Newsletter, Feb. 1, 2017

1 Feb

Tet Show on Friday
Please join us to celebrate the Year of the Rooster on Friday, February 3, 2017. Delicious Vietnamese food, pizzas, drinks and concession items are available for purchase starting at 6 pm in the Summitt cafeteria. The Tet show will start at 7 pm. Tickets will be sold on Friday, this week at 7:30 am, 2:30 pm in the Great Hall. The tickets will also be sold the night of the show.

Only $3 reserved seats are left. Our Tet Show benefits the AISD Vietnamese Dual Language Program. See you at the show!


Science Expo next week
You are invited to the 5th grade Science Expo, on Tuesday, February 7th from 6-8 p.m. This hands-on science night is full of exciting demonstrations taught by our 5th grade students. Feel free to bring a friend or family member! Light refreshments will be provided. See you at the Expo!

Box Tops
On Monday, February 6 a Box Tops sheet will be send home. Please tape or glue box tops on to paper, no staples. Once your student has a completed form they can turn it into their teacher for a reward. Questions email:

Message from School Nurse
The school nurse has sent out a message regarding head lice. Click here for the information.

Yearbook orders coming soon
Beginning next week, you will get an order form in the Monday Folder to purchase a school yearbook. They cost $25 if your order them by Feb. 28. The price will increase to $30 until March 31. We did not offer any yearbooks to order at the beginning of the school year, so get yours this month!

If you have pictures you’d like to submit for consideration, please send full size pictures to We prefer group shots over individual pictures. It would also be helpful to tell us the event and grades/teacher of the students in the picture.

It is that time of year once again for the Bookspring Read-A-Thon. This is our 4th year to participate in this amazing program that aims to launch all children into a world of reading by providing them with their own new books. BookSpring’s Read-A-Thon encourages community service through reading. During this two week event, students and book lovers read and collect donations based on the number of minutes they read. The donations buy books and support BookSpring’s childhood literacy programs in the Greater Austin area.

BookSpring serves children ages birth to 12 years, teen parents and parents of young children. Ninety-five percent (95%) of BookSpring’s recipients are living at or below the federal poverty level. In an effort to save costs and paper, we are going paperless, but all students should have brought home an envelope for collecting pledges. Otherwise, reading and pledge logs along with more information can be found at

Summitt Fun Run!
Parents! One of this year’s big fundraisers is the Summitt Eagle Fun Run! It’s a 9-day program that kicks off with a Pep Rally on Monday, February 13, 2017. Then families will have time to get pledges for every lap your student runs (30-35 laps), and we’ll celebrate at the Fun Run on Thursday, February 23, 2017. With our big goal to raise funds for Math & Reading Intervention programs, we asked the Fun Run experts at Boosterthon to power our Fun Run and make it more profitable, easier, and fun.

Students will also experience an amazing character theme, BACKYARD BOX OFFICE! It’s a movie theme all about making a difference by getting into character. Our students will learn from five REAL kid difference-makers. From inventors, to world-class speakers, to business owners, to world-record holders, these five kids will inspire our students to practice the five “Character Acts” and make a difference in our community. Donations will go toward Math & Reading Intervention programs and to the entire 9-day experience. So please help our school by reaching out to sponsors. Also, all families are invited to come out and cheer on your student at the Fun Run! Thank you for your support!”

Follow these directions to see Ms. Standish’s hilarious pledge video: Go to and insert this link: You will be prompted to download the video, but it will not really download. It just takes you to a video. More questions? Click here. Click here to get the information in Vietnamese.  Click here for information in Spanish.

National School Counseling Week next week
On Feb. 6-10, please remember our counselors, Courtney Cardosa and Sandy Cumming, and all of the hard work they do for us. Have your student fill out a “Thank you Message” in order to recognize the important impact counselor make in their students’ lives.

Girls on the Run begins soon
GOTR Spring 2017 will start in 3 weeks. More information about registration will come out soon. Please email

Fifth Grade News
Does your student love to act on stage? Is your student interested in behind-the-scenes stage tech? Applications are now being accepted for the Murchison Middle School 6th grade Advanced Theatre Production class. In this class students will fully produce one-act plays during class time, learning the art of acting and design through real stage productions. This advanced class is an intense, fast paced exploration of high level concepts for students who are internally driven, highly responsible and confident in their creative abilities. Applications available on the MMS Theatre Arts website or Questions should be emailed to teacher Nancy Owens at

Counselors’ Chronicle
Fifth grade parents – choice sheets for next year’s 6th graders should have come home on Friday of last week. We are giving you one week from the date of Murchison’s choice sheet night (February 6) to get decisions made and get the choice sheet back to your student’s homeroom teacher. We would like all of these to come back by February 13. This gives us some time to verify that the selections are valid and correct any errors if needed. If you or your student has any questions, please don’t hesitate to call or email and ask. The students will be putting these final choices directly into the computer, at the request of Murchison, on March 3. We will be looking for parent volunteers who can help monitor this process. If you are willing to help, please email

No Place For Hate Kindness Paper Chain Challenge – The NPFH committee of 4th grade students has been traveling to classrooms and teaching a lesson on kindness with the counselor’s.  Last week, we taught the lesson to grades K, 1, and 3. This week we will be visiting grades 2, 4, and 5. At the end of the lessons, the committee is introducing the school wide paper chain challenge. Beginning on February 2, any time a student or teacher completes a random act of kindness, they will add a loop to their class kindness paper chain. Each classroom has two list with 100 items that they can use for inspiration. The school wide challenge will run through the remainder of February. When the challenge is finished, we will combine all the class chains together and display one giant chain in The Great Hall. We hope this will inspire us all to continue doing kind things far beyond the month of February.

Guidance – the beginning of January was all about careers. In first grade, students pulled surprise items from a bucket and had to identify what career might go with them. We read the story “When I Grow Up” and wrote down what we thought we might want to be. 3rd grade played career Taboo with a variety of careers. 4th grade played career charades with a similar set of careers. 5th grade students completed their Individual Academic Career Plan. They are supposed to keep these in their folder for the remainder of the year. As a parent, I was very interested to see my child’s. If you are interested, they should have it tucked safely away for your viewing  This was done intentionally right before we had MMS come and talk about choice sheets last Friday  It also gave me a chance to answer some of their middle school questions and concerns in advance.

Voss Water bottles – Please help us collect empty VOSS water bottles (small size). We need as many as possible, so if you can drink a few of these bottles of water we would appreciate the empty bottles. We will be collecting them through February and will have a box in the great hall labeled Voss water bottles. Your empty bottles will help our teachers make new materials for their Peace Corners. Thank you!



AISD and Community Events


Safe Routes to School Survey
Thanks to Prop 1, Austin now has over $27.5 Million for Safe Routes to Schools – The biggest budget for Safe Routes in America. Bike Austin and Walk Austin want to help connect parents from every neighborhood with this huge new resource. Please take our short survey below to let us know where you’d like to see safety improvements like bike lanes or sidewalks.

To take the 1-2 minute survey please visit this site:

STEAM Summer Camp
There will be a STEAM Summer Camp 2017 at Small Middle School. This year’s theme is “Where Nature’s Wisdom Powers Human Innovation.” Go to Our Website to Save Your Spot by Registering Today!

AISD Survey

Austin ISD needs your input. A survey was sent out in this week’s Monday folders. Please fill out that survey and return it. Please note that the hard copy scan forms are due no later than Monday, February 20, 2017. You may also choose to take the survey online. Online responses will be accepted through February 3, 2017.

If parents do not wish to complete the scan form survey, the online version of the Parent Survey is now available. Parents can reach the survey by going to AISD’s main page ( and clicking on the survey announcement below the rotating banner. This will take them to the Parent Survey page where they can choose to take the survey in English, Spanish, or Vietnamese. PLEASE NOTE: THE SURVEY SHOULD ONLY BE COMPLETED IN ONE FORM, SCAN FORM OR ON-LINE, BUT NOT BOTH!

Anderson Trojan Belles Camp
Come dance with the Anderson Trojan Belles at their 2016 BELLES SUMMER DANCE CAMP, June 19th – 22nd at Murchison Middle School (new location). Full day elementary aged campers will learn dances, participate in daily arts & crafts and game time, perform with the Belles, and more! Half day middle and high school campers learn more challenging dance routines, how the Belles practice and what it takes to be a Belle. Registration forms coming soon at Registration begins early this year on February 1st.

ADHD Coaching  sessions
AISD Department of Special Education presents Positive Parenting:  An ADHD Coaching Series at Pillow Elementary Cafeteria. The dates are January 27, February 17, April 25 at  8-9:30 a.m.

There will be expert speakers for each session. Spanish Interpreter Provided. Light refreshments served. LINK TO FLYER  and Registration LINK.

AISD Accepting Open Nominations
Open nominations for Principal of the Year, Assistant Principal of the Year, Counselor of the Year, Librarian of the Year and Campus Classified Staff and District Classified Staff of the Year began Jan. 3 and close Jan. 31. We invite staff, students, parents and community members to nominate a candidate for these awards.  Join us May 16, 2017 at the AISD Performing Arts Center. Click here to nominate.

FABPAC Meeting
As the new year approaches, we look forward to working with you to shape our #AISDFuture by updating our Facility Master Plan to modernize campuses during the next two decades.

Our community’s feedback has helped refine our approach to modernization to include:

State-of-the-art technology in all schools

Flexible learning spaces in all schools and

Community spaces.

Community members on the trustee-appointed Facilities and Bond Planning Advisory Committee continue to examine the consultants’ preliminary options, which have been reviewed with every school’s leadership. They will review community comments and bring recommendations to the Board of Trustees.

As we continue to plan, shape and build our #AISDFuture, we need your input.

Community Engagement Series Jan. 24-Feb.1

Invite your stakeholders to join us at the next series of community engagement conversations to share feedback about the FMP update and the options identified to date with FABPAC. The meetings are:

Feb. 1 – 6 to 8 p.m. at Burnet Middle School and

Feb. 2 – 6 to 8 p.m. at Gorzycki Middle School

Food and refreshments will be provided. Interpretation services will be available upon request. To request interpretation services, please call 512-414-9595 or email AISD will offer childcare with Maker Kids Lab, a district partner that offers fun projects that inspire kids to explore their interests in science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics. Arrive early as there will be limited space for children to participate in the small group activity.

To learn more about the FMP process, visit AISD’s website (English and Spanish) and watch and share the FMP video (English and Spanish). We look forward to hearing from you. Please contact us at or 512-414-9595. A flyer with this information is here.