School Times Now!
Dewan Woods - Dell
& Gates Scholar
RISD Hosts Lone
Star Challenge
Robotics Teams Compete
in World Championship
Big Springs PACE Students
Build Unique Cabin
Country Western Dance Off
Benefits Alumni in Haiti
Spring Valley Walkers
Trek Through Texas
MST Ladybug Ball Celebrates
Ladybug Learning
Beth Brown Honored as
Junior Achievement's
Teacher of the Year
CBE Students Motivated by
PHS Soccer & SNHS Students
in 2011-2012
RISD Students Honored
by Duke Talent
Identification Program
RISD Students Win at
State Reflections Art Contest
Partners Corner
Pearce Orchestra
Wins in Houston
LHFC Hosts Singapore
Robotics Students
Berkner Students Create
Children's Stories
Greenhaw, Holburn, and
Oliver Win Board Election
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Dewan Woods - Dell & Gates Scholar
Congratulations to Berkner Senior Dewan Woods, who was selected as a Dell Scholar Finalist and a Gates Millennium Scholar. Receiving one of these prestigious awards is an amazing accomplishment. Receiving both is a tribute to Woods’ hard work, character, and academic achievement. He, though credits AVID. Dewan said, “I attribute my success to AVID. It helped me realize my own potential.”

Woods, who has been part of the AVID (“Advancement Via Individual Determination”) program since 8th grade, will be attending Boston College on a full academic scholarship, studying physics. The Dell and Gates honors will allow him to pay for post-graduate schooling as well. (Dewan is pictured holding a poster-size copy of his letter of acceptance from Boston College.)

“I've always worked hard since 8th grade and knew I wanted to go to college but would only think of regional schools. Through AVID, I found that I could dream of bigger and better things for myself. If it weren't for AVID I wouldn't know the possibilities of Boston College or have heard about the Dell or Gates scholarships,” said Dewan.

Erinn Wilcots is Dewan’s AVID teacher at Berkner. She commented, “Dewan is nothing short of outstanding. His story is the very essence of what the AVID program is about. Since I have known him, Dewan has always had the initiative and drive to work towards the goals he set for himself. This is the fourth year I have known this young man and he simply astounds everyone around him, from fellow students to teachers. He lets nothing stand in his way.”

Erinn also provided a quote from Nobel-prize winning physicist Marie Curie that reminds her of Dewan, a future physicist: “Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something, and that this thing, at whatever cost, must be attained."

With the Dell Scholar award, Woods will receive a $20,000 scholarship, a laptop and printer, and an on-site mentor during his post-secondary education. The Gates Millennium Scholar award is a 10-year scholarship good through post-graduate study, which also includes academic support, mentoring and leadership training. >Top
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Last Saturday, 300 4th, 5th and 6th grade students from 23 Richardson ISD elementary schools convened at Berkner High School to compete at the Lone Star Challenge, the elementary school version of Academic Decathlon.

Teams of three 4th graders, three 5th graders and three 6th graders competed in four events – Essay, a Math/Science objective test, a Language Arts/Social Studies test and Super Quiz, the only event open to the public, which drew a crowd of over 500 spectators.

