HPS Austin Highlights September 2018 Edition

Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month


Harmony Public Schools Austin honors Hispanic Heritage Month, which takes place between September 15 - October 15, 2018. Our HPS Austin campuses will host a variety of events during the month of September and October to celebrate the contributions of our Hispanic families, students and staff.

This September, the Harmony Science Academy - Pflugerville Spanish department hosted Hispanic Heritage assemblies to celebrate the music, culture and people of Latin America. The show included a parade of flags showcasing all 22 Spanish Speaking countries and student performances.

Students performed “Danza de los Viejitos,”a traditional Mexican dance.

The HSAPf Spanish department invited special guest speakers to share their stories and to inspire and motivate students.

“I had the privilege and honor of addressing a student assembly about the importance of being proud of our heritage, of never stopping to pursue knowledge (don’t quit school) and chasing after the dreams that make us happy! Making sure that every day we take one step closer to achieve them. #neverstoplearning Awesome kids!

- William Ortiz Jr, Host at LatinX TalX: A Sharing LatinX Journeys Podcast

Carolina Pérez of Radiant Expansion and Larissa Davila, BCO (Bilingual Community Outreach) Consulting Group founder, visited Harmony Science Academy - Pflugerville to speak with students about the importance of paying attention in class and having the courage of dreaming big!

Bulletin boards fill the halls with famous Hispanics in history that have shaped our community.

In the Community


Harmony Science Academy Pflugerville middle and high school students had the honor of performing at the Pfamily Pfestival & Expo. The event provides area businesses with an opportunity to showcase their products and services to the Pflugerville community. In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month, the HSAPf Ballet Folklorico dance team performed traditional Mexican songs; Son de la Negra, Jarabe Tapatio, Veracruz Morena and Veracruz Jaquetón. Students enjoyed showcasing their heritage to the community.

Harmony Science Academy Pflugerville high school students and Ballet Folklorico dance team host vendor table at Pfamily Pfestival & Chamber Expo

STEM For All


KVUE News featured Harmony School of Endeavor - Austin student, Abrar. His science fair project was chosen in the top 300 Broadcom M.A.S.T.E.R.S. science competition with more than 2,500 other middle school students nationwide. Out of the four Texas students chosen, Abrar was the youngest finalists being the only 6th grader. Now in 7th grade, Abrar offers words of advice for other young scientists. "You can just try something and if you get frustrated in the middle, it's alright. Keep on going because it's never going to work the first time,” said Abrar.

Congratulations Abrar and to all of this year's Broadcom M.A.S.T.E.R.S. Top 300!

"You can just try something and if you get frustrated in the middle, it's alright. Keep on going because it's never going to work the first time,” said Abrar.
Abrar presenting his science project to Mrs. Gina Gregory, Austin Area Superintendent.


Monday started off like any other day at Harmony Science Academy - Austin. The hallways were filled with students, laughing and walking to their next classroom. Teachers monitored the halls for any running or pushing while greeting students into their classrooms. Once classes began, teacher’s voices, echoing lessons about history, science, math, and reading, traveled down the hallways. One new voice that joined this chorus was that of Sabina Bharwari, CEO and Founder of Hello World Studio, a company centered on teaching students about different technological fields through project-based learning.

Accompanied by Brennan Wong, Hello World Operations Manager and Leader of Student Success, Sabina spoke to Mr. Brandon Gregory’s 5th grade coding class about all the different fields where coding is involved. “Bottom line: coding is relevant in any industry,” said Sabina after she asked the class why she had mentioned different fields. This message keeps in line with the goal that Hello World has set for itself, which is to empower and inspire a new generation of innovators through the help of industry-based instructors from various tech fields such as AI architects, software engineers, data scientists and educators.

HPS Austin Promotes a Love of Learning


Harmony School of Innovation students were visited by Mr. Pedro “Tony” Perez and Ms. Cora “Selene” Bataille, art instructors from the Mexic-Arte Museum this September. Their arrival marks the beginning of a 6-week art program that will teach 5th grade art students about the creative and technical principles of print screening, the process of transferring ink onto different surfaces through the use of stenciled designs.

Funded through the 78744 Community Youth Development Program (CYD), a state funded program which aims to provides family and youth support through different community services in the 78744 zip code, Mexic-Arte will use project-based learning to encourage the students to think outside of the box.

When asked why programs such as these are important for students to have access to, Ms. Cora “Selene” Bataille, Mexic-Arte instructor, said, “Kids should be introduced to different kinds of art. It can open more doors for them. It’s cool to show them there is a possibility to make money with art”. Mr. Eduardo Martinez, HSI 5th grade art instructor, also agrees this program is a great opportunity for his students to be introduced into art as a career: “Students are exposed to a skill that can lead them to a career they may have never considered. Many of the students were asking if they could apply this technique to hats or purses, which lead to conversations on careers such as fashion designers or graphic designer”. Mr. Pedro “Tony” Perez and Ms. Bataille will be coming to Mr. Martinez’s 5th grade art classes three time a week. Each artists will create their own design that they will then print screen onto a t-shirt. Let’s give a big HSI welcome to Mr. Perez, Ms. Bataille, and Mexic-Arte!

In the Community


The Harmony Austin Public Relations Team volunteered at the 2018 Stronger Austin Day! The event was held on Saturday, September 29th at the Gus Garcia Recreation Center, a community partner of Harmony Science Academy Austin.

