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RISD Reaches Out
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It's Official!
February - Career
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RHS Girls Basketball Team
Advances to Area Playoffs
Lake Highlands
Tops Competition
North Junior High 7th
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Team Earns Championship
Emily White Wins Dallas
County Spelling Bee
Forest Meadow
Hoops for Hearts
Back to School for
Forest Lane Parents
Hamilton Park
Hearts Veterans
Bowie Helps Others,
Brick by Brick
<empty> Pearce Swimmers Take
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The effects of Haiti’s earthquake were felt even in our own school district. Students whose pockets were usually empty were carrying change to school. Kids who were typically eating cupcakes were hosting Bake Sales. Little ones who enjoy making crafts were cutting hundreds of hearts for a bigger cause. News of the earthquake and all of the visuals seen on TVs and in newspapers moved RISD students to do something to help.

Relief efforts were held at campuses across the district, from elementary to high school – some organized by teachers and others initiated by students. While the goal of most was to raise funds to donate to the American Red Cross or another relief organization, others collected first aid items, crutches, braces, and more. In total, over $15,000 was collected as a result of over 20 events.

“Our district has a long history of community service. I was so pleased to hear about all of the wonderful activities implemented throughout our schools to help those so far away,” said Superintendent Carolyn Bukhair. >Top

Click here learn more about RISD's efforts to aid Haiti.
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It’s Official!
The RISD Board of Trustees voted unanimously today to formally name Dr. Kay Waggoner as Superintendent of Richardson ISD, also approving her three year contract. She was previously named sole finalist for the position on January 29.

“Dr. Waggoner is an ideal match to the profile our community and staff helped us develop, and brings to our district a wealth of knowledge, experience and compassion,” said Board President Kim Quirk.

The vote completes a national search that began in the fall of 2009.

“I am honored and excited to be the next superintendent of RISD,” said Dr. Waggoner. “I appreciate the vote of confidence from the board and I’m looking forward to working with staff, parents, and community members.”

Board member Kim Caston thanked Interim Superintendent, Dr. Carolyn Bukhair, for her service over the past seven months. “On behalf of the Board, we appreciate you again answering the call when the district needed you. You have epitomized servant leadership during this time of transition, and we are thankful for your skill, experience and passion.”

Dr. Waggoner will officially start after Spring Break on Monday, March 22.
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February - career & technology education month
February is nationally celebrated as Career & Technology Education (CTE) Month. CTE provides students academic subject matter taught with relevance to the real world, employability skills, and career pathways that link secondary and post-secondary education.

RISD provides a wide range of CTE classes including Culinary Arts, Business Education, Audio Video Production, Building Trades, Electrical Systems, Health Science, Horticulture, Cosmetology, Criminal Justice, Geographic Information Systems, Hospitality, Transportation Systems, and more.
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“Many of the CTE programs are a result of funds made available through the last Bond and, therefore, have only been in place for the past three years,” shared Danny Stotts, RISD Director of Career & Technology Education. “It’s a bit of a new world for our district.” For the 2009-2010 school year, 92 CTE courses were offered. The offerings have grown to approximately 124 courses available for the 2010-2011 school year.

More than 8,400 students are involved in CTE in RISD. Course offerings begin as early as junior high for fields such as Information Technology, Business Management and Administration, and STEM, with the majority of courses offered at the high school level. As an added bonus, the CTE programs offer 52 different certificates and licenses that students can earn. In addition, more than 50 Tech Prep articulations with area colleges and dual credit courses are offered.

“Providing training and education that results in an industry certification or license is a valuable benefit to our students. For those who are entering the workforce right after graduation, the certification or license allows them to immediately enter their field, rather than first having to pay for additional technical classes,” said Stotts. Many other courses, such as Architectural Design, Accounting, and Engineering Design and Presentation prepare students for post-secondary studies in specific fields.

Stotts commented, “The new ‘Secondary Program of Studies' hand book describes all of our new CTE course offerings, which are now in line with the 16 federal occupational clusters. I think every student should be able to find something they’re interested in.” >Top
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Congratulations to the Richardson High School girls varsity basketball team! This week they won their district playoff game against Sachse and now advance to the area playoff game, which will be held at McLennan Community College in Waco this evening against Bryon High School.

Friday, February 19, 2010
@McLennan Community College-Waco, Texas
Richardson H.S. vs. Bryan H.S. @7:00 Girls Area Basketball Playoff Game
Ticket Prices: $5.00 Adult $3.00 Student

Good luck Eagles! >Top
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Congratulations to the Lake Highlands High School Winterguard for their first place finish at a recent competition. In addition to this wonderful achievement, they also won “General Effect,” “Ensemble Analysis," “Equipment,” and “Movement.”

“The students did a fantastic job of demonstrating great sportsmanship. They cheered for other schools and told other performers how much they liked their shows. They were truly young ladies and gentlemen,” commented LHHS Colorguard instructor Danny Martinez. >Top
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Congratulations to the 7th grade Lady Vikings basketball team! After finishing their season 9-1, they then won their District Championship. Principal Melissa Gassman said, “This is a great group of skillful girls. They have a wonderful work ethic.”

