September 20, 2011

Local Astronomer Earns a Star

Carol Lee Andrews Lutsinger, BISD teacher and district astronomer, has been selected to receive the 2011 Texas Association for Gifted and Talented Award for Region I. Ms. Lutsinger, a teacher at Faulk Middle School, was recognized for her strong commitment to gifted education at the local, regional and state level. Lutsinger is passionate about teaching and has shared her love of astronomy within the school district and Brownsville community for many years. She brought the first portable planetarium to BISD through the STARLAB program and shares her expansive astronomical knowledge with teachers at annual district GT inservices. Lutsinger also writes a weekly column in the local newspaper about celestial events of all kinds. Ms. Lutsinger will be recognized at the BISD Board Meeting on September 20.

Brownsville Earns Grant Award

Brownsville was one of four communities in Texas to earn Texas Early Learning Council Grants to improve local school readiness. The BISD Curriculum & Instruction Department Collaborated with the United Way of Southern Cameron County to secure the $110,000, two-year grant awarded. View the entire media release.

A Message to Vendors

The BISD Purchasing Department has taken on the duty of issuing the letters of introduction for vendors to visit district campuses. To obtain a letter, visit the Purchasing Department located in the BISD Administration Building, 1900 Price Road, Suite #107, or call 548-8361. Rosario Peña is the Purchasing Administrator.

A Taste of Higher Education

The Guidance & Counseling Department will host “University Day” on Thursday, September 15 from 8:00 AM-12:30 PM at the Jacob Brown Auditorium. This annual event provides an opportunity for juniors and seniors from area high schools to visit with representatives from colleges and universities and learn about admission requirements and educational programs. Students from 15 local high schools will participate in this year’s “University Day.”

Walking for Graduates

Brownsville ISD wants every student in our community to graduate from high school. To reach that goal, Interim Superintendent Dr. Carl A. Montoya, Board Trustees and over 100 district and community volunteers will spend Saturday, September 10, 2011 participating in the district’s third “Walk for the Future.” The volunteer teams will campaign door to door to find students who have not returned to school or who have dropped out. Each team will visit with students and parents about the district’s many graduation opportunities. View the media release.

Faculty Artists

The BISD Department of Fine Arts will host the 16th Annual Faculty Art Exhibit on September 9-October 7 at the Brownsville Museum of Fine Art located at 660 E. Ringgold Street. Everyone is invited to attend a reception on Friday, September 9 from 6:00 - 8:00 pm. This year’s exhibit theme is Mother Earth. For more information, call 982-3730.


Beginning in Spring 2012, the new State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) will replace the TAKS as mandated by the legislature. STAAR is a more rigorous assessment program that will provide the foundation for a new Texas accountability system. The STAAR program in grades 3-8 will assess the same subjects and grades as TAKS. At high school, grade specific assessments will be replaced with 12 end-of-course (EOC) assessments in Algebra I, geometry, Algebra II, biology, chemistry, physics, English I, English II, English III, world geography, world history and U.S. history.

School Zones

Zoning maps for BISD schools are available on the district’s website. The zoning areas are updated annually by the Assessment, Research and Evaluation Department. Call 554-2806 if you have a question about a specific address or zone. View the online attendance zone for each school.

Subscribe to RSS

Brownsville ISD offers RSS (Really Simple Syndication) to distribute online content beyond visitors just using browsers. RSS is a technology used by millions of web users around the world. It will allow you to keep track of the latest headlines from BISD’s homepage easily and effectively without having to visit the district’s website on a regular basis. Click here to subscribe to the district’s RSS.

The BISD Tradition Continues, 1915-2011

For 96 years, Brownsville ISD has provided a quality education for our community’s children. The addition of more public school students and schools has not changed the district’s mission. Each BISD campus from the original Putegnat Elementary School to the new Daniel Breeden Elementary School has a fascinating history. Click here and select a BISD school to learn more.

Labor Day Holiday

All BISD campuses and offices will be closed on Monday, September 5, 2011 for Labor Day. Regular district operation will resume on Tuesday, September 6, 2011.

Vela Band is Tops

The Vela Middle School was ranked 11th in the final state round of honor band competition conducted by the Texas Music Educators Association on July 24 in San Antonio.

The Vela Band has advanced to state level competition 8 times since the school opened in 1990, an amazing record. No other Rio Grande Valley middle school band program has ever ranked at the state level with such consistency.

The Vela Middle School Band is under the direction of Mario Sarmiento. Congratulations to the students, parents and directors on their most recent state level achievement.

August Grads

Brownsville ISD hosted it annual summer graduation ceremony on Wednesday, August 31 at 7 pm in the Rivera High School gym. Over 100 BISD graduates wore their home-school caps and gowns and crossed the stage to receive their high school diplomas in a traditional ceremony. For over 15 years, BISD has held a special summer graduation ceremony at the end of August for students who were unable to participate in the district’s June commencements for various reasons. Click here to view photos of the district’s 2011 Summer Graduation.

3 Days to Rescind Early Notification

The Early Notification of Resignation/Retirement deadline was Wednesday, August 31, 2011. BISD employees have until Tuesday, September 6, 2011 to rescind their resignation/retirement if they wish to do so. Written notification to rescind a resignation/retirement must be submitted to the Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources at 1900 Price Road, Suite 302.