Congratulations to the winning teams:
  • District Champion: Brentfield Elementary - Gavin Watts, Julia Goldman, Nathan Mandell, Charlie Weitz, Alec Shea, Griffon Rubin, Savanna Dunaway, Rebecca Francis and J. B. Fishman. Coaches - Steve Lemons and Ann Rubin. (pictured)
  • 2nd Place: White Rock Elementary - Annie Hutton, Paranjaya Pokharel, Craig Casler, Nathan Price, Kenzie Grogan, Caleb Ginn, Madeleine Ash, Tita Peterson and Nahiyan Khan. Coaches - Suzanne Martin and Mary Mathieu.
  • 3rd Place: Richland Elementary - Justin Phan, Isra Hamid Ali, Claire Hahn, Mubashir Mohammed, Hamza Malick, Rasin Faruk, Jacob Payne, Emily Rockwell, and Celia Nguyen. Coaches - Greg Gaston, Laura Payne, Chanda Ash, Jennie Marx, Autumn Voss, Misty Wilson and Kathy Chicoine.
  • 4th Place: Bowie Elementary - James Monroe, Katie Lloyd, Ashley Grossman, Maria Firan, Tho Le, Brian Kaner, Thomas Mayer, Rob Burns and Parker Self. Coaches -Holly Lee and Janice Thigpen.
  • 5th Place: Dartmouth Elementary - Parker Lackland, Carla Pineda, Cynthia Corsiga, Mark Witte, Dylan Johnson, Nicholas Shadel, Abbie Vandruff, Valerie Phon and Alex Graham. Coaches -Jann Richards and Lashawnda Holiwell.
Individual All-Around winners were:
  • 4th Grade: 1st Place Gavin Watts-Brentfield, 2nd Place Nathan Mandell-Brentfield and 3rd Place John Holt-Spring Creek
  • 5th Grade: 1st Place Griffon Rubin-Brentfield, 2nd Place Caleb Ginn-White Rock and 3rd Place Shankar Lal-Spring Creek
  • 6th Grade: 1st Place Tita Peterson-White Rock, 2nd Place Nahiyan Khan-White Rock and 3rd Place Rebecca Francis-Brentfield
After the event, scores are submitted to the state organization for state rankings. Four RISD elementary schools finished in the top 10 statewide:
2nd in state – Brentfield Elementary
4th in state – White Rock Elementary
9th in state – Richland Elementary
10th in state – Bowie Elementary

Congratulations to all of the students who participated for their dedication and hard work! >Top
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The VEX Robotics World Championship took place recently at the Dallas Convention Center. Among almost 400 teams, representing over 14 countries, were teams from Apollo JH (the only middle school to qualify) and Berkner HS.

Apollo, who sent two teams, received the 2010 VEX Robotics World Championship Unite Award, which is presented to a school that has built a sustainable, multi-team robotics program. Normally reserved for big technical schools that have been active in robotics for many years, Apollo, who formed its first team in February 2009, has quickly become one of the top teams in Texas, winning nine trophies this season – more than any other middle or high school in the state. In just 15 months they have built a program that includes almost 50 students who built 15 robots this year.

“This award shows our community that RISD and its partners are committed to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) programs and preparing their students for challenging and rewarding careers for the future,” said Jack Nelson, Apollo robotics coach and teacher.

Danny Stotts, RISD Career & Technology Director, shared, “As a district, we are integrating robotics curriculum components into all of the technology courses. In these courses, students not only assemble robots, they program using computer languages, electronics controls, as well as gears and manufacturing of components on various pieces of equipment. RISD is one of the first in the state to embrace robotics. We’re really in the forefront of this initiative.”
Berkner, also one of the top teams in Texas, had three robots compete in the World Championship, as result of winning the East Texas VEX Robotics Competition in February and qualifying two other robots with wins in the Robot and Programming Skill Challenges at a UT Dallas competition in December. One of their teams was a quarterfinalist in the championship.

“What made our team successful this year was a renewed focus on quality robots, a determination to perform well, and a commitment to work hard,” said Eon Meusa, Berkner robotics coach and teacher. “The students stayed very focused in making their ideas literally come to life and engineering the best solution to the challenges in front of them.”

Congratulations to the following students:
Berkner HS team: Grace Hoffman, Katherine Graber, Kevin Holmes, Talia Spencer, Henry Kim, Humberto Adame, Kalindra Green-Ellison, Nicholas Braden, Captain Lawson, Workneh Mekuria, and Matt Batey
Coaches: Eon Meusa (BHS STEM Academy) & Joel Graber (Texas Instruments)

Apollo JH team: Josh Anderson, Brady Cameron, Anthony Castillo, Sam Frykholm, Andrew Ho, Jonathan Leyva, Ezra Lin, Hero McIntyre, Phil Nguyen, Vincent Nguyen, Emma Swopes and Indy Vermeersch
Coach: Jack Nelson >Top
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Recently, students in the PACE after-school program at Big Springs participated in a team building unit, learning about both teamwork and construction.

