Even More HCLS Awards

In addition to our High School students, we had several students in lower grades participate in the Henderson County Livestock Show. Olivia Dailey won numerous Horse Show Awards:

Speed Events
Cloverleaf barrels-1st
Straight Away Barrels-1st
Flag Race-3rd
Pole Bending-2nd
Flying W-5th

Overall high point buckle winner for junior division speed events.

Horse Show Events
Halter class –Geldings 5 and over -1st
Yearling class-2nd
Showmanship at Halter-1st
English:
Hunter Under Saddle-3rd
Hunt Seat Equitation-1st
Western:
Western Pleasure-3rd
Stock Horse Pleasure-3rd
Western Horsemanship-2nd
Reining-1st
Trail-1st

Over all high point buckle winner for junior division performance events.

Other students that participated in the Henderson County Livestock Show include:
Maggie Groom, David Cathey, Olivia Herring, Ryan Caldwell, Calie Spivey

 

Henderson County Livestock Show

Below are the results from the Henderson County Livestock Show. The young men and young ladies from Eustace certainly represented our district well. Congratulations to each one for their hard work and dedication to their project. Also a big thank you to our Ag Science Teachers, Theresa Tindel and Steve Stegall.  Finally, a huge thank you to the Ag Booster Club and all the people that support our Ag Science program!

Overall, students earned over $37,000.00 at the Henderson County Show alone.  Two other steers sold at the major shows that increased the overall total to right at $50,000.00!

2015 Henderson County Livestock Show  Results

Champions

Champion Sr. Project Show- Jodi Costlow kitchen Play set  sold for $900.00

Champion Commercial Heifers- Emma Bell – $5,200.00

Class Champion Mkt. Goat- Chad Tindel – $1,600.00

Class Champion Mkt. Goat- Whitney Boerner – $1,100.00

Class Champion Mkt. Goat- Abby Cates – $1,100.00

Sr. Champion Mkt. Goat Showmanship- Chad Tindel

Division Champion Gates- Travis Goodson, Mike Marshall, Santos Umana

Class Champion Hay Forks- Jude Bonner

Class Champion Hay Trailer- Chad Tindel, Daniel Hester, Zach Dultmeier

Class Champion small trailer- Caleb Clark, Ethen Hoops

Class Champion Heifer- Jordyn Costlow

Class Champion  Western Pleasure – Bo Bohannon

Class Champion Stock Horse Pleasure- Bo Bohannon

Division Champion Turkey- Santos Umana

Reserve Champion Breeding Poultry- Lane Smith

Reserve Champion Breeding Rabbits- Calie Spivey

 

The Day Google Classroom Went Down

via Technology Tidbits by Twyla Felty

On April 2, 2015, Google Classroom “went down”.

Students were the first to notice of course, and, as teachers started trouble-shooting, the tension started to rise in the Middle School building. Soon, we realized we had a total catastrophe! Panic ensued. How would we access the shared resources and turn in student work? What is our back-up plan? As the tech integration person, I could hear the echo of this outage coming back to haunt me for years to come: “Remember the day that Google Classroom went down? That’s why I don’t use technology!”

Quickly I raced to open the link to check the Apps Status Dashboard……but there was nothing there. I called our tech support team….but they knew of no issues either. So, I screamed into social media, “Help! Google Classroom is down! Anyone else out there having issues?”

In the end, the glitch in Google Classroom was really just a “service disruption”, but, ultimately, it proved to be a learning experience for everyone involved.

Teachers found that Google is extremely reliable. We were soon up and running within minutes….not hours, not days.

Students and teachers found that they could still work on their products and share information the “old-fashioned way” since Google Drive was just fine. Who would have thought that using Google Drive would be considered the “old way”? This is how far we have come and how quickly Google Classroom has been embraced by teachers as an effective conduit for learning.

We discovered which teachers were really integrating technology at the highest levels. After several years of talking about SAMR and speculating about “substitution”versus “modification” or “redefinition”, the level of student engagement through technology became readily apparent within seconds after the disruption. After assessing our access to Drive and other web tools, teachers and students regrouped and moved on, but there was the sudden realization that not one teacher using Google Classroom had a plan that translated to paperwork. Our teaching and learning were technology dependent.

