September 17, 2021
Dear Brooks Family:
Autumn is my favorite time of year! I love all the special events we plan for our children: sports, pep rallies, spirit walks, Hispanic Heritage Month celebrations, Fall Fests, Teddy Bear Picnics and more. Please watch for all the calendar notices that each school will forward.
I must remind you that while we do have some storybook character parades and Trunk or Treat events after school hours, we do not celebrate Halloween. We have a winter party and an end of year party in all elementary classrooms (grades PK to 5) and teachers will send home information about those celebrations later in the year.
There is a lot going on in the Legislature and some new rules for Brooks to adhere to beginning immediately. This includes the new law which will change our Social Studies TEKS, HB 4545 which requires 30 hours of tutoring for certain students, and SB 15 which allows for 10% of our students to attend virtual learning.
A note about virtual learning - we currently have about 40 spots available. See the information below and the application to confirm if your student is seeking virtual learning. Not all schools and districts are choosing to provide this option to their students. So if you know of any friends of family members who want virtual learning for their students grades K-12, please have them contact me about registering to become part of our Brooks family.
We will be having a special event for our staff members and their families on Sunday, October 24. Usually teachers are busy working at these types of events so we are going to have a family outing for them to enjoy with their significant others and children. Are you interested in volunteering to help at the event or contributing funds or items to make this a very special party for them? If so please contact Martha.Avila@brooksacademy.org at BASE or Tiffany.Salazar@brooksacademy.org at BCA, Lone Star and Oaks. Thank you.
Please enjoy a Pumpkin Spice Latte or whatever treats you enjoy as we welcome the Fall of 2021 - thank you for all your support and cooperation. Don't forget to read each of the articles carefully and contact me if you need any help!
Lisa Freeman Schutz, M.Ed.
Superintendent of Schools
Families - all students in grades 3-10 are required to participate in the Accelerated Reader program to measure their success in reading for pleasure. In addition to earning a grade, we have many fun incentives for our students as well.
I am excited to announce that we have our first two Million Word readers this year.
Here are the leading students from each school:
BCA - Joslynn F - 1,014,546 words
BCA - Daniela A - 1,009, 911 words
BASE - Sophia C - 637,802
Lone Star - Dessa K - 255,399
Oaks - Alvin T - 757,142
If you need more information about Accelerated Reader, please refer to our special edition newsletter with all the details: https://www.smore.com/3n7t8
Last week many of you added your names to reserve a seat. You have the first access to spots (based on your student qualifying). Below is the formal application which must be completed for each child. You can either complete the form online or print it out, complete it, and bring it to the district office at 4802 Vance Jackson Road.
We still have about 40 remote learning spots available. If you wish to have your child participate in remote learning and you have not previously made a request, you may fill out the application below as well.
Just a few reminders about remote learning:
1. Students will attend for four hours per day, at least two of those hours will be face-to-face.
2. I believe class hours will be either 8 am to 12 noon or 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. The class times will be based on when the teachers are available for the various cohorts. Unfortunately, families will not be able to choose their instruction times.
3. All teachers will be Texas-certified Brooks instructors who are trained to provide virtual learning. No teachers will instruct both in-person and virtually at the same time. This means that students may have different instructors for virtual learning than they had for in-person learning.
4. For upper school students, some electives may not be available in virtual learning so the student would need to take these electives in summer school, online, or in person after the two-year virtual learning period has expired.
5. Students are still expected to take their progress assessments as well as the STAAR test, and arrangements will be made for them to be assessed outside of the regular school day OR in a socially-distanced setting.
6. Students are required to attend virtually classes regularly and complete all assignments.
7. Students who enter virtual learning are expected to stay virtual until the end of the first semester (December 17) and then reconfirm whether or not they wish to continue virtually.
8. Students who are attending virtually are welcome to attend their home school clubs, sports, and events.
If you have any questions about remote learning, I am managing the program at this time so please email me directly at Lisa.Schutz@brooksacademy.org
If your child must be picked up early, there is a 2 p.m. cutoff for pick up. This helps ensure that we can safely get all students to their after school locations. If you need to pick up your child after 2:30 p.m. on a school day, please follow this procedure: the day before your early pick up, please send your early pick-up request to your school leader (see contact information below). Then when you arrive for pick-up it will already be approved. In case of an emergency, please contact the school leader as soon as you know you need an emergency pick up.
Important Contact Information for Our Schools
Interim Virtual Program Director: Lisa.Schutz@brooksacademy.org
Director of Special Education/Student Services: Christine.Guido@brooksacademy.org
SEL Coordinator: Paula.Turner@brooksacademy.org
ELL Coordinator: Lily.Collins@brooksacademy.org
Mr. Barry LeMaitre - Principal at Lone Star: Barry.LeMaitre@brooksacademy.org
Ms. TaLisa Wilson - Principal at Oaks: TaLisa.Wilson@brooksacademy.org
Principal at BASE: Bonnie.Salas@brooksacademy.org
Upper School ASL at BASE: Latasha.Washington@brooksacademy.org
Lower School ASL at BASE: Nora.Leza@brooksacademy.org
Dean of Students at BASE: Christina.Garza@brooksacademy.org
College & Career Counselor at BASE: Virginia.Moore@brooksacademy.org
Principal at BCA: Monique.Almazan@brooksacademy.org
Lower School Leader at BCA: Francisco.Vargas@brooksacademy.org
Assistant School Leader at BCA: Sarah.Riojas@brooksacademy.org
Dean of Students at BCA: Tanya.Bonillas@brooksacademy.org
College & Career Counselor at BCA: Eric.Washington@brooksacademy.org
Child Nutrition Coordinator: Mike.Jones@brooksacademy.org
Director of IT Services: Austin.Morgenroth@brooksacademy.org
District Athletic Director: Joel.Sofet@brooksacademy.org