Over a four-week period, the students built a cabin almost entirely out of toilet paper rolls. They started with the frame, made of empty fabric bolts, and then began construction of the paper roll walls. In the end, the cabin turned out to be over seven feet tall, with room inside for several kids to sit. In total, they used 15 fabric bolts, 20 laminating rolls and 678 toilet paper rolls.

“It was really neat to see it come together - and to see how big it was,” said Salma, a 5th grader in PACE at Big Springs. Allyn, a classmate agreed, adding, “It was also cool that no one else had thought of doing something like this.”
Katherine and Sophia, 1st graders in Big Springs PACE, thought the project was a lot of fun, too. All of the students enjoyed working with kids from other grade levels.

Lisa Matthews, Big Springs PACE site coordinator, commented, “I’m very proud of how all the children and instructional assistants worked together to get the project done. Everyone wanted to help and be a part of it. It’s a great feeling when you see all ages working together and helping each other.”

Soon, one lucky Big Springs family will be the proud owners of this unique cabin, as it will be auctioned at an upcoming school event.

PACE is an after-school program offered at all elementary schools in the district. Registration is currently underway for the 2010-2011 school year. To find out more, please visit >Top
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Annually, the four high schools’ country-western dance teams come together for a Country Western Dance Off. The performances provide an opportunity for students to share what they’ve been working on throughout the year – but also benefit a greater good. This year, $1,300 was raised and donated to the charity of Ben and Katie Kilpatrick, RISD alumni who married in 2008 and are currently living in Haiti, teaching at a local school.

Ben Kilpatrick, a former student at Big Springs, Apollo and Berkner, and Katie Wilhoite-Kilpatrick, a former student at Prestonwood, Parkhill and Pearce, moved to Haiti in December of 2009 to teach high school at Quisqueya Christian School. Because of the earthquake in January, they have found themselves being more than just teachers. “At least four of my students lost a parent, and their whole worlds are changed,” shared Katie.
When asked how help can be best provided to Haiti, Katie replied, “Cash donations are a very efficient way to help since they allow local aid groups to buy needed items in-country, stimulating the Haitian economy. They also allow us to buy exactly what we need without the large costs and delays of shipping.” The Country Western Dance Off donation will, no doubt, be put to good use.

For more information about Ben and Katie Kilpatrick’s work in Haiti, please visit >Top
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Spring Valley students in 3rd – 6th grade recently walked from Dallas to Austin, in a matter of speaking, learning about towns they walked through along the way.

To start the “Trek Through Texas” program, jump ropes were sold to students and staff, with the profits used to purchase pedometers for the 25 walkers. Then, the students calculated the number of miles walked each week during “Walking Wednesdays.”

During their walking times, Coach Elisa Statts, Nurse Sherry Freeland, and Betsy Davis taught the students important facts about the towns and cities that they were “walking” through.

As a celebration, students made Texas trail mix when they reached their goal of walking over 200 miles, the distance between Dallas and Austin.

“This was a lot of fun for everyone. We’re definitely planning on continuing this program next year,” said Freeland. >Top
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First graders at MST (Math/Science/Technology) Magnet Elementary recently attended a Ladybug Ball to celebrate the completion of their science unit on ladybugs. “I liked the bug ball because I got to dress up like a ladybug. It was fun to make my ladybug costume,” said Dazia Riser.

As part of the ladybug unit, students took part in a variety of activities, including using hand lenses to observe ladybugs, viewing ladybugs under microscopes via the computer, and creating anatomically correct ladybug costumes with two antenna and six legs.

“I liked when we did ladybug diagrams of the life cycle on the computer because I like computers,” said Gabriel Patterson.

Robel Araya found ladybug observation interesting. He said, “My favorite part was getting to observe the ladybugs with my hand lenses. I liked recording what I was looking at.”

In the end, as part of the celebration, the ladybugs were all set free. “The best part was when we set them free. They didn’t want to come out. That was funny!” said Tucker Royal. Vibha Annaswamy also enjoyed setting the ladybugs free and added, “I was hoping one would land on me!”>Top
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Beth Brown, Marketing Education Career Preparation teacher at Richardson High School, was honored at the 12th Annual Junior Achievement Dallas Business Hall of Fame as Teacher of the Year. This award is given to a present and future leader of our community who has demonstrated a commitment to Junior Achievement and the enhancement of our children’s future.

