Every so often, I will see a post on social media that says schools no longer require the Pledge of Allegiance for fear of offending someone. Actually, there are more states than not that require the Pledge of Allegiance be recited each day.
In the state of Texas, it is the law that, every day, at every school, our students recite the Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag and the Pledge of Allegiance to the Texas Flag. This is followed by a moment of silence in which students may choose to pray, meditate, or reflect on the day. In addition, you might not be aware that schools in Texas also recognize Sept. 11 and the U.S. Constitution through morning announcements and special activities on these specific days.
So the next time you see a post similar to the one I described, you can reply: “In Texas, we do.”
Homecoming week is next week in Burnet Consolidated Independent School District, and that means mums, pep rallies, parades, bonfire, and football. It is also a time to welcome back our alumni. I hope our alumni and community will join us in celebrating homecoming by attending the homecoming parade at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27, on the courthouse square in Burnet followed by the bonfire at 7:30 p.m. in the field just west of Burnet High School. On that Friday, please join us for the pep rally at the high school gymnasium beginning at 3 p.m. Of course, you have to wrap up your homecoming week by coming out Friday evening and watching the Burnet Bulldogs take on the Sonora Broncos. Kickoff will be at 7:30 p.m.
Speaking of alumni, we are preparing to honor the sixth set of inductees to the BCISD Hall of Honor, but we need your help. Nominations are being accepted for the Hall of Honor and can be submitted electronically by going to burnetcisd.net and selecting the Hall of Honor link under the Community tab at the top of the homepage.
In February, we will honor four individuals in the following categories: Distinguished Burnet High School Graduate, Distinguished Burnet High School Athlete, Distinguished Former School Board Member, and Distinguished Former Employee. We are looking for nominations of individuals who have not only brought great honor to themselves but also to BCISD.
Last Monday, the BCISD Board of Trustees heard a status report on the three-year strategic plan that was adopted last January. As you will recall, more than 40 stakeholders worked together to develop objectives and strategies that focused on the four goals addressing Academic Achievement, District Culture, Educator Quality, and Family and Community Engagement. Some of the activities shared with the board that have been accomplished include:
• A Leadership Academy has been formed and has met eight times to analyze five years of BCISD’s past STAAR results in ELA and Math to find areas to improve for student achievement. This group is led by district APs and is composed of 15 teachers in kindergarten through 12th grade who specialized in ELA and Math.
• Individual student literacy plans are being finalized and will be available for all students K-6 at the end of September.
• A survey was developed and administered to new staff asking why they chose BCISD in order to inform our recruitment process.
• Each campus has built into the schedule common planning times or times for subject area teams to work together to plan.
• All campuses held training on behavior strategies at the beginning of the 2018-19 school year.
• An employee “survival guide” was developed for each campus in the district
• Electronic marquees are in the planning stages to be added at Bertram Elementary, Shady Grove Elementary, and R.J. Richey Elementary.
• Each campus has developed a committee to support staff morale.
• A communication survey is being conducted with parents to determine the best way to communicate with them and to improve current communication practices.
• A Volunteer in Public Schools (VIPS) program has been developed with more than 300 people completing an application and background check.
Finally, mark your calendar now for Thursday, Oct. 18, at 8 a.m. I will be hosting Coffee and Tea with the Superintendent to provide updates about BCISD. I hope you can join me for a cup of coffee at the Parent Resource Center, located next to the Central Office at 208 E. Brier. I look forward to sharing information and answering questions.