During the month of February, we celebrated the 100th day of learning at school, kindness week, student athletes who committed to higher education, and Black History Month. It is truly our pleasure to support the whole development of our students, your children.
This is our sixth month bringing you this newsletter packed with information about recent happenings, upcoming program opportunities and chances for you to be more engaged in your child's education.
In Lancaster ISD, our students are extremely important to us and so are you. Please enjoy this edition of a newsletter especially designed for you.
Thank you for staying connected!
George Washington Carver 6th Grade STEM Learning Center Students Receive College Acceptance Letters
For many 6th graders, a college acceptance letter is unknown at this early age of their education. However, this is no longer the case for students in the G.W. Carver Exploring Careers & College class!
This class is filled with exciting new experiences which include learning career skills, connecting their personality traits with their career interest, career and college research, resume and cover letter writing, mock interviews, taking college to the bank, dressing for success, and participating in the district-wide college awareness days on Wednesdays. Now, these students can also add landing their first college acceptance letter to their list of accomplishments!
The process began with students completing an actual college application including writing an essay and working to make the admissions deadline. This month, more than 50 G.W. Carver 6th grade scholars were overjoyed to receive their FIRST college acceptance letter. They are already beginning the first steps to becoming college students!
This achievement brought the concept of the district initiative of “More Than a Diploma” to life. It is the vision of Lancaster ISD that all students will achieve self-sustaining success and leave a lasting legacy.
Rosa Parks-Millbrook Students and Staff Age for a Day!
Education Matters: Black History Bowl, Art and Essay Competition
On Saturday, February 18, Lancaster ISD hosted its 4th Lancaster ISD Black History Academic competition at Lancaster High School. The competition featured 17 junior division teams and 8 senior division teams competing to show their knowledge of Black history and culture.
The goal of this community event is to increase exposure and raise awareness of the Black culture and heritage in the history of the country and around the world. The theme this year was, Education Matters! In addition to the academic bowl, about 40 students in elementary, middle and high school participated in the black history and culture visual art contest.
New to this year's event, students in all grades had the opportunity to participate in the W.E.B. DuBois Essay Contest and a T-Shirt Contest. The winners of this cultural academic competition are as follows:
Black History Bowl Black History Bowl Champions
Secondary Division-LHS Team Blackish
Junior Division-Houston Elementary Team Wrecking Crew
W.E.B Du Bois Essay Contest Winners
“How can American citizens ensure that civil liberties are protected?”
Brilliana Stewart-Lancaster High School-11th Grade
“African Americans in STEM”
Kaiden Drain-Lancaster Middle School-7th Grade
Black History Bowl Art Contest Winners
Senior Division, Devin Caruthers, Lancaster High School
Junior Division, Alexander Cordero, Lancaster Elementary
Best Shirt Design
Rolling Hills Elementary
The winners of the competition and contests will reunite in the summer for the annual history field trip and tour.
Connecting Classrooms to Careers: 2000 Lancaster ISD Students Attend Oscar-Nominated movie, Hidden Figures
In celebration of National Engineers Week (February 19-25), about 2000 Lancaster ISD elementary, middle and high school students attended a private viewing of the Oscar-nominated biographical movie, Hidden Figures as a part of their innovative learning curriculum.
Hidden Figures chronicles the life of NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson and her colleagues who were human computers critical to the success of John Glenn’s Friendship 7 mission in 1962.
For Lancaster ISD students, this is much more than a visit to view a movie. It is yet another timely opportunity to inform, engage, and raise the awareness of STEM career pathways and to increase college readiness.
Lancaster ISD Executive Director of Academics and Innovation Kyndra Johnson explained, “As the only T-STEM district in the state of Texas, our students in Pre-K -12th grades experience STEM-focused learning every day and we are consistently connecting them to real world experiences, career pathways and educating them with industry standard knowledge to ensure that they are college ready and career prepared.”
Prior to seeing the movie, students participated in related classroom lessons and discussions. In addition to viewing the movie, students will complete pre and post lessons and activities in math, writing, history, science, technology, art, and STEM careers. Their teachers have created engaging lessons that integrate critical thinking, communication, and creativity.
Making these classroom to careers connections is a critical part of what teachers in the district do each day and thanks to a generous donation from one of its STEM Education partners—the Texas Instruments Foundation, Lancaster ISD students are able to connect attend this screening and have had other immersive learning experiences all designed to open up a whole new world of possibilities.
“We have taken about 500 students to NASA Space Center where they have met with engineers, scientists, and technologists. Numerous students have successfully participated in design challenges for computer science, engineering and robotics,” Johnson said. “And middle and high school students built a road-approved race car and now some of them are building an airplane.”