Congratulations to the girls and their coach, Krista Hernandez. >Top
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Congratulations to West Junior High 7th grader Emily White for winning the 2010 Dallas County Schools Spelling Bee. Four students from RISD, representing each high school area, were among the 40 participants at the event. Many other school districts were represented including Dallas, Garland, Irving, Highland Park, Duncanville, DeSoto, Carrollton-Farmers Branch, and others.

Emily, who represented the Richardson High School area, won in the 13th round, with her championship word being “Zeitgeist.” This was Emily’s fourth time to participate at this level of competition. She has now won the Dallas County Public Schools Spelling Bee twice.

The next round of competition for Emily is the Dallas Morning News Regional Spelling Bee, which is Saturday, March 20. Participating will be winners from 38 North and East Texas County Spelling Bees. >Top
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Forest Meadow Junior High recently held a “Hoops for Hearts” five-on-five basketball tournament to raise funds for the American Heart Association. The tournament was open to all students, with co-ed, boys, and girls teams competing. Students that didn’t play came out to cheer for their friends. Coach Brian Rote, who helped organize the event, Coach Brian Rote helped organize the event and reports that more than $600 was raised for this excellent cause. >Top
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Forest Lane Academy recently hosted a special parent education event during voluntary Saturday School. The focus of the event was to help parents understand strategies students are expected to use on their assignments. Many parents also came to sit in with their students for a reading lesson. Then, at the end of the event, parents enjoyed breakfast and were given an opportunity to ask questions.

Forest Lane Principal Pam Aitken commented, "Including our parents as partners in learning by teaching them strategies to help their children creates a community of success. We appreciate all the parents who took the time to come up to the school on a Saturday morning to build this partnership." >Top
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Hamilton Park Hearts Veterans
Valentine’s Day was extra special for Hamilton Park students. As an annual community service activity, each student from Kindergarten through 6th grade. makes Valentine cards for military veterans. The cards are then picked up by a representative of Congressman Sam Johnson’s office and delivered to veterans. This year, though, the cards were picked up by a special visitor. Lanecia Jackson, Hamilton Park Community Liaison, explained, “Last year Congressman Johnson’s field director picked up the hearts, but this year the Congressman wanted to pick them up himself!”

As part of the special pick up, Hamilton Park held an assembly where students heard Congressman Johnson talk about being a prisoner of war and how they can help their country and be good citizens . “It was such a pleasure to have Congressman Johnson at Hamilton Park,” said Principal Megan Timme. “He did a great job speaking to the children in a way that really engaged them. I am still hearing lots of conversation and excitement about his visit.” >Top
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BOWIE HELPS others, Brick by brick
Bowie Elementary is helping Pearce High School change the world, “Brick by Brick.” The goal is to raise $25,000 to build, furnish, and staff a school in an impoverished area in the Middle East. To do their part, Bowie’s Student Council sponsored a “Brick by Brick” fundraising drive. For every 25¢ donated, a brick was placed in the main hallway of the school. From students to teachers, custodians to staff, everyone had their name up on the wall for contributing to the project. After only a week, over 8,600 bricks had been added to the wall, representing a total donation of over $2,100.

“Our Student Council did a phenomenal job promoting this project,” commented Jeni Dillingham, Bowie Student Council sponsor. “They made a video to show school-wide, telling the story of the project, how it was started, pictures of the part of the world our school will be built, and how Bowie students specifically could participate.”
After hearing on the school announcements that the school had reached its goal, Ethan Cope, a student at Bowie, exclaimed, “We built a place for children to learn!” What a great accomplishment for all involved! >Top
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Rain, snow, and freezing fog didn’t deter Mustang swimmers from their Region 3-4A Championship meet last weekend as they competed against swimmers from more than 20 other schools. Congratulations to the following boys who are headed to the State Championship meet in Austin:
  • Adam Bull – 1st in 200 IM and 100 Butterfly
  • Hayden Wallace – 3rd in 200 and 500 Freestyle
  • Andrew Silver – 3rd in 100 Freestyle
  • Adam Bull, Hayden Wallace, Andrew Silver & Austin Buonasera – Bronze medal in 200 Medley Relay
  • Adam Bull, Andrew Silver, Austin Buonasera & Gage Robinson – Bronze medal in 200 Freestyle Relay
  • Hayden Wallace, Andrew Silver, Austin Buonasera, Gage Robinson & Justin Moore – Silver medal in 400 Freestyle Relay >Top
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this weekend in risd
Theatre, February 18-21
Pearce High School presents "Fiddler on the Roof” at Pearce High School auditorium, February 18-19-20 at 7:30 p.m., and February 21 at 2:00 p.m.

Band, February 21
Lake Highlands High School Jazz Band performs with the Dallas Original Jazz Orchestra at Village Country, Village Apartments at 8303 Southwestern Blvd. in Dallas, 6:30 p.m.

