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May 30
BISD Memorial Day Holiday

May 31
-Student Recognition for Special Olympics
@ 5 PM Rivera ECHS Gym

-Student Recognition for Elementary Schools
@ 6 PM Rivera ECHS Gym

June 1
-Student Recognition for Middle Schools
@ 5 PM Rivera ECHS Gym

-Student Recognition for ECHS
@ 6 PM Rivera ECHS Gym




 




Pace Tops in U.S.
Pace ECHS was named the 2016 winner of the Gold National Excellence in Education Award in San Diego on Tuesday, May 24. View the story in The Brownsville Herald.
All Valley Sports Honors
Brownsville ISD received several nominations in the 2016 All Valley Sports Awards. The student athletes and coaches listed below will be honored at an awards banquet to be held on Tuesday, June 14, 2016 from 6-8 pm at the Double Tree Suites in McAllen. Congratulations to:

Finalist School Category
Jordan Rudd
Jose Echevarria
Alexis Armendariz 
Dianna Amaro 
Santiago Garcia
Julie Lucio 
Anthony Garza
Cassie Valdez 
Fred Villarreal 
Fred Villarreal 
Karla Sosa 
Brownsville Lopez Soccer 
Brownsville Porter Soccer
Jose Espitia, Porter Soccer 
Brownsville Porter Soccer
 
Veterans Memorial
Lopez
Porter
Porter
Hanna
Hanna
Rivera
Veterans Memorial
Veterans Memorial
Veterans Memorial
Porter
Lopez
Porter
Porter
Porter
Girls Basketball Player of the Year
Boys Soccer Player of the Year
Boys Soccer Player of the Year
Girls Tennis Player of the Year
Boys Golfer of the Year
Girls Golfer of the Year
Boys Track and Field Athlete of the Year
Softball Player of the Year
Baseball Player of the Year
6A Male Athlete of the Year
Sub 6A Female Athlete of the Year
Class 6A Boys Team of the Year
Sub 6A Boys Team of the Year
Boys Coach of the Year
Moment of the Year
Congratulations to these outstanding students and their coaches. Call Mark Guess, BISD Athletics Administrator at 548-8261 for more information.

Pace Brings Home the Gold
Pace Early College High School received the prestigious 2016 Gold National Excellence in Urban Education Award. The announcement was made on Tuesday, May 24 at the National Center for Urban School Transformation (NCUST) awards ceremony held in San Diego, California. Dr. Esperanza Zendejas, Board Assistant Secretary Minerva Peña, Principal Rose Longoria, and Pace representatives received the award and a $5,000 check. Benavides Elementary earned the Silver Award and Breeden and Veterans Memorial were Bronze Award recipients. A total of 18 BISD elementary schools, Canales, Castañeda, Champion, Gallegos, Gonzalez, Keller, Martin, Morningside, Palm Grove, Paredes, Peña, Pullam, Resaca, Sharp, Skinner, Southmost, Vermillion, and Yturria were named to this year’s NCUST Honor Roll. All NCUST recognized schools serve low-income communities with an array of challenges but still boast achievement results that exceed state averages for all students. In 2015, Ortiz Elementary earned the NCUST Silver Award, Benavides and Breeden were Bronze recipients, and Paredes and Pullam were named to the Honor Roll.
BISD Math Wizards
Brownsville ISD hosted the annual Secondary Math Meet on May 18 at Hanna ECHS. Students from each of the 7 district early college high schools competed in Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II, Calculus, and Problem Solving events with Pace earning 1st Place overall. Oliveira Middle School captured the top title over the 11 middle schools that competed in Algebra I and 8th Grade Mathematics. Students received individual awards for earning 1st – 10th place in several math categories. The Mathematics Department from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Brownsville campus collaborated with BISD to prepare for the meet. View the results.
Superintendent Awards $113,000 in Scholarships
Superintendent Dr. Esperanza Zendejas has announced the winners of the 2016 Superintendent’s Scholarships. A total of 113 graduating BISD seniors will each receive $1,000 to attend the college of their choice.

The scholarship funds were raised at the 13th Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament hosted by Dr. Zendejas at the Rancho Viejo Resort on Saturday, May 7, 2016. Scholarship recipients were selected by committees of local community members and district personnel. Over 433 student applications were reviewed by the committees to determine the winners.

“We sincerely thank the tournament sponsors and dedicated BISD employees who have made this tournament one of the largest in the Rio Grande Valley. We will award $113,000 in scholarships, the largest amount to date, to our 2016 early college high school graduates because of the generous donations of many businesses and organizations that value our students and want to see them continue their postsecondary education. It was a great golf tournament that truly benefitted a worthy cause, our students,” said Zendejas.

With this year’s proceeds, the Superintendent’s Scholarship Golf Tournament will have provided $901,000 to 800 deserving BISD graduates over the past 13 years. Dr. Zendejas will personally award the 2016 Superintendent’s Scholarships to the following seniors at special ceremonies which will be held at their respective high school campuses on May 26-June 1, 2016. View the scholarship recipicents by campus.
Wall Street in BISD
What would you do with $100,000? Students at Benavides, Paredes, Skinner, Faulk, and Stell virtually invested the money in The Stock Market Game where they learned about financial literacy, investing money, and buying and selling stocks. The students, with the guidance of their teachers, built and managed investment portfolios and participated in the simulation during the Fall and Spring Competition.