“Beth is a great teacher. She encourages her students, works with them and challenges them to be the best they can be,” said Ruben Pratt, a Junior Achievement volunteer who has been working with Beth for ten years, teaching a Success Skills program to her class each week. “She allows each student the opportunity to become the person they want to be.”

“As a teacher, I feel one of the greatest things I can give my students is the opportunity to learn and Junior Achievement provides this, especially through involved business leaders like Ruben Pratt. Ruben brings the ‘real world’ into my classroom in a way that I can’t,” said Beth. “I am honored to have received this award and to work with great volunteers like Ruben.” >Top
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As Bukhair Elementary students prepared for TAKS tests, they were inspired by special visitors from Pearce High School – the girl’s state-championship soccer team and the National Spanish Honor Society officers. These older students hosted a pep rally for the Bukhair students, encouraging them to try their best, take their time, and use their strategies, as they themselves have done to accomplish their own goals.

The soccer team creatively used soccer terms as they spoke about TAKS – “use your head” as they headed the ball, “kick TAKS” as they kicked the ball. Gregg Larimer, a Bukhair PE teacher, was impressed with how the Pearce students engaged the younger students. He said, “They got the attention of our students of all ages and sent a positive message about taking academics seriously. It was not all about soccer or sports, but giving them confidence to succeed.”
“It was fun to being up there and kicking the ball with the soccer team,” said Belen Salazar (pictured kicking), a 4th grader. Jaime Navarro, also a 4th grader, agreed and added, “What they said helped me know I could pass the TAKS test.”

Older students understood how success on TAKS tests can help them achieve other goals. Dvonte Adcock, a 6th grader, commented, “The Pearce students motivated me to be better. If I pass my classes, I can play sports.”

Bryant Hernandez, also a 6th grader, liked watching the soccer players’ skills demonstration but also was listening to the message the high school students delivered. He said, “I know if I can pass TAKS, I can graduate from school.” >Top
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The acronym TAKS is very familiar to anyone involved in Texas public education, from students and teachers, to parents and administrators. This yearly series of tests, administered to students in grades 3-11, assesses students’ knowledge of the Texas Essential Knowledge & Skills, or TEKS.

Starting in 2011-2012, TAKS will be replaced by STAAR – the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness. The two primary components of STAAR are a change to end-of-course assessments for students in grades 9-12, and new assessments for grades 3-8.

There will be 12 end-of-course (EOC) assessments for high school students, three in each core subject area: math, English, science, and social studies. As mandated by state law, a student’s score on each EOC assessment will be worth 15% of the student’s final grade for that course. The EOC assessments will also be part of graduation requirements, beginning with the freshman class of 2011-2012.

Reading and math STAAR tests for grades 3-8 will, as mandated by law, be vertically aligned, linking grade to grade tests to performance expectations for English III and Algebra II EOC assessments. “The vertical alignment of STAAR will enable us to better measure student growth from year to year and grade to grade. This in turn, will help tighten our curriculum as STAAR is implemented,” said Elvia Noriega, RISD’s executive director of Accountability & Continuous Improvement.

Vertical alignment also translates into a more rigorous series of tests than have been used before. Such alignment will allow for measurement of a child’s performance as well as academic growth. “We are excited to see the vertical alignment for these tests,” said Noriega. “Our curriculum department has already begun making adjustments, which we feel will result in increased postsecondary readiness for RISD students.”

The school accountability rating system that will accompany STAAR is still being developed and is not expected to be released until 2011. The last TAKS-based ratings will be issued in 2011. Ratings will be suspended in 2012 while the new system is being finalized, with the new school rating system debuting in 2013.

For more information about EOC assessments, please click here.

Information about STAAR assessments for grades 3-8 will be communicated as it becomes available. >Top
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Duke University’s Talent Identification Program (TIP) identifies academically gifted 7th grade students, providing them with innovative programming to support their development. As part of the program, these 7th graders take the ACT or SAT college entrance exam, along with area high school students.

Congratulations to the following RISD Duke TIP students for receiving state recognition, based on their SAT and/or ACT scores:
Caitlin Cafiero – Apollo JH
Lydia Chen – Apollo JH
Daniel Choi – Apollo JH
Angela Golio – Apollo JH
Olivia Posner – Apollo JH
Dominik Fritz – Forest Meadow JH
Matthew Mason – Forest Meadow JH
Andrew Kirsop – Lake Highlands JH
Arjun Nair – Lake Highlands JH
Jamie Wilson – Lake Highlands JH
Lucy Collins – Liberty JH
Johnnie Ho – Liberty JH
Jackson Evans – Parkhill JH
Michael Lanham – Parkhill JH
Diemthi Le – Parkhill JH
Alexandra Olazaran – Parkhill JH
Alexa Paikowski – Parkhill JH
Jared Ucherek – Parkhill JH
Adam Gruszecki – North JH
Kathering Kring – North JH
Harper Luecke – North JH
Blake Maczka – North JH
Jason Poindexter – North JH
Taylor Allen – West JH
Erika Casales – West JH
Jacob Flanders – West JH
Trent Juarez – West JH
Gabriel Schafer – West JH
Emily White – West JH
Steven Paisley – Westwood JH
Dylan Winkler – Westwood JH

Congratulations also to Olivia Posner, Matthew Mason, and Emily White for receiving grand recognition for their SAT results, an honor for those scoring in the top 3% of national participants. >Top
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Each year PTA sponsors the Reflections art contest. This year, RISD doubled the number of entries that advanced from the local schools to the RISD Council level. “We also had more RISD schools participate this year than ever before,” shared Marni Kaner, Council Arts in Education Chair.

Of the 85 entries that advanced to the state level, two received the “Overall Award of Excellence” and moved on to the national competition. These entries are of Marria Nakhoda from Lake Highlands High School, “Body of Dance,” and Kassidy Testut from Richardson High School, “Beauty is Life.”

Two other student artists, Zain Walker, West Junior High, and Cole Williams, White Rock Elementary, each received the “Award of Excellence” and will have their art displayed in the Texas Education Agency building in Austin.

Next year’s Reflections theme is “Together We Can.” Detailed information will be distributed in the fall through local PTAs. Questions can be directed to Marni Kaner at >Top
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RISD Education Appreciation Week "Chip & Dip Style"
The Richardson Chamber of Commerce recently provided chips and dip as a treat for all RISD schools. *All entities listed with an asterisk have contributed for three consecutive years.

The following businesses and individuals contributed:
4 Women Shopping*
Amerprise Financial*
Assurnet Insurance Agency*
Atmos Energy and Cisco Systems*
Bank of Texas*
Bell Insurance*
Bland, Garvey, Eades, Medlock & Deppe, PC
Bry-Jo Roofing and Remodeling*
Colliers International*
Congressman Sam Johnson*
Constable Ben Adamcik*
County Commissioner Maurine Dickey*
Crull Fitness and Elite Therapy Solutions*
Dallas Baptist University Frisco*
Dr. Arnie Stokol, Optometrist*
Ebby Halliday*
First Community Bank*
George McKearin, Attorney*
Highland Springs*
Judge Sandra Ellis*
Junior Achievement
Legacy Texas Bank*
Louie L. Kilgore Insurance Agency - Farmers Insurance*
Methodist Richardson Medical Center*
Mulvihill Asset Management*
Nannis Chiropractic
Pavillion Bank*
Richardson Chamber of Commerce – EarlyNet
Richardson City Council - Amir Omar
Richardson City Council - Bob Townsend*
Richardson Mayor - Gary Slagel*
Richardson City Council - Steve Mitchell*
Richardson East Rotary*
Richland College*
State Senator John Carona*
State Representative Angie Chen Button*
State Representative Carol Kent*
Texans Credit Union*
Texas Instruments, Inc.*
State Representative Allen Vaught*
The Heights Baptist Church
Tom Thumb Coit and Campbell*
UT Dallas & UTeach Program*
Verizon Wireless
ViewPoint Bank*
VisionBank Texas* >Top
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The Pearce orchestras recently competed in the Space City Music Showcase in Houston, TX, winning “Superior” ratings from all three judges, the top rating possible. In addition, the varsity Chamber orchestra received “Best in Class” for being the best 4A orchestra and “Best Overall” for being the best orchestra in attendance at the festival.

The Pearce orchestras are directed by Melissa Livings. Jason Bolak is assistant director. >Top
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The Lake Highlands Freshman Center recently hosted a group of students and teachers from Admiralty Secondary School in Singapore (pictured with Kim Swarm, center). The team, in Dallas for the VEX Robotics World Championship, was interested in observing how Lake Highlands uses robotics in the classroom, and, specifically, in their lab.

The Lake Highlands lab is entering the second year of a four year project which, when complete, will be the only computer integrated manufacturing lab of its kind in Texas. Currently, Lake Highlands has 80+ VEX robotic kits with many upgrade accessory packages. Students use these kits to begin their training with basic robotic platforms, creating and designing robots that can be programmed to do many tasks. In addition, they have the Expert Mill CNC with robotic automation and a Scorbot automation material handling system with conveyor. To develop the designs for these robots, students use the CAD/CAM/CNC quality control module as well as associated software including the Learn Mate system.
“The visiting teachers were particularly interested in how we manage differentiated instruction across multiple skill levels and how we organize our inventory,” said Kim Swarm, Robotics teacher. “We were excited to showcase our wonderful lab with our international visitors.” >Top
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As part of Ranya Matthews’ Business Computer Information Systems class, students create children’s stories and accompanying activity sheets using Microsoft Word and PowerPoint. As part of their story, each student includes the name of one pre-K child from Hamilton Park Daycare.

When the stories are complete, the Hamilton Park Daycare children make a visit to Berkner to meet their “Berkner Buddies.” The visit includes reading their personalized stories, playing games, and drawing pictures. This culmination of learning is as fun for the high school students as it is for their little visitors.

“This project is successful because the students are creatively applying the skills they have learned all year,” said Matthews. “The high school students and pre-K children really enjoy working together and reading the stories.” >Top
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Congratulations to Lanet Greenhaw (Place 4) and Karen Holburn (Place 5) for their re-election to the RISD Board of Trustees and to Kris Oliver (Place 3) for his election to the Board. Each are expected to be sworn in at the May 17 Board of Trustees meeting.

Click here to view full election results. >Top
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Students at each high school are regularly accomplishing amazing and interesting achievements. Below are recent highlights.

Berkner HS
The Berkner Choir won several awards at the UIL Concert & Sight-Reading contest, including three “Sweepstakes,” the highest achievement a music ensemble can attain at UIL.
A Cappella Choir – 1st Division (superior) in concert / 2nd Division (excellent) in sight-reading
Varsity Treble Choir – Sweepstakes
Varsity Tenor/Bass Choir – Sweepstakes
Non-Varsity Treble Choir – Sweepstakes

The Berkner Orchestra recently competed against groups from all over the country in a festival held in Winter Park, Colorado. They walked away with five trophies. Both Orchestras received a Superior rating, won the Best in Class trophy, and the Symphony won the Grand Champion trophy for the Best Orchestra at the festival.

Congratulations to Sophomore Mallory O'Sullivan who advanced to the state level of the UIL journalism contest in editorial writing.

Brennan DiChiara was one of 53 North Texas scholar-athletes recognized by the National Football Foundation Gridiron Club of Dallas for his accomplishments on and off the field. Congratulations Brennan!

Lake Highlands HS
Lake Highlands HS choirs performed at the UIL Solo and Ensemble event earlier this spring. All A Capella ensembles received a 1 rating for their performance, as did a large number of soloists. Congratulations Wildcat choir!

It was a clean sweep for Lake Highlands theater students in the One Act Play competition – the entire cast received an award, including Chandler Ludwick as “Best Actor” and Emily Hawkins and Katie York being selected as “All Star Cast.”

Latin students at Lake Highlands High School recently participated in the National Latin Exam, which covered the Latin language, mythology and Roman culture. Brice Paterik, Jack Stewart, and Lars Frederikson won silver medals and Maxima Cum Laude certificates. Patrick Mahurin received the Magna Cum Laude award. Also, Cum Laude awards were presented to Michael Bonahoom, Max Mueller, Hannah Pittman, and Maggie Duffy.

