In The Schools

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Schools set to close for holiday break

Students in the Denton school district’s middle and high schools will be released early on Dec. 20 and Dec. 21.

Other schools in the district will release at their regular times those days.

All students will be out of school for the annual holiday break until Jan. 8.

All district schools will reopen at the regularly scheduled time on Jan. 7, for a staff development day. However, students will not return until Jan. 8.


Schools place students on all-region bands

Denton school district band students accounted for 60 members or alternates on the three Texas Music Educators Association all-region bands.

Students from Ryan, Denton and Guyer high schools auditioned for spots on the TMEA Class 5A and Class 4A Region 2 all-region bands.

Students were then selected to one of the three bands — symphonic, the top band in the region; concert, the second band in the region; or ninth-grade band.

Members of the symphonic band now advance to the area tryouts at Abilene Christian University in January.


Ryan High School

The school placed 14 students on the three 5A Region 2 bands, including symphonic band member — Jacob Fields, trumpet; concert band members — Erica Yarbrough, oboe; Kelsey Cogswell, E flat clarinet; Asiah Claiborne, bass clarinet; Sara Guerrero, alto saxophone; Robie Bidleman, French horn; Rachael Rosenberg, French horn; Zsuzsa Ratliff-Johnson, tuba; Destiny Murphy, percussion, and Mandy Schwark, flute, alternate; and ninth-grade band members — Lauren Villarreal, oboe; Jarod Wilson, trumpet; Zane Hill, tuba; and Oliver Davidson, bassoon, alternate.

The Ryan band director is Eddy Russell and he is assisted by Lee Smith, associate band director, and Mary Brown, assistant band director.


Denton High School

The school placed nine students on the three 4A Region 2 bands, including symphonic band members — Camden Hunt, trumpet; Truett Ide, oboe; and Omar Rivera, clarinet; concert band members — Alexi Dollar, piccolo; Abby Harris, piccolo; Kaitlynne Peters, oboe; and Madison Saner, trumpet; and ninth-grade band members — Annie Heffley, percussion; and Alex Souris, percussion.

The Denton band director is Brian Wilson and he is assisted by Jesse Woolery, associate director, and Robert Brannock, percussion director.


Guyer High School

The school placed 37 students on the three 4A Region 2 bands, including symphonic band members — Jackie Peterson, flute; Mollie Ramsey, flute; Mikaela Pyle, flute; Brianna Hamilton, E flat clarinet; Julie Song, alto saxophone; Ramiro Martinez, trumpet; Patrick Alarcon, French horn; Gilbert Cortes, euphonium; Bethany Rush, percussion; Sean Sasiain, percussion; Allison Reibach, percussion; and Hunter Napier, percussion; concert band members — Madison Pasdernick, flute; Iida-Maria Raina, B flat clarinet; Gabby Fontes, B flat clarinet; Morgan Deal, B flat clarinet, alternate; Emma Nelson, bass clarinet; Thomas Diaz, trumpet; Bobby Tumino, trumpet; Megan Hoffman, trumpet, alternate; Zach Fears, French horn; Hailey Ray, French horn; Kolton White, trombone; Cameron Hogan, trombone, alternate; Mario Ortega, euphonium; Tim Stern, tuba; David Fletcher, tuba; Justin Swain, percussion; Jade Biondo, percussion; Zach Wade, percussion; and Kyle Gelsthorpe, percussion; and ninth-grade band members — Nicole Mendyka, flute; Taylor Jarrett, oboe; Elizabeth Rivera, B flat clarinet; Cameron Nestor, alto saxophone; Alexandria Reid, tuba; and Austin Talia, euphonium, alternate.

The Guyer band director is Chris Cansler and he is assisted by Amy Woody, associate director, and Ellis Hampton, percussion coordinator.


Calhoun Middle School

Emergency service personnel to get treat

Calhoun Middle School students in Michel Docktor’s seventh-grade math class are doing their part to recognize local emergency service personnel by giving them homemade fudge at a special ceremony at 2 p.m. Friday in the auditorium.

The students applied their math knowledge as part of a “cooking with fractions” unit that coincided with the class’ International Baccalaureate community service project.

The end result was several trays of fudge that will be given to local police and fire departments.

“This is just our students’ way of saying thank you to them for keeping us safe,” said Docktor.

For more information on the project, contact Docktor at 940-369-2400.


Denton High School

Math group claims victory at invitational

The Denton High School UIL Math Team recently scored a victory in the team math relay at the Paschal High School University Interscholastic League Math Invitational in Fort Worth.

The Denton High team posted the win by being the first team to answer Algebra I, geometry, Algebra II, pre-calculus and calculus questions with no errors.

Students from public and private schools throughout Denton and Tarrant counties participated in the competition.

The math team also swept first through fifth place in the number sense (advanced) category and finished with three individual victories and 12 top-five finishes.

The Denton High students that placed at the competition included:

•  Number Sense (advanced) — William Root, first place; Omar Akram, second place; Kevin Ye, third place; Any Ye, fourth place; Wade Cope, fifth place;

•  Mathematics — William Root, first place; Yiming Su, second place; Karti Chaturvedi, fourth place; Kevin Ye, fifth place;

•  Calculator — Omar Akram, third place;

•  Number Sense (beginner) — Emily Hu, first place; and

•  Mathematics (beginner) — Emily Hu, third place.


Bronco Junior Cheer Clinic set for Friday

A Denton Bronco Junior Cheer Clinic is planned from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday at the Denton High School Gym.

The clinic is open for children age 5 through the eighth grade.

The clinic will teach skills and a performance routine.

Participants should wear workout clothes and tennis shoes; they should wear their hair in a ponytail, and they should bring water.

The cheerleaders who participate will perform at the Denton High School vs. Guyer High School basketball game on Dec. 21.

Registration is $35 on the day of the clinic.

To register visit and click on the cheerleaders website.

For more information, call Courtney Swindle at 940-369-2114.


Ryan High School

Basketball staff slates holiday camp Saturday

Ryan High School basketball staff will have a joint holiday basketball camp for boys and girls in first through fifth grades from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday in the main gym.

The camp’s purpose is to help young basketball players develop and practice solid fundamental skills through drills and games.

Each camper will receive individual and group instruction from members of the Ryan basketball staff as well as current and former players.

Cost for the camp is $25, and participants can pay and register beginning at 8 a.m. on the day of the camp.

For more information and to RSVP, contact Bryce Overstreet at 940-369-3164 or by e-mail at .




Argyle High School

High school creates new dance team

A new pom team has been organized at Argyle High School. The 24-member group, known as the Argyle Pom Squad, will perform dance routines during halftime at boys’ varsity basketball games.

The squad is also slated to perform at some girls’ athletics events and other sporting activities in the spring.

Last weekend, the group performed during halftime at the University of North Texas-Jackson State University men’s basketball match at the UNT Super Pit.


Council conducts Angel Tree Community Dinner

The Argyle High School Student Council held its second Angel Tree Community Dinner recently.

The Angel Tree Community Dinner was implemented last year with the idea that the Argyle community could join in with the school district to raise money and accept donations for the local children in need.

George Dunham — a community member, radio celebrity and musician — was the keynote speaker for the evening.

School officials said many district administrators and teachers came out to support the event.

The Argyle High School Choir made several special performances along with musical solo performances by Argyle Middle School Student Council member Malia May and Argyle High School Choir member Molly Livingston.

Santa showed up and visited with community members at the charity event.

There were more than 250 people present at the event and more than 70 angels were adopted, school officials said.

 “The AHS Student Council’s goal was to have every angel on the tree adopted that night, and they all were,” said Pam Arrington, student council adviser.



Liberty theater class wins state contest

Liberty Christian School’s advanced theater class clinched the One-Act Play state contest championship at a recent Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools competition in Tyler.

The one-act play is a new category in the TAPPS competition.

“For the first time in 26 years, TAPPS added a new category with points that go toward winning its top award, the Henderson Cup,” said Misty Baptiste, Liberty’s fine arts department chairwoman.

The theater group, Encore, competed and won with a production of The Diary of Anne Frank.

“This story is one that still impacts us 70 years later,” said Baptiste. “Our students poured their hearts and souls into researching these very real people who struggled and persevered for two years of their lives.”

Liberty’s entry of The Diary of Anne Frank enjoyed success at both the state and region levels.

At state, students competed against the other top two shows from each region across the state.

At the state contest, senior Hannah Spates was awarded an All Star Crew award, junior Ross Earley received an Honorable Mention Cast honor, and seniors Max Merriman, Katelynn Pearson and Alexandra Stewart won All Star Cast awards.

At this competition, students learned Liberty received first place in the state overall for its one-act play for 4A and 5A schools.

In addition to the play placing first at the regional level, seniors Emmy Edwards, Katelynn Pearson and Alexandra Stewart won All Star Cast awards.

Senior Hannah Spates received the All Star Crew award.

Junior Ross Earley won best actor, and senior Malyn Porter won best actress.


Annual Christmas programs open to all

Liberty Christian School is welcoming the public to celebrate the Christmas season by attending a variety of events taking place on the campus throughout this week.

To commemorate Jesus Christ’s birth, students at the campus will participate in singing, acting and playing musical instruments in various programs.

At 7 p.m. Thursday, third- and fourth-grade students will perform The Secret of Snowflake County, the story of a county where Christmas performances and celebrations have become so overblown and competitive that they threaten to steal the focus away from the true meaning of Christmas. 

The voice of reason in the show is little Suzy Hallmark, who keeps telling her mom, the mayor, that she has a secret totell her. She eventually reminds all of the residents of the meaning of Christmas, and it is only then that they realize they’ve forgotten what is really important.

Fifth- through 12th-grade band students will perform traditional Christmas favorites plus a couple of surprises in their concert at 7 p.m. Friday. School officials encourage attendees to “hear an amazing show” and enjoy the brass, strings, woodwind and percussion.

At 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Liberty’s Middle School musical theater and Upper School Chorale will perform, Christmas on Broadway. Tickets are $5 for adults and $2 for students.

Christmas presentations will come to a close with fifth-grade musical theater students presenting Christmas Time, a musical set in the 1970s at 7 p.m. Dec. 17.

With a lot of ’70s style music, singing, and dancing, this musical is full of surprises, school officials say and while perhaps nontraditional, the blessing of Jesus is the focal point of this musical.

Liberty Christian School isat 1301 S. U.S. Highway 377 in Argyle.

To view a listing of all of the programs, visit .



School board members recognize FFA student

The Sanger school board recognized Sanger High School senior Kenneth Trey Ruland at its board meeting Monday for being named a finalist for a national award at the 85th annual National FFA Convention and Expo.

At the convention, held in Indianapolis, Kenneth was one of four national finalists for the Small Animal Production and Care Entrepreneurship/Placement proficiency award.

According to a National FFA Organization media release, proficiency awards recognize “outstanding student achievement in agribusiness gained through establishment of a new business, working for an existing company or otherwise gaining hands-on career experience.”

As a finalist, Rulan received a $500 award and a plaque.

He advanced to the national competition after winning a Texas FFA contest earlier this year.

“For his SAE, Kenneth Trey Ruland of the Sanger FFA Chapter in Texas has 75 mature breeding rabbits, raising them for the purpose of show and seed stock and market meat pen rabbits for fryers,” a FFA media release stated. “Throughout his program, he’s worked creating a marketing plan that would build a customer base for repeat sales while also enhancing his reputation as a breeder.”

The Sanger school board on Monday presented Ruland with a certificate for his achievement.



Student wins first place in writing contest

Selwyn seventh-grade student Hiba Khan won first place in the 2012-13 Patriot’s Pen essay contest sponsored by the Denton chapter of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. This year’s theme was “What Would I Tell America’s Founding Fathers.”

The 300- to 400-word typewritten essays are judged on knowledge of the theme, theme development and clarity of ideas.

In January, Khan will be honored at a ceremony for the local winners at the Denton VFW.

The top 45 national winners each receive a $1,000 savings bond. The first-place national award is a $10,000 savings bond plus an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. for the winner and a parent or guardian.



School wins its 12th academic championship

Immaculate Conception Catholic School recently won its 12th North Texas Independent League academic championship in 13 years during the meet.

The event was held Nov. 30 at Sacred Heart Catholic School in Muenster.

The school finished first with 564 points.

Immaculate Conception’s “Top Knights,” who attained high individual point totals at the meet, included Jillian Josefsberg and Marga Del Mundo, both with 52 points, and Brandy Sorrells with 34 points.

Other high scorers included Bret Sorrels with 30 points and Will Davey with 27 points.

Winners from Immaculate Conception included: Art Memory 4 — Makenna Connors, first; Roya Ghasemi, second; Brooke Moonier, sixth; Art Memory 5/6 — Jillian Josefsberg, first; Brandy Sorrells, second; Lauren Strittmatter, fourth; Art Memory 7/8 —Michael Oviedo, second; Christina Bridges, third;Calculator 7/8 — August Finger, fourth; Scott Wisker, fifth; Creative Writing 2 — Rachel Fox, first; Mia Lynch, third; Allie McDonald, fifth; Dictionary Skills 5/6 — Katherine Dunlop, first; Bret Sorrells, second; Dictionary Skills 7/8 — Marga Del Mundo, first; Editorial Writing 7/8 — Marga Del Mundo, third; Scott Wisker, sixth; Listening 5/6 — Jillian Josefsberg, first; Will Davey, second; Cierra Stafford, fifth; Listening 7/8 — Ford Feigle, second; Scott Wisker, tie for fifth; Maps, Graphs, Charts 5/6 — Tony Falcinelli, first; Bret Sorrells, second; Brandy Sorrells, third; Maps, Graphs, Charts 7/8 — Nathan Staats, fourth; Daniel McDonald, fifth; Mathematics 5/6 — Brandy Sorrells, second; Bret Sorrells, fifth; Derik Flores, sixth; Mathematics 7/8 — Marga Del Mundo, fifth; Number Sense 7/8 — Nathan Staats, tie for third; Marga Del Mundo, tie for third; Oral Reading 4- Roya Ghasemi, third; Abby Worth, fourth; Ready Writing 5/6 — Jillian Josefsberg, second; Rebecca Stiegelmar, third; Leah LaBarbera, fourth; Ready Writing 7/8 — Olivia Johnson, second; Science II — Marga Del Mundo, second; Social Studies 5/6 — Will Davey, first; Jillian Josefsberg, second; Rebecca Stiegelmar, third; Spelling 3 /4 — Jamie Ordonez, first; Makenna Connors, third; Dominic Lewis, fifth; Spelling 5/6 — Derik Flores, second; Spelling 7/8 — Sierra Wood, third; Jessica Kemna, fourth; Andrea Bridges, fifth; Storytelling 2 —Allie McDonald, first; Christian Wood, second; Mia Lynch, third; and Storytelling — Jessica Josefsberg, first and Grant Green, second.

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