Each Lancaster ISD elementary campus has a STEM-focus pipeline in either Health Science Technology, Engineering, Information Systems and Software Designs, or Global Arts Communications and Entrepreneurship. Its sixth grade and middle school campuses provide exposure to all areas of STEM Education and the high school campus provides the opportunity for students to further dissect their STEM pipeline into more specialized fields and to obtain real-world training and certifications prior to graduation.
All campuses are also equipped with campus clubs and organizations that include gaming, robotics and coding, just to name a few.
For Johnson, this is a chance for students to unpack the tools that they have been given and connect the dots.
“As educators, we seek to create opportunities for our students that will engage and ignite the fire of lifelong learning,” she said. “This experience is another intentional way to underscore and emphasize the constant learning experiences of our students and will allow them to see the value and hopefully inspire some of them to actually pursue this area as a career.”
At West Main Elementary, Chess is More than a Game
Twenty-three students from the WME Chess Club took a field trip to the University of Texas at Dallas (UT-Dallas) on January 25, 2017. Aside from visiting the distinguished college campus, the students also played chess against Grand Chess Master Gil Popilski. All 23 students played Popilski in a simultaneous game of chess.
Popilski is not just any chess player, he is one of the most noted chess competitors in the country and even the world. He is a sophomore student at UT-Dallas majoring in Computer Science, a native of Israel and is presently ranked 37th in the world out of 61,216 players. The university that he attends has student teams that compete in the NCAA Chess Tournament and the University teams finished first in the country in 2002 and is presently rated 4th.
This exposure allowed students to see make a real-world connection and the opportunity to "match wits" with this world competitor in the game that they intensely play with their campus peers.
LANCASTER ISD STRENGTHENING FAMILIES 5TH SERIES: AN EVENING OF EXCELLENCE
Secure Your Child's Seat : Pre-Register for the 2017-18 School Year Today!
WME Fine Arts Academy to Open In August 2017: Preparing for Auditions
The application window is closed, but all selected students in second to fourth grades who are attending West Main Elementary during the 2017-18 school year should be receiving their scheduled audition times.
The West Main Fine Arts Academy will offer an intense study in the performing and visual arts while maintaining a strong emphasis in its core academic areas. This program is geared toward students who display artistic potential and who can be cultivated into articulate individuals focused on their artistry.
Spaces are limited. Auditions will be held. Contact the Lancaster ISD Fine Arts Department for more information at 972-218-1800 x 5262.
Bond Construction Update
As we enter the month of March, the construction of our two new elementary campuses is steadily progressing.
Pleasant Run: Click HERE to see the latest Pleasant Run construction video.
We invite you to stay connected to the process and share any questions that you may have as we provide periodic updates. If you have questions, please share them via the Let's Talk application on our district website, www.lancasterisd.org.
Stay connected with our construction progress at LancasterISDBond.org.
Upcoming Events and Celebrations
We invite you to visit our facebook page and join in our Celebration of Texas Public Schools! Tell us why you love your Lancaster ISD Public school. Be sure to use following the hashtags:
SPRING PARENT CONNECT SESSIONS: PARENT SUCCESS STUDIO TRAINING SERIES
National Elementary Honor Society Induction Ceremony is March 2
The NEHS recognizes students in both public and nonpublic elementary schools for their outstanding academic achievement and demonstrated personal responsibility. Through NEHS, students provide meaningful service to the school and community and develop essential leadership skills.
(The National Junior Honor Society Induction Ceremony will be held on March 7 at LHS at 6 PM.)
Career Go Get It Week & STEM Week is March 6-10
Lancaster ISD is committed to providing students with More Than a Diploma. The College and Career Readiness Division hosts College Go Get It Week in the fall and has committed to equipping students in the spring with the knowledge to make informed career decisions through its Annual Career Go Get It Week.
This week is dedicated to raising awareness of the journey to a successful career, the types of career availables and the educational background that is essential to obtaining the desired career.
Students will have opportunities to learn from industry professionals and entrepreneurs.
This year, this week of immersion will be intertwined with STEM Week. Each campus counselor and Academic Support team member has been tasked with creating a memorable learning experience for all the students on their campus and help connect them to their future.
Mark Your Calendars: Lancaster ISD STEM Showcase & Parent Connect Expo is March 25!
This year's event is jointly hosted by the Parent Connect, Strengthening Families and Academics and Innovation Departments. It is poised to be a full-agenda of enjoyment, learning, networking and much more.
There will be something for everyone, so plan to make a day of it with your family. We will see you there!
