Join Us for "Challenge Accepted"

Challenge Accepted is a series of free videoconferencing/networking events designed to spark creativity, imagination, and problem-solving in your students. With a new challenge planned for each month, this event is a great way to build excitement and collaboration among your students and others. More than 300 students participated in October's activity, The Marshmallow Challenge. Join us next month on November 17 for the Build a Bridge Challenge. More information is available here.
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Join the K-12 STEAM PLC Network

You are invited to join a community of STEAM/STEM teachers in Region 11 to network and learn through a series of face-to-face collaboration times with continued partnership and learning through Canvas.

Face-to-face network collaboration times include:

  • Action Time: TEKS-based, hands-on investigations for Grades K-5 and 6-12
  • Unconference: informal participant exchange of information, ideas, and solutions related to current issues
  • Reality Check: industry connections and trends related to STEAM careers
  • Product Development: extended collaboration time for planning classroom instruction with colleagues

Canvas network collaboration times include:

  • Product Implementation: extended collaboration time for planning classroom instruction using discussion chats about lesson integration
  • Unconference Part Deux: new monthly discussions and follow-up
  • STEAMCenter: spotlights campus-based STEAM in Action during December, January, and March

The STEAM PLC Network is free. To register, visit and click on Register. For questions, please contact Alison Lentz, (817) 740-3636, or Thais Mitchell, (817) 740-3679, or visit

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Technology - Blackboard/Schoolwires User Group to Meet in Early November

The Fall Blackboard/Schoolwires User Group will meet on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 9 a.m.- Noon. Topics of discussion include:

  • website accessibility,
  • updates on upcoming releases from Blackboard/Schoolwires

The Computer Lab is reserved for the afternoon if anyone wants to stay and work on their site after the user group meeting.

The user group is open to any district/charter Schoolwires website administrator. For more information, call Chad Pierce, (817) 740-7622.


Texas SUCCESS (Student Success Initiative Support) programs accelerate student learning through online instructional resources. ESC Region 11 is offering several levels of teacher training and a comprehensive overview of each program:


November 14, 2016

9 a.m.-Noon - Novice User

1-4 p.m. - Intermediate/Advanced User


November 15, 2016

9 a.m.-Noon - Intermediate/Advanced User

1-4 p.m. - Novice User

Think Through Math

November 17, 2016

9 a.m.-Noon - Novice User

1-4 p.m. - Intermediate/Advanced User

Compass Learning

November 18, 2016

9 a.m.-noon - Novice User

1-4 p.m. - Intermediate/Advanced User

For more information, contact Michelle Bateman, (817) 740-3691.

Transition and Employment Guide Available Online

The Texas Transition and Employment Guide is now available. This guide provides information on statewide services and programs that assist students with disabilities and their families with information about education, employment, and community living. Visit or click on the QR code above.

Transition Specialists, Vocational Coordinators, Service Agency Representatives, Other Educators, and Youth with Disabilities and their Families

The Texas Transition Conference is a two-day event, February 22-24, 2017, with a pre-conference session, focused on providing evidence-based practices that result in a smooth transition from school to adult life for youth with disabilities. Participants will receive intensive training in five focus areas: student-focused planning, family involvement, interagency collaboration, student development, and program structure.

Conference attendees come from all over the state of Texas and include educators, transition specialists, vocational coordinators, service agency representatives, and youth with disabilities and their families.

Beyond Barriers to Postsecondary Education and Employment: Passion and Possibilities!

2017 Texas Transition Conference on February 22-24, 2017

Westin Galleria Houston

Online Registration

Join Our Social Community

Stay connected to ESC Region 11 through our Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest accounts; blogs; and email contact lists/listservs. Join the ESC Region 11 pages, and/or find the specific group that meets your needs. Browse through the list and click on the one you are interested in joining.

Click on this QR code to go to our Facebook page, then "Like" our page.

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