Our District Accomplishments page recognizes Round Rock ISD students and staff who receive state and national honors. All recipients are invited to receive recognition during Regular Board Meetings.
2012-2013 RRISD District Accomplishments include:
The Cactus Ranch Elementary School Student Council has been chosen for the Student Council Excellence Award 2012-2013 of the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP). Student councils are recognized for outstanding participation in the following areas: community service, student leadership, citizenship, and school spirit.
Council members are: Addie Beeson, Ethan Bennett, Brooks Berry, Maya Bhasin, Miles Crain, Valeria Cruz, Larson Featherstone, Morgan Foltz, Bryn Frieling, Hayden Gray, Declan Grey, Brandon Hanen, Nikki Harkare, Blake Herrera, Mary Iliukevich, Saahir Janmohamed, Beck Kipperman, Shrivatsa Kulkarni, Catherine Layne, William Layne, Emma Lopez, Kallie Lopez, Jordan Miller, Jaaucklynn Moore, Conner Mullen, Juliana Murillo, Seth O'Brien, Sarah Pattison, Jack Peterson, Sneha Philip, Theo Phocas, Tej Reddy, Jack Ripley, Chai Savage, Kayla Stewart, Caleb Strmiska, Collin Sullivan, Lauren Tam, Klein Thompson, Landry Topo, Dominique Walker, Jordan Wasicek, Kylie Winkles, Riley Yarbrough, and Eli Zunker
Vicki Crain is their principal.
Congratulations to Johaun Hatchett, Chisholm Trail Middle School who recently placed 1st in 8th grade Science and 2nd in Geometry, Middle School, at the state TAME (Texas Association of Minority of Engineers competition.) His teacher is Carolina Carner, and Robert Sormani is his principal.
Congratulations to the McNeil HS Engineering Academy whose Junior Varsity Team A placed 6th in Texas at the TEAMS (Test of Engineering Aptitude, Math and Science) competition. JV A team members are: Daniel Nguyen, Cameron Barufaldi, Addison Ewing, Benjamin Henthorn, Amber Hokama, Kara Li, Pruthvi Patel, and Christopher Walker.
The McNeil HS Engineering Varsity Team C placed 4th in the state competition. The Varsity C team members are: Devin Carr, Joshil Bhatpuria, Preston Bracamontez, Rachel Chen, Ben Gravell, Justin Harmacek, Anusher Momin, and Greg Vargas. John Yonker is their principal and Lisa Windolph and Walter Lee are their teachers.
Congratulations to Miguel Alda, Westwood High School, who recently won the 5A Boys Singles Tennis State Championship. Miguel captured the 5A State title with a 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 win.
Travis Dalrymple is his tennis coach and Laurelyn Arterbury is his principal.
Congratulations to Caldwell Heights Elementary School and Chandler Oaks Elementary School for being authorized as International Baccalaureate® (IB) World Schools (Primary Years Programme) after successfully completing a rigorous development process and review by the prestigious international organization. Caldwell Heights’ principal is Barbara Bergman, and Chandler Oaks’ principal is Rebecca Haynes.
Two Round Rock ISD high schools have earned spots in the annual “Best High School” list compiled by U.S. News & World Report. Westwood High School earned a Gold Medal and a national ranking of 144, and McNeil High School earned a Silver Medal and national ranking of 696. Additionally, Westwood High School was ranked 22nd among Texas high schools, and McNeil High School was ranked 76th in the state. Laurelyn Arterbury is principal at WWHS and John Yonker is principal at MHS.
Congratulations to Caren Ulcak, Wells Branch Elementary School who was recently selected the state winner for the “Kindest Heart In Texas,” from the Newtown Kindness National Foundation. This young girl is the kindest heart in Texas, as nominated by her teacher. She will receive a $100 donation to the charity of her choice. Belinda Cini is her principal.
Round Rock ISD middle and high school students were recognized for exemplary projects at the recent Texas State History Association (TSHA) History Fair.
