Lively Middle School

October 23, 2020


Greetings Falcon Nation,

I want to start off by thanking the families that emailed me or called to inquire about the facts of our transition plan for November 2nd. Your concerns and feedback are always valuable to us and an important piece of our decision-making process. We know what a challenging situation this is and understand that change, fear of the unknown, and social media can intensify stress and worries. Unfortunately, misinformation and incomplete plans were shared and caused great angst for our students and families. Rumors and misinformation are not productive and in fact divide our school community.

When we plan, ideas and models will naturally evolve as we create an environment that is best for our students’ emotional, physical, and academic wellbeing. Generating ideas and assessing pros and cons is part of the problem solving process. It’s unfortunate that incorrect information about our planning process was prematurely shared before the plans were finalized. Hopefully, the schoolmessenger sent to all families and staff on Wednesday, October 21, clarified what transitioning to classes will look like. I have learned in my experience as a teacher and administrator that it’s never too late to change until you decide not to change.

Uncertainty and changes are not easy, but we do need to consider a multitude of ideas as we create the best learning experience for our students. Additionally, there are requirements from the Texas Education Agency that make this process even more challenging. We may not always agree with one another, but I know that we can all get behind providing the very best environment for our school community. To support our students, we must be courageous, have difficult conversations, seek to understand, and ask questions. I encourage dialogue and collaboration with all stakeholders. Join us for CAC, PTSA, or Parent Coffees to engage in this continuous process.

CAC Meetings- Time 4:00p-5:00p

November 4, 2020

December 2, 2020

January 6, 2020

February 3, 2020

March 3, 2020

April 7, 2020

May 5, 2020

PTSA Meetings- Time 4:30p-5:30p

November 11, 2020

December 9, 2020

January 6, 2020

February 10, 2020

March 10, 2020

April 14, 2020

Parent Coffee- Time 9:30a-10:30a

November 6, 2020

December 4, 2020

January 8, 2020

February 5, 2020

March 3, 2020

April 4, 2020

May 7, 2020

Finally, I would like to remind us all that we must act with love, patience, flexibility, and grace. We are stronger together and we are #LivelyStrong when we work together. As always, if you are unsure or have questions please reach out to me or another member of our administrative team.

Grades and Incompletes

If your child received an “I” for an incomplete or a failing grade (less than a 70) on their 1st 6 weeks report card, please reach out to the teacher of that course. Students should be working with the teacher to complete assignments in order to receive credit for the 1st 6 weeks or improve their grade. Once their work is completed, they should see a new average for the 1st 6 weeks on the next report card along with their 2nd 6 weeks grades. If you need further assistance, please contact your child’s assistant principal: Corey Wiggins ( for 6th grade last names A-L and 8th grade, or Sarah Tanner ( for 6th grade last names M-Z and 7th grade.


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November 2nd Learning Experience

There have been some wonderful questions about what learning will look like on November 2nd. I hope the questions and answers are helpful to you.

1. What time will kids be expected to arrive for the start of the day? I assume students need to be there earlier to get the temperature checked etc but what is that time frame?

Answer: The school day online and on campus is 7:45 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Students should be here between 7:45 and 8:15 for check-in, getting materials, breakfast, meeting with teachers, seeing a counselor etc. However, if you have a family emergency or are arriving late, please have the student check in with the front office and notify the school of your late arrival. Please know that students will need to use the call box on our Leland Street entrance so that we can check them in.

To get the most out of the school experience, it is preferable that students are here by 7:45 a.m. As we move later in the year the hope is that students can participate in student council, clubs, service projects, capstone, or passion projects from 7:45 a.m. to 8:45 a.m. if they do not need intervention or tutoring.

2. It looks like from 8:15 a.m. - 8:45 a.m. is student intervention. What does that mean?

Answer: Students will be pulled for tutoring, allowed to make up any missed work, have time to participate in enrichment or intervention (see above for more detailed options). This is individualized time for students and they should participate. I am also hoping to allow time for student council, exercise or outdoor time, capstone, access to makerspace, projects, and more enrichment activities.

3. It looks like Friday's will stay asynchronous. If we choose to come back can he stay home for asynchronous on friday's and check-in via blend at home?

