STEM Updates

December 2021

A Message from the Superintendent

STEM Family,

There is no doubt that 2021 has been a challenging year. However, due to our parent partnerships and the strength of our stellar teachers and staff we have successfully navigated every challenge presented to us. The data shows our students are learning and growing academically despite the circumstances of the pandemic over the last couple of years. I am confident that our success will continue as we enter the second half of the school year in 2022!

It is my hope that the holiday season provides your family with time to rest and rejuvenate. On behalf of the UTPB STEM Academy, I extend our sincere appreciation and gratitude to all our students and families. We thank you for your continued support in your children's education. We truly are better because of you!

Shannon Davidson


UT Permian Basin STEM Academy



UTPB STEM Academy is offering COVID-19 testing at no cost for students and staff who develop symptoms of COVID-19 while at school. This testing uses Abbott Laboratories BinaxNOW tests provided by the state and federal government. Students under 18 years of age must have written parent consent for testing to be completed. If you wish to give your consent for COVID-19 testing using the BinaxNOW test, please read and complete this form.

Upcoming Events

Click the link to view our STEM Academy Calendar online.


01 StuCo Café (High School Only)

03 3rd-5th Grade Reading Expo

04 Robotics Competition at Trinity

07 English I retake

08 Algebra I retake

08 StuCo Café (High School)

09 English II retake

09 Family Math Night

10 Biology and US History retake

10 Star Gazing Night (K-12 + families)

10 Fall Dual Credit End Date

6-10 Candy Cane Gram sales—MS StuCo

11 Winter Formal (High School Only)

13-16 NHS December Donation Drive

13-16 MS/HS Finals

14-16 Candy Cane Gram delivery—MS StuCo

15 Santa’s DI-Y Workshop DI Fundraiser (K-3rd grade)

16 Book Reading with Mrs. Claus—Elementary

16 Cycle 3 ends

17 Start of Winter Break

February 2022

04 Peace, Love, & STEM

*All events are subject to cancellation or change


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Thank you for participating in our Pickle/Popcorn Sale last month! You helped us raise enough money to sponsor THREE salvation army angels and a STEM family. Our NHS officers are excited to go shopping for these families soon. For our next community service event, STEM has partnered with the Odessa Meals on Wheels. Please see the attached flyer to see what your child's grade level has been asked to bring. Honor Society will take your items and create care packages for members of our Odessa Community. High school members: your community service hours are due December 6th, all information is posted in the STEM Honor Society Canvas page.

Thank you,

Candi Sikes - HS NHS Sponsor

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From Ms. Villarreal

Catered Lunch Options

Click below to order lunch for your students. Beginning next week, there will be lunch options Monday-Thursday! Go to our website under the Parent Resource tab to order!


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Elementary Updates

Dear Parents,

As we approach the end of our fall semester, I wanted to thank you, your child, and all our staff for a very successful semester. One of the things I have thoroughly enjoyed this semester is having all learning occur on campus. Nothing is better than walking the halls and hearing the excitement for learning permeating from the classrooms. Students made real life connections through intriguing PBLs, demonstrated their athletic prowess through Cross Country, nurtured their creativity with Destination Imagination, competed and bonded in eSports, and began learning about student government through our first ever Elementary Student Council!

The fun activities and learning opportunities continue throughout this month of December. Please see the flyers attached to this newsletter in addition to looking in your emails for our Elementary and District Week-at-a-Glance for the scheduled events. Although this month is bursting with fun activities, we want our students to finish strong and keep their focus on learning and coming to school each and every day. To minimize learning loss over the Christmas break, I strongly encourage you to read with your child, bake with your child, and have your child read to you. I wish all of you a very merry holiday season!

Best Regards,

Monica Elizondo, M.Ed.

Elementary Principal

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

Office 432.552.2588

Fax 432.552.2581




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Elementary Programs Cheat Sheet

Want to know more about Google Suite or any of the many programs used in elementary classes? Click the document below.

Secondary Updates

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Dear Secondary Parents,

I want to express my sincere appreciation for all of you for being a member of our STEM family. When I reflect on the last year or so I could not have asked for a better place to be a part of. I have truly enjoyed having all our students back on campus and getting to interact with them.

As we close out the semester it is very important that our students finish the semester strong. You received an email with the final exam schedule. Please remember these exams account for 10% of the semester average. Our secondary students are taking courses that count on their high school transcript and we want to put our best foot forward.

Our high school students this month will get to participate in a return to our tradition that was cut short by COVID. The STEM Winter Formal. December 11th at the MCM FunDome will be a fun evening for our young adults and my hope is that all of our high school students will participate. Tickets can be purchased through MySchooldance.

I hope that you all have a wonderful winter break.

In Service to others,

Mr. Cody Griffin

Principal STEM Academy Middle/High School




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Parents of Secondary Students:

In order to help our students have a positive and successful math experience, we encourage all students in 8th grade math and beyond to own a graphing calculator. A graphing calculator will be used in all 4 years of their UTPB STEM Academy math courses, and should also be more than adequate for any college level work after high school. We realize there is a cost involved but we’re hoping you see it as an 8‐year educational investment in your son and/or daughter.

There are several options for graphing calculators listed below. Any of the TI 84s or TI 83s will be more than adequate for our high school courses. We ask that any calculators labeled CAS not be purchased for school use, as these are not permitted for use on the STAAR test. These calculators can be purchased at many local stores like Office Depot, Staples, Target, or online at (see example in link below).

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions!

Thank you,

STEM Academy Math Team


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Secondary Programs Cheat Sheet

Want to know more about Google Suite or any of the many programs used in secondary classes? Click the document below.

School Hours

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2021-2022 Grant Applications

Below are links to the grants for which STEM is applying.

Plans for Federal Funds


ESSER III (ARP) Community Feedback and Input Survey