The Spring Stock Market Game results were as follows:
1st Place Skinner Elementary
2nd Place Paredes Elementary
3rd Place Stell Middle School

The Fall Stock Market Game results were as follows:
1st Place Benavides Elementary
2nd Place Faulk Middle School
3rd Place Skinner Elementary

The teams were recognized on Thursday, May 19, 2016 at Valley Federal Credit Union. The Brownsville Herald, Valley Federal Credit Union, Texas Council on Economic Education, and BISD Advanced Academic Services Department sponsored the competition.
Two BISD Schools Earn Library Grants
Two BISD elementary schools, Burns and Champion, were selected to receive library grants from the Laura Bush Foundation for America's Libraries in the amount of $7,000 each. Sandra Cruz is the Champion Media Specialist and Melanie G. Smith is the Media Specialist at Burns. The grants are to be used to fulfill school library book and magazine requests. More than $831,000 is being distributed to 130 school libraries in 30 states this year. The mission of the Laura Bush Foundation is to encourage a love of reading and learning for students. View the media release.
Alhambra Announces Award Recipients
The Order of Alhambra Alva Caravan #91 has announced two educational awards. Perla Guerrero, a special education teacher at Pace ECHS, received the 2016 Teacher of the Year award for her demonstrated commitment to students with disabilities. The award includes $1,000. Veronica B. Garcia, a classroom aide at Rivera ECHS, received the 2016 High School Special Education Paraprofessional award and $500. They will be recognized on Thursday, May 12 at a meeting at the Galaxy Bowling Event Center. Congratulations to these outstanding BISD educators and thank you to the Order of Alhambra.
Summertime Student Fun
The BISD Athletic Department has released the 2016 summer recreation schedule. For more information, call Mark Guess, BISD Athletics/UIL Administrator, at 548-8261. View the summer recreation schedule.
BISD Teachers Recognized for Excellence
BISD teachers won five of the six available 2016 Brownsville Rotary Club Scholarships for Teaching Excellence in the amount of $1,000 each. Congratulations to Elisa Moreno, Brownsville Academic Center; Delia Lopez, Champion Elementary; Lucrecia Alanis-Cruz, Russell Elementary School; Virginia Ramirez, Lopez ECHS; and Dawn Hill, Vela Middle School. These outstanding educators will be recognized at a Brownsville Rotary Club luncheon on Wednesday, May 18 at 12 noon at the Brownsville Museum of Fine Art. For over 20 years, the Brownsville Rotary Club has sponsored this teaching endowment to recognize and reward local teachers.
Veterans Memorial Athlete to Represent Texas
Alfredo Villarreal, Jr., a Veterans Memorial ECHS student athlete, has been nominated for the Gatorade Baseball Player of the Year for Texas. This award is sponsored by USA Today and Gatorade. The winner will be announced on May 24. The Gatorade Player of the Year award was established in 1985 to recognize and celebrate the nation’s most outstanding high school talents for their athletic achievement, academic excellence and exemplary character. Now in its third decade, the Gatorade Player of the Year award has become one of the most prestigious accolades in high school sports. View more information.
Pace Historians Advance to Nationals
Two Pace ECHS students, Alma Gamez and Madeleine Gregory, placed 2nd in the Senior Division of the Group Website category at the Texas History Day event on April 30, 2016. Their project, “Florence Nightingale: The Woman Who Encountered Unsanitary Conditions and Explored Visionary Methods in Healthcare,” will represent BISD and Pace at the National History Contest to be held at the University of Maryland, College Park on June 12-16. Their sponsor is Marisa Medrano. Congratulations to the BISD schools and sponsors who earned Distinguished Achievement awards from the Texas State Historical Association. View the results.
5 BISD Seniors Named Gates Scholars
The Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) Program has announced the Class of 2016 award recipients which includes 5 BISD seniors. The BISD Gates recipients are Zahira Correa, Brownsville ECHS; Daniela Butanda and Paulina Montez, Pace ECHS; Yannira Herrera, Porter ECHS; and Cassandra Gonzalez, Veterans Memorial ECHS. Each of these students will receive a scholarship that can be used to pursue a degree in any undergraduate major and selected graduate programs at accredited colleges or universities. Established in 1999, the GMS program is funded by a $1.6 billion grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Challenging Schools
Pace and Hanna Early College High Schools made the list of America’s Most Challenging High Schools recently released by The Washington Post. Pace was ranked #888 and Hanna was #1685. View the list.
4 ECHS Named to Best Schools List
Four BISD early college high schools, BECHS, Veterans, Hanna, and Pace, have earned medals in the national U.S. News and World Report 2016 Best High Schools ranking. Gold, silver and bronze medals are awarded based on a methodology that incorporates state proficiency tests, participation in Advanced Placement, and other examinations and data. Brownsville ECHS was ranked #27 in Texas and #150 nationally earning the school a gold medal. Veterans Memorial ECHS at #145 in Texas and #1559 nationally earned a silver medal and Hanna ranked at #185 in Texas and #2182 in the nation also received a silver medal. Pace ECHS completed the list by earning a silver medal for ranking #192 in Texas and #2296 nationally. Over 21,500 U.S. public high schools were reviewed and more than 6,000 received medals. View the rankings for the 4 BISD schools.
College Connected
BISD early college high school students are actively applying to colleges and universities using the APPLY TEXAS Application. Check out the latest numbers below by BISD school. For questions, contact Pilar Janis, BISD Guidance and Counseling Department, at 548-8251.

Name of ECHS Apply Texas % FAFSA% TASFA FAFSA/TASFA %
HANNA 100% 77% 7 79%
PORTER 100% 63% 13 67%
PACE 100% 72% 10 74%
RIVERA 99% 72% 30 78%
LOPEZ 100% 93% 10 95%
VETERANS 98% 75% 15 78%
BECHS 100% 100% - -
         
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