Inside FWISD November 15, 2018

FWISD Recognizes 2018-2019 Chairs of Teaching Excellence

The Fort Worth ISD salutes its 2018-2019 Academic Chairs for Teaching Excellence honorees.

The District recognized the 16 recipients at a special luncheon hosted Wednesday, November 14 at The Ashton Depot.

Established by the Fort Worth ISD in 1994, The Chairs for Teaching Excellence program models after the university-level Chair program and is designed to recognize and reward exemplary teachers. It’s unique because of its role in a public K-12 setting and for its rigorous selection process.

Award recipients are conferred the title of Chair for Teaching Excellence for one year, they receive a $5,000 honorarium and their photograph is on display at the FWISD Professional Development Center for one year. Campuses where Teaching Chair honorees teach receive a banner for display in a prominent area, announcing to school visitors that a Teaching Chair honoree is among the staff.

For a complete list of the 2018-2019 Academic Chairs for Teaching Excellence honorees and photos from the November 14 luncheon, click here.

Scribner Named Communicator of the Year

Congratulations to Dr. Kent P. Scribner, Fort Worth ISD superintendent and recipient of the 2018 Communicator of the Year award, presented by the Greater Fort Worth Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.

Dr. Scribner will receive the award at the seventh annual Worthy Awards gala on Thursday, November 15, at the Fort Worth Club.

Read more about the award and Dr. Scribner here.

SHHS Alum Semifinalist for College Football’s Biletnikoff Award

Fort Worth ISD community, support one of our very own, South Hills High School alumnus Tylan Wallace, who is a semifinalist for college football’s 2018 Biletnikoff Award.

Mr. Wallace, now a sophomore wide receiver at Oklahoma State University, is one of 11 semifinalists for the award that annually recognizes an outstanding college football receiver.

Fans can vote for their favorite receivers once daily at https://biletnikoffaward.com/fan-vote. An aggregate fan tally will count as one official vote for determining three award finalists, who will be named, Monday, November 19, and ultimately the winner, according to Biletnikoff Award officials.

Read more about the award and Mr. Wallace here.


Five Fort Worth ISD football teams are advancing to bi-district playoffs in Classes 4A and 5A, respectively.

All five gridiron matches are scheduled for Friday, November 16.

The following playoff matches are set:


  • Southwest versus Canyon Randall at 6:30 p.m. at Clark Stadium, 5201 C.A. Roberson Blvd., Fort Worth (Tickets are $5 for students and $7 for adults; Passes Accepted: Dist. 3-5A, Dist. 4-5A, THSCA, TGCA, TASO)
  • O. D. Wyatt versus Wichita Falls Rider at 7 p.m. at Wichita Falls Memorial Stadium (Pre-sale tickets are $2 for students and $6 for adults. Tickets at the gate are $8; Passes Accepted: Dist. 3-5A, Dist. 4-5A, THSCA, TGCA, TASO)
  • Eastern Hills versus Lubbock Cooper at 7 p.m. at Pirate Stadium in Lubbock (Tickets are $2 for students and $6 for adults; Passes Accepted: Dist. 3-5A, Dist. 4-5A, THSCA, TGCA, TASO)

4A (Each game begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $5 for students and $7 for adults; Passes Accepted: Dist. 5-4A, Dist. 6-4A, THSCA, TGCA, TASO)

  • Benbrook versus China Spring at Lumpkins Stadium in Waxahachie
  • Dunbar versus Stephenville at Pirate Stadium in Granbury

The District sends its best wishes to our five teams in the hunt for the state championship title.

FWISD To Participate in GM Financial Parade of Lights

Eight Fort Worth ISD bands and mariachi groups and the Board of Education are participating in the annual GM Financial Parade of Lights, Sunday, November 18.

Performers from FWISD include the marching bands from Arlington Heights, Benbrook, Carter-Riverside, Dunbar, Eastern Hills, Paschal and Southwest High Schools and Northside Mariachi Espuelas de Plata. The Board of Education will represent the District on a float in the parade.

Paschal High will serve as the parade’s lead band, and the band from Southwest is performing ahead of the arrival of Santa Claus.

For more parade details visit, www.fortworthparadeoflights.org.

Thanksgiving Break Is November 19-23

The Fort Worth ISD will observe Thanksgiving Break Monday, November 19- Friday, November 23, 2018. There are no classes at FWISD campuses during that time period.

Fort Worth ISD staff are reminded that the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday prior to the Thanksgiving holiday are normal work days for 240- and 245-day employees. The District is closed November 22 and 23.

Inside FWISD will resume Thursday, November 29.

Athletic events will continue as scheduled.

The District will resume normal business and class schedules on Monday, November 26, 2018.


There’s still time to contribute to United Way of Tarrant County.

Help Fort Worth ISD reach our $250,000 contribution goal.

In this short video, FWISD Superintendent Kent P. Scribner explains the significance of your gift and how it takes just one minute to donate online.

Contact Cindy Ybarra at cindy.ybarra@fwisd.org or by calling 817-814-3350 with United Way campaign questions.

FWISD Announces Gold Seal Application Help Dates

Following the Thanksgiving Break, Gold Seal Programs and Schools of Choice representatives will host Application Help Date events, November 28, December 3-7 at the Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center, 5201 CA. Roberson Blvd.

The events allow families to complete online Gold Seal applications and ask questions about the process.

Application Help Date Events are slated for:

  • 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Wednesday, November 28
  • 8 a.m.- 1 p.m. December 3-4
  • 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. December 5-7

Assistance will also be available through campus counselors and College and Career Readiness coordinators.

Online Gold Seal applications are now being accepted. Because all applications are now submitted online, it’s extremely important that parents have an active email address prior to starting the application process. District employees submitting applications for their own children may use their active directory login.

Applications are due no later than 5 p.m. December 7.

For more information visit, www.fwisd.org/choice , view the 2019-2020 Gold Seal catalog or call 817-814-2584.

FWISD to Host Secondary Hiring Fair

The following communication is from Fort Worth ISD's Human Capital Management Department:

FWISD Announces October Webby Award Winners

Clifford Davis Elementary School and Trimble Tech High School are Fort Worth ISD’s Webby Award October challenge winners.

Campus principals from the two schools were each presented with the coveted Webby Award trophy to display on their campus for the next month and a Kroger gift card for campus use. The award presentations were made at elementary and secondary principals’ meetings, November 14 and 15 at the Professional Development Center.

From left: Pamela Henderson, principal at Clifford Davis Elementary, is presented with a Kroger gift card by Thomas Ketchersid, web communications coordinator; Mr. Ketchersid presents Omar Ramos, principal at Trimble Tech High School, with the Secondary School Webby Award.

The challenge theme – “What’s Going On?” – encouraged District schools to inform stakeholders of the day-to-day club and organizational meetings, fine arts, athletic and family events happening on their campuses. FWISD schools were also urged to include information highlighting student groups, celebrating campus milestones, successes and offering details on how to become involved with campus organizations such as PTA, SBDM or booster club.

“With calendars being some of the most viewed pages on campus sites, it was great to see so many schools embrace the challenge and fill their calendars with a variety of detailed academic, athletic, holiday and community events,” said Thomas Ketchersid, FWISD’s web communications coordinator.

Distributed monthly by the FWISD Communications Department, the Webby Awards recognizes campus websites that engage families, students, alumni and the community at large. Elementary and secondary campus websites that best complete the monthly challenge are recognized with the Webby Award at principals’ meetings.

The November Webby Award challenge is “Thankful For Our Students.” Campus webmasters are encouraged to showcase students participating in campus events, field trips and other activities via video and photos.

For more details or assistance with your campus website, visit www.fwisd.org/websitetraining or email web@fwisd.org.

Website Training Sessions Resume

The Fort Worth ISD Communications Department is resuming its website open lab training sessions for campus web managers.

Five Blackboard open lab sessions are scheduled through Friday, December 14 at the Board Conference Room, 2903 Shotts St.

The scheduled sessions include:

  • 1-4 p.m. Friday, November 16; November 28 and December 14
  • 3-7 p.m. Wednesday, November 21 and December 5

The labs are open to Web managers appointed by their campus principals. Attendees must bring their own laptop to open lab sessions.

Attendees will be trained on the use of the Blackboard content management system, how to update faculty pages and calendar items and upload pictures to campus webpages.

Web managers interested in attending a session must email Thomas Ketchersid, web communications coordinator, at thomas.ketchersid@fwisd.org, no later than one day prior to the scheduled lab to reserve a seat.

For more details, visit www.fwisd.org/websitetraining.

FWISD Announces Letters About Literature Contest Winners

The Fort Worth ISD has selected 15 sixth-graders as grand champions of its Letters About Literature Contest.

The winning letters will be submitted for consideration to the Library of Congress Letters About Literature National Writing Contest.

FWISD sixth-grade centers and middle schools identified their top three student letters and submitted them to the District-level contest committee who, using a rubric, selected 15 students representing 12 campuses as grand champions.

See a complete list of the winners and learn more about the contest here.

FWISD Schools to Ice Skate at Panther Island

Thousands of Fort Worth ISD elementary students will have the chance to experience outdoor ice skating this week thanks to a partnership between the Trinity River Vision Authority, Bank of Texas and Blue Zones Project.

FWISD Schools on Skates is a program which will allow students from 23 District elementary schools to experience ice skating at Panther Island Ice.

Read more here.

WHAT: I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA Dedication Ceremony

WHEN: Friday, December 7

WHERE: I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA Performance Hall, 1411 I.M. Terrell Circle


The Fort Worth ISD’s new I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA will be formally dedicated on Friday, December 7.

The ceremony will include performances by the Terrell Academy Chorale, Wind and Dance Ensembles and special guests, as well as two short videos about this newest Gold Seal School of Choice.

Academy students will greet guests, answer questions and host information booths. Robotics demonstrations, musical performances and student artwork will precede the event in the Academy’s 901-seat performance hall.

Campus tours will follow.

Fort Worth ISD officially opened the I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA in August. The campus beautifully blends the historic Terrell school, originally opened as the city’s first black campus in 1882, with a new state-of-the-art science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and visual and performing arts (VPA) academy. The newly constructed portion of campus is a 65,00-square-foot, two-story facility, including the performance hall.

Voters approved construction of an academy for VPA and STEM in the 2013 Fort Worth ISD bond election. In August, the school welcomed approximately 160 ninth-graders. The school will add additional grade levels annually. At capacity, I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA will serve 800 students.

For more information, visit www.fwisd.org/IMTerrell.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Ask Elsie is a column where Chief Financial Officer Elsie Schiro tackles employee queries, or in areas outside her purview, asks other District leaders to answer them.

Dear Elsie,

I am a substitute without a bachelor’s degree. I feel that I am penalized when I accept a long-term position and after the 11th day the pay does not increase as it would for someone with the degree. What is the advantage of taking the long-term position if the pay isn't going to increase like other substitutes? I have had this happen now twice and each time I ask, the answer I receive is that I don't have the degree. If others or myself are already in the position and teaching the students, we should get the same pay.

James Fish

Dear Mr. Fish,

Thank you for your question. I reached out to Max Ates, senior officer of payroll, benefits and risk management, regarding your question and here’s the response: “Thank you for your dedication to teaching the students of Fort Worth ISD. It is true that the District’s compensation package pays more for a long-term substitute with a bachelor’s degree, or higher, than a substitute who has 60-plus hours of higher education. This pay differential is much like any other type of business; there must be parameters to determine the rate of pay for any individual. This differential is only paid to substitutes with degrees who are working in a teaching position in the place of an absent full-time employee or in an unfilled full-time position. However, advantages other than the pay rate of accepting a long-term substitute assignment are that you know each day for that long-term period of time that you will be working at the same location, with the same students, alongside the same administrators and teaching staff teams. Another advantage is that you can be assured that you will accumulate workdays that will apply toward the possibility of receiving a monetary award per the Substitute Teacher Incentive Program, according to the guidelines of the program. If you have questions regarding the Substitute Teacher Incentive Program, you may contact the Central Calling Office at 817-814-2780.”

Thank you, Mr. Fish and thank you Mr. Ates for your response.


