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    Dear CISD Families, 

     

    Great things are happening in Coppell ISD, and I appreciate the amazing work of our students and staff as we focus on both academic and social/emotional goals in 2020. I have been on several campuses this week and attended a variety of athletic and fine arts activities, including the Honor Choir performance, and I continue to be impressed with the achievement of our students both in classroom and in other areas.  I am so honored to be the superintendent of this incredible district and proud to witness the super efforts of our students and staff.

     

    Speaking of super, it is a “super” time here in CISD, as one of our very own, San Francisco 49er and 2014 Coppell High School graduate Solomon Thomas, will play in the Super Bowl on February 2.  Solomon is still very much a part of the CISD family, as his mother, Martha Thomas, teaches Texas History at CMS North.  I have known him and his wonderful family for many years, and as proud as we are that Solomon is playing in the Super Bowl, we are even more proud of the incredible man he has become and how he uses his platform to bring awareness to the important issues of mental health and suicide prevention. 

     

    Solomon’s “My Cause My Cleats” campaign is for the American Federation for Suicide Prevention.  He is using his status as an NFL player to encourage people to talk about mental health and to seek help in order to prevent suicides.  He is so passionate about this work because his older sister, Ella, died by suicide two years ago.  The Thomas family believes the only way to change the course of the suicide epidemic is to destigmatize it by being open and honest.  Because of their work on this issue, the Thomas family — Solomon, Martha and her husband Chris —  received the Survivor of Loss Award from the American Federation for Suicide Prevention. The family participated in the 2018 Dallas Out of the Darkness™ Overnight Walk, and have used both their own platform and that of the NFL to enhance the message that suicide is preventable and that help is always available, such as in an interview with ESPN, which aired during “Monday Night Football.”  

     

    I am sharing the Thomas family's story with their permission, because I too believe it is imperative we continue to shed light on the critical issue of suicide prevention. Ella was a beautiful, smart and talented young woman.  She came from an extremely supportive and close knit family.  We have no idea what others may be struggling with or going through, even if they appear to have it all together.  I also want our families to know that we have resources available to help them via our school counselors, crisis counselors and parent toolkit at www.coppellisd.com/parenttoolkit.  The American Federation for Suicide Prevention is also a great resource at https://afsp.org/. It is time we take our mental health and well-being out of the shadows and into the light, so we can talk openly and honestly about this topic. 

     

    Solomon Thomas is just one of many CISD alumni that we are proud of, which is why we began our Distinguished Alumni Award last year.  You can read more about nominating a CISD graduate for this distinction further down in the newsletter. 

     

    Finally, I want to say once again that we at CISD truly appreciate our families and your support of our district, our teachers and our students.  We value the opportunities we have to engage with our community, and we thank you for being a part of the CISD family.  Have a wonderful weekend! 

     

    Sincerely,

      


    Dr. Brad Hunt

     


    Announcing 2020-2021 Calendar


    The CISD Board of Trustees approved the 2020-2021 academic calendar at its Jan. 13 meeting. The 2020-2021 calendar will be duplicated for 2021-2022 calendar. The approved 2020-2021 is similar to the district’s calendar for the past two years. The approved calendar has school beginning on Wednesday, August 12, 2020. The second semester for students begins on Wednesday, January 6, 2021, and employees return Tuesday, January 5, 2021. Spring Break is the third week of March — March 15-19, 2021 — which aligns with neighboring school districts and the Dallas County Community College District, which benefits CISD’s Dual Enrollment high school students. School ends Wednesday, May 26, 2021, which is before Memorial Day.  The approved calendar meets the 75,600 minutes requirement of the state of Texas for student instruction.

     

    A copy of the CISD 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 calendars can be found at www.coppellisd.com/approvedcalendar.

     
    Distinguished Alumni Nominations

    CISD will honor individuals this year with the Distinguished Alumni Award at our upcoming Coppell ISD Education Foundation Banquet. Recognition as a Distinguished Alumni is limited to those individuals, living or deceased, who graduated from Coppell High School (including those from Victory Place @ Coppell) or New Tech High @ Coppell no fewer than five (5) years prior to the nomination (graduated in or prior to 2014) and who have made significant accomplishments in one or both of the following areas while maintaining high standards of personal integrity and character:

    • An outstanding leader in his/her field
    • Service to his/her community through local, state, national, or international organizations


    The nomination window will close Feb. 21 and recipients will be notified in March. To nominate, click here
     

     
    Fighting the Flu

    It isn’t unusual for CISD to see an increase in students and staff absences during flu season at this time of year. CISD Health Services is monitoring these illnesses in our district and communicates frequently with our custodial partner, Aramark, ensure our campuses receive thorough cleanings during flu season. The actions of students and staff also can help prevent or slow the incidence of flu. The most important of these is to keep children at home while sick and until they are free of a fever for 24 hours without the aid of medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. According to the CDC, the first line of defense is getting the flu shot. Other preventative measures include covering coughs and sneezes, washing hands and keeping sick people away from others. As a reminder, though CISD is required to send an automatic email after three unexcused absences within a four-week period (all excused absences will be corrected in the parent portal once a note is received), the district understands that recovery from the flu and other illnesses often takes several days. Keeping a sick child at home prevents the spread of illness in the school community and allows the child an opportunity to rest and recover.  Click here for more information on the district’s health attendance guidelines.

     
    High School Choir Students Make State


    Congratulations to the four Coppell High School Choir students who made the All-State Choir for 2020.  Under the leadership of Choir Director Bona Coogle and Associate Director Aaron Coronado, seniors Ethan Koshy and Max Madlambayan, junior Rishab Pulugurta and sophomore Joseph Mathew were selected for the All-State Choir distinction. Each year, more than 20,000 singers start learning music over the summer and go through four rounds of audition process from September all the way to January to make it to All-State, which is the highest honor a Texas music student can receive.

     
    West's Sana Abusaad Takes 1st in State Lions Club Peace Poster Contest


    We are #CISDProud of CMS West eighth grader Sana Abusaad, who won 1st place in Texas in the Lion’s Club Peace Poster Contest. As the winner in the state middle school category, Sana will be entered in the International Competition.  Congratulations to Sana and her Art Teacher, Gail Cary!

     
    CHS Students Exhibit at DMA






    Three CHS students were chosen to have their artwork displayed at the Teen Renaissance exhibition at the Dallas Museum of Art. Juniors Sujeong Oh and Ishita Sisodia, and sophomore Kashish Vishwakarma will have their work displayed Jan. 25 to March 11 in Mezzanine 2 of the museum. Teen Renaissance is curated by the DMA's Teen Advisory Council and features selected works created by Dallas-area high school students. Congratulations to these students and their teachers, Michelle Hauske and Cameron Tiede!

     

    December Sub of the Month

    Susan Holscher is a retired former teacher with CISD who has been subbing with the district since 2008. Her love for kids brought her back into the classroom as a substitute teacher. Holscher is a staple at CHS and New Tech High School, where she is highly requested on both campuses. If she has a free moment, she spends it offering to help out teachers and learners in any way she can. She goes out of her way to engage with the students on a one-on-one basis, and her passion for them is very apparent, as Holscher knows most of them by name. CISD’s Human Resources Department is honored to reward her dedication to CISD and its learners by recognizing her as December’s Sub of the Month.
     

    Cottonwood Creek, Lakeside and CMS East Students

    Some CISD students are literal “cover stories” through their appearances on national television programs,  local marketing campaigns and the cover of a local  magazine. CMS East 7th grader Eshan Inamdar is appearing in the first episode of the Apple TV series “Little America” entitled “The Manager,” which is currently streaming.

    Cottonwood Creek Elementary 2nd grader Blake Holguin and his sister, 1st grader Breigh Holguin are part of the  Souper Bowl of Caring food drive campaign and are appearing on digital billboards for the campaign.




    Lakeside Elementary 2nd grader Katherine Ton appears on the cover of North Texas Child magazine.

     

     


    Pen Pals Between CMS North and Canyon Ranch Students

    It all started with a conversation between roommates, Morgan Wilson, English Language Arts teacher at CMS North and Katie Cassidy, 3rd grade teacher at Canyon Ranch Elementary. They were trying to determine what their next lesson plan would be and decided to collaborate with each other.

    Creative writers in Ms. Wilson's class started writing letters to Canyon Ranch 3rd graders during the holidays. Now they have become great pen pals. The most recent exchange has been about what it is like being at the middle school.
                 
    Watch this Twitter video, as Ms. Wilson explains how these pen pals work.



    "Pay to Ride" Bus Renewal by Jan. 27


    All "Pay to Ride" bus students must renew their spring bus pass no later than Monday, Jan. 27, in order to continue bus service. Visit
    www.coppellisd.com for instructions on how to renew.

     
    Foreign Language & Fine Arts Classes Questionnaire by Jan. 31
    CISD is exploring adding more languages to our LOTE (Languages Other Than English) Curriculum and expanding our Fine Arts Curriculum in the next few years. We are soliciting feedback from our community as part of this process. Please share your input via a brief questionnaire at https://forms.gle by Jan. 31. Additional feedback can be shared by emailing input@coppellisd.com.
     
    Accepting Board Applications for May Elections

    CISD is accepting applications for a place on the ballot of the May 2, 2020 CISD School Board Election.  Places 4 and 5 are up for election. The deadline to apply is Friday, Feb. 14, at 5 p.m. For more information, visit www.coppellisd.com/Page/8719 or contact Carol Snowden at csnowden@coppellisd.com or 214-496-8002. More information will be offered at a School Board Candidate Workshop on Tuesday, Feb. 4, at 6 p.m.

     
    Register to Vote by Feb. 3
    Monday, Feb. 3, is the last day to register to vote for the March 3, 2020 primaries. To check if you are registered to vote or for more information, visit the Texas Secretary of State’s voting website at www.votetexas.gov. Early voting for the March 3 election runs Feb. 18 to 28.
     
    ITT Community Challenge

    Living Well in Coppell (LWiC) is once again locally sponsoring the 2020 It’s Time Texas (ITT) Community Challenge. This statewide wellness initiative, which runs from January 6 to March 1, 2020, pits Texas cities of similar size against each other as they find fun and easy ways to demonstrate their commitment to healthy living. With the help of LWiC’s sponsorship, Coppell participated and won its size category for numerous consecutive years. In 2019, we only managed fourth place, but we can do better!

     

    If Coppell can once again clench first place, the City will not only be recognized both regionally and statewide as a healthy community, but will also receive a grand prize to distribute to schools in Coppell ISD for health and wellness programs. It’s easy to participate in the Community Challenge, simply:

    • Visit ittcommunitychallenge.com and register as a Coppell participant.
    • Take a selfie doing something healthy or track your fitness.
    • Upload your photos and activities to your account to earn points for the community.
     
    • Feb. 3 - Board Training - CMS West - 6:00 p.m.

    • Feb. 4 - Board Candidate Workshop 6:00 p.m.

    • Feb. 14 - Professional Development Day (No School)

    • Feb. 17 - Bad Weather Day (No School) 

    • Feb. 24 - Regular Board Meeting - 7:00 p.m.

     

    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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