The Harmony Austin Public Relations team with Ghisallo Cycling Initiative. GCO lead a Bike Rodeo at the 2018 Stronger Austin Day.


Victoria Mancha, District Public Relations Coordinator and HSAPf student, Eric hosted an informative table at the Wells Branch Cultural Diversity Fair sharing information about Harmony Public Schools to the community. The family fun event was filled with performances, food, and music of the diverse cultures in the Wells Branch community.

Civic Engagement


Senior year marks the beginning of many lifetime milestones; prom, graduation, applying to college. At Harmony School of Excellence, though, this list of firsts is accompanied by registering age-qualifying seniors to vote for the first time. Passed into state law in 1985, all Texas high schools are required to distribute voter registrations to high school seniors who will be of legal voting age by November 6th. HSE takes this mandated responsibility a step further by educating its seniors on the civic importance of voting for the first time.

“You all are carrying a big responsibility since you are entering the world of voting,” said Mrs. Christel Sullivan, HSE Assistant Principal, to 12 seniors huddled around a cafeteria table. She stressed that voting is the way they can begin to raise their voice about the things happening in their communities. John Robey, AP English teacher at HSE, further encouraged the seniors to empower themselves through knowledge: “Do you want to decide? Then you must be responsible. You need to educate yourselves.”

When asked about the importance of encouraging these seniors to be informed about the state and federal affairs of the times, Mr. Robey said, “These young people can really make a difference.” This difference is something Daniel, an HSE senior who is also a student ambassador, is excited to be a part of.

“It’s pretty cool to make a change in a community. If I have the power to do that, I want to do it.”


The Middle School Leadership Class in partnership with R.E.A.D. (Rundberg Educational Advancement District) and the Austin Police Department’s Police Activities League of Austin (P.A.L.) is back in full swing this year at Harmony Science Academy - Austin. Led by APD Officer Kianes and Officer Stewart, this after-school club is meant to help HSA middle school students learn about interpersonal communication, public speaking, and leadership. Officer Kianes will bring in guest speakers throughout the semester that will offer advice to the students about the different aspects of leadership found in everyday situations.


Go collaborative and Harmony Science Academy Alumni Team up with Harmony Students

Lynn Osgood, founder of Go collaborative, and Diana Albiter, Harmony Science Academy - Pflugerville alumna, have teamed up together to help students at Harmony Science Academy - Austin beautify their Rundberg community.

This past month, students from the Civic Leaders club meet after-school with Mrs. Osgood and Ms. Albiter to discuss the idea of making trash cans more appealing to encourage the local community to keep clean their streets. As the head artist for this project, Ms. Albiter encouraged the kids to think outside the box: “Art can come from every day and every place so nothing is too crazy.” When asked about what she hopes the students will gain from this program, Ms. Albiter said, “I hope the students realize that they have a voice and that they are heard…the point of the project is not to make pretty trash cans, but for the students to realize that they can be part of a positive change in their community.”

Split up into three groups, the students came up with a variety of idea. Among these ideas were hearing the trashcans by placing decorative wind chime around them, smelling the trash cans by planting flowers around it, and playing with the trashcans by placing mini basketball hoops around it. Students will be working on this project throughout the semester and hope to finish in the spring.

Home Visits Work!


Harmony’s Home Visit Program is one way our staff supports students and families through the educational process. Harmony teachers visit more than 7,000 homes each year to answer any questions families might have, often helping parents work through confusion about the college application process or provide student resources. We want to ensure our students know that they have the support of both their school and their family in their academic pursuits. Educators from all grades have made the commitment to build communication between themselves and families by visiting the homes of their students. Parents, we encourage you to contact your campus to request your home visit today!

Harmony Public Schools Austin

HPS Austin Leadership Team

Left to Right: Ozan Doganay, M.Ed. - Director of Engagement and Talent | Allanur Agaberdiyev, M. Ed. - Director of Academics | Clarissa Davila - Director of Communications and Outreach | Gina Gregory, M.Ed. - Austin Area Superintendent; Dana Moses, M.Ed. - Director of Operations | Dustin Cox, MBA - Director of External Relations | Toraman Yayla, M.Ed. - Director of Finance
HPS Austin District Office - 13415 Fm 620 N Austin, Texas 78717

HPS Austin schools

Mr. Engin Dogan, M.Ed. Principal | Harmony Science Academy - Pflugerville

1421 WELLS BRANCH #200 Pflugerville, TX 78660 GRADES: 6TH-12TH

Kyle Borel, M.Ed. Principal | Harmony Science Academy - Austin

930 E Rundberg Lane Austin, TX 78753 Grades: PK-8th

Waylon Stengler, M.Ed. Principal | Harmony School of Endeavor - Austin

13415 Fm 620 N Austin, TX 78717 Grades: PK-12th

Ilker Yilmaz, M.Ed. Principal | Harmony Science Academy - Cedar Park

12200 Anderson Mill Rd Austin, Texas 78726 Grades: PK-5th

Mehmet Subas, M.Ed. Principal | Harmony School of Science - Austin

11800 Stonehollow Dr. #100 Austin, TX Grades: K-5th

Agil Sharifov M.Ed. M.A Principal | Harmony School of Excellence - Austin

2100 East St. Elmo Rd. Austin, Texas 78744 Grades: 6th-12th

Tiffany Molina, M. Ed. Principal | Harmony School of Innovation - Austin


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Created By
Clarissa Davila

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