Soccer, Friday, February 19
Berkner High School girls vs. Molina High School at Kincaide Field.  7:00 p.m.
Berkner High School boys vs. Molina High School at Berkner High School. 7:00 p.m.  
Lake Highlands High School boys vs. Skyline High School at Forester Field.  7:00 p.m.
Lake Highlands High School girls vs. Skyline High School at Lake Highlands High School.  7:00 p.m.
Richardson High School boys vs. Sunset High School at Sprague Fieldhouse.  7:00 p.m.
Pearce High School boys vs. Rockwall Heath High School at Pearce High School. 7:15 p.m.
Pearce High School girls vs. Rockwall Heath High School at Rockwall Heath High School. 7:15 p.m.

Bowling (Non-UIL), Friday, February 19
Berkner High School vs. Fairhill High School at AMF Richardson.  5:15 p.m.

Bowling (Non-UIL), Saturday, February 20
Richardson High School vs. Plano West High School at Plano Super Bowl.  1:00 p.m. >Top
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“Help for Haiti” was the theme at Dobie Primary days after the quake. Principal Kay Reynolds shared, “The Monday after the earthquake, I talked to our kids on our school television and showed them pictures from the newspaper.  We asked the children to bring their pennies, nickels and dimes to help those in Haiti. I also talked to our parents at our Town Hall Meeting.  And, it made an impression.”  Children attending Dobie are in PreK or Kindergarten and most of their families live at or below poverty level. This didn’t stop them, though, from supporting other families in need. One mom brought a two-gallon plastic bag filled with pennies. Another sent $50 with her Kindergartener. In total, over $2,000 was collected. “This year our parents have really learned to ‘pay it forward,” commented Reynolds.

Other schools also held fundraising drives. Students at Jess Harben Elementary stood in front of their school collecting coins in cans and jugs from parents and other passers-by. In only three days the students collected $1,694. “This is an amazing accomplishment considering the small size of the school and neighborhood,” said parent Jennifer Bryant.

Many saw Valentine’s Day as a natural tie-in to helping support Haitian relief efforts. Yale Elementary, Brentfield Elementary and Parkhill Junior High sold “Val-o-Grams,” short notes sent to teachers and friends, to raise funds. Hamilton Park sold baggies of hearts, hand-cut by their PreK and Kindergarten students, raising over $800. In the process these young students at Hamilton Park learned about earthquakes, the economics of producing goods and selling them, and, most significantly, the importance of being part of a larger, global community. “I feel certain that this experience will have a lifelong impact on all of us at Hamilton Park,” said Principal Megan Timme.

Anna Robinson, a 4th grader at Mohawk Elementary, decided a Bake Sale at her school would be a good way to help those in Haiti. “My brother, James, did a lemonade stand a few years ago and raised a bunch of money. So, I wanted to see if I could raise money doing a bake sale for Haiti – to help the victims of the earthquake,” said Robinson. “I decided on a bake sale because I didn’t think people would buy lemonade when it was so cold.”

Anna’s dad encouraged her to take her idea to the school. After discussing it with her teachers and classmates, everyone wanted to help. The Mohawk Bake Sale raised $1,400 for World Vision, an organization that has worked in Haiti for 30 years.

Students at all four high schools also got involved in providing assistance to earthquake victims. Peer Helper groups from Berkner, Lake Highlands, Pearce and Richardson combined efforts, collecting crutches, walkers, braces, and more to be sent to “tent hospitals” set up throughout Haiti.  Casey Boland, Peer Helper teacher at Lake Highlands, coordinated the campaign and stored donated items in her classroom. As part of the effort, 100 crutches and 16 walkers were collected and sent to Haiti.

Other schools that held Haiti fundraising events include:
  • Forest Lane Academy - “Hats for Haiti” raised $573.
  • Forestridge Elementary - Collected health items, towels, nail clippers and more that were then assembled into bags to be sent to Haiti.
  • Lake Highlands Elementary - Raised over $1,000 for Quisqueya Christian School in Haiti. This school was selected because two of the teachers at the Haitian school, Katie and Ben Kilpatrick, are RISD alum. Katie is a Pearce grad and Ben is a Berkner grad.
  • Merriman Park Elementary - Raised over $1,000.
  • Northlake Elementary - “Hats for Haiti” raised $385 (and they’re still going).
  • Pearce High School’s National Honor Society - Raising funds to send to UNICEF through a “Hearts for Haiti” campaign.
  • Stults Road Elementary - Raised $435 through a “Silver for Haiti” coin collection.
  • Thurgood Marshall Elementary - Raised $201 with a “Super Bowl of Caring” campaign. Students and teachers were able to donate money to a Saints or Colts jar, supporting their favorite Super Bowl team while supporting Haiti relief efforts. (The Saints jar won by $100.)
“All of the Haitian relief efforts that took place at RISD campuses are yet another shining example of how our teachers and students continue to go beyond what is expected of them, showing care and concern for those in need,” said Bukhair. “They are true ambassadors of our spirit of community.” >Top
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