Dear Elsie,

After attending a recent in-service, I was wondering if FWISD has looked in to adding a fall break to the calendar? In my department alone, 40 percent of teachers called in sick. Fall is a busy time. A long weekend to recharge and be with my family would be welcomed. I would gladly attend professional development in the summer OR start school one or two days earlier (for teachers) to have a long weekend in the fall.

A Tired FWISD Teacher

Dear A Tired FWISD Teacher,

Thank you for your question. I reached out to Charles Carroll, FWISD’s chief academic officer, and here’s the response: “The District is working through drafts of sample calendars for the 2019-20 and 2020-21 school years during the fall semester (now). A fall break is a consideration currently under review by the calendar committee. As in past years, it may be one of several differences that exist between drafts and be a decision point for consideration when a calendar for each year is adopted.”

Thanks again, A Tired FWISD Teacher for your question and thank you Mr. Carroll for your response.


Direct your questions to Inside@fwisd.org and put the words "Ask Elsie" in the subject line. Please close your letter with your preferred signature as you wish it to appear in the column. When there are multiple queries on the same subject, we will select the one that is most representative of the subject. We will try to answer as many questions as possible.

Please bear with us as we have a backlog of Ask Elsie questions and are responding to questions as soon as we can.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a new segment Inside FWISD is launching with the FWISD Safety and Security Emergency Management Coordinator Ed McGinley.

“It won’t happen to me” or “It can’t happen here.” How many times have we heard those famous words preceding a disaster? Many of the people that make that statement find themselves facing a situation that rapidly spirals out of control because they were unprepared.

A little preparation goes a long way in keeping you and your family together with food, shelter and light in case of an emergency event. Not all emergencies are disasters. The goal is to prevent a small event from becoming disastrous for your family.

Two things will happen in an emergency, you stay at home and hunker down – we call this shelter in place. Or, you have to leave and go somewhere – we call this evacuation. We are going to build a kit to deal with both situations. We are also going to aim for being self-dependent for 72 hours, that is three days. Conventional wisdom shows that it may take up to three days for relief efforts to reach you in a major emergency.

Every week, we will focus on building a supply kit to help your family get through an emergency. And we will do this on a budget that we can live with. My goal is to try to stay under $5 a week. I am going to shop and recommend stores and brands sometimes. I have no financial stake in any of those places. We also will look at practical things we can do around our homes to decrease the effects of things that happen around us.

Let’s begin.

Supply – Week One

Water- Experience has proven we need about a gallon of water per person (and per pet) per day for drinking, bathing and cooking. Pick up a case of water, the inexpensive brand in the 16.9-ounce bottles. If there are 32 bottles, that is a little over 4 gallons of water. Don’t worry we will get more later. Cost is about $4. Put your case of water in a place where everyone understands it’s for emergency use only.

Put the extra dollar away for next week.

Clothing – See if you can gather up a change of underwear for every person in the house. This is a good use for the comfortable pairs with holes in them. Put a set for each person in a plastic Ziplock bag. Oh the feel of clean underwear on day three of a disaster….

Buckets - Search around for a bucket with a lid and handle. We want freebies here, from the bakery, at the grocery store, or the local doughnut shop or those that cat litter from Tidy Cat comes in (you know someone with a cat don’t you?).

Stores I have picked up free buckets from in the past:

  • Dunkin’ Donuts
  • Chick-fil-A
  • Sam’s Club
  • Wendy’s
  • The bakery at Kroger
  • The bakery at Walmart – not all of them but talk to the bakery people
  • Shipley Do-Nuts – they sell them cheap like 50 cents but if you tell the manager you are making an emergency kit for the family, they sometimes give you a couple.
  • Jason’s Deli

Preparedness Tip of the Week:

Winter is coming. If you live in a house, start looking for the water faucet covers you had last year. Or get new ones from the store while you can find them and they are inexpensive. Don’t wait until the freeze gets here.

Volunteers Needed for INA Anniversary Celebration

The International Newcomer Academy is looking for volunteers to help make their upcoming 25th Anniversary Celebration a success.

Volunteers are needed to serve, greet guests and assist with event set-up and breakdown.

INA’s 25th Anniversary Celebration is slated for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, December 20 at the campus, located at 7060 Camp Bowie Blvd. Come hear about the history of INA, as well as listen to success stories from former and current students. Cake and drinks will also be provided.

To volunteer contact Richard Johnson, a FWISD family Communications Specialist, at Richard.johnson@fwisd.org.

For more details on INA, click here.

We’re Thankful For…

Recently, Inside FWISD asked District employees to share with us photos listing the three things they’re thankful for this holiday season.

As we enter the Thanksgiving break, we want you to know that we’re thankful for you, our FWISD employees and Inside FWISD readers.

Our lone submission for the #ThankfulFWISD challenge comes from Dr. Julie Ledford, a gifted and talented/TPPO teacher, and her daughter, a student at Alice Carlson Applied Learning Center.

Have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving Break. Inside FWISD will resume Thursday, November 29.

#ThankYouThursday: Southwest Airlines

The Fort Worth ISD is thankful for Southwest Airlines who is presenting 20 families at Harlean Beal Elementary School with LUV baskets this afternoon.

The baskets are being filled with groceries for celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday.

“We are so excited about the upcoming opportunity to share some LUV with the Fort Worth ISD family and community,” said Chad Green, manager of ramp operations at Southwest Airlines.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following are recent photos from across the Fort Worth ISD.

Veterans Day Parade

Adopt An Angel

The following communication is from the Early Learning Department

Adopt an angel today at: www.fwisd.org/angeltree

Clearing Your Web Browser Cache

The following communication is from the Department of Educational Technology:

Crowdfunding tips

The following communication is the Grants and Development Department:

Before you set up a crowdfunding account, please contact the District's Senior Project Development Specialist Stephanie Pollard at stephanie.pollard@fwisd.org.

Communications Announcements

The following are important messages from the FWISD Communications Department:

We changed our Twitter name!

The Fort Worth Independent School District has a new Twitter handle! Formerly known as @FortWorth_ISD , we are now @FortWorthISD.

Yes, we’ve removed the underscore from the Twitter handle. You’ll find the District under @FortWorthISD on every social media platform! Be sure to follow @FortWorthISD on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for updates on all #FWISD events, programs, and news.

November is Native American Heritage Month

New Teacher Professional Learning Opportunities

Professional Learning and Innovation Opportunities

Elementary Professional Learning Opportunities for November

Secondary Professional Learning Opportunities

Financial Aid Help Sessions, October 2-December 3

Website Training: Blackboard Open Labs, November 2- December 14

National Parental Involvement Day, Thursday, November 15

Sundance Square Annual Christmas Tree Lighting, 6 p.m. Saturday, November 17

GM Financial Parade of Lights, 6 p.m. Sunday, November 18. Route starts at Weatherford and Houston streets

Thanksgiving Break, November 19-23

City-Wide Read and Performance Concerts, November 26-27

Elementary Literacy Professional Learning Opportunities in November, Register in Eduphoria

FWISD Secondary Hiring Fair, Wednesday, November 28

Professional Learning Opportunities with Education Technology, Register in Eduphoria

Hanukkah Begins, Monday, December 3

Academic Sweatshirt Award Ceremony, Thursday, December 6, Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center

Gold Seal Applications Due, Friday, December 7

I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA Dedication, Friday, December 7

Conference on the Education of Hispanics, Saturday, December 8

Fort Worth ISD Holiday Concert series, December 10-20

International Newcomer Academy 25th Anniversary Celebration, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday, December 20

Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl, Saturday, December 22

Christmas Eve, Monday, December 24

Winter Break, December 24-January 4

Christmas Day, Tuesday, December 25

Kwanzaa Begins, Wednesday, December 26

New Year's Eve, Monday, January 31

New Year's Day, January 1, 2019

Save the Date: Fort Worth Technology Conference, Coming January 2019

Share your story ideas, successes, calendar items, photos, questions and feedback with us at Inside@FWISD.org. Check the Inside FWISD blog, www.fwisd.org/insidefwisd, regularly updated throughout the week with additional content and features.

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.