STEM Updates

January 2021

Our monthly STEM newsletter is designed to communicate upcoming events, important information, ask for help, and share good news. We hope parents will be able to find answers to many of their questions in the information provided. We have updated our website to include past newsletters on the landing page for you to refer to if needed. Please reach out to us by phone or email if you have any questions, we are here to help!

Upcoming Events


13 Senior cap and gown presentation 8:45am

13 Snack Attack!

15 Parents can order caps and gowns.

20 Snack Attack!

27 Snack Attack!


10 The Zoo Crew is coming!


28 2021 Senior Graduation! 7pm at the Wagner Noel

NHS Fundraiser!

Click the picture below to donate to the table fund.

Mrs. V's Leap into Litercy

Click the picture below.

Mrs. Grametbaur's Biomed COVID Artifacts

Students were asked to make an artifact to showcase their feelings about this pandemic so that in 100 years when students are studying the effects of our pandemic, they will be able to see how we felt during this time. Below are some of the results.

Keep away by Mia Quiroz

What I did for my artifact was a poem. It doesn't really have a rhyme elike other ones, but I figured that didn't really matter. I did this poem over COVID and social distancing, mainly just distance. I really just focused on the negative part of this, and really just loneliness.

Isolated till whenever time will tell

COVID-19 outbreak turned to pandemic

A virus that keeps everyone indoors

Days turn into months

Not a lot to do

Webcams are now communication

Seperated from friends and family

Those we love

Not being near them

Hardly able to have fun

Nor go outside

Not for a while

Unless you must

People walking outside

Waving if possible

Keeping their distance

Self protection

Wanting to talk

Wanting to interact

Being cautious to the limits

Taking precautions not to get sick

A two sided coin, keep your distance or risk infection.

by Abby Paredes

My video starts out before the pandemic hits. The photos are of me and my friends hanging out with each other, but as the pandemic cases rise they become less of us hanging out together. The cases continue to rise and eventually none of us are hanging out in person because the virus has hit millions and each of us has someone at home more susceptible to the disease we decide to video chat instead. All though we took precautions to protect ourselves and those arounds us, not everyone will that is why life can change in an instant.

Click below to view Abby's video.

by Kelly Zhu

I created a video story that depicts a girl being awoken by a beautiful force (this can represent anything, possible even symbolizing the normality and good of the world prior to the pandemic) that carries her out the door and in to the world where she explores places such as Paris. Although, a darker force (representing the pandemic) takes over full control and throws the world into chaos, sending the girl back home to quarantine and wait. This is a highly unrealistic story but it symbolized our lives now, seeming to be put on pause, but I believe it is worth the wait, and if we endure, we can get through it together.

Click below to view Kelley's video.

Please click on each picture to view the entire flyer.

Counselor's Corner

STEM Family,

The 2020 year has brought upon us many challenges as not only a nation but as a STEM community. During this time, I am thankful to be part of such a strong STEM family. Many of our students need basic necessities such as shoes, socks, underwear, food, glasses, school supplies, hygiene materials, etc. Many people do not realize that we as a school provide families in need with these supports with no additional funding. This is why we need your help. Please donate to the UTPB STEM Academy counseling fund, your money will supply students with these basic needs. Also, know that your money will go to families who have come across hard times with Thanksgiving turkeys, Christmas presents, and coats for the winter season. I appreciate all your generosity. Please reach out to our PTO at and let them know you would like to donate to the Counseling Fund.

Thank you,

Jaimie Miller, M.Ed



Click below to sign up for volunteer opportunities!

Yearbook Pictures

Parents of Kinder through 8th-grade students,

In an effort to be as accommodating as possible and due to timing constraints sending in a picture is the only option to ensure your child's picture in the yearbook. If your child missed pictures but you would like them to be in the yearbook, please fill out the following Google Form. You will be able to attach one picture.