Answer: yes

4. Will teachers be teaching face-to-face for the kids or will they be making them log into zoom to do the classwork?

Answer: Teachers will hone their skills as we learn how to "hybrid" teach. We want students face-to-face to interact with their teacher, not just sit on the computer or access class on zoom. We are working with our teachers to accomplish this. They have had some training on how to successfully implement hybrid teaching and we will monitor our classes to provide support and feedback until we are providing a learning experience that is not what a student can get while at home. Our teachers will still use BLEND for all our students and Zoom for our at home learners. Please allow our teachers some time to adjust to this new teaching model. Your feedback on how this process is going in the next couple of weeks would be appreciated so we can continue to refine our craft.

We are excited to have our students return. Over the last three weeks our enrollment has remained steady and the number of students returning to face-to-face learning has increased. Please encourage your children to wear their Lively t-shirt every Thursday. Need Lively swag? Just visit our PTSA website to order one today. We are an AVID campus and this means we support college and career readiness. Let us see students wearing their favorite University t-shirt every Friday. Students wearing Lively or University swag on campus will be entered into a drawing for a prize. Remote learners are welcome to participate too. Just submit your selfie wearing your Lively or University shirt to me via email or share school spirit online and tag us on Twitter @LivelyFalcons. Prize winners will be announced every Monday on the PA system. Join us as we celebrate school spirit and promote universities!

Have a wonderful weekend and I’ll see you on Monday.

Stacie Holiday, Principal


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We are excited to announce an opportunity for our Spanish-speaking parents to enroll in a FREE online class with Austin Community College designed to teach AISD parents about how to navigate the AISD technology essentials. See the attached flyer to learn how to enroll in the class and learn how to navigate AISD’s parent and student portals, parent and student Blend, google suite, and email!

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Lively Library Book Check Out Now Available!

I’m happy to announce that you can now check out books (with pages and everything!). Here is the Lively Library Book Delivery 2020-21 Form. It will be translated in Spanish next week.

Students on campus will have their books delivered to Advisory. Students at home will pick up books with our Curbside Service from 8 am - 3:30 pm. Text our "Lets Talk" number 512-856-1314 for the curbside pick-up and drop off. Please let office staff know your student’s name and that you are picking up library books for your student. If you have any questions, please email me at

Digital Books Still Available with MackinVIA.

Our students checked out 278 books from our library over the past 2 weeks!

Our New Diverse Digital Books are HERE:

  • Thanks to the Austin Ed Fund!

  • The new books are ready to check out from MackinVIA NOW!

  • Here are a few of the authors: Elizabeth Acevedo, Jerry Craft, Tiffany Jackson, Jason Reynolds, Nic Stone.

Lively Library Prepares for Dia de los Muertos!

Happy Reading,

Yvonne Steckel

Lively Librarian


Red Ribbon Week

There is no single reason why teenagers use drugs or alcohol. But here are some of the core issues and influences behind the behavior of teenage drug and alcohol use.

It’s important that you, as a parent, understand these reasons and talk to your kids about the dangers of drinking and doing drugs.

  1. Other people: Teenagers see lots of people consuming various substances.
  2. Popular media: Forty-five percent of teens agree with the statement: “The music that teens listen to makes marijuana seem cool.”
  3. Escape and self-medication: When teens are unhappy and can’t find a healthy outlet for their frustration or a trusted confidant, they may turn to chemicals for solace.
  4. Boredom: Teens who can’t tolerate being alone have trouble keeping themselves occupied or crave excitement are prime candidates for substance use.
  5. Rebellion: Different rebellious teens choose different substances to use based on their personalities. Alcohol is the drug of choice for the angry teenager because it frees them to behave aggressively. Some teens abuse prescription medicine to party and get high. Hallucinogens (ex. mushrooms, LSD) are also escape drugs, often used by young people who feel misunderstood and may long to escape to a more idealistic, kind world. Smoking cigarettes can be a form of rebellion to flaunt their independence and make their parents angry. The reasons for teenage drug-use are as complex as teenagers themselves.
  6. Instant gratification: Drugs and alcohol work quickly. The initial effects feel really good. Teenagers turn to drug use because they see it as a short-term shortcut to happiness.
  7. Lack of confidence: Many shy teenagers who lack confidence report that they’ll do things under the influence of alcohol or drugs that they might not otherwise. This is part of the appeal of drugs and alcohol even for relatively self-confident teens; you have the courage to dance if you’re a bad dancer, or sing at the top of your lungs even if you have a terrible voice, or kiss the girl you’re attracted to.
  8. Misinformation: Perhaps the most avoidable cause of substance use is inaccurate information about drugs and alcohol. Nearly every teenager has friends who claim to be experts on various recreational substances, and they’re happy to assure her that the risks are minimal. Educate your teenagers about drug use, so they get the real facts about the dangers of drug use.

