August 13, 2019
Dear CISD Families,
Back to School is an exciting time for our students, staff and families. Thank you to those who joined us last Wednesday evening for our Back to School Facebook Live event. Once again, the participation in this event shows it is a successful way to engage with our community, as we had more than 100 view the event live and, so far, have had more than 3,100 views of the video. Those who may have missed the event, can view an archive of the chat at www.facebook.com. We continue to plan for future Facebook Live Chats as they help us live out our Engagement Core Value of, “We value collective engagement that positively impacts the lives of our children and our world.” I am so excited about the start of this school year. I believe it will be one of the best years yet for Coppell ISD.
Last week, all of our teachers and staff returned to their campuses to prepare their classrooms, participate in professional development activities, and learn from each other as we get ready for the first day of school. One highlight of last week was our Convocation ceremony, where all teachers and staff from all of our campuses and buildings gather at the CHS Arena to kick-off the school year. Highlights of Convocation with the theme of Gifts, Passions and Stories, included performances from our talented students, our Teachers of the Year sharing their stories, as well as other staff sharing their “CISD Cover Stories,” and two of our outstanding former leaders -— Vonita White and Buddy Echols — sharing memories as we celebrate our district’s 60th Birthday this year! Our keynote speaker was one of our Distinguished Alumni, Jacob Schick, a retired U.S. Marine Corporal and Executive Director of the nonprofit 22Kill organization. Amongst his many inspiring messages for staff was to “Be present with compassion, absent of comparison.” This is advice all of us should follow, from our youngest children, to our parents and guardians, to all of our teachers, staff, community members and more.
All of our employees have been hard at work getting ready to welcome students back to class on the first day of the new school year, Wednesday, Aug. 14. There will be a new chapter to the CISD story, as we welcome students to our newest school, Canyon Ranch Elementary. A special thank you to our facilities and maintenance staff, custodians and construction partners, who have worked countless hours this summer to ensure that Canyon Ranch, as well as major upgrades to CMS East, CMS North and CHS were finished on time, under budget and ready for the start of school.
The beginning of a school year can be challenging in terms of transportation. Please plan ahead by leaving early and allowing ample time for traffic the first few days of school. A suggestion of carpooling, if you are able or allowing walking or bike riding if appropriate. I also encourage parents of bus riders to download the Durham Bus App at www.coppellisd.com/bus to track their child(ren)’s bus. Be sure to turn on notifications after you install the app. Specifically, I ask for grace as the first few days of school can be hectic as we transition back to our school morning and afternoon routines.
Please be part of the CISD Cover Story by sharing the first day of school pictures of your children using the hashtag #CISD1stDay19. I always enjoy following our families and staff online during this time of year.
Here’s to an amazing 2019-20 school year, our 60th, which will be our best year ever!
Safety and Security Procedures for 2019-2020 School Year
CISD is implementing additional safety and security procedures for the 2019-2020 school year in order to ensure the safety of our students, teachers, staff and campus visitors. These are:
- When the front doors of our schools are unlocked during the school day, visitors and volunteers must be buzzed into the front offices to check-in before entering the school.
- As in the past, all visitors and volunteers must check-in at the front office through the Raptor system. All visitors and volunteers must bring a photo ID to check in, and passports are accepted. Please visit www.coppellisd.com/Domain/3443 for details.
- All volunteers must complete our new background check application at least one week before volunteering. Visit www.coppellisd.com/volunteer or see the article below for more information.
- In anticipation of home football games at Buddy Echols Stadium, additional security measures are in place. All visitors to football games may be subjected to wanding with handheld metal detectors. Purses will be limited to clutch style bags, no larger than 4.5” x 6.5.” No backpacks will be allowed, as was the case last year. All bags are subject to search. This site has additional information on Buddy Echols security procedures https://coppellathletics.net.
Announcing CISD’s New Volunteer Background Check System
New for the 2019-20 school year, CISD is using a new application and background check process for all volunteers in the District using the same software used for employee background checks. In order to upgrade the security of your personal information, you will be required to fill out a volunteer application (setting up a new secure username and password) and background form. This username and password will be used again each year you complete the form. Volunteers are a valuable part of our educational team, and we appreciate all you do! Please visit coppellisd.com/volunteer and click on “Volunteer Application and Background Check Forms" to complete the application and background check at least a week in advance before you volunteer.
