Monday Message

News from Mrs. Hilcher- Principal of Grapevine Elementary

Week of January 4-January 8

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Welcome Mr. Burns

As you may remember, GES students will have Art this semester as part of their MAPS rotation during the spring semester. Senora Laughlin will be teaching Spanish at Bransford now and Mr. Burns will be teaching Art to our students. I had the privilege of interviewing Mr. Burns this summer and have heard wonderful things about his work at O.C. Taylor this fall. I am eager to have him join our staff and work with our students! I know you will help me welcome him to GES. Below is a short bio from Justin:

My name is Justin Burns and this will be my second year in teaching. Before I came to GCISD I started my first year teaching art to grade levels 3rd-12th. I have always had a huge passion for the arts and not only do I come from an art background but I also come from a music and audio engineering background. Before I started teaching I had the opportunity to travel the U.S playing music in several musical groups. When I was not traveling or playing music I worked for an audio/visual company for eight years setting up live events running sound, lighting and video for large corporate events. I received a bachelors degree from the University of North Texas in Fine Arts: Studio Drawing and Painting. I am excited to be teaching at Grapevine Elementary and look forward to seeing some great artwork from our students.

Upcoming Events

Tuesday, 1/5 Students return to school

Wednesday, 1/6 Second nine weeks report cards posted to Skyward & Google drive

Wednesday, 1/6 Running Club (2:45-3:30pm)

Thursday, 1/7 Choir (2:45-3:45pm)

Monday, 1/11 Choir (2:45-3:45pm)

Wednesday, 1/13 Running Club, Student Council & KC Club (2:45-3:30pm)

Thursday, 1/14 Choir (2:45-3:45pm)

Monday, 1/18 MLK Day-Student & teacher holiday

Wednesday, 1/20 NEHS meeting & Running Club (2:45-3:30pm)

Thursday, 1/21 Choir (2:45-3:45pm)

Monday, 1/25 Choir (2:45-3:45pm)

Tuesday, 1/26 Campus Excellence Committee meeting (3:10pm)

Wednesday, 1/27 Running Club (2:45-3:30pm)

Thursday, 1/28 Choir Performance (6:30pm)

Play It Safe

GCISD offers the “Play it Safe” program for all students in grades K – 5. The GCISD School Health Advisory Committee has previewed and recommended these programs for all GCISD elementary schools. The curriculum and presentations are aligned with district philosophy. This program is a personal safety program and does not address human sexuality. The Women’s Center of Tarrant County, Inc., uses trained employees to present a fact-based personal safety program for students. This program is designed for K – 5th grade students. This program will be held at Grapevine Elementary on January 27th. The curriculum is age-appropriate with children being taught new information as they mature. Each grade level is introduced to the “stranger rule” which is say no, get away, if you can, and always tell a trusted adult. The “stranger rule” is applied to many situations that children may encounter on a daily basis, such as bullies on the playground, exploitation by friends, or peer pressure. The “stranger rule” encourages assertive responses, whether it is used with strangers or someone the child knows. The presentations are classroom-based so that children are in a familiar environment, and feel comfortable to interact with the trainer. A video is shown, followed by a question and answer time. Parents have the option to request that their student not participate in the above program(s). The form for Non-Participation is located on the GCISD website:, departments-Health and Physical Education, Non-participation Forms.

A parent preview of the program will be held tomorrow, January 5, 2016 at 10:00 am or 6:00 pm at the GCISD Administration Building – Board Room, 3051 Ira E. Woods, Grapevine, Texas 76051.

If you are interested in joining the GCISD School Health Advisory Council (SHAC) please complete the SHAC application which is located on the GCISD website under the PE and Health tab. The GCISD SHAC serves as an advisory council which provides recommendations, changes and/or additions to the school’s health education curriculum and instruction for consideration by the GCISD Board of Trustees.

GES Information & Announcements

Important Reminders

  • Birthday treats: Please remember that all birthday treats must be store bought and brought to the front office for Nurse Burwell to approve due to allergies. Our school policy states: Student birthdays may be recognized in the classroom at the end of the day. Birthday celebrations may not be conducted in the cafeteria while meals are being served. Students may bring a snack or treat to share with their classmate. Due to food allergies, we request parents either send store bought items (with the ingredient label showing) or non-food treats (pencils, erasers, etc.). This policy can be found in the ABCs of GES:
  • iPads at Home: All iPads that are taken home are expected to return to school charged at 100% each day. We use our iPads for a multitude of activities and assessments and they should be taken to and from school each day just like a daily folder. iPads are part of student responsibility and preparation for class. Thank you for your help!

STAAR Testing Dates

Please note the following STAAR testing dates for 3rd, 4th & 5th grade students for the 2015-2016 school year. Please avoid scheduling appointments for your students, or taking vacations, on these important testing days. Visitors and volunteers will not be permitted on campus on testing days due to TEA regulations. We appreciate your support during the state testing season! We know our GES Stars will shine brightly!!

Tuesday, 3/29 - STAAR 4th grade writing; STAAR 5th grade math

Wednesday, 3/30 - STAAR 5th grade reading

Monday, 5/9 - STAAR 3rd & 4th grade math

Tuesday, 5/10 - STAAR 3 & 4th grade reading

Wednesday, 5/11 - STAAR 5th grade science

GES PTA Information

JA in a Day Opportunity

Junior Achievement is currently recruiting volunteers for “JA in a Day” at Grapevine Elementary! “JA in a Day” is a special Junior Achievement delivery method. Like all JA programs, volunteers involved in this program help to educate and inspire youth about free enterprise, business, and economics.

“JA in a Day” is different from other JA programs only in that all lessons are covered in the course of one day in the school. At the end of the school day, the students will have completed all 5 JA lessons and will have earned their JA certificate. Normally, this process would take 5 weeks to complete. All of the materials are provided for you. New volunteers will be trained on the materials before they go into the classroom.

People who say Junior Achievement has changed their lives often credit their JA volunteer. Sometimes it takes that one caring adult to recognize the potential in a young person that might have been missed by others. By becoming a Junior Achievement volunteer, you can empower young people to own their economic success by sharing your experience and JA’s proven and engaging lessons.

If you are interested in volunteering or would like more information, please contact GES’s Junior Achievement parent coordinator Nicole Nixon, or Principal Liz Hilcher, You may also email the JA Education Manager, Destini Tasby,

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GCISD Information

2016-2017 Student Calendar

GCISD is working on finalizing the student calendar for next year. State changes in attendance requirements have caused a delay. Please view the link below to stay updated on our student calendar progress:

GCISD Podcasts

Are you interested in learning more about LEAD 2021, GCISD's long range plan? You should subscribe to the new LEAD GCISD podcast at: It's a new way for GCISD to communicate information and successes with the community. A new podcast will be released every Tuesday until Christmas break.

Important Links

Follow Our Story

Stay connected with GES events on our website:

Follow the excitement on Twitter and Facebook:

  • On Twitter follow:
    • Principal Mrs. Hilcher: @GESHilcher

    • Assistant Principal Ms. Ray: @GESKRay

    • Grapevine Elementary: @GESStars

    • Your favorite teacher: @GES[lastname]

    • All GES classrooms by checking our #GESshineon

  • On Facebook: