School Matters

April 2020

Welcome to the all new School Matters, your official source for news that matters from the Lake Travis Independent School District Office of Communications, Media & Community Relations. Questions or concerns regarding any of the content in this publication should be addressed to info@ltisdschools.org.
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Governor extends school closure through remainder of 2019-2020 school year

Governor Greg Abbott recently announced the “opening of Texas” will begin to occur in various stages. However, he also indicated all public and private schools will remain closed through the remainder of the current school year. Please note, the current school year will not be extended into the summer. The governor’s order results in the cancellation of all LTISD events scheduled through Friday, May 22, our final day of instruction for the current school year. Read more

Superintendent provides district update, Q&A in response to school closure as of April 23, 2020

District Update and Q&A - April 23, 2020

District releases guidelines on grading during online learning

During the April 22 special called school board meeting, trustees approved a resolution authorizing Superintendent Dr. Brad Lancaster to modify certain grading requirements, class rank calculations and promotion/retention standards in response to COVID-19. These guidelines will remain in effect through the completion of the 2019-2020 school year. Read more

As we manage the impact of COVID-19, what are the most important things LTISD should consider to best support our families as we conclude this school year?

Please join this conversation today and share your thoughts and questions via the following link: https://my.thoughtexchange.com/621345299. Also, please "star" or rate the thoughts shared by others. We will use the results of this exchange to make sure we are meeting the needs of our students, families, and staff. The exchange will be open through Friday, May 1.

Get Connected

2019-2020 Campus Teachers of the Year announced


Despite school closure due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Superintendent Dr. Brad Lancaster found a way to meet with the 2019-2020 campus teachers of the year.


Between April 21-24, the superintendent and district senior staff took to Google Meet video conferencing to recognize each campus honoree among his or her peers during virtual faculty meetings.


“We have some of the finest teachers in all of Texas,” said Dr. Lancaster. “Now more than ever, they work hard each and every day to provide a safe and nurturing learning environment for students in a highly-demanding and ever-evolving profession. Regardless of our new normal, this is one of our favorite times of the year, and COVID-19 is not going to take that away from us.”


Watch our video highlighting the announcement of all 10 Lake Travis ISD 2019-2020 Campus Teachers of the Year.

LTISD 2019 2020 TOY surprise announcements

Lake Travis ISD 2019-2020 Campus Teachers of the Year

  • Shannon Norris - Lake Pointe Elementary School
  • Maggie Bauer - Lakeway Elementary School
  • Idalia Gannon - Lake Travis Elementary School
  • Bianca Brymer - West Cypress Hills Elementary School
  • Rachel Hughes - Bee Cave Elementary School
  • Kelly Stewart - Serene Hills Elementary School
  • Jennifer Monshaugen - Bee Cave Middle School
  • Frank Assorgi - Lake Travis Middle School
  • Megan Guynes - Hudson Bend Middle School
  • Shannon Aguirre - Lake Travis High School

LTE, SHE principals announced

Superintendent Dr. Brad Lancaster announced April 28 the appointment of two new principals—Pamela Schaeffer who will serve Lake Travis Elementary School and Keegan Luedecke who will be promoted to lead Serene Hills Elementary School. Both positions are effective July 1.
Mrs. Schaeffer possesses over 20 years of professional experience in public education having served as a teacher, curriculum specialist, reading instructor, literacy coordinator, assistant principal and principal in the Terrell, Crandall, and Frisco school districts. Currently, Mrs. Schaeffer is concluding the school year as Principal of Shawnee Trail Elementary School in Frisco where she has served for the past six years. Read more
Mrs. Luedecke currently serves as the Assistant Principal at Serene Hills Elementary School. She possesses nine years of professional teaching experience in first, third and fourth grades in the Copperas Cove and Lake Travis school districts. Mrs. Luedecke began her tenure at LTISD in 2010 as a 1st grade teacher at Lakeway Elementary School. A member of the District’s inaugural class of the Future Administrators Leadership Academy (FALA), she assumed the duties and responsibilities as Assistant Principal at Serene Hills Elementary School in 2017. Read more

April 19-25 is National Library Week

With the theme “Find Your Place at the Library,” Lake Travis ISD joins the American Library Association (ALA) to celebrate April 19-25, 2020 as National Library Week in recognition of our school librarians and their unique contributions to public education.


