Thanks for a Great Season

by Coy Holcombe.  

Thanks to Coach Doug Wendel, the entire football coaching staff, and each and every player for a great football season. The varsity team finished second in district and qualified for the playoffs for the first time in 11 years. The JV football team also had a great year.

Special thanks goes out to all the parents and fans that supported the Bulldogs this football season. Also, special thanks to Sandy Sowers and the varsity cheerleading squad for their support and for being the best cheerleading squad in this area. A special thank you also goes out to Todd Felty, Chad Bentley, Patricia Fields, and the Mighty Bulldog Marching Band for their support and for providing first-class marching and music at each game. 

Also, I want to thank all the people behind the scenes that made this football season enjoyable: our announcer, Cotton Walker, the chain crew, Haskell Cook, our security officer, and Jack Wallace and his maintenance people for taking care of our facilities and field.

Finally, I want to thank Shelley Compton and the officers and members of the Booster Club for all the hard work put in during these past few months. They put in many long hours in providing support for the volleyball, cross country, and football teams.

Great Thursday Night

by Coy Holcombe.  

Thanks to everyone for making last night a huge success! There was plenty of food and entertainment for everyone. I really appreciate all the community members coming out and showing their support and appreciation for our young men and young ladies. Special thanks goes out to the officers and members of the Athletic Booster Club for the planning and preparation that went into both the parking lot party and the pep rally.

This truly was a community event: EASA brought their playoff teams and their cheerleading squads, the Middle School and High School cheerleading squads both performed. the cross country teams, volleyball team, and football team were there, the band performed, and former players from previous playoff teams were honored.

Tonight, our Bulldogs face Nevada-Community for the bi-district football championship. The game will take place in Richardson at Eagle-Mustang Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30. A link to a map of the location of the stadium is below. I encourage everyone to come out to see football, cheerleading, and music done the Bulldog way!

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=1250+W.+Belt+Line+Rd+-+Richardson,+Texas+75080&ie=UTF8&om=1

Parking Lot Party/Pep Rally

by Coy Holcombe.  

Starting at 5:30 this evening, the Athletic Booster Club will be sponsoring a parking lot party and community pep rally at the football field parking lot. The Booster Club will be serving free hot dogs and hamburgers. Everyone is invited to come out and help celebrate the accomplishments of the cross country teams, the volleyball team, and the football team. Also, Mr. Felty has informed me that the band will be doing their annual glow-stick performance tonight. Please, don’t miss out on a great night of fun and entertainment.

Thanks for a Great Season

by Coy Holcombe.  

The Eustace Bulldog volleyball team ended its season last night in a hard fought game against Princeton. Throughout the season, these ladies did a first-class job in representing our district. Along the way, they won the district championship, bi-district championship, and area championship. I am extremely proud of the team and the coaching staff for all the hard work and sacrifice that went into this season.  

I also want to say a special thank you to the parents for their support this year. They also put in many long hours. Finally, a special thank you to all the fans for their support this season.

Again, thank you ladies for a great season!!

High School Receives Grant from Exxon Mobil

by Coy Holcombe.  

Special thanks goes out to Prewitt Petroleum Products, Inc.  and TexStop #3 for their efforts in securing a $500 Exxon Mobil Educational Alliance grant for Eustace High School. The grant will be used to support the math program at EHS. Through funding from Exxon Mobil, 4,000 of these grants will be awarded to high schools across the country.

Special thanks also goes out to Greg Russell of Prewitt Petroleum Products, inc. and Jason Cole, manager of TexStop #3 for their efforts in securing this grant for EHS. The Exxon Mobil Educational Alliance program is designed to provide Exxon and Mobil retailers with an opportunity to invest in the future of their communities through educational grants to neighborhood schools.

EISD thanks everyone involved for their efforts in obtaining this grant for EHS.

Directions to Eagle/Mustang Stadium

by Coy Holcombe.  

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=1250+W.+Belt+Line+Rd+-+Richardson,+Texas+75080&ie=UTF8&om=1

The above link will take you to a map that details the location of the stadium for Friday’s bi-district playoff game. It looks like taking 175 to 75 will be the best route. Once on 75, you will go North until you reach the Belt Line Road exit. After you exit, you will turn back left on Belt Line Road. The stadium will be a little under a mile on the right side of the road.

Technology, Volleyball, and Football

by Coy Holcombe.  

If you have visited (or tried to visit) our homepage recently, you probably did not get to see much. We had some major issues with one of our main servers starting on Thursday. Our technology department spent some long hours this weekend reconfiguring a new server for our email, webpage, and Moodle. While things are beginning to return to normal, it will take a couple of additional days to get all components of the new server working just right.

Congratulations to Coach Chuck Powers and the volleyball team for a great victory against New Boston in the area playoff game on Saturday. Our ladies will now take on Princeton in the regional quarterfinals. This game will be played tomorrow (Tuesday) at Quinlan-Ford. The opening serve will take place at 7:00. I encourage everyone to come out and support our volleyball team.

