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Denton ISD

Wilson Elementary earns Edmentum award

Woodrow Wilson Elementary School teachers and administrators were the recipients of the Edmentum Rock Star Award that was presented April 30.

The program recognizes outstanding schools and their inventive and effective uses of the full range of Edmentum learning solutions

Wilson is the highest-performing Title I campus in the Denton school district, with passing rates that consistently are above the state level and district level. The school uses Edmentum’s Study Island learning solution in the third through fifth grade across multiple courses, including math, reading and science. Students use the Web-based learning solution both in the classroom and at home.

For more information about the school’s use of technology in the classroom, contact Wilson principal Audrey Staniszewski at 940-369-4501.


RHS students win business award

The Ryan High School parliamentary procedure team recently won first place in the Business Professionals of America national parliamentary procedure competition in Orlando, Fla.

Four of the six team members scored in the top 10 in the nation on the written test over parliamentary procedure concepts, with two placing first and second.

The parliamentary procedure team includes: Salman Hasan, first place; Eva Sadowski, second place; Jocelyn Almarez; Kristal Cunningham, top 10; Nadja Hemphill, top 10; and Dominique Benson.


School to be closed Friday, Monday

Students will be out of school on Friday and for Memorial Day on Monday. The doors to all schools and offices will close at the regular time Thursday and reopen at the regularly scheduled time May 28.

All students will be dismissed early on the last day of school, June 6. All secondary schools also will dismiss early on June 4 and 5. Buses will run early on the early dismissal days.

For additional information, contact the communications and community relations department at 940-369-0006. For the early busing schedules, call the transportation department at 940-369-0300.


Top grads to be honored by district, DPSF today

The district’s top graduates and educators of influence will be honored by district officials and the Denton Public School Foundation at 5:30 tonight, at a special ceremony at the LaGrone Advanced Technology Complex.

Ten graduating seniors from each of the district’s three high schools were selected to be recognized for their achievements in academics or their combination of school spirit, extracurricular efforts and achievements throughout their high school career. Each chosen student also named an educator who provided the greatest influence during their educational experience in the district.

Among the Denton ISD students and educators being honored are (student and educator):

Denton High — Victoria Amadi and Patrick Matous; Allison Beltrone and Jesse Woolery; Nico Cortes and Fred Mueller; Joshua Harden and Mark Baker; Jametrice Keating-Lynton and Kerri Burgess; Kyla Petrie and Julie Seeley; Kylie Richter and Jennifer Phillips; Elenea Souris and Jennifer Phillips; Kendall Wagner and James Rosin and Hayden Winborn and Jamie Covey.

Guyer — Adam Oh and Jerome Noel; Sang-Yop Kwon and Paula Robinson; VirinTamprateep and Stephanie Taylor-Whitlow; Tanner Hunt and Sandra Miller; Zachary Colpean and Misty Moffitt; Justin Griffin and Grant Long; Robert Champion and Bridget Matamoros; Anita Williams and Misty Chesnut; Suzette Palmer and David Christian and Kourtney Logan and Stephanie Carbonaro.

Ryan — James (JD) McClanahan and Julie Tolle; Catherine Tryon and Julie Tolle; Sarah Miles and Robert Lamon; Katherine Modrow and Diedre Williams; Domino Birze and Cindy Williams; Max Atkinson and Jayme Kiraly; Hannah Hagemann and Jayme Hunt; Emily Staniszewski and Edward Russell; Daniel Telaneus and Shawn Zeigler and Dakota Ratliff and Jeannene Abney.


Stephens Elementary

Opening of Bulldog Nature Center set

Stephens Elementary School will have an opening celebration for its Bulldog Nature Center at 5:30 p.m. May 30, at the school, 133 Garza Road.

The Bulldog Nature Center will provide students an outdoor learning environment where they can study plants, insects and nature. The center is located behind the school and gives students ample views to the outdoors.

Parents, teachers and the public are invited to attend. Refreshments will be served, and the Stephens Honor Choir will perform.

For more information on the event or to help with the Bulldog Nature Center, contact Matt Preston, assistant principal, at 940-369-0800 or by e-mail at


Ryan High

Ryan recognizes students, staff members

Ryan High School recently announced its scholars and Raiders of the Month for May. These students from grades nine through 12 were recognized by peers and staff members for their school spirit, academic achievements and character.

In addition, the school announced its staff members of the year. These students and teachers were honored by Ryan High parents and staff at a special breakfast in the school’s Renaissance Hall.

The Scholars of the Month for May were: Lyssette Lumbreras, freshman; Hannah Rudd, sophomore; Melissa Gonzalez, junior; and Cristian Negrete, senior.

The Raiders of the Month for May were: Helena Keeton, freshman; Ana Chairez, sophomore; Sara Guerrero, junior’ and Jocelyn Almaraz, senior.

The RHS Teacher of the Year was Lon Cakerice, social studies and world history teacher.

The RHS Newcomer of the Year is Erin Coulter, who is in her first year as a counselor.

The RHS Staff Member of the Year is Joel Hays, who is in his first year as the associate principal.


Denton High

Senior breakfast, awards assembly set

The annual Denton High School Senior Breakfast and Awards Assembly is scheduled for Thursday.

All seniors and their families are invited to attend the breakfast at 7:30 a.m. in Gym 2 at the school. The awards assembly will be held at 9:15 a.m. in the school auditorium.

Parents, alumni and the public are invited to attend as members of the class of 2013 are recognized for their achievements in and out of the classroom. The valedictorians and salutatorians will be announced, and students will receive their scholarships from the Denton Public School Foundation.


Ryan Elmentary

Students to learn about agriculture from club

Students will have their final Million Word Challenge by learning about agriculture and farm work with members of the Ryan Road Riding Club at the RRRC Arena on Thursday.

The students will break up into two groups and visit the arena from 8:30 to 10:45 a.m. and noon to 2:15 p.m. Each group will learn about mustangs from Bureau of Land Management Wild Mustang program, horseshoeing from a farrier, cows and the products that come from their milk and other small farm animals.

The event serves as a reward for every student at the school achieving the goal of reading 100 books, for kindergarten and first grade, or 25 chapter books, for second through fifth grade. It also will provide a first-hand learning environment for students to understand the value of farmers and ranchers, especially in Denton County.

For more information, contact Sharon Cox, communications director, at 940-369-0006 or Mario Zavala, communications coordinator, at 940-369-0050.


Liberty Christian School

Archaeology study deepens students’ faith

Both the junior class and the fifth-grade classes saw in person what has been called the greatest manuscript discovery of the 20th century, the Dead Sea Scrolls. These treasured artifacts were on display at Southwestern Seminary in Fort Worth until January. The scrolls, composed of mere parchment, outlived most civilizations and were hidden for more than 2,000 years, even before the birth of Christ.

Dating back as far as 2,250 years, the Dead Sea Scrolls include thousands of fragments of some 300 biblical manuscripts representing every book in the Hebrew Bible (except the book of Esther) and are more than 1,000 years older than previously known complete copies.

The exhibit at the seminary was one of the largest and most comprehensive exhibitions of Dead Sea Scroll fragments ever assembled and the largest ever presented in Texas. Liberty juniors took this trip to provide a hands-on introduction to their Bible class unit, “The Doctrine of the Bible.”

With this trip, students had the opportunity to view fragments of original scrolls bearing texts from Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, the Psalms, Isaiah and Daniel.

Like the junior class, fifth-grade students were taken on a guided tour of the exhibit led by history and Bible students from Southwestern Seminary who had actually been to the excavation sites near the Dead Sea.

Students also dug in to some archaeology as a part of the tour.


Little Elm ISD

Gutierrez named human resources director

The Little Elm school board recently approved the hiring of Matthew Gutierrez as the district’s human resources director.

Gutierrez currently serves as the human resources director for an elementary school in the Round Rock school district. He replaces Rhonda Bilbrey, who has accepted an assistant superintendent's position with the Sanger school district.


Helms hired as curriculum coordinator

The Little Elm school board recently approved the hiring of Ashley Helms as the curriculum coordinator for English language arts and social studies. She replaces Maria McCoy who has accepted a position with another district.

Helms currently serves as part of the instructional support team at Gainesville High School and as the head of the English department. She was instrumental in the design and development of the campus’ response to intervention for students who needed extra assistance to pass the state assessments. She also helped implement a campus-mentoring program for teachers to cultivate “best instructional practices.”

For the five years prior, Helms taught English at Denton’s Guyer High School while working on her principal certification. She also coached the cheerleading team. She started her teaching career at Sanger High School, serving as the cheer coach and head of the UIL academics team.

Seven retirees honored for 200 years of service

During the district’s annual retirement reception, Superintendent Lynne Leuthard honored seven staff members for their collective 200 years of service to the public school children of Texas. In keeping with tradition, the district presented them with an engraved rocking chair.

This year’s retirees include: Sharon Ward, Rena Sutphin, Cathy Shull, Jayline Rose, Peggy Jones-Poe, Judy Janzen and Raquel Estrada.


Northwest ISD

Granger Elementary earns national honor

Kay Granger Elementary School has been named a National School of Character by the Character Education Partnership (CEP). Granger is among 29 schools and districts across the nation to receive this honor. The campus is recognized for its commitment to character education and for fostering a positive environment for social and academic learning. Granger Elementary School will be featured at the National Forum on Character Education in Washington, D.C. in October.


Lakeview Elementary team advances to finals

Lakeview Elementary’s Team RAD will advance to the Destination Imagination global finals, scheduled for today through Sunday in Knoxville, Tenn.

Team members include fourth-graders Olivia Carter, Jordan Sarmento, Tess Winkler, Riley Scott and Eden Fussleman.

The team will compete in an open-ended challenge called Wind Visible, where students apply science, technology, engineering and math skills in addition to improvisation, theater arts, writing, project management and communication.


Executive director for elementary ed named

The Northwest school district announced the hiring of Michael Griffin as the new executive director of elementary education.

Griffin has been the principal of Haslet Elementary School since 2009. She received a doctorate in educational leadership from Nova Southeastern University in 2012. She holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Texas Tech University and a master’s in education from the University of Arizona. Griffin will begin her new role in July as the district begins a search to replace her current position at Haslet Elementary.


District seeks feedback to rename center

The Northwest school board and administration invites the community to submit nominations to rename the Agricultural Sciences Learning Center.

An electronic nomination form is available on the district’s website at, or a hard copy can be requested by calling 817-215-0171. Nominations received through June 14 will be reviewed by selection committee and recommended to the school board on June 25.


Leadership NISD participants recognized

The Northwest school district recognized 23 Leadership NISD participants at a reception and graduation at the School Board meeting on May 13.

Parents and community members involved in the year-long Leadership NISD program were given an opportunity to go behind the scenes for an in-depth look at Northwest ISD. Anyone interested in the program for the 2013-2014 school year can call 817-215-0175.


Steele Accelerated High School opens enrollment

The Northwest school district is opening the enrollment for James M. Steele Accelerated High School to students.

Steele Accelerated High School provides an avenue for students to accelerate their studies. Thanks to a partnership with North Central Texas College, students can take expanded dual credit classes.

Steele also is home to the district’s fifth career academy, The Cosmetology Academy. Shears of Steele will debut in August, providing a year of state-mandated training for cosmetology students prior to opening for business in 2014.

To submit an application, go to Applications are due July 24. For more information, call 817-698-5800.


Students take part in Operation Don’t Bug Me

Granger Elementary fourth-grade students participated in a service project, Operation Don’t Bug Me from the Adopt a Platoon Organization, to assist troops overseas.

The program helps to provide bug spray, suntan lotion, sunglasses, eye drops, anti-itch creams and other items to different platoons stationed around the world. The campus donated approximately 300 items to troops.


STEM to conduct annual showcase

The Academy of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics is conducting the third annual STEM Showcase, where high school students showcase their best work from the past year. The showcase is scheduled from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Northwest High School.


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