Lancaster ISD Pre-Kindergarten, Headstart and New to District Elementary Registration is April 3-7
Lancaster ISD will hold an onsite registration for all Pre-K 3, Pre-K 4, and new to the district elementary students on April 3-7 from 8:30 AM - 4 PM.
On Thursday, April 6, the registration team will be available until 7 PM for those who need to register in the evening.
The onsite registration will be held at the Lancaster ISD Administration Building located at 422 S. Centre Avenue.
Please note that all students currently in the Pre-K 3 program must re-enroll for the upcoming year. The Pre-Registration process can be started online and a link is available on the Lancaster ISD website at www.lancasterisd.org. For additional questions, please contact 972-218-1400.
Click this link to see the meals scheduled for the students. You can also view the create-a-meal option for those who may have specific meal plan needs and also download the SFE Mobil app to plan on-the-go.
News from Our Community
Three Lancaster High School students who are on the City of Lancaster Youth Advisory Commission were accompanied by City of Lancaster staff - Bakahri Thornton (Recreation Superintendent/ YAC Staff Liaison); Sean Johnson (Managing Director); Rona Stringfellow (Assistant City Manager); Councilwoman Nina Morris (Council Liaison to 4B/ Parks & Rec Advisory Board and Youth Advisory Commission Board) attended "Parks Day at The State Capitol" in Austin Texas.
This event, hosted by the Texas Recreation and Parks Society, provided an opportunity for recreation professionals, elected and appointed officials and executive level city leadership to participate in the "TRAPS 85th Legislative Session Platform."
This year's lobbying efforts were to sustain the previous year' 84th Legislative Session passage of House Bill 158 which fully restored sporting good sales tax to the TRPA (Texas Recreation Park Account). The TRPA account is the holder of grant funds awarded to State Parks, local/ municipal parks and like projects. The City of Lancaster has been a recipient of such funds and utilized for projects listed below:
• Bear Creek Nature Park Development
• Helen Giddings Amphitheater Development at Community Park
• Outdoor Education programs at Bear Creek Nature Park
• LISD: Girls outdoor recreation experience at local State Park (Cedar Hill).
Lancaster YAC members were thrilled to see and learn more about our State elected officials at work and participate in the process of getting bills to be created and passed.
Their personal highlights were meeting with Senator Royce West, Representative Toni Rose, Representative Helen Giddings, Representative Eric Johnson, and Representative Villaba's Chief of Staff.
They enjoyed voicing their appreciation for the previous appropriation of funding for Parks and Recreation and recommended that those funds remain whole during this upcoming session.
The YAC officers and members who attended included:
LHS - Xavien Johns-President
LHS - Zion James-Vice President
LHS - Veronica Ramos-Member
Sign Up for the City of Lancaster's Code Red Alert System to Keep You Safe and Informed
Residents can sign up for this alert or download the app to stay connected and be notified.
Users must opt-in to receive alerts. Your contact information will remain private and will only be used for severe weather alerts. You may also receive alerts in other areas that use CodeRED for community notifications.
Keep posting and sharing your healthy choices on your account. Get some friends together and host an event. See what events are happening with the city of Lancaster and the Mayor's Health Initiative. Get on board and help Lancaster move up the ranks to Number 1.
The Challenge is a 12-week competition that unites and mobilizes schools, businesses, organizations, community members, and mayors toward the common goal of transforming their community’s health. Each of the last four years, Texans have demonstrated their competitive spirit and dedication to building healthier communities for their families, coworkers, neighbors, and for the next generation.
The competition ends on March 31st. We are in third place, but we have what it takes to win...are you still up for the challenge? Log in, Create an Account and update your posts today. Visit the https://ittcommunitychallenge.com/
Upcoming District Events
March 2: NEHS Induction Ceremony, 6-7 PM (LHS)
March 6-10: Career Go Get it Week
March 7: NJHS Induction Ceremony, 6-7 PM (LHS)
March 13-17: Spring Break – Campuses and District Offices Closed
March 25: March Madness STEM Expo and Parent Connect
March 30: School Board Meeting, 7 PM
Campus Calendars for March 2017
Stay connected to the district academic schedule and be aware of the upcoming district holidays.
In Lancaster ISD, our VISION is 2020!
Lancaster ISD Beliefs:
Equity in education is a human right.
Educators, parents and students share in the responsibility of developing well-rounded individuals.
Engaged, relevant learning experiences provide for a quality education leading to a quality life.
Learning is a life-long process that is enhanced by taking risks.
A person has the capacity to learn from past experiences.
Purposeful planning to meet individual student needs leads to intentional outcomes for student success.