Stony Point High School:
The Junior Historians received first place for their Chapter Project, Jean Lafitte: Texas Treasure and Legend.
- Gabriel Chapman won first place for his documentary, The Dallas Texans.
- Justin Sipple won third place for a research paper, The Immortal Ten, and recognition for the Kate Harding Bates Parker/Texas history research award.
- Marcus Hunter won an honorable mention for his individual research paper, Dr. Lawrence Nixon: The Unknown Civil Rights Activist, and recognition for the Willie Lee Gay/African American research award.
Cheri Christian-Winne is their teacher.
Canyon Vista Middle School:
- The Junior Historians earned first place for their Chapter Project, The Battle of Palo Alto. Students are Louis Fernandez, Jitendra Gudlavalleti, Ben Pimpler, Michael Rada, and Madison Riba.
William Waghorne is their teacher.
Hopewell Middle School:
- The Junior Historians earned second place for their Chapter Project, The Williamson County Courthouse. Students are: Trevor Brown, Samantha Dees, Brianna Harner, Gaby Medina, Nathan Sippel, Chad Warner and Dallas Winne.
- Gaby Medina was selected National History Club Historian of the Year
Ron Goins is their teacher.
Round Rock High School’s Marine Corps JROTC Academic Team comprised of Matthew Vanden Bosch, Ayesha Gonzales, Christopher Cooper, Cole Zoeller, and Tristan Miller will compete in the final championship round of the 2013 Marine Corps JROTC Academic Bowl Championship in Washington D.C. on June 21-25. The event is sponsored by the College Options Foundation. JROTC Academic Team is led by Major Tedd R. Shimp.
Congratulations to William Waghorne, Canyon Vista Middle School who received the Texas State History Associations’ (TSHA’s) annual David DeBoe Award for "History Day teachers that serve the organization and ultimately their students." Barbara Paris is his principal.
Congratulations to Penny Smeltzer, Westwood High School AP Statistics teacher, and Lisa Windolph, McNeil High School Engineering teacher who were recently selected as finalists for this year’s H-E-B Excellence in Education Awards. The state winners will be announced on May 3.
Congratulations to Nicole Hagerty, Canyon Vista Middle School Assistant Principal who was recently selected by the Texas Association of Secondary School Principals (TASSP) as the Region XIII Assistant Principal of the Year. Her principal is Barbara Paris.
The Round Rock Independent School District has been named to the Texas High Performance Schools Consortium (THPSC) which will help develop innovative, next-generation learning standards, assessments, and accountability systems for Texas schools. Districts selected for the consortium must have received either national, statewide, or regional public acknowledgement for district-wide or campus-wide excellence in academic performance or innovative practice, and met performance and audit requirements of the Texas Education Agency. Round Rock ISD is one of 23 Texas public school districts invited to join the consortium by Education Commissioner Michael Williams.
Congratulations to Dr. Jesús H. Chávez who has been honored by the Senate of the State of Texas with a resolution congratulating him on his upcoming retirement and service to the students of Round Rock ISD.
Congratulations to the Round Rock High School Marine Corps Junior ROTC. The Cyberteam advanced to the National Semifinals Round of CyberPatriot V. The members of the Cyberteam are:
Maria Dronen, Bryan Dronen, Jared Kindles, Kayla Rivera, Robert Diaz, and Gavin Kondrath.
The Rifle Team finished their season at #11 of approximately 260 teams from across the nation. They qualified for the Marine Corps Junior ROTC Marksmanship Championships in Anniston, AL.
Members of the Rifle Team are: Brenton Janysek, Jason Williams, Sarah Liberty, Ashton Dickinson, and Keith Martin. Their instructor is Tedd R. Shimp, Major, USMC (Ret).
