TALAS E-newsletter – October 25

Posted on October 25th, 2021
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Texas News
Ysleta ISD’s Ramon Benavides named 2022 Texas Teacher of the Year
Ramon Benavides, a biology teacher at Del Valle High School in Ysleta ISD, has been selected as the 2022 Texas Teacher of the Year, and will now go on to represent the state of Texas in the prestigious National Teacher of the Year competition.

Benavides was named the winner by the Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA) during a ceremony Friday at Del Valle High School, where Benavides was surprised with the award and a check from TASA Deputy Executive Director Charles Dupre in front of a cheering crowd of students, staff, faculty, Ysleta ISD Trustees, and Superintendent of Schools Dr. Xavier De La Torre.

SAISD will ‘pause efforts’ after Texas Supreme Court ruling on vaccine mandate
Thursday, the district released a statement saying they are proud of the COVID-19 policies and will continue to educate the community and coordinate vaccine clinics.

San Antonio ISD says it will “pause efforts” on an employee vaccination mandate after the Texas Supreme Court stayed the policy last week.

El Paso coalition of Borderland organizations working together to help with early childhood development
Preparing students for the future is top of mind for a fairly new coalition in El Paso. Their goal, to help children succeed in the classroom and to invest in the child care industry.

Early Matters El Paso was created by the El Paso Collaborative for Academic Excellence in the summer of 2020. Its one of several chapters in Texas.

In the midst of the pandemic, the collaborative brought together 20 different organization from across the Borderland, including school districts like Fabens ISD, Workforce Solutions Borderplex, and United Way just to name few.

Teachers Form Partnerships Across District Lines to Help Each Other Manage Stress
Her words aren’t easy to swallow.

“We see the gaps and are working so hard to close the gaps however it’s just not happening,” said Yuridiana Lewis, eighth-grade teacher, Medrano Junior High.

Lewis said fighting back from the pandemic isn’t going as well as everyone hoped.

“They just aren’t there, they have a year and a half that they missed and we’re expecting them to be on that level,” she said.

How to Dine With the Dead
A new cookbook honors Día de los Muertos traditions from across Mexico, with regional recipes designed to help us remember and celebrate departed loved ones.

It all started with a blog post. On October 25, 2013, in anticipation of the annual Day of the Dead celebration, Austinite and recipe blogger Mariana Nuño-Ruiz McEnroe posted her recipe for pan de muerto on her blog Yes, More Please!, accompanied by her husband Ian McEnroe’s photography. Día de los Muertos, she wrote, helps people remember departed loved ones, and is part of the rich and colorful culture of the country where she was born. As she put it, “Mexico has a lot of traditions to share with the world.”

Career Advice
Personal Branding as a School Administrator & Leader
Veronica V. Sopher, President of TSPRA, Chief Communications Officer at Fort Bend ISD
As a school administrator and leader, your brand can send a strong message about who you are and what you’re looking to accomplish.

Have you ever thought about what your personal brand might be? It may seem like an odd question to be asking yourself as a school administrator, but believe it or not, everyone has a personal brand, regardless of whether they are intentional about it. When people think about you, there are personality traits, promises, and maybe even colors or imagery that come to mind. If you are intentional and consistent about your branding as an administrator, you can help send a stronger message about who you are and what you are looking to accomplish in your role. In order to do this, you’ll have to think about your positioning, your personality, and your marketing.

Looking for a new opportunity?
Leadership opportunities available
Take a look at who’s hiring:
National News
White House Unveils Plans for Mass Vaccination Effort of 5- to 11-Year Olds, Will Launch Campaign to ‘Increase Vaccine Confidence’
The Biden administration will match schools with COVID-19 vaccine providers as part of its effort to roll out shots for 5- to 11-year-olds, the White House announced Wednesday. Expecting that tens of thousands of sites will be necessary to meet the demand, including hundreds of schools, the administration said it aims to make vaccines available “in settings that kids and their parents know and trust.”

The Department of Health and Human Services will also enlist community-based clinics, doctor’s offices, hospitals and faith-based organizations in rapidly distributing vaccines through the end of the year, making enough available to immunize 28 million children. 

Hispanic Serving Institutions to receive $254 million in federal funding support
Announced by California Senator Alex Padilla, the funding is part of the Senate’s Labor, Health and Human Services appropriations bill. 

On Thursday, Oct. 21, California Senator Alex Padilla announced that he has managed to secure more than $254 million in federal funding to support Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs).

The funding is part of the Senate’s Labor, Health and Human Services appropriations bill. 

3 best-practice approaches for assessing students with disabilities
Results from informal and formal student assessments can help determine effective instructional strategies and individualized supports.

Limited time or resources shouldn’t prevent schools from conducting informal and formal assessments of students with disabilities, including those with significant cognitive disabilities. In fact, collecting high-quality data about a student’s performance can guide educators in making more informed decisions about instruction and individualized supports, said the National Center on Educational Outcomes, in a recent paper.

‘At the Ready’ Film Review: Young Latino Students Groomed for Border-Patrol Jobs in Chilling Documentary
Director Maisie Crow examines how opportunity-starved youths are recruited and indoctrinated

The sight of a Blue Lives Matter flag, with its menacing color scheme, immediately signifies an ideological stance that aligns with brutality, racism, and impunity under the guise of respect for authority. A symbol of institutions meant to protect but more efficient at terrorizing. To see this perturbing emblem casually decorating the walls of a classroom in director Maisie Crow’s documentary “At the Ready” merits great concern.

‘Grandes Dreamers’ children’s book celebrates Latina trailblazers in the United States
“Grandes Dreamers” is a children’s book celebrating the extraordinary lives of Latinas in the United States.

The author, Algeria Atilano, was inspired by this book when her daughter had a school project to write about iconic women. She looked at the list and felt sad.

“None of them was Latina, and it broke my heart,” Atilano says.

So she decided she needed to know the story of a moving woman whose children are changing the world.

Las Tienditas
This Week’s Featured Sponsor
TALAS sponsors make this newsletter and other TALAS activities possible. Please support them. Click on the logo to learn more!
At Imagine Learning, we believe every child deserves the chance to enjoy learning and the right to fulfill their unique potential.

For more than fifteen years, our foundation has been helping students acquire, develop, and strengthen the language skills necessary to fully participate in academic settings and prepare for college and careers.

Today, we provide a complete suite of adaptive digital curriculum and assessment solutions for PreK–8 that delivers unmatched excellence in language development—accelerating learning across subjects for all students.

Imagine Learning is passionate about igniting engagement, maximizing personal relevance, amplifying confidence and inspiring breakthroughs for students and educators.

David Webb – Regional Partnership Director, Texas – 214.883.2880

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