According to the ALA, this year’s theme was chosen some time ago, well before the emergence of the COVID-19 global pandemic that would force our schools and libraries to close their physical spaces. However, our libraries are open for business online, providing the virtual services and digital content our students need now more than ever. In fact, this year’s theme has been creatively repurposed to reflect our current environment: “Find the Library at Your Place.”


A total of 10 elementary and secondary school librarians, and one librarian aide, provide services to more than 11,400 students across LTISD:

  • Michelle Cheeney – Bee Cave Elementary

  • Deborah Foster – Lake Pointe Elementary

  • Brekka Larrew – Lakeway Elementary

  • Kim Wood – Lake Travis Elementary

  • Helen Dawkins – Serene Hills Elementary

  • Cathy Seidenberger – West Cypress Hills Elementary School

  • Andrea Heckler – Bee Cave Middle School

  • Caitlin Hooker – Hudson Bend Middle School

  • Joyce Loyd – Lake Travis Middle School

  • Elizabeth Stearns – Lake Travis High School

  • Rosalie Galliver – Lake Travis High School


"Our librarians actively and creatively engage students in developing the most fundamental of skills, collaboratively plan with teachers and other school staff to deliver quality instruction through cutting-edge technology, and work with parents to plan, design, and coordinate book fairs and other special campus events," said Superintendent Dr. Brad Lancaster. "Whether it’s by creating an interest in reading or by helping students connect to the Internet, our LTISD librarians have a direct impact on student learning and achievement."

Earth Day

April 22 marked the 50th celebration of Earth Day. With the theme "Climate Action," the Earth Day Network strives to drive change for people and the planet. Earthday.org provides a digital landscape with discussions and examples of actions people can take in honor of Earth Day 2020.
Volunteer Appreciation

April 20-24 is Public School Volunteer Week

April 20-24 is Public School Volunteer Week. We thank our many Lake Travis ISD volunteers for the time and contributions invested in our staff, students and schools. On behalf of Superintendent Dr. Brad Lancaster, we are proud to recognize the following individuals as our 2019-2020 campus volunteers and mentors of the year:


Campus Volunteers of the Year:

  • Patt Germann – Bee Cave Elementary

  • Brooke Williams – Lake Pointe Elementary

  • Christina Colwell – Lakeway Elementary

  • Kimberly Taylor – Lake Travis Elementary

  • Erin Warner – Serene Hills Elementary

  • Amy Stine – West Cypress Hills Elementary School

  • Brandy Meid – Bee Cave Middle School

  • Elizabeth O’Dell – Hudson Bend Middle School

  • Aimee Riebold – Lake Travis Middle School

  • Rachel Morilli – Lake Travis High School


Campus Mentors of the Year:


  • Mike Paggi – Bee Cave Elementary

  • Tammy Pochop – Lake Pointe Elementary

  • Evan Duval – Lakeway Elementary

  • Phil Storin – Lake Travis Elementary

  • George Wagner – Serene Hills Elementary

  • Leslie Menikoff – West Cypress Hills Elementary School

  • Babita Deitrich – Bee Cave Middle School

  • Dr. Jeff Lazar – Hudson Bend Middle School

  • John Breidinger – Lake Travis Middle School

  • Joe Stallone – Lake Travis High School

April 6 - 10 is National Assistant Principals Week

From car duty and traffic control, administrator on call for evening and weekend athletic events, to academic support and student discipline issues, assistant principals make significant contributions throughout the school environment. In honor and recognition of these hard-working professionals and the critical duties they perform, Lake Travis ISD joins the National Association of Secondary School Principals, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, and the American Federation of School Administrators to celebrate April 6-10, 2020 as National Assistant Principals Week.