Congratulations to Priya and Naveen Arunachalam, Westwood High School, who are this year's Exploravision Region 5 winners. Their project was the Nanoparticle Induced Immunoresponsive Correction (NIIC) and Redirection of Fat Accumulation (RFA). The Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision science competition encourages students to imagine what technology might be like in the future. There were only six winners in the regional level for the United States. They will compete at the national competition later this year. Natasha Armstead is their sponsor and Laurelyn Arterbury is their principal.
Westwood High School students James Yoon, Andrew Feng and Jennifer Yoon placed first in Texas in the H&R Block Dollars and Sense Challenge. The competition encourages DECA members to test their financial literacy skills individually or as a team. They will attend the international competition in Anaheim, CA later this year. Laurelyn Arterbury is their principal.
Congratulations to Jennifer Land, Director of Internal Audit, who was elected to the Texas Association of School Business Officials (TASBO) Board of Directors at their annual conference in February. She will serve on the board through 2016. TASBO is a statewide organization of almost 6,000 members representing more than 900 Texas school districts that is dedicated to being a trusted resource for school finance and operations. TASBO’s mission is to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of Texas public schools through the development of highly qualified school finance and operations professionals. Pat Reddin is her supervisor.
Congratulations to Denise Cochran, Round Rock ISD Dance Curriculum Specialist, who was recently named the recipient of the Texas Dance Educators Association Lifetime Achievement Award. Cochran is a Past President of TDEA and continues to be a leader of that organization. Jim Van Zandt, director of fine arts is her supervisor.
Four awards for excellence in school communications were presented to Round Rock ISD’s Community Relations Department in February during the Texas School Public Relations Association (TSPRA) Star Awards Celebration in Corpus Christi. Each year TSPRA, an organization with more than 900 members, recognizes school communicators for outstanding work in both print and electronic media. The “What is a Day Worth?” attendance marketing campaign earned the Crystal Certificate of Merit in the Parent Involvement/Volunteer Category, a Gold Star Award was awarded for the “Bond Update” newspaper insert in the External Newsletter Category, and Silver Star Awards were presented for RRISD’s “Retirement Plan Meeting” in the Non-English Speaking Audience Category, and “Rodeo Roundup” logo in the Logo, Trademark, Symbol Category for districts with 30,000 or more students. Members of the community relations team include Deb Strahler, coordinator of community relations, Linda Aschenbrener, coordinator of web communications, and JoyLynn Occhiuzzi, executive director of community relations.
Congratulations to Superintendent Jesús H. Chávez who was presented The Blueprint for Educational Change, “2013 Architect of Change Award”, by the E3 Alliance. The “Blueprint for Educational Change” is Central Texas’ strategic plan to build the strongest educational pipeline in the country. The Blueprint focuses on the following goals:
- All children enter kindergarten school ready
- Central Texas eliminates achievement gaps while improving overall student performance
- Students graduate college-career ready, and prepared for a lifetime of learning
- Central Texas, as a community, prepares children to succeed
Dr. Chávez was honored for his diligent work to eliminate achievement gaps across different student populations.
Walsh Middle School student Meghan Busby was named as a national finalist in the Paralyzed Veterans of America Veterans Day Poster and Essay Contest in the grade 7-8 essay category. The contest is a way to creatively and actively involve America’s youth in the celebration of Veterans Day. They received more than 700 poster and essay entries expressing this year’s theme “Show/Tell a Personal Story about a Veteran Who Has Made a Difference in Your Life or Hometown.” Her principal is Toni Hicks.
The following Round Rock ISD student were named to Texas All-State Band, Orchestra, or Choir and represented our district at the All-State Convention on Feb 13-16 in San Antonio.