Please submit a clear picture of your child with appropriate attire from the chest up and facing the camera. You will have from January 11th until January 15th to do so. If we do not receive your child's picture during this time unfortunately your child will not be pictured in our yearbook for this school year. We want all our students to be in it.

Yearbook Picture Google Form


PTO is now on Remind. If you would like to join our volunteer group please text @32667b to 81010 to join.

This will help us get the word out faster when the school needs volunteers. We appreciate everyone who has volunteered already!

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Secondary Updates

Dear Parents/Guardians,

In previous years, the student promotion/retention process followed the board approved policy found HERE on page 42. For UTPB STEM Academy students, promotion/retention is based on the following factors:

  1. Demonstrated proficiency in grade-level subject matter (passing coursework)
  2. Performance on state-mandated testing (STAAR/End of Course scores)
  3. Attendance compliance of the 90-10 rule (in attendance 90% of days per semester)

However, with the 2020-2021 school year, adjustments due to COVID-19 must be made. We want to make sure our students and parents are aware of these requirements as we enter the second semester of the school year.

1. Demonstrated proficiency in grade level subject matter

  • passing the course with at least a 70%
  • Priority is given to English Language Arts and Mathematics

2. Performance on state-mandated testing

  • 8th grade SSI (passing STAAR was waived this year as a state requirement for promotion)
  • UTPB STEM Academy will use state testing as a consideration of promotion/retention

3. Attendance compliance of the 90-10 rule (in attendance 90% of days a semester).

  • UTPB STEM Academy will still use attendance as a consideration of promotion/retention.

As always if you have questions about promotion/retention I encourage you to reach out to me via email or call the school office. I will be happy to discuss your concerns with you.

In Service to others,

Mr. Cody Griffin

Principal STEM Academy Middle/High School




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Beginning of the Year Assessment Information

Students in 4th grade up through EOC grades, took a benchmark assessment to gather information on their current academic needs. This test covered content from the previous year (for example, a 6th grade took a benchmark that covered 5th grade content from last year). This data allows our teachers and staff to see gaps in learning and adjust this year's curriculum to meet the needs of the students. As the parent, you have access to their results and other helpful information provided by TEA. Open the document for a step-by-step guide to "How to Access" you child's benchmark information.

Attached is the information for parents to access their child's BOY/benchmark information.

It is two pages:

  • Page 2 is the step by step instructions for accessing.
  • Page 1 explains the test and the process.

Elementary Updates

Dear Elementary Parents,

2020/2021 Promotion/Retention:

As we enter our Spring Semester, I wanted to give you information on the tools we will be using to determine whether or not your elementary child is promoted to the next grade.

  • STAAR Results
  • Reading level based upon End of Year (EOY) TPRI results as well as EOY Running Record results
  • Grades in each content
  • Attendance (attended 90% or more of the school year)

Please see the attached document that explains the EOY reading level your child should be at for his or her grade level. If you have any questions regarding your child's reading level, please contact their homeroom or reading teacher. I believe we are all in agreement that the best place for your student to learn is on campus. However, our current health situation in our community has made many of us choose remote learning. If your child is failing a core content, I am requesting that you reconsider and switch your child to 100% on campus. Many of our children who failed first semester did so because of missing assignments and not making up failing grades. Thus, I ask each of you to ensure that your child completes his or her assignments as we all know the only way to learn is to engage in and complete the assignments.

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 432.552.2580

Fax 432.552.2581



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Technology Update!

Service Tickets:

Service tickets need to be submitted online at: Once a ticket has been submitted and verified, the student can be issued a loaner device while the school issued device is being repaired. The student/parent will be responsible for ensuring the loaner device is returned in the same condition it was issued, as loaner devices are NOT covered by insurance.

Broken Device Payment Information:

If your student has a broken device (beyond insurance repair), payment will be required to be made to the school before a replacement device is issued. Payments for devices can be made online at:

Examples of Non-Covered Claims:

STEM Academy Approved Calendar for 2020-2021

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STEM Office Hours

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