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    Dear CISD Families, 

    One of my favorite things to do as a Superintendent is when I get the opportunity to read aloud to our students, as reading out loud to children is an important building block for future academic success. I also consider myself a lifelong learner, and enjoy reading books that enhance my leadership skills and provide me with the opportunity to learn and grow.  Currently, I am reading “The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else In Business.” I have asked my Cabinet to join me in reading this book as part of a team book study. Some of the book's content was also incorporated into a Board Retreat that was held for the development of our school board. While I know we do an excellent job in Coppell ISD, we can do better and should always strive towards continuous improvement in our collective mission of creating profound learning experiences for our children.  In other words, we should practice what we teach amongst ourselves. 

    Therefore, I am elated that several of our elementary schools are engaging their parents and guardians in parent book clubs.  You will read more about these clubs below, but I hope you will take advantage of this opportunity to learn together. Even if your school is not participating, we are sharing some of the titles of the books with you. I encourage you to read these books in order to expand your own knowledge as we work together to educate the whole child. 

    This week, I also had the opportunity to present a State of Education update with the Coppell Chamber of Commerce. This annual tradition allows me to share more of the CISD Story with our business and community partners.  I look forward to doing the same with the Irving-Las Colinas Chamber next week. I am ending my week by meeting in a small group with Gov. Greg Abbott, today, as part of the US India Chamber of Commerce DFW Small Business Forum.  I plan to share how grateful we are that HB 3 allocated more funding for schools and provided property tax relief, which enabled CISD to lower our tax rate by 8.9 percent for 2019-2020. I look forward to continuing to share our legislative goals with Gov. Abbott and our state representatives, including our commitment to redefining success and redefining assessment, as it is never too early to prepare for the 2021 Legislative Session. 

    To that end, I hope you will take advantage of our first Lunch Bites Facebook Live event next week on Sept. 18, which is all about Community Based Accountability and CISD.  We hope that these 30 minute events, which consist of a 20 minute video followed by a Facebook Live question and answer session, will help our community learn more about topics of interest in the district. 

     I also want to take this opportunity to remember 9/11 and to thank CISD’s own first responders for keeping our students, teachers and staff, and visitors to our campuses safe each and every day.  I also want to thank our community for your patience at our first home football game last Friday at Buddy Echols Field. I know adjusting to our new safety and security procedures may have been a challenge, but we appreciate your cooperation in working with us to ensure these games are a safe and fun experience for all. I hope you will save the date and join us for our next home football game and 3rd Annual Community Tailgate on Oct. 4.  We will share reminders about this event, as well as about safety and security procedures prior to that game, as we continue to improve our commitment to safety and security in the district. 

    I hope you enjoy this weekend with your family,

    Brad Hunt


    New Assessment for K-9th Learners

    CISD is excited to be implementing a new assessment tool this school year called the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), which will help measure growth and skill mastery for our Kindergarten-9th grade learners.  Your child/ren will be taking the online assessment twice during the school year. Once during our fall testing window and once during our spring testing window. Our fall testing window currently is open, and we are now working to ensure all of our educators have access to the data and a clear understanding of how they can use the data in order to differentiate instruction to support overall learners needs.  Our Kinder-2nd grade learners are taking a reading and math assessment. Our 3rd-8th grade learners are taking a reading, math and science assessment, and our 9th grade learners are taking a reading and math assessment. Our campuses will be working with all of our families on sharing the data during the month of October. Until then, here is a link to the MAP Parent Toolkit that gives insight into what you will receive about your child’s assessment data.  Link: https://www.nwea.org/parent-toolkit/


    Grading Expectations + Final Exams

    We know that our wonderful CISD educators were able to discuss grading practices and expectations during our Curriculum Nights this fall. We also want to share these again for our families as a reference. Click here to view the elementary expectations and here to view the secondary expectations.  As you read over the document for secondary expectations, you will notice that the district is not having final exams for our middle school or high school campuses this year.  

    As the expectations state, "No semester exams or spring final exams will be given in 6th-12th grade. Educators will have a summative assessment that will be part of their 2nd and 4th nine week grades designed to comprehensively measure overall growth. These will be given near the end of the 2nd and 4th nine weeks, and the reassessment practice does not apply to these summative assessments.”  

    We hope to relieve some of the overall pressure with assessments, since a majority of our state testing (STAAR, End of Course Exams, IB and AP Exams, etc.) occurs in the final weeks of our school year.

    Free Student Admission to Home Volleyball Games on Feeder Pattern Nights

    CISD is expanding its Feeder Pattern Nights to some high school girls volleyball home games.  Students will receive free admission to a game on their designated night with purchase of parent/guardian ticket. Come out and cheer our Coppell Cowgirls at the CHS Arena and enjoy time with your school and feeder pattern community! We ask that parents attend the game with their elementary and middle school children. Our Feeder Pattern Nights are:


    • Sept. 24, 5:30 p.m. vs. Flower Mound Marcus  — CMS East, Austin, Lakeside, Mockingbird and Pinkerton Night; 

    • Oct. 15, 5:30 p.m. vs Flower Mound — CMS North, Cottonwood Creek, Denton Creek, Town Center and Wilson Night; 

    • Oct. 22, 5:30 p.m. vs. Irving MacArthur  — CMS West, Canyon Ranch, Richard J. Lee and Valley Ranch Night.

    Sept. 18 Lunch Bites Focuses on Community-Based Accountability System

    CISD is launching a new Facebook Live series called “Lunch Bites” to engage with our community. This is a series that can be viewed over lunch and will feature 20 minutes of video content followed by a 10 minute question and answer session live on Facebook.  Our first Lunch Bites is Wednesday, Sept. 18, at 11:30 a.m. will focus on Community-Based Accountability System and why CISD is adopting this program. View Lunch Bites at www.facebook.com/coppellisd.

    Food Tickets Available for CISD Oct. 4 Community Tailgate

    CISD invites our community to join us for our 3rd Annual Community Tailgate Friday, Oct. 4 from 5:30 p.m. to game kickoff at 7 p.m.  The tailgate will be held in the parking lot of Buddy Echols field at Coppell High School in front of the tennis courts. Dinner from Hard 8 BBQ will be available for $5, which includes either a turkey or beef sandwich, two sides and a drink. The only way to guarantee a meal is to purchase tickets in advance by the end of the day Sept. 30.  To purchase a ticket, visit https://www.schoolpay.com. We also will be celebrating the district’s 60th birthday with a Pop Up Party at the Community Tailgate. Join us in celebrating CISD and supporting our Cowboys as they play Hebron High School. Game tickets are still required to enter Buddy Echols Field to watch the game. We ask that parents attend the game with their elementary or middle school children.

    CHS Sidekick Newspaper Chosen as NSPA Pacemaker Finalist
    Congrats to the 2018-2019 Coppell High School Sidekick newspaper staff, who has been named a 2019 National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA) Newspaper Pacemaker finalist. The Sidekick is one of eight finalists from Texas and one of 49 national finalists. The Sidekick is the only public school finalist from the DFW Metroplex, and one of only four public schools finalists in the state. NSPA Pacemakers are the highest national honors given to high school journalism programs. Coppell Student Media won NSPA Online Pacemakers in 2017 and 2018, while CHS KCBY-TV won NSPA Broadcast Pacemakers in 2015, 2017 and 2018. Prior to this year, Sidekick has been named a Newspaper Pacemaker finalist in 2002 and 2018. Newspaper Pacemaker winners will be announced Nov. 23 at the NSPA Awards Ceremony at the Marriott Wardman Park in Washington, D.C., at the Journalism Education Association/NSPA Fall National High School Journalism Convention.

    CMS North Selected as Model Professional Learning Community

    For the third consecutive year, CMS North has been chosen as a “Model Professional Learning Community School” by Solution Tree, a global leader in Professional Learning Communities (PLC). Only 232 schools in the U.S. and only 28 schools in Texas have this designation, which is given to schools that demonstrate a commitment to Professional Learning Community concepts that result in improved student learning.  PLC is an ongoing process in which educators work collaboratively in recurring cycles of collective inquiry and action research to achieve better results for the students they serve. PLCs operate under the assumption that the key to improved learning for students is continuous job-embedded learning for educators.

    Broadway Star Visits for CHS Newsies Production

    Broadway star Clay Thomson, who was in NEWSIES on Broadway, came and taught a Broadway Dance Workshop to the CHS Theatre high school cast of the production for their first day of rehearsal.  Thomson worked with the student performers on the iconic "paper dance" from the song "Seize the Day," and held a Q & A with the students about being a working actor. Thomson’s Broadway credits include King Kong, NEWSIES, Matilda and the Broadway National Tours of Wicked, West Side Story and Cameron Macintosh’s Oliver. He also has performed on Saturday Night Live, at the Tony Awards, and in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Good Morning America and more. The CHS production of NEWSIES begins its performances Nov. 1 at the CHS Auditorium.

    Engaging Parents Through Parent Book Clubs

    Following the lead of Austin Elementary, several CISD elementary schools are engaging their community via parent book clubs led by parents, school librarians and administrators.  Joining Austin are Valley Ranch Elementary, Mockingbird Elementary and Richard J. Lee Elementary. Austin Elementary will read "
    Teach Your Children Well: Why Values and Coping Skills Matter More Than Grades, Trophies, and Fat Envelopes" and "The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed." The Valley Ranch Elementary parent book club will launch by reading “The Leader in Me: How Schools Around the World Are Inspiring Greatness, One Child at a Time.”  Mockingbird Elementary’s Book Club will feature six books over the school year— “The Whole Brain Child,” “The Gift of Failure,” “No Drama Discipline,” “UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World,” “How to Raise an Adult,” and “Untangled.” Richard J. Lee Elementary’s title is yet to be determined. These parent book clubs will foster collective engagement between parents/guardians and educators by bringing them together, along with guest speakers, to encourage meaningful dialogue and enhanced relationships and partnerships. Continuing the district’s commitment to educating the whole child, these clubs are an opportunity to have families and educators work together to best serve our CISD students.

    CISD Honors First Responders

    September is designated as First Responders Appreciation Month and Sept. 11 is designated as Texas First Responder Day. CISD expressed its appreciation to its School Resource Officers and School Resource Deputies via the CISD website and social media. The district also asked the CISD community to share their thanks for those who protect our students, teachers and staff and community each day.  All CISD schools had a moment of silence on Sept. 11 for those who lost their lives on 9/11/01. In addition, many schools had their students write thank you notes to our first responders, including CMS North and Valley Ranch Elementary. Schools also had students and staff wear red, white and blue and other patriotic shirts on Sept. 11. The theme of the first CHS home football game Sept. 6 was America United.  The CHS Pep Rally that morning featured CISD Distinguished Alumnus and retired U.S. Marine Corporal Jacob Schick, Executive Director of the non-profit 22Kill Organization. In addition, CMS East teachers and staff hosted a breakfast on Sept. 12 to show their appreciation to Coppell First Responders, including Police Officers, Firefighters, Paramedics and others.

    Another Red, White and Blue celebration this week happened at Pinkerton Elementary, where the school recognized its lead custodian, Sylvia Argueta, who was sworn in as a U.S. Citizen on Sept. 9.


    New CISD Volunteer Application + 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 should remember these four steps of the process: 1) create an account (setting up a new secure username and password), 2) fill out a volunteer application/background check form 3) receive a confirmation email that your application has been received and 4) receive approval of your background check. If you don’t receive an email confirming  your application is received, this may mean that you only have created an account and have not filled out an application. Please visit coppellisd.com/volunteer and click on “Volunteer Application and Background Check Forms" to complete the application and background check at least 10 days in advance before you volunteer.
    CISD Seeks Crossing Guards
    CISD is looking for Crossing Guards for the 2019-2020 school year. Starting pay is $12 per hour Apply at www.coppellisd.com/Page/14460 or email acurry@coppellisd.com.
    Coppell Education Foundation Super Star Nominations Due Sept. 27
    Help the Coppell ISD Education Foundation spotlight the dedicated and hardworking students, teachers, administrators and support staff in CISD by nominating them for a Super Star award. The deadline for the first round of Super Star nominations this year is Friday, Sept. 27. Everyone nominated, regardless of whether they are chosen as a winner, will receive a printed certificate, so please nominate as many deserving individuals as possible!  Visit www.coppellisdef.com/super-star for more information about the Super Star Program and to nominate a Super Star.  Click here for a link to the nomination form.
    • Sept. 18 - Grand Opening Celebration Canyon Ranch Elementary 9 a.m. 

    • Sept. 18 - 11:30 a.m. Lunch Bites via Facebook Live www.facebook.com/coppellisd

    • Sept. 23 - Regular CISD Board Meeting 7 p.m 

    • Oct. 4 - Community Tailgate at Buddy Echols Field

    • Oct. 11 - First Grading Period Ends/Professional Development Day (No School)

    • Oct. 14 - Columbus Day Holiday (No School)


    In this Issue:

    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!

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