The following men and women serve students across our district as assistant principals:

  • Ashley Nauta - Bee Cave Elementary School
  • Mak El-Hassan - Lake Pointe Elementary School
  • Lizeth Thompson - Lake Travis Elementary School
  • Kelli Ruby - Lakeway Elementary School
  • Keegan Luedecke - Serene Hills Elementary School
  • Leanna Pesta - West Cypress Hills Elementary School
  • Tres Ellis and Laura Keogh - Bee Cave Middle School
  • Logan Docherty - Hudson Bend Middle School
  • Dr. John Haro (interim) - Hudson Bend Middle School
  • Michaele Pansza - Hudson Bend Middle School
  • Rachel Foreman - Lake Travis Middle School
  • Janet Pyne - Lake Travis Middle School
  • Patrick Hinson (associate principal) - Lake Travis High School
  • Zach Freed - Lake Travis High School
  • Darnell Horton - Lake Travis High School
  • Angela Hrapchak - Lake Travis High School
  • Roy Hudson - Lake Travis High School
  • Brianne Walker - Lake Travis High School

April is Occupational Therapy Month

Occupational Therapists (OTs) are licensed professionals who help improve the quality of life for individuals of all ages and stages. School-based OTs support academic achievement and social participation by promoting occupation within school routines including recess, classroom, and cafeteria time. They utilize strategies for student health and well-being and prepare them for college, career, and community integration. In recognition of the critical role OTs play in both school and clinical settings, the month of April is designated as Occupational Therapy month.


The following Occupational Therapists serve students across LTISD:

  • Quina Brown - BCE, WCHE
  • Cat Daniel - LTHS, LTMS, BCMS
  • Jenna Olney - SHE, LWE, HBMS
  • Johann Salas - LTE, LPE
Teachers Can

#TeachersCan initiative spotlights importance and impact of the teaching profession amid pandemic

As teachers across the state continue adapting their teaching methods to support students in a remote learning environment, a new initiative is providing Texans the opportunity to show their appreciation for these dedicated educators.


The #TeachersCan initiative encourages Texans to thank both current teachers as well as those who had a profound impacton their lives by entering their favorite educators into a drawing. Nominated teachers and educators will be automatically entered into a drawing for a host of exclusive prizes, with winners announced daily during a special week-long virtual National Teacher Appreciation Week celebration May 4-8.


For more information about the #TeachersCan initiative, visit TeachersCan.org.

LTHS Cavalier Band fight song at-home version

Listen to the Lake Travis High School Cavalier Band as members perform the LT fight song via social distancing.
Lake Travis High School Cavalier Band fight song at-home version

Rough Hollow Elementary School logo released

Despite the closure, construction of Rough Hollow Elementary School—a major component of our 2018 bond program—is on schedule. Together with Superintendent Dr. Brad Lancaster and Principal Angela Frankhouser, we are excited to unveil the official school logo for Rough Hollow Elementary School. For more information on Rough Hollow Elementary, visit www.ltisdschools.org/rhe. Go Rattlers!

HBMS yearbook recognized as Best Of 2019

Balfour has recognized the 2019 Hudson Bend Middle School yearbook staff in the publisher’s Best Of 2019 collection for the students’ outstanding contribution to scholastic journalism.


The HBMS 2018-19 yearbook is featured in Balfour's 2020 Yearbook Yearbook which showcases exceptional work in theme development, design, and photography from publications across the U.S. and overseas. Balfour honors fewer than 5 percent of yearbook staffs with this distinction. Only the top 1% are awarded the recognition of “Best Of.” Tanya Henslee is the HBMS yearbook adviser. Read more

Lake Travis Independent School District

The Lake Travis Independent School District is a 6A district located about 25 minutes west of Austin, Texas. Established in 1981, Lake Travis ISD is a fast growth district comprised of 10 campuses serving more than 11,000 students.