Our Bulldog football team will be playing for the bi-district championship this Friday against Nevada-Community. The game will be played at the Richardson Mustang-Eagle Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30. Make plans now to come out and support the football team in their first playoff appearance in 11 years. Check back later this week for detailed driving instructions to the stadium.

  

Thanks to the Drama Department

by Coy Holcombe.  

Thanks to Tammy Beaty and the High School Drama Department for a great performance of The Princess and The Princess. The play was performed for the general public and for both the Primary and Intermediate schools.

I know that the cast and crew put in many hours of rehearsal time to make this play successful. If you missed the live performance, or if you would like to see the play again, the link below will take you to a video of the play.

http://moodle.eustaceisd.net/blocks/inwicast/view.php?id=104&cmd=show_media&mediaRef=MEDIA081104185301306

Pupil Projections

by Coy Holcombe.  

We have talked before about how the state estimates how much money to send to school districts. So, how does the state get these estimates for future state funding? One avenue that the state uses is pupil projections provided by school districts. About 3 years ago, EISD had to submit projections to the state for the next three years on estimated ADA, special programs ADA, and special program FTEs (full-time equivalent). These estimates then became part of the estimates used by TEA to plan and allocate funds for the next three years.

Currently, TEA is requesting pupil projections for 08-09, 09-10, and 10-11 school years. These estimates have to be submitted by December 12, 2008. TEA has its own set of projections for EISD for these years. If we agree with the TEA projections, then no change is necessary. However, usually the TEA projections are much greater than the actual numbers for EISD. Only in a limited number of categories will the TEA projections actually reflect a reasonable approximation of enrollment for EISD.

So how does EISD project the numbers three years in advance? Since the submission of this data is not due until December 12, we will have over two full six weeks of actual enrollment data to use in our projections. Once we make the projections for the 08-09 school year, we can then estimate the projections for the 09-10 and the 10-11 school years.

If you have any questions regarding pupil projections or how EISD calculates future projections, please contact me at cholcombe@eustaceisd.net.

Pre-K Grant Proposed Rules

by Coy Holcombe.  

Last week, I briefly mentioned that there would be changes in the rules governing the pre-k grant program. This program allows EISD to basically receive funding for a full-day pre-k program. Normally, the state only provides funding for 1/2 day pre-k program. With the pre-k grant, the state still provides funding for 1/2 day attendance and the grant provides the funding for the other 1/2 day. This enables EISD to provide a full-day pre-k program for our 4 year olds.

The new rules were released last Friday. I will attempt to summarize the rules below, and I will provide a link that will take you to the complete text of the proposed rules.

The basic premise behind the new rules is to allow districts that do not have a full-day pre-k program to apply for funding to start a full-day program. The state is targeting the districts that do not have a full-day program and that are performing below the state standard on the state assessments in third grade (the TAKS test). The new rules provide three different tiers of funding: Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3.

Tier 1 funding will have the highest percentage of available funds. This tier will target schools whose performance on the grade 3 assessments is "substantially below the state average, as defined in the grant application, for the last three consecutive years and either has not previously received a pre-k grant or did not participate in the last round of pre-k grant funding.

Tier 2 will receive a percentage of available funding. This tier takes in schools that received grant funds in the latest round of funding. The schools funded under Tier 2 must "demonstrate improved student performance results for the last three consecutive years on the Grade 3 assessment instruments" and have "demonstrated successful implementation of a prekindergarten program that includes proven readiness components".

The final tier, Tier 3 will also receive a percentage of funding. This tier takes into account schools that received funds from the latest round of funding and "has been substantially below the state average, as defined in the grant application, for the last three consecutive years".

So, where does EISD fall in these three tiers? Well, certainly, we would not qualify in either Tier 1 or Tier 3 because we have received grant funds and our performance in grade 3 is not below, but above, the state average. In Tier 2, it states that a district must show "demonstrated improved student performance results for the last three consecutive years on the Grade 3 assessment instruments". Because our scores in the third grade have been substantially above the state average, it may be difficult to show this improved performance. Over the last three years, our passing rate on the TAKS reading test in third grade have been 98%, 99%, and 96%. In the 3rd grade TAKS math, our passing percentages have been 91%, 87%, and 91%. When your scores are this high, it is difficult to show improvement.

Since there is no tier that takes into account high achievement being maintained over a multiple year period, it may be that EISD does not qualify for any pre-k grant funds because our scores on the third grade TAKS tests were too good. It appears that the new rules will not provide funds for a district such as EISD that has done everything that the state has asked and has produced scores above and beyond the state average on a consistent basis. 

It needs to be noted that these are just proposed rules at this time. Right now, TEA is taking public comments on the proposed rules. Anyone may submit comments to TEA regarding these rules. I encourage everyone interested in maintaining our full-day pre-k program to submit your comments to TEA. I believe the bottom line is that you do not build up new pre-k programs by tearing down successful pre-k programs. You may submit comments to TEA by emailing them at rules@tea.state.tx.us.

You may view the proposed rules by going to this website:

http://www.tea.state.tx.us/rules/commissioner/proposed/1008/102-1002-ltrprop.html