I found that connections in Google+ communities and Twitter are invaluable. While it took the Apps Status Dashboard a little while to show the disruption, social media was awash with an affirmation to the “crisis” within seconds of my posts. Sympathetic voices answered back, mirroring my own concerns. Yes, it was down for everyone. Not just us. And misery loves company!

The most valuable lesson for me, however, came from the paradigm shift that seemed almost palpable. When Classroom was smoothly working again, there were sighs of relief and whispers of “thank goodness” as teachers went back to their business and students back to their learning. Through the years, I had grown accustomed to technology naysayers quipping their “Why I Don’t Use Technology” litany. This time, not one word! Technology integration had indeed arrived at Eustace Middle School !

Yes, I know there are still teachers lurking behind lecterns, preaching from Power Points, and commanding the copying of volumes of notes. There will always be those who will make an excuse not to try, not to learn, not to change, not to grow. Their voices and reasoning, however, are fading into the background. We are moving forward.

Yes, Google Classroom went “down” on April 2, 2015, but, in that moment, as brief as it may have been, I learned a great deal!

UIL Academic Meet and This Week

Last week, EHS participated in the District UIL Academic Meet. Several individuals and teams qualified to move on to the Regional Academic Meet. Below are the results for EHS:

Current Issues – 1st Kevin Richmond; 2nd – Dane McAfee; 3rd – Eli Newbury-Kimball

Headline Writing – 1st Sarah Loftis

Informative Speaking – 5th Chyannia Bailey; 6th Justin Griffin

Lincoln Douglas Debate – 1st Angel Baker; 2nd Temple Hendrickson; 3rd Ben Warren

Literary Criticism – 1st Grace Holcombe; 3rd Emma Lopez; 6th Dane McAfee

Mathematics – 5th Rusty Rogers; 6th Juan Garcia

Number Sense – 2nd Rusty Rogers

News Writing – 6th Makenzie Abbott

Persuasive Speaking – 2nd Angel Baker

Poetry Interpretation – 4th Keairra Hargest; 6th Veronica Wheat

Ready Writing – 6th Ashley Blaylock

Science – 6th Brandon Hall

Social Studies – 6th Kevin Richmond

Spelling and Vocabulary – Veronica Wheat

Current Issues Team – 1st

Literary Criticism Team – 1st

Number Sense Team – 1st

Social Studies Team – 2nd

Speech Team – 2nd

Overall, EHS placed 3rd in the Academic Competition. Congratulations to all the contestants on their success! Also, I want to congratulate the sponsors and coaches of the events for their time and effort.

This Week

The Middle School and Primary School are having Book Fairs all week.

Monday – Softball v. West Rusk – 5:00

Tuesday – Pre-K and Kindergarten Round Up – 12:00 – 6:00; Graduation Options Presentation for Parents of 8th Graders – 5:30 – HS Auditorium; JV and Varsity Softball at Mildred – 5:00; Baseball at Mildred

Wednesday – District Track Meet – Field Events and Prelims

Thursday – 2nd Grade Field Trip to Dallas World Aquarium; Graduation Options Presentation for Parents of 8th Graders – 8:30 AM – HS Auditorium; District Track Meet – Running Finals – 6:00

Friday – End 5th 6 Weeks; Softball v. Frankston – 6:00; JV & V Baseball v Frankston – 6:00

I hope everyone has a great week!

EHS Film Team Wins First in TxDot Regional Competition

A team of students from Eustace High School has placed 1st in the Texas Department of Transportation regional competition for a public service announcement on traffic safety. The team put together a 60 second PSA about the importance of wearing seat belts. The regional competition consisted of an 8 county area around Tyler. The video may be viewed by following this link: https://youtu.be/frq3QbDCERo

Team members on the film are:

Producer/Film Maker – Nic Caldwell

Creator – Kelsey Max

Actress – Emma Brashear

Narrator – Delaney Worth

Team Sponsor – Tammy Beaty

With their first place finish, the team earned a $1,000 award for EHS to use toward this year’s Project Graduation.

Congratulations to all the team members for a great film and for representing Eustace ISD with Bulldog Pride!