Pearce HS
Jennifer Thompson was recently announced as a National Merit Scholar. She is one of only 2,500 distinguished high school students to receive this prestigious honor, which includes a $2,500 National Merit Scholarship. Recipients are regarded as having the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills, and potential for success in rigorous college studies.

The Dallas Morning News recently named Lady Mustang soccer players Kathryn Watson and Maddie Harper to the All-Area 1st Team for girls soccer. Coach Borgarello, the girls’ coach, was named All-Area Coach of the Year. Congratulations!

Five Pearce freshman won the Willie Lee Gay Award at the Texas State National History Day competition in Austin. After successfully competing at both the local and regional competitions, ten of students advanced to the state competition. From that group of ten, five freshman - Lizzie Bach, Lauren English, Kathleen Francis, Samantha Glazer, and Kendall Wolkenstein - received one of only seven special awards available in the high-school exhibit category for their exhibit “Fair Trade: Revolutionizing the Labor Behind Your Everyday Cup of Joe.”

Richardson HS
Jason Wardy was recently announced as a National Merit Scholar. He is one of only 2,500 distinguished high school students to receive this prestigious honor, which includes a $2,500 National Merit Scholarship. Recipients are regarded as having the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills, and potential for success in rigorous college studies.

Freshman Michael Nowak’s video, The Effect of One, was awarded second place in the TXU Energy Fast Forward Video contest. As one of the top three videos, The Effect of One was screened at the Dallas International Film Festival where Michael walked the Red Carpet with the other filmmakers being honored at this year’s Film Festival. Michael’s award also included a $2,500 cash award for the benefit of the RHS Communications Department.
Go to to view Michael’s video.

RHS Baseball team won the Yellow Rose Tournament that was held at RHS. Teams from Oklahoma and North Texas competed in the event, sponsored by Yellow Rose Landscaping.

Nick Anderson’s drawing, “One Love,” received the Silver medal at the National Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. This is the nation’s largest and longest-running scholarship and recognition program for teenage artists and writers. The Awards ceremony, which Nick will attend, will be held at Carnegie Hall in New York City in June.

Over 700 entries were received for the Young American Talent Regional High School Competition that is sponsored by the Visual Arts Guild of Booker T. Washington School for the Performing and Visual Arts. Richardson student Kendall Wrightson’s entry, “Tire Chair,” was accepted into the show and won 1st place in the Mixed Media Category.

Nathan Pontzer won a Gold Medal in Electronics Technology at the Texas SkillsUSA competition in Corpus Christi. Because of his stellar performance, Nathan also qualified to be certified by the International Society of Certified Electronics Technicians (ISCET).

Evan Smith was one of 53 North Texas scholar-athletes recognized by the National Football Foundation Gridiron Club of Dallas for his accomplishments on and off the field. Congratulations Evan! >Top
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this weekend in risd
Fine Arts
Theatre, Friday-Sunday, May 14-16         
J. J. Pearce High School presents ‘To Kill a Mockingbird”’ at Lynn “Zed” Shaw Black Box Theatre, 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 14; 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 15; 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m on Sunday, May 16.  Ticket information at

Choir, Friday, May 14         
Lake Highlands High School Choir Spring Concert at Lake Highlands High School auditorium, 7:30 p.m.

High School Sports
Baseball Playoffs, Round 2 (All Series are best 2 out of 3)
Lake Highlands High School vs. Killeen Ellison High School
at Lake Highlands High School High School, Saturday, May 15.  12:00 noon
If needed, the third game will start 30 minutes after game two at Lake Highlands High School.

Richardson High School vs. A&M Consolidated High School
at Richardson High School, Friday, May 14.  5:00 p.m.
If needed, the third game will start 30 minutes after game two at Richardson High School.

Berkner High School vs. Belton High School
at Berkner High School, Saturday, May 15.  1:00 p.m.
If needed, the third game will start 30 minutes after game two at Berkner High School.

For complete athletics and fine arts schedules, please visit RISD's online calendar here. >Top
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