Student Handbook and Code of Conduct Available Online
The CISD Board of Trustees approved the 2019-2020 Student Code of Conduct during the July 22 Board Meeting. This document guides student expectations of behavior in an effort to maintain a safe and productive learning environment for all students.
The Student Handbook sets forth guidelines for operating within the CISD schools. In it, you will find the staff and parent commitment to collaborate together for each child's success, basic campus operations information and attendance guidelines. There are two laws that guide attendance in school. We recently updated our attendance practices within the district to better align with the compulsory attendance laws. Please take a moment to review these standards. It is important that our students are present at school, as some aspects of student learning cannot be recreated. Consistent attendance in school is directly linked to academic success. Our school schedule has some naturally built in holiday vacation days throughout the school year to allow for family travel. Aside from these dates, travel and trips are considered to be unexcused absences. Both the Student Code of Conduct and the Student Handbook, as well as the CISD Dress Code, can be found at www.coppellisd.com/policies.
Back to School Quick Tips
Check out www.coppellisd.com/backtoschool for tips and links for the first day of school Aug. 14. A couple of quick tips include:
- Bus routes are available at www.coppellisd.com/bus. Special needs bus route information will not be online.
- You also can download the Durham Bus Tracking App to track your child(ren)’s bus at www.ccoppellisd.com/Page/15154.
- Look for school zone signs to begin flashing on Aug. 12. Follow and obey traffic laws, drive slow and leave early!
- Download the CISD App
- Add money to your school lunch account at www.coppellisd.com/childnutrition
- Share your “First Day” pics with us by using the hashtag #CISD1stDay19 and tagging us on social media!
CISD is excited to welcome students to the Canyon Ranch Elementary! In addition, major upgrades have been completed at CMS East, including a new gym, new fine arts spaces for band and choir, additional classroom space, expanded cafeteria space, more parking and the completion of a concession stand at the athletic field. CHS also had renovations to its entryway completed this summer. For more information on 2016 Bond construction projects, visit www.coppellisd.com/construction.
CISD Now on Telegram Messenger App
CISD is expanding its communication channels with parents and guardians via the Telegram Messenger App. The district will be sending one-way messages and announcements via this app to those who download the app and sign up for the district’s chat. To sign up, download the Telegram App from the App Store or Google Play store and then use the link https://t.me/cisdcommunication to receive CISD messages. Once an account has been created use the link https://t.me/cisdcommunication or search for “CISD Communications” to subscribe and receive CISD messages.
Trustee Leigh Walker Completes Leadership TASB
Congratulations to CISD Trustee Leigh Walker, who recently earned the designation of “Master Trustee” upon completion of Leadership TASB this summer, a program sponsored by the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB).
CISD Welcomes 2019-2020 New Employees
Coppell ISD is welcoming 236 new teachers and other staff to the district for the 2019-2020 School Year. On Monday, Aug. 5, these new hires enjoyed fellowship and an official welcome from the district at CMS West during the district’s annual New Employee Breakfast, sponsored by the Coppell Chamber of Commerce.
Samira Khan and Cathy Douglas Named
Region 10 Teacher of the Year Finalists
CISD’s Samira Khan and Cathy Douglas have been named as 2020 Teacher of the Year finalists by Region 10, marking the first time in CISD’s 60 year history that both of the district’s Teachers of the Year have achieved this regional teaching distinction. Mrs. Khan, who teaches 5th grade at Richard J. Lee Elementary, and Mrs. Douglas, who teaches biology at the Coppell High School Ninth Grade Campus (CHS9), were recognized as one of the two finalists in their teaching categories during the Region 10 Teacher of the Year Banquet held Aug. 1 at Southfork Ranch. This event honored more than 120 Teachers of the Year from across the Region 10 Education Service Center’s ten-county service area, with two teachers from the elementary and secondary categories named as finalists and one winner announced in each category. Congratulations to these two CISD teachers!