Buckle Up

EHS video that won the Tyler Region 2015 Texas Department of Transportation public service announcement for Traffic Safety. Producer/Film Maker – Nic Caldwell; Creator – Kelsey Max; Actress…
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Legislative Update

Last week, I had the opportunity to attend the TASB/TASA Legislative Conference in Austin. It was one of the most informative events I have attended in recent years. Among the presenters were Ross Ramsey, co-founder and executive editor of the Texas Tribune, Senator Larry Taylor, Chairman of the Senate Education Committee, Beaman Floyd, lobbyist and consultant for TASB, Senator Royce West, Dineen Majcher, co-founder of Texans Advocating for Meaningful Student Assessment, Representative Jimmie Don Aycock, and Representative Larry Gonzalez. There were also presentations given by representatives of TASA and TASB.

The main focus of the conference was to discuss the current legislative session. In this session, there have been almost 6,500 bills filed. As you would expect, a number of these bills deal with education. Some bill deal directly with the actual instruction in the classroom; other bills are more indirectly related to education. There is no way I can present each bill that was mentioned, so I will try to include the major issues.

Both the House and Senate are considering measures to lower taxes that Texans pay. The Senate is focusing on property tax relief with a possible increase in the homestead exemption. One proposal would provide the “average” homeowner in Texas with a $264 annual savings. While I am all for lower property taxes, we have already seen that property taxes can be difficult to control. In 2006, the legislature “reduced” property taxes by decreasing the maximum tax rate for school districts. Unfortunately, most of this relief has been eroded by rising property values (over which school districts have no control). In addition, if property taxes are lowered, the revenue lost to school districts will have to fall to another source.

The House is looking at possibly lowering the sales tax rate. Both proposals have positives and negatives to consider.

Senator Taylor provided his beliefs on what would provide the innovation necessary to best prepare our students:

  • Teacher Preparation and teacher pay. Senator Taylor stated that districts needed more flexibility in they pay teachers.
  • Money – Not just more money, but how we spend the money in education. Senator Taylor pointed out that the Health and Human Services budget now exceeds the education budget.
  • How do we assess our students?

Beaman Floyd gave a very detailed discussion on the Teacher Retirement System of Texas. He discussed the three major components of the retirement system: TRS Benefits, TRS ActiveCare (the insurance program for current school employees), and TRS Care  (the insurance program for retired teachers). The TRS Benefit program is in sound financial condition and should continue to be so in the future. The TRS ActiveCare program, which was established in 2001, has been subject to extreme inflationary pressures. He pointed out that the state has not increased their contribution to employee’s insurance since the beginning of the program. Many school districts have either increased their contribution or provided salary increases to employees to help offset the increased cost of premiums. Finally, TRS Care is not doing well financially at all. It is suffering from serious underfunding. The legislature will need to provide an additional $800 million this biennium to keep the program sound; however, this is not a long term solution. The problem will continue into the future.

Dineen Majcher discussed the Texas high stakes assessment system. Since 2000, Texas has spent about $1.2 billion on high stakes testing. She pointed out that the majority of both parties supported reducing high stakes testing. She also pointed out that Texas requires more high stakes testing for graduation than most other states. Ms. Majcher also discussed numerous bills that have been introduced that would either reduce the number of high stakes tests or eliminate some of the tests entirely. Several of the bills focus on the writing assessments in grades 4, 7, and high school. Other bills are seeking to eliminate the social studies and science tests at the 5th & 8th grades.

The greatest surprise came when Representative Aycock announced HB 1759 that would repeal the entire school finance system. He believes that it is within reach to make significant changes to how Texas funds its schools. Among the bills highlights include basing the transportation allotment on ADA (transportation allotment has never been increased since its introduction), eliminating the Cost of Education Index (which again has never been modified since its inception) and putting that money back into the funding formulas, and eliminating the Mid-Size School Formula. The new system would add $3 billion into school funding. Representative Aycock stated that 94% of the children would see a funding gain.

There have been several bills that would introduce vouchers, grants, tax credits, or taxpayer savings accounts to allow public funds to be used for private schools.

There have also been numerous bills introduced that would alter the school start and/or ending date.

Today, I received a notification that the Senate has passed a bill that would begin rating all campuses on an A-F scale. The bill now goes to the House for consideration.

If you have any questions about any of these topics, please do not hesitate to contact me at cholcombe@eustaceisd.net. Also, I have summarized greatly in this article. If you are interested in knowing about specific bills, please let me know.

