TALAS E-newsletter – September 23

Posted on September 23rd, 2021
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Texas News
El Paso ISD, Ysleta ISD schools named as National Blue Ribbon Schools
U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona Tuesday recognized 325 schools as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2021, with 26 schools in Texas, and including five from the El Paso region.

Secretary Cardona made the announcement during his Return to School Road Trip, while visiting an awardee school, Walter R. Sundling Jr. High School, in Palatine, Illinois.

Mission CISD prepares to strengthen bench of instructional leaders through new Holdsworth Center leadership program
Mission Consolidated Independent School District (CISD) is partnering with The Holdsworth Center, an Austin-based nonprofit, to strengthen its bench of aspiring instructional leaders and principals through a new, 18-month program called the Holdsworth Leadership Collaborative. 

Mission CISD is among the first 15 districts in the state invited to take part in the program, which is designed to help district leaders create systems that ensure a strong pool of aspiring instructional leaders who are truly ready to step into the various roles when a position arises. As demands on school districts evolve and heighten, instructional leaders must be more prepared to navigate ambiguity and respond to challenges with creativity.

Garland ISD Offers Mexican American, African American Studies Courses
It’s National Hispanic Heritage Month, a time to recognize the contributions and influence of Latin Americans to the United States. The Garland Independent School District is looking to honor those experiences year-round in a new social studies course.

“Our school is very diverse. We have over 50% Hispanic students, 20% African American, 25% Asian American,” said Michael Arreola, the principal of North Garland High School. “We feel like if we can make things more relevant to them, then they’re really going to embrace it.”

Helping High Schoolers Transition to College: How 4 Texas Students Launched a Mentorship Network to Give the Next Generation the Tips and Advice They Wish They Had Known
In 2019, four college students from El Paso met at a Starbucks because they wanted to give back to their community, but weren’t sure how to do so.

“We sat down and we started talking about the experiences that we had in high school and what we felt the ecosystem of El Paso was in the education realm,” said Eric Diaz, a mathematics senior at the University of Texas at El Paso.

Although somewhat strangers to one another, they found a similarity in all of their experiences: a lack of knowledge on how to access and prepare for college.

Seven Texans on the Emerging Hispanic Plurality
Texas Monthly spoke with experts about how Tejanos are influencing everything in the state, from cuisine to pop culture to entrepreneurship. 

While the growth of the Hispanic population in Texas isn’t shifting the state’s politics as quickly or predictably as many Democrats assumed it would, it is transforming the state in other notable ways. Texas Monthly spoke with experts about how Tejanos are touching everything from cuisine to pop culture to entrepreneurship. 

Upcoming Events
Accelerating Learning for Equity: Different Not More
Friday, September 24 at 11am CT
Join Educate Texas, Getting Smart and the Learner-Centered Collaborative to discuss shifting the narrative and mindset from learning loss to accelerated learning. We’ll discuss key practices and frameworks for personalizing learning. Participants will leave with strategies for implementing personalized learning that is community-connected and recognizes that learning happens outside school.

This session will be recorded and posted on the TxLx.org site with resources on using it for your own professional learning session.

This session is the first of our four TxLx professional learning initiative sessions that will be hosted in Fall 2021.
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Your Dose of Inspiration
How Ellen Ochoa, the first Hispanic woman in space, dealt with ‘people who didn’t think I should be there’
When people ask Ellen Ochoa if she’d change anything about her life, the former NASA astronaut quickly responds: “Oh gosh, no!”

Any small change to her story, she says, could have altered her historic journey. In 1993, Ochoa became the first Hispanic woman in space. Twenty years later, after completing three more missions to space, she became the NASA Johnson Space Center’s first Hispanic director, and only its second female director.

National News
New TikTok Trend Has Students Stealing, Vandalizing Their Schools for Fame — a “Devious Lick” for Them, But Another Blow for Struggling Schools
A new TikTok trend that has turned students into clout-seeking kleptomaniacs may be nothing more to them than a “devious lick” — a successful theft for social media consumption — but for cash-strapped schools it could be a serious blow.

In the last several weeks, a slew of videos have flooded TikTok showing students vandalizing and stealing paper towel dispensers, printers, projectors, microscopes and even urinals. In one clip, a student is shown pilfering a fire extinguisher from a classroom right in the middle of a lesson. The video-sharing social media platform is known for copy-cat posts by young people hoping to score their 15 minutes of fame.

Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute looks to boost young Latino leadership
The need to increase Hispanics in federal leadership positions, tackling racism and Covid health disparities and looking at the effects of climate change on Latino communities are part of the 44th annual conference.

Latino economic advancement, leadership development for young Hispanics, and Latino health care after Covid-19 are among the issues that will be discussed at one of the largest virtual gatherings of Latino leaders this year.

Specialized prep program overcomes obstacles for Latina girls in Baltimore applying to college
At Patterson Park, a group of Latina girls gathered this summer to construct a mosaic for the Esperanza Center, an immigrant resource center for health care, education and legal services that first opened in 1963.

The mosaic pieces were imported from Mexico, and the bold red, blue, green and yellow colors were inspired by Peruvian and Guatemalan textiles. The artwork’s theme was immigration. The girls cut and glued pieces of glass together in the shape of swallows and other migratory birds. They shared at least one thing in common: being current or former members of ¡Adelante Latina!

She grew up without health insurance. Now a doctor, she’s helping vaccinate her Latinx community
Dr. Argentina Servin grew up without health insurance and regular access to health care. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, she’s helping others in her community get the care they deserve.

Almost every endeavor Dr. Argentina Servin has taken on in her 14 years since becoming a physician has been directly inspired by her upbringing. She’s the daughter of a single mom who moved to San Diego from Mexico before Servin was born. Servin’s the oldest of three siblings and while she has fond memories of her childhood and regularly visiting family in Mexico, there was always an underlying fear of getting sick — her family didn’t have health insurance.

A Latino family paved the way for school desegregation. It’s still ‘unknown’ history.
The case of Mendez v. Westminster is not part of schools’ or most law schools’ studies, part of the “unremarked history of Latinos facing discrimination in the Southwest,” says legal advocate Thomas A. Saenz.

As a little girl in Westminster, California, in 1945, Sylvia Mendez yearned to attend the “beautiful school” with the “nice playground” where the school bus deposited her every morning. But the 9-year-old wasn’t allowed in that school — because she was Mexican American.

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!
NoRedInk provides a comprehensive, TEKS-aligned, adaptive, mastery-based writing platform for grades 4-12. NoRedInk balances grammar and writing skills with composition and revision activities. Our platform engages students with personalized, interest-based content which allows teachers to easily differentiate in the classroom whilst tracking mastery on over 1000 skills. Additionally, NoRedInk’s writing assignments allow students to build a portfolio of written work and engage in a highly scaffolded drafting, revision and peer review process. It’s free to sign up and use with students! Learn more about NoRedInk and how it’s proven to improve student performance on STAAR, ACT, and SAT.

Sheryl Colaur – 708-565-3545

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