- Cedar Ridge High School:
- Band - Tyler Hardee, Christopher Kreger, Devon Sheets, Sean Yi and Joel Wright
- Orchestra - Caitlin Komm
- Choir - Joshua Hill
- McNeil High School:
- Orchestra - Edward Wang, Derek Ju and Eugene Ng
- Round Rock High School:
- Band - Jessica Treffer
- Orchestra - Analee Cantu
- Choir - Sam Henderson and Kaely Wilding
- Westwood High School:
- Band - Eric Zhou, Jisop Lee and Justin Kim
- Orchestra - Steven Chen, Mesoo Cha, Deepa Rajan, Dolores Derksen, Grace Song, Joann Gu Johyn Lou, Wesley Ng and Juliana Kim
- Choir - Manasa Kanukurthy, Christian Moellenhoff, Russell Zacher, Costa Skevofilax, Adam Munoz and Kendall Walshak
The Texas High School Coaches Association has released its Academic All-State athletes for football and Round Rock ISD has six students.
- Cedar Ridge High School: Jordan Lehuquet - Honorable Mention, Rayce Morgante - 2nd Team, and Tyler Tomasino - 2nd Team
- Stony Point High School: Will Bowden - 1st Team, Alec Cochran – ELITE, and Josh Shokraeifard - 1st Team
Deerpark Middle School has been selected as a 2013 Texas School to Watch by the Texas Middle School Association. Texas Schools to Watch is a state-level partnership that seeks to identify middle schools that are committed to a journey of excellence centered around the program areas of Academic Excellence, Developmental Responsiveness, Social Equity, and Organizational Structures and Processes. As a Texas School to Watch, Deerpark Middle School joins a network of over 100 schools throughout the United States that have achieved this elite status. Sonya Hayes is principal at Deerpark Middle School.
Round Rock Independent School District ranked third in the nation on the Top 20 K-12 Schools list by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Green Power Partnership for the amount of green power or renewable energy the district uses. The report released by the EPA for 2012 shows that Round Rock ISD purchased 15,567,055 kilowatt hours of wind energy last year.
Congratulations to Aneesha Kommineni, Westwood High School who was selected as a national winner of the 2013 National NCWIT (National Center for Women & Information Technology) Award for Aspirations in Computing. Aneesha was recognized for her computing-related aspirations, outstanding aptitude and interest in information technology/computing, solid leadership ability, academic history, and plans for post-secondary education. There were over 1800 applications for the award this year. Her principal is Laurelyn Arterbury.
The following McNeil High School students are advancing to the State HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) competition in April after scoring high on their area tests. They are:
- Danny Lin - Healthcare Issues Exam, top 10%
- Saheel Chodavadia - Medical Law and Ethics Exam, 1st place
- Vivianna Wu – Medical Law and Ethics Exam, 2nd place
- Barun Das - Medical Math, 2nd place
- Hunter Montgomery - Pharmacology, 2nd place
- Livia Rezende – Pharmacology, 3rd place
Kathy Schneider is their Health Science teacher and John Yonker is their principal.
Congratulations to the following Cedar Ridge High School students who have been selected to take part in a grant from the National Science Foundation to study stem cell research. The students will participate in the research grant beginning this March and ending in May.
They are: Phoebe Atkinson, Ashley Gomez, and Samantha Wasson. Cam Pearce is their Advanced Biotechnology teacher and Dr. Daniel Presley is their principal.
Round Rock High School’s Thespian Troupe proudly represented the district at the Texas State Thespian Festival. Three performance events qualified for national competition: Monologue - Lucas Reilly; Duet Acting - Allison Wojtowecz and Rebecca Reap; and Duet Musical - Ben Carneiro and Kristen Cottrell. Their teacher is Charles Hobby and Natalie Nichols is their principal.
Congratulations to Pam Bartholomew, Forest Creek Elementary who was recently selected as one of the 2013 honorees of the Texas Exes Awards for Outstanding Teachers, sponsored by The Texas Exes (UT alumni association), the President’s Office and the College of Education at The University of Texas at Austin. Pam is one of two elementary and ten high school teachers selected from across the entire state for her outstanding professional accomplishments as a teacher. Her principal is Sheri Lehnick.
Stony Point High School has been named National Champion in the 2012 “Get Schooled Fall Attendance Challenge” with a 5.06% attendance gain. The school participated in the contest as part of the district’s “What is a Day Worth?” informational attendance campaign which was launched last year. Albert Hernandez is principal.
Congratulations to Chelsey Tiger, Round Rock High School, who was selected the 1st
place winner by The Native American Heritage Celebration Committee for her essay on the
theme "The Shared Journey: The Resiliency Of Our Native People". Natalie Nichols is her
Congratulations to Laurel Mountain Elementary School student Emily Nguyen who
participated in the 2012 World Youth Chess Championships in Croatia last month. She competed
in the U10 Girls Group and finished 16th among 126 participants from over 50 countries.
The Following Round Rock ISD students competed in the 16th annual Texas Chess
Championships (grades K-12) in Houston last month. After two days of intense and fun
competition, many RRISD students came back as trophy winners in their grade sections:
Individual Trophy Winners:
- Dang Nguyen, Cactus Ranch Elementary, 2nd place in 4th grade – Texas 4th grade
- Anh Nguyen, Cactus Ranch Elementary, 10th place in 2nd grade
- Rithik Polavaram, Laurel Mountain Elementary, 1st place in 1st grade – Texas 1st
- Rohit Bandi, Laurel Mountain Elementary, 1st place in 4th grade – Texas 4th grade
- Rohan Polavaram, Laurel Mountain Elementary, 7th place in 4th grade
- Ijay Narang, Laurel Mountain Elementary, 8th place in 4th grade
- Helen Le, Laurel Mountain Elementary, 9th place in 2nd grade
- Collin Le, Laurel Mountain Elementary, 10th place in 4th grade
- Anuja Uppuluri, Laurel Mountain Elementary, 12th place in 4th grade
- Alexander Quach, Canyon Vista Middle School, 3rd place in 8th grade
- Louis Fernandes, Canyon Vista Middle School, 7th place in 6th grade
- Tejas Karuturi, Canyon Vista Middle School, 7th place in 7th grade
- Chinmay Pingale, Canyon Vista Middle School, 9th place in 6th grade
- Duy Nguyen, Walsh Middle School, 1st place in 8th grade - Texas 8th grade
- Khoa Nguyen, Walsh Middle School, 2nd place in 6th grade
- Rohith Kaliyur, Westwood High School, 7th place in 9th grade
- Team Trophy Winners:
- Laurel Mountain Elementary (Rohit Bandi, Rohan Polavaram, Ijay Narang, Collin Le
and Anuja Uppuluri), 1st place in 4th grade – Texas 4th grade Team Champion
- Laurel Mountain Elementary (Helen Le, And Isha Narang), 5th place in 2nd grade
- Spicewood Elementary (Shreyes Kaliyur, Sathvik Allala, And Rahul Karuturi), 3rd
place in 5th grade
- Canyon Vista Middle School (Louis Fernandes And Chinmay Pingale), 2nd place in 6th
- Canyon Vista Middle School (Alexander Quach And Gargi Pingale), 3rd place in 8th
Congratulations to Susan Nix, (assistant athletic director) who was recently selected by
the University of Texas CATCH team as “CATCH Champion of 2012.” Ms. Nix is being
recognized for her untiring dedication to create healthy environments for the children in
Texas. The catch team was impressed with Ms. Nix’s commitment and passion towards the
improvement of school health. Jim Loerwald is her supervisor.
Congratulations to McNeil High School and Westwood High School for receiving the 2012
ACT College Readiness award. The award was given to schools that showed improvement over
a five-year span in increasing both their students’ level of performance on the test as well as the
number of students from their campus who took the test. John Yonker is principal at McNeil
High School and Laurelyn Aterbury is principal at Westwood High School.
Congratulations to the Gattis Elementary art program which has been ranked the number one program in Texas by Artsonia, the world’s largest online children’s art museum. The award recognizes the school’s participation in the site’s online art gallery. Gattis had 39 students participate with four students receiving high merit awards for their work.
High merit award winners are: Gabriella Sosby, Loralei Lindner, Issac Gonzales and Tesdenya Firew. Donna Staten is their art teacher and was named one of 23 Teachers of Distinction. Jennifer Lucas is their principal.
Congratulations to Taylor Sims, Round Rock High School for being selected to the 2013 ACDA Junior High Honor Choir that will perform at the 2013 National American Choral Directors Association Convention in Dallas, next March 13-16. This is a huge honor as students from all over the country auditioned to be a part of this ensemble. Her director is Jamieson McCaffity, and her principal is Natalie Nichols.
Congratulations to Rachael Brunson, England Elementary School, who recently received a $5,000 Sodexo Foundation School Engagement Grant to lead her class in a semester-long service-learning program to study and address childhood hunger in the local community. Jana Stowe is her principal.
Voigt Elementary fourth grade teacher Annette Schalchlin was selected as a recipient of Office Max’s “A Day Made Better” event. Office Max awards more than 1,000 teachers from across the country with more than $1,000 each in school supplies. Schalchlin was presented a certificate, flowers and a box of supplies for her classroom that included a digital camera and a personal laminator. Christene Nemestsky is her principal.
Congratulations to Donna Staten, art instructor at Gattis Elementary School for being selected to present to elementary visual art teachers from across the state regarding her work with students and the web gallery Artsonia at the Texas Art Education Association Conference – Artistic Foundations from November 11 through 15 in Dallas, Texas. Her principal is Jennifer Lucas.
The Westwood High School Symphony has been named the 2012-2013 Texas Music Educators Association Honor String Orchestra. They were selected from a field of thirty applicants based on two rounds of judging of audition recordings. The symphony is directed by Susan Williams. The WWHS Symphony will perform at the TMEA convention in San Antonio in February. Laurelyn Arterbury is her principal.
Dr. Pedro Galaviz, Director of Secondary Education, has been selected as one of only 17 candidates nationwide to participate in this year’s prestigious Superintendent Leadership Academy (SLA), created by the Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (ALAS).
Congratulations to the following Round Rock ISD School Honors Bands which were winners in the 2012 Mark of Excellence project. They are:
- Canyon Vista Middle School Honors Band, directed by Mark Piwetz, is a National Winner in the Mark of Excellence/National Wind Band Honors project.
- Grisham Middle School Honors Band, directed by Betty Bierschenk-Pierce, is a National Winner in the Mark of Excellence/National Wind Band Honors project.
- Hernandez Middle School Honor Wind Ensemble, directed by Cathy Humphrey, is a National Winner in the Mark of Excellence /National Wind Band Honors project.
- Westwood High School Honors Band, directed by Jack Green, is a Commended Winner in the Mark of Excellence/National Wind Band Honors project.
Congratulations to Chandler Oaks Elementary School for being named a Green Ribbon School award winner for the second year in a row. The award recognizes Chandler Oaks’ efforts in the last year to improve their campus in four cornerstone areas: Health and Fitness, Nature Adventure, Natural Classrooms and Eco-Friendly Campus. Parents Sabrina James and Andrea Mercado sponsor the green school activities. Rebecca Haynes is the principal.
Forty-nine Round Rock ISD students were named National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists this
fall. They will continue in the competition for some 8,300 Merit Scholarship® awards, worth
more than $32 million, that will be offered next spring.