This Week

Congratulations to Zach Hughes on placing 11th at the state power lifting meet this past weekend in Abilene! Zach put in many hours of work to make it to the state meet.

Monday – Wednesday will be end of course and STAAR testing in writing.

A reminder that EISD will be in school this Friday as a bad weather make-up day. Friday will be an early release day. Buses will run two hours early.

Monday – End of course – English I; STAAR – 4th & 7th Grade Writing Day 1

Tuesday – STAAR – 4th & 7th Grade Writing – Day 2; Reading 5th & 8th Grade; Softball and Baseball at Rice – 5:00; Middle School Track at Malakoff

Wednesday – End of Course English II

Thursday – High School Track at Malakoff

Friday – Early Release Day; Primary and Intermediate Easter Egg Hunts; JV & V Softball at Arp – 5:00; Varsity Baseball at Arp – 6:30

I hope everyone has a great week!

 

 

State Power Lifting and This Week

Congratulations to Sunni Goodell on placing 2nd at the State Power Lifting meet this past weekend! Congratulations also go out to Marshalla Padgitt who placed 12 in state in her weight class! Both of these young ladies put in a lot of time and work to make it to this level. The power lifting coaches are Clay Ard and Nick Shutak. A picture of all four is at the end of this post.

This Week
Monday – MS Track at Kemp; One Act Play Zone Competition – Van

Tuesday – Kindergarten Family Reading Night; JV & V Softball v. Mildred – 5:00; JV & V Baseball v. Mildred – 5:00

Wednesday – UIL Middle School Concert and Sight Reading at Canton; One Act Play District Competition – Van

Thursday – 2nd Grade Family Reading Night; HS Track at Ferris

Friday – JV & V Softball v. Troup – 5:00; Varsity Baseball v. Troup – 5:30

Saturday – Boys State Power Lifting Meet – Abilene

I hope everyone has a great week!

State Power Lifting Meet - Clay Ard, Sunni Goodell, Marshalla Padgitt, Nick Shutak

State Power Lifting Meet – Clay Ard, Sunni Goodell, Marshalla Padgitt, Nick Shutak

March-May 2015 Theater Arts Schedule of Events

Attention Parents and Theater Arts Students:

Dear Parents,

If you’d like to be involved with any of the events listed below by volunteering time for concession, sewing costumes, providing snacks for meets, etc. Please contact Ms. Beaty at tbeaty@eustaceisd.net. Thank you!

Updated Calendar of Events listed for Theater Arts Program including U.I.L. One Act Play

All Theater Performance Dates, Workshops, Deadlines, Trips & UIL Meets:

March 2015- May 2015

March 15th—Sunday: OAP Script & Community Standards due to Judge

March 18th- Wednesday: TxDot PSA Students meet to film video 5:30 p.m.

March 20th—Friday: Alice in Wonderland One Act Play Sneek Peek Public Performance @ 7:00 call time 5:00 p.m.

March 20th– Friday: Tx Dot PSA Video Due

March 21st- Saturday: Alice in Wonderland One Act Play Sneek Peek Public Performance @7:00 p.m. call time 5:00 p.m.

March 23rd– Monday: One Act Play Zone Contest @ Van High School

March 24th- Wednesday: Dallas Theater Center/Project Discovery Teacher Workshop for Colossal rehearsal with Mr. Kennedy only

March 25th– Wednesday: One Act Play District Contest @ Mabank High School

April 2nd—Thursday: Early Release Day— Rehearsal until 2:30 p.m.

April 3rd—Friday: Bad Weather Makeup Day

April 8th—Wednesday: One Act Play Bi-District @ Mabank

April 13th– Monday: Dallas Theater Center—Teacher Workshop for Sense and Sensibility- Rehearsal with Mr. Kennedy only

April 15th– Wednesday: Colossal at Dallas Theater Center—No Rehearsal

April 16th– Thursday: One Act Play Area-Waco Midway High School -District Track Meet same day

April 24rd—Friday: One Act Play Regional –Blinn College

May 1st—Friday: School Principal’s Day– Drama Club sponsors

May 6th– Wednesday: DTC Sense and Sensibility Trip– No rehearsal

May 15th- Friday: Drama Club Banquet 6:00 p.m.

May 26th– Tuesday: One Act Play State Meet at Austin