High School Information:

Mrs. Hunter will be sending out announcements on BLEND as information from high schools are updated. LASA applications and information will be available on their website November 2nd.

McCallum Fine Arts Academy:

  • Who: 8th Graders and parents/guardians wanting more information about McCallum High School and their Fine Arts Program

  • What: McCallum Fine Arts Academy’s Young Artist Welcome

  • When: Wednesday, October 28th @ 2:30pm and 5:00pm

  • Where: RSVP to to get the Zoom link sent to you

  • Visit for more information or see flyer below:

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Girls basketball tryouts begin October 19th.

Tryouts will be all week, Monday - Friday from 3:45 - 5:15.

All students coming from home will enter and be screened at the North entrance of the school.


Boys soccer tryouts will begin October 19th.

Tryouts will run from 3:45 - 5:15.

All students coming from home will enter and be screened at the North gate entrance between the gym and portable.

7TH GRADE tryouts will be on M/W/TH, October 26, 28, 29

All participants must:

  • bring and wear a mask
  • follow social distancing regulations
  • wear appropriate clothing (locker rooms are unavailable)
  • complete Physical Packet, COVID Waiver, & UIL Online Forms
  • bring their own water bottle

Please contact our Athletic Coordinator, Coach Molina, at for further questions.

The following are links for each form that is needed.

  • COVID Waiver form you will have to print out and be signed in person. If you don't have a printer, we have copies at the school you sign one.
  • Physical Packet (Packet includes: Medical History, Physical, Contact Information)

On the medical history part of the physical (the front page), if you answered, YES, to any of the questions, you HAVE TO explain why that answer is a, YES, at the bottom. If it's not explained it will not be valid.


Student Flu Vaccine

Consent Form can be emailed to or drop off at our school using our curbside.

Carpenters Union Information

Acceptance into the program will require that the participants have either lost their job, experienced significant loss of income, can not find work due to the pandemic or had to leave their job due to health concerns related to the Covid-19 pandemic. Basically people who have been impacted by the pandemic.

More information below:

  • The training is around: 'Interior Systems Training'.
  • "Participants will have a chance at being accepted into the apprenticeship program and joining the Carpenter’s Union with an almost certain probability of landing a spot with a signatory contractor." (a job with a Union employer).
  • Program is 5 weeks in total.
  • Participants receive $200/week stipend and some tools, etc. for the first four weeks.
  • The 5th week, participants will earn $15/hour for 40 hours/work doing hands-on projects at Community First Village.
  • Start date is October 26. Monday - Friday 7:00am - 4:30pm (may release earlier on some days)
  • Background friendly
  • No GED or diploma required
  • Address: Carpenters Union, 1825 So. IH 35 Frontage Road. Austin, TX 78741

Please let me know if you have any questions - I'm happy to assist anyone who is interested or you can contact Bobby Vasquez at the Union, below.

Allison Brandt: 512-375-1294

Direct contact at the Carpenters Union
Bobby Vasquez: 512-487-9386

Immunization Clinics
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Lively Middle School PTSA For Your Child


Join Lively's PTSA and Cheerleading Team

next Thursday 10/29 at Lively Leland street side!

The Car Parade will be from 5:30- 6:30 pm

All Ages Welcome! Decorate your car! Free candy give away!

Next PTSA meeting:

Wednesday, November 10th at 5:00 pm will be our next Online General Meeting.

More details coming soon

Together we are stronger!

It's easy to sign up to be a PTSA member! Buy Lively PTSA and Athletic Spirit Wear

on this link and there is an easy PTSA sign up Please join us now on our website.

Our Lively MS PTSA

Our purpose as the Parent/Teacher/Student Association (PTSA) is to support critical academic needs, we are an active voice on decisions that impact your child's health, safety, and quality of education. We help build a stronger and more inclusive school community. There is no wrong or right way to be involved -- anything you can give, whether it's time or money, will support your child's potential.

Questions? email: