OCT Tiger Time News

News from the O.C. Taylor Principal, Lisa Pedevilla

January 13-17, 2020


Dear OCT Families,

Thank you to those who purchased items in the Silent Auction. Friday we had our Rule the School. Miss Snell, the principal, and Miss Scruggs, the assistant principal, led our TTN Morning Broadcast and faculty meeting on Friday morning. Miss Snell says, "Thank you for all you have done this school year. I think you should have fun at our school. Bye!" Miss Scruggs said, "Thank you for paying for Rule the School. The students are very happy! Thank you, Mom and Dad, for this!"

To the BEST of days,

Principal Pedevilla and Principal Snell

Stay Connected at O. C. Taylor Elementary School

We have a number of ways to keep in touch with our school. Be sure to read, subscribe to and join these resources to get all the latest news.

Facebook: If you’re a Facebook member be sure to join the O.C. Taylor Elementary Facebook Group to get updates in your feed. This group is meant to provide another way to get news and updates.

Website: The school’s website has the latest news, updates, and calendars, as well as general information about the school, resources for parents, volunteer opportunity information, event information and ways to donate.

Twitter: We regularly post events and upcoming news on Twitter. Follow me on Twitter: @OCTYoung and follow our hashtag #OCT4U.

OCT Vision: To empower our children today to create a better tomorrow.

OCT Mission: To create life-long learners and develop servant leaders through authentic, real-world experiences.


Upcoming Events

Monday, January 13

Wear your favorite team jersey, Go Tigers!

8:15 a.m. - PTA Executive Board Meeting

Tuesday, January 14

Wednesday, January 15

2:55 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Yearbook

3:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. NEHS

3:00 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. TTT

3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Talent Show Auditions

Thursday, January 16

2:55 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Choir

3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Talent Show Auditions

Friday, January 17

Monday, January 20

MLK Day - No School/Student & Staff Holiday

Tuesday, January 21

4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. Hopdoddy Spirit Night

Wednesday, January 22

2:55 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Yearbook

3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Talent Show Rehearsal

Thursday, January 23

Play it Safe

2:55 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Choir

3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Talent Show Rehearsal

Friday, January 24

National Compliment Day

Saturday, January 25

8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Snow Day/Pancake Breakfast with Dads' Club

Monday, January 27

Tuesday, January 28

Wednesday, January 29

Thursday, January 30

3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. Talent Show Dress Rehearsal

Friday, January 31

8:30 a.m. Talent Show

6:30 p.m. PTA Meeting and Talent Show


Grade Level Newsletters

Parents, please click on the link below to read your child's grade level newsletter.










Important Links

OCT and GCISD Updates

Assistant Principal Points from Mrs. Bailey

Rule the School was a HUGE success!! This day created a variety of opportunities for students to work on our OCT mission to "develop servant leaders through authentic, real-world experiences." Students experienced first-hand what it's like to lead a library, a counseling group, a classroom, P.E., Music, Art, and even help out our amazing custodian. Our Principal, Miss Snell, and our Assistant Principal, Miss Scruggs, experienced many of the daily duties that campus administrators do. From the morning show announcements and holding a faculty meeting to classroom walk-throughs, safety drills, and praising GREAT Tigers. These future leaders agreed that although their day was busy, that it was the "BEST DAY EVER!"

Please reach out and let us know how we can help,

Assistant Principal Bailey and Assistant Principal Scruggs

(817) 305-4870




Updates from Counseling and Guidance, Mrs. Whisman

Please click here to see the Counselor Corner Newsletter.


Parent Previews: Jan. 14 @ 10 and 6 at GCISD Admin building

OC Taylor student presentations: Jan. 23


Updates from Learning Commons, Mrs. Bonacci

O. C. Taylor Families,

The GCISD Reads Challenge continues! Thank you for continuing to encourage your child to reach his or her reading goals.

As a reminder, your child will still record the number of pages read, but will also be asked to read at least one book from each of the genres listed on the new Recording Document. I find that kids really do like an authentic challenge so I think they will love this one. To make it easier for students to locate books for this challenge the library (located inside of the Learning Commons) is organized by genre!

Some of our Tigers have already met the challenge requirements, and are now working to complete the challenge a 2nd time! If you have any questions please let me know.

For more information and the Recording Documents for the 2019-2020 GCISD Reads can be found at https://www.smore.com/n06z7-2019-2020-gcisd-reads-challenge


Updates from our Nurse Katy

  • THANK YOU! We want to thank our OCT families for all of the beautiful Christmas cards and goodies given to us during the busy month of December. We appreciate your kindness! HaPPy NeW YeaR from the office staff! :)
  • If your child is sick: Please keep students at home until they are fever and/or symptom-free for at least 24 hours without any medication. In GCISD, a temperature of 100 degrees is considered to be a fever. Encourage healthy habits at home to help prevent the spread of illnesses. Washing hands with soap and water (sing Happy Birthday song or ABCs twice!) Coughing and sneezing into elbows or a Kleenex instead of hands. Not touching the face- especially the T-zone. Getting plenty of rest. Staying hydrated.


Updates from GT LEAD, Mrs. Griffin

Please click here to see the newsletter.


O.C. Taylor Staff Shout-Outs for Jan. 21

Our next faculty meeting is Jan. 21. I have been reading aloud the Shout-Outs you submit at our monthly faculty meetings. Thank you! It is a bucket filler and positive way to start our meeting! If you would like to send a positive shout-out to a staff member, please complete this brief form. Staff members will be recognized each month during our faculty meetings.


Take Care of Texas Art Contest

2020 Take Care of Texas Kids Art Contest (Elementary Only)

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and Texas Chemical Council are excited to kick off the 2020 Take Care of Texas Kids Art Contest. Sixteen students—and one lucky teacher—will win a tablet or laptop! Prizes are provided by Texas Chemical Council.

To enter, K-5th grade students should create a unique piece of artwork portraying the positive ways people can Take Care of Texas by keeping the air and water clean, conserving water and energy, and reducing waste. You can see the winning artwork from previous years.

All entries must be postmarked on or before March 6, 2020 to be eligible. Please read our contest rules and complete the entry form to return with the artwork. Winners will be announced on April 15, 2020.

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Not Just Blowing Smoke presented by Chandler's Hope, Jan. 29th

Wednesday, January 29th from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. in Rawlins Lecture Hall at White's Chapel. This is a free event.

Nearly one in three high school seniors have tried vaping in the past year.

What can parents do to prevent vaping? Be equipped with facts. Learn about e-cigarettes, current trends, local data and tobacco cessation presented by Tobacco Prevention Specialist Ashley Paramore.

It is important for parents to have information about threats to their children in order to prevent health and addiction issues.

For more information, visit:



OCT Kindergarten Team

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Mrs. Kimberly McNamara

Mrs. McNamara graduated from Irving High School where she was an All-American cheerleader. Woohoo! She graduated from Texas A&M with a Bachelor's of Science in education. She graduated with a Master's of Science in Educational Leadership from Dallas Baptist University. She has three educational certifications: Early Childhood-4th, English Second Language, and Principal Certification.

Her favorite part of teaching is teaching children how to read!

Her favorite food is Mexican or Italian. One cool fact about Mrs. McNamara is she and her husband own two restaurants! Wise Guys Pizzeria! If she could have one meal for the rest of her life, it would be a wedge salad and pasta. Yummm-eeee!

She and her husband have five kids and one old dog. If she were a superhero she would be a superhero with lots of arms so she could complete many tasks at one time. That is not surprising with five kids!

Her favorite color is purple because it is pretty. Her favorite school memory is singing before lunch in Mrs. Noble's 4th grade class. Her advice to parents is to stick to a routine at home. (bedtime, meals, etc.)

We are so glad you are a Tiger, Mrs. McNamara!

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Mrs. Anna Marie Richardson

Mrs. Richardson graduated from Nimitz High School in Irving, TX. She graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington with a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies. Her educational certifications include Early Childhood-4th and English as a Second Language.

Her greatest strength in education is working with young kids and building a relationship so they love to come to school every day.

When in high school, Mrs. Richardson and her husband were named "Barbie and Ken" because we started dating when I was a freshman, and everyone thought we were the cutest couple. Now we are married and working on our 18th year of marriage.

Her favorite food is strawberries. However, if she could only eat one thing for the rest of her life, she picked pizza!

I love designing and making shirts for friends.

They have three kids: a 6th grader at CTMS and loves to cheers for Spirit Xtreme on Elite team, a 4th grader and one

in Kindergarten. Both boys go to OCT and play baseball, soccer, flag football and basketball. One busy momma!

It would be super speed, so I can get to places faster.

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Save the Date

Cross Timbers Middle School has been selected to be featured on NBC 5’s Brag About Your School! Please join us for a community-wide pep rally at Cross Timbers at January 13 at 4 p.m. and help show your CTMS and GCISD Spirit!


United States 2020 Census

The 2020 Census is closer than you think! The census counts every person living in the U.S. once, only once and in the right place. It's mandated by the U.S. Constitution in Article 1, Section 2: The U.S. has counted its population every 10 years since 1790. For more information and how to complete the census, visit 2020census.gov.


Follow OCT on Twitter

If you are not on Twitter, we invite you to join and follow your teacher and O.C. Taylor Elementary! This will give you a glimpse inside your child's classroom and school. We want you to see the many educational experiences our teachers provide our students. @OCTaylorTigers #OCT4U

School Health Advisory Council (SHAC)

School Health Advisory Council (SHAC) is the perfect place for parents to make contributions and recommendations on health initiatives that influence your child. Find out how you can join SHAC.

We think your kids are..... G-G-G-G-reat!

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Snow Day/Pancake Breakfast with Dads' Club - Saturday, January 25th!

Bring the entire family to enjoy a morning of Breakfast + Sledding. Breakfast will be served by the Dads’ Club and we will have two sledding lanes to enjoy.

Space is limited, and the demand will be high, so hurry and get your reservations in early!

You must sign up in advance as no walk-ups will be accepted this year!

Saturday, January 25th
8:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Breakfast Served from 8:30-10:30 a.m.

Snow Hill will be open during the entire event!

Breakfast includes Pancakes, Eggs, Sausage and Juice/Milk.

All-You-Can-Take Sledding on the Double Snow Hill!

Reservations/Payment Forms will be going home in folders this week!

New Online Directory!

The PTA is very excited to launch our NEW online class directory and app. We are using the software from Membership Toolkit. Parents are asked to create an account and enter your information for your children. You are allowed to designate what information is seen by others (address, phone numbers, emails), and you can edit your own information at any time. Information on setting up an account is included in the below link, and printed directions will go home next week.


Sara Stricherz, Paw Prints Directory Chair

2nd Chance OCT 2019 Silent Auction

A HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who purchased an item or items from our OCT 2019 Silent Auction! If you have not already done so, please be sure to log on to www.32auctions.com to pay your invoice. You may pay via credit card on the website or send in a check made out to OCT PTA in an envelope marked Silent Auction. Checks save us the 3% credit card fees if you don't mind the extra step! Be on the lookout for emails from octsilentauction@gmail.com with details regarding your purchase!

We still have some amazing auction packages left! Click here to purchase awesome teacher packages, Game On, Lunch with the Principal, seating, parking, and more in our Second Chance Auction. This will be your LAST CHANCE to purchase these items for the 2020 calendar year. You may bid in $25 increments for the WFAA package, otherwise, the items are first come first serve for the dollar amount listed in the description. Please complete your purchases by Monday, January 20th. For more detailed descriptions of packages, please log on to www.32auctions.com/OCTSilentAuction20192020 and view Packages with No Bids. Please deliver payment for any items purchased in the Second Chance Auction no later than Friday, January 24th. Checks can be made out to OCT PTA and placed in an envelope marked Silent Auction. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Stephanie Williams at octsilentauction@gmail.com.

Thank you for supporting our school!!

Game On - Thursday February 27th

Game On is Thursday, February 27th from 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. in the CMS South Gym! This is such a fun event! Purchase your child’s spot to play in the Second Chance Auction. Students in PreK through 2nd grade will play fun games of Trash Your Neighbor's Yard, and the 3rd through 5th graders will face off in games of Newcomb! Do you have a 6th-8th grade student who wants to come back and challenge their favorite OCT teacher?!?! Purchase a spot for them in the alumni game! We hope to see you there.

3rd Annual Dads' Club Golf Tournament

On Friday, February 28th, the Dads' Club will host the 3rd Annual Dads' Club Golf Tournament. The Tournament will be held at the Texas Star Golf Course.

Holes are available to purchase for sponsorship! For more information, please contact Brad Haga, Dads' Club Golf Tournament Chair at brad.carlton.haga@gmail.com.

World Wear Donation Bin

There is a new donation bin on campus so that you can donate your clothing, toys, shoes, stuffed animals and other items. O.C. Taylor will receive a portion of the profits, so that money will go straight back into our school. Thank you so much to our PTA Environmental Science Vice President, Marisa Livingston, for organizing this project!
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Box Tops

It's a new semester, so we're starting a new Racing to Recess Challenge. New collection bags will be sent home this week. Keep clipping those Box Tops when you see them. If you haven't already, be sure to download the Box Tops App so that you can scan your receipts and earn money for our school instantly! We're only a little more than $250 away from raising $1000 in Box Tops this year!!


Be sure to shop smileamazon.com so that .5% of all your purchases will go to the OC Taylor PTA. Log on to smileamazon.com and select PTA Texas Congress 1610 O C Taylor Elementary as your preferred charity. It's an amazingly easy way to earn money for our school!! Remember, you must log on to smileamazon.com every time you shop Amazon to ensure that your purchases earn money for our school.

Tom Thumb Good Neighbor Program

You can now earn money for our school simply by shopping for groceries at Tom Thumb or Albertson's! Designate O.C. Taylor PTA as your organization by completing a Reward Application at any courtesy booth. Fill in the top portion and the "Good Neighbor Program" section, indicating account number 8332 to link your grocery purchases to O.C. Taylor. If you already have a Rewards Card, simply stop by a courtesy desk to link our school to your existing account. Pharmacy, fuel, alcoholic beverages, and tobacco products do not count toward the purchase amount credited to the Good Neighbor Program accounts. 1% of all eligible purchases made at Tom Thumb & Albertson's will be given back to our school! So far this year we've raised over $70 for our school just by shopping for groceries!


Stay Connected at O. C. Taylor Elementary School

We have a number of ways to keep in touch with our school. Be sure to read, subscribe to and join these resources to get all the latest news.

Facebook: If you’re a Facebook member be sure to join the O.C. Taylor Elementary Facebook Group to get updates in your feed. This group is meant to provide another way to get news and updates.

Website: The school’s website has the latest news, updates, and calendars, as well as general information about the school, resources for parents, volunteer opportunity information, event information and ways to donate.

Twitter: We regularly post events and upcoming news on Twitter. Follow me on Twitter: @OCTYoung and follow our hashtag #OCT4U.

Thank you!

Berri O'Neal Gormley

PTA President



Lissa Critz

PTA President-Elect