Round Rock ISD students include:
- McNeil High School: Eugene Ng, Zachary Sullivan
- Round Rock High School: Timothy Bordelon, Stefan Bordovsky
- Stony Point High School: Anh Phan, Chaaru Raghavan
- Westwood High School: Aseem Afsah, Corinne Alford, Preethi Balakrishnan, Dongsoo
Cha, Eric Chen, Richard Chiang, Valerie Chiu, Pooja Dasari, Cesar Delgado, Krishna
Desai, Michael Duan, Arpana Dutta, Simone Feng, Ann George, Anna Gottardi, Rebecca
Ho, Henadz Horyn, Archana Jeeji, Shanshan Jiang, Aaron Kubala, Sailesh Kumar, Seung
Lee, Richard Lin, Victor Lu, Isabella Mozdzierz-Monico, Anoop Naravaram, Sindhu
Nathan, Victor Ng, Bryant Peng, Stefan Prisacaru, Andrew Raddatz, Dayal Rajagopalan,
Aditya Rao, Sneha Shrotriya, Aparna Singh, Tejinder Singh, Geethika Vemulapalli, Eric
Wei, Abigail Westover, Danyang Xiang, Jessica Xiao, Russell Yang, and Eric Zhang
Two Round Rock ISD students were named Semifinalists in the 2013 National Achievement
Scholarship Program, an academic competition to provide recognition for outstanding African-
American high school students. They will continue to compete for approximately 800
Achievement Scholarship® awards, worth more than $2.5 million, to be offered next spring.
Round Rock ISD Students include: McNeil High School: Bethany Smith, Round Rock High School: Myron Angus
The following Round Rock ISD students have been named National Hispanic Scholars which
recognizes exceptional academic achievements of Hispanic high school seniors. Students
- Round Rock High School: Gabriela Enriquez, Jonathan Gonzalez, Heather Jones, Colton
Korgel, and Jacob Rolette
- Westwood High School: Cesar Delgado, Miguel Guerrero, Tyler Logan, Jessica McCully,
Isabella Mozdzierz-Monico, and Luis Valenciau
Congratulations to Rachael Brunson, England Elementary School, who recently received
a $5,000 Sodexo Foundation School Engagement Grant to lead her class in a semester-long
service-learning program to study and address childhood hunger in the local community. Jana
Stowe is her principal.
For the third year in a row, Round Rock ISD has earned 4.5 out of 5 stars on the Texas State
Comptroller’s Financial Allocation Study for Texas (FAST) report, an indication of the district’s
strong academic performance coupled with low costs. The report shows that Round Rock ISD
displayed academic progress in the top 90th percentile of Texas school districts, while the
district’s spending remained low compared to its fiscal peers. Congratulations to Ramiro Flores,
Deputy Superintendent of Finance & Administration and Dr. Martha Salazar-Zamora, Deputy
Superintendent of Instruction & Administration.
Also, Teravista Elementary and Walsh Middle School were named 2012 Texas Honor Circle
campuses based on each school’s ranking in the FAST report. Elementary schools must achieve
a five-star FAST rating to be named an Honor Circle Campus, while middle and high schools
must achieve at least 4.5 stars. Congratulations to Kristina Snow, principal at Teravista
Elementary School and Toni Hicks, principal at Walsh Middle School.
Congratulations to Chandler Oaks Elementary School for being named a Green Ribbon School
award winner for the second year in a row, Chandler Oaks Elementary has been named a Green
Ribbon School award winner by the Green Ribbon Schools organization. The award recognizes
Chandler Oaks’ efforts in the last year to improve their campus in four cornerstone areas: Health
and Fitness, Nature Adventure, Natural Classrooms and Eco-Friendly Campus. Rebecca Haynes
is the principal.
Congratulations to Westwood High School student Sailesh Kumar who was one of 10 students chosen from across the country to take part in a summer research program at Baylor University. Kumar worked and developed a computer model to study the bio-mechanical effects of reverse shoulder therapy. The computer model simulated reaction forces within the glenohumeral joint during arm elevation tasks for various locations of the Center of Rotation.
Congratulations to former Walsh Middle School students London Bolsius and Mariya Raleigh and Canyon Vista Middle School’s Govind Girish who were named semifinalists in the 2012 Broadcom MASTERS competition, a national science, technology, engineering and math competition for middle school students. They were among 300 semifinalists chosen from more than 6,000 nominees nation-wide.