Schools Engage Community to Welcome Students Back to School
Whether it was home visits, a bus road show with teachers and staff, or popsicle or frozen yogurt parties, CISD schools engaged their communities in a variety of ways to help get students and families, both new and returning, excited about the first day of school Aug. 14. These activities included: home visits by Canyon Ranch elementary teachers to welcome its new students; a popsicle party hosted by Valley Ranch elementary for its new learners from the Summit Apartments; New Tech High @ Coppell’s Rookie Camp for new learners, Pre-K student orientations hosted by Austin, Denton Creek, Lakeside and Wilson Elementary Schools; Denton Creek Elementary School’s “Popsicles at the Park" for kindergartners at Kid Kountry; Mockingbird Elementary’s TCBY night; CMS North Cougar Camp and Beat the Heat Back-to-School Social; Austin Elementary’s Popsicles at the Park; Town Center Elementary’s teacher home visits; Cottonwood Creek teachers and staff delivering welcome notes to students; CMS East’s Bronco Bash and more.
Several news stations covered the Richard J. Lee Road Show. including NBC 5. Visit www.nbcdfw.com to view the story.
2019-2020 Budget Hearing Set for Aug. 26
Four Board Budget Workshops were held this summer as part of the planning and drafting of the CISD 2019-2020 Budget, which began in January 2019. CISD will hold its Budget and Proposed Tax Rate Hearing on Monday, Aug. 26, at 5:30 p.m. prior to the Board of Trustees meeting at 7 p.m. For more information about the proposed 2019-2020 budget, including details on the four Budget Workshops, visit www.coppellisd.com/budget.
Dates Set for CISD 2019-2020 iLead
Want to know more about Coppell ISD? Applications are now open for iLead, a five session leadership training opportunity designed to help parents and community members gain insight into the operations of Coppell ISD, learn more about district service opportunities and build capacity for future Board and committee leadership. The cost to participate in iLead is $50, which helps defray district expenses such as t-shirts, training materials, food, etc. Visit www.coppellisd.com/ilead for more information and session dates and to apply to participate.To confirm your spot, please complete the application and bring exact cash or check payable to Coppell ISD (at the Vonita White Administration Building) no later than Friday, Sept. 6. Limited seating and selection will be on a first-come, first served basis. All confirmed participants will be notified by Monday, Sept. 9.
CISD Seeks Crossing Guards & Child Nutrition Workers
CISD is looking for crossing guards and Child Nutrition employees for the 2019-2020 school year. Starting pay is $12 per hour for crossing guards and $12.36 per hour for Child Nutrition employees. Apply at www.coppellisd.com/Page/14460.
2019-2020 Coppell ISD Education Foundation Shirts Available
It's a new school year, with a new opportunity to purchase your 2019 CEF shirt! By purchasing a shirt, you are supporting CEF and our “Give for Grants” fundraising campaign. The money raised provides CISD educators grants for innovative classroom programs! Shirts are $20 each and can be purchased online at https://coppellisdeducationfoundation.revtrak.net. The order deadline is Friday, Aug. 23.
- August 14: First Day of School
- August 26: Board of Trustees Budget Hearing 5:30 p.m.; Regular Meeting starts at 7:00 p.m.
- August 27: High School Curriculum Night
- August 28: Middle School Curriculum Night
- August 29: Elementary School Curriculum Night
- September 2: Labor Day Holiday
- September 3: CHS 9 Curriculum Night - 6:00 p.m.
Start your day the healthy way – by walking or biking! Trade in traffic for a safe, outdoor route to school along one of our beautiful trails. With more than 14 miles of trails, there are plenty of ways to stay active in Coppell. Check out the interactive map at coppelltx.gov/routestoschool!
At Baylor Scott & White Medical Center – Irving, we provide comprehensive healthcare services to help you and your family get better. And because we care about building a healthier community, we’re renovating our hospital to fit your needs as they grow. Learn more at BSWHealth.com/Irving.
Interested in learning more about pursuing a degree from GCU? You are invited to find out about your opportunities to earn your next degree and learn more from our enrollment representatives. Learn More!