McNeil High School graduate Lucas Burns and junior David Williams competed against more than 300 teams in the Duo Acting category of the National Forensics League national speech/acting tournament. Their piece, “The Mustache,” finished ranked 20th in the nation.
Congratulations to Michael Cravey, Westwood High School, who medaled in four categories at the National Junior Classical League Convention held at Wake Forest University. Cravey placed second in original board games, fourth in epic poetry/original myth, fourth in long jump and fourth in 100 yd dash/Olympika track. He also placed in the top 20 nationally for reading comprehension (Latin).
Congratulations to the following RRISD students who competed at the HOSA National Competition this summer. They are:
Jessica Yehl, Cedar Ridge HS – 5th place, Prepared Speaking
Raveena Saini, Cedar Ridge HS – Extemporaneous Speaking
Gabrielle Williams, Cedar Ridge HS – Recognition Award, Chapter Newsletter
Grace Truong, Stony Point HS – 6th place, Medical Math
Congratulations to Garima Singh, Chisholm Trail Middle School who was one of the top 15 finalists in North America for the Google Science Fair. Her project was titled “Which Cooking Oil Will Make The Most Energy-Efficient Biodiesel?”
Congratulations to Westwood High School biology teacher Joy Killough who received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, the nation’s highest recognition for math and science teachers. The awards recognize teachers who are innovative and bring teaching to life in their classrooms. National winners receive $10,000 and a trip to Washington, D.C. Laurelyn Artebury is her principal.
Congratulations to the Canyon Vista Middle School String Orchestra under the direction of Beth Frederick for once again being named the Texas Music Educators Association State Middle School Honor Orchestra. They will perform for the TMEA membership at its annual convention in San Antonio in February, 2013.
The Westwood High School Full Orchestra, under the direction of Susan Williams and Jack Green, was named third in the state by the Texas Music Educators Association. The Westwood orchestra has been named State Honor Orchestra three times since 1999-2000.
Congratulations to Michelle Swain, Round Rock ISD’s director of Gifted and Advanced Academic Services, who has been elected to serve a three-year term as a state representative on the National Association for Gifted Children board of directors. NAGC supports and develops policies and practices that encourage and respond to the diverse expressions of gifts and talents in children.
Congratulations to Stony Point High School’s Deborah Kariuki, who was one of 50 science, technology, engineering and math teachers nationwide selected for the Summer Siemens STEM Institute, a week-long professional development experience in Washington D.C. Her principal is Albert Hernandez.
Congratulations to the following Laurel Mountain Elementary educators who were selected to attend the University of Connecticut’s “Confratute,” a week-long program on gifted education and enrichment-based teaching and learning. Laurel Mountain principal Jan Richards and assistant principal Johanna Kelley joined Lucy Castro, Melissa Hein, Trevor Hance, Kate Fredrickson, Jessica Lofaro, Charlotte Justice, and enrichment coordinator Nicole Levitan at the conference. Levitan presented a special topic session during the program entitled “Building SEM (School wide Enrichment Model) Brick by Brick.
Congratulations to the following Round Rock ISD teachers who were selected winners of the 2012 A+Education Foundation educator grants. This year the A+ Education Foundation gave out over $67,000 in grants to 74 recipients. The funds will help the recipients cover the cost of programs and training to improve the classroom experience for their students.
Rebecca Kunkel, ASPRIE Program
Barbara Ludden, C.D. Fulkes Middle School
Margaret Payne, Caldwell Heights Elementary
Jennifer Reyes, Caldwell Heights Elementary
Leslee Arredondo, Callison Elementary
Jessica Cheyney, Callison Elementary
Lalitha Shetty, Callison Elementary
Sam Soto, Callison Elementary
Jennifer Weaver, Callison Elementary
Maria Vega, Callison Elementary
Sintra Persad, Cedar Valley Middle School
Debbie Galloway, Herrington Elementary
Linda Wilcox, Live Oak Elementary
Kristina Caffey, Teravista Elementary
Christine Epperson, Voigt Elementary