May

04

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : May 4, 2016

IMG_3093-pointing

Special to The Monitor
EUSTACE–Eustace High School’s journey in the U.I.L. One-Act Play Contest was a huge success this year with it being named as Alternate Advancing Play for State at the Regional Contest on April 22, at Blinn College in Brenham.  Six schools competed for advancement to the 3A State One-Act Play Contest at Regionals. The state contest is to be held at the Austin Performing Arts Center on May 25. Little River Academy and Woodville High School placed first and second, with Eustace behind by only one point. 
The last time Eustace High School qualified for state competition with their One-Act Play was in 1989 when they were named as runner up for the 2A contest.
“These students are excellent actors. I knew from day one they would go far.  We pushed hard every day to make it happen and I’m very proud of their performances.” EHS Theater Arts Director Tammy Beaty said. 
She and Co-Director Tiffany Miley began working with the students in early January on “Over the River and Through the Woods.” The final performance is at 6 p.m. this Saturday, May 7, Tickets are less than $5 at the door, and would be a great Mother’s Day gift. “Seeing this play would be a great way of showing mom just how much she means to you,” Beaty and Miley agree.
The play is a dramatic comedy that will make you laugh and cry. Centered around Nick, a single Italian American from New Jersey, his grandparents (all four of them) decide to devise a plan to keep Nick from moving away and leaving them alone. For 29 years, Nick has faithfully stayed near his grandparents and eaten Sunday dinner with them; however, he gets a promotion that requires a move to Seattle, Wash. Immigrants from Italy, his grandparents can’t seem to understand his need to move or why he isn’t married and why he doesn’t seem to value family as much as they do. It’s a story of generational differences and how they come to understand one another and just how important family is in life. It’s a story of love, sacrifice and coming to terms with change.
“How much do we truly owe those who care for us? How can you repay someone for their devotion? Can it ever be enough?”- Nick Cristano, excerpt from “Over the River and Through the Woods” by Joe Dipietro, produced by special arrangements with Dramatist Play Service, LLC. New York, NY.
“This is the best production Eustace High School has ever accomplished,” Superintendent Dr. Coy Holcombe said during the recent employee appreciation dinner. “This is a must see. Bring as many people with you as you can.”
There are six UIL contests: Zone, District, Bi-District, Area, Regional and State. (Zone competition kicks in when there are more than eight schools in their District.) “We’re happy we made it this far,” sophomore Ben Warren said, who was awarded Best Actor from a field of 130 students, competing at the Regional contest. “We didn’t have Bi-District a couple of years ago and had it been the same, this year’s regional contest would have been our State – so we were really pleased.” Other students receiving awards included Zachary Martin and Emma Lopez.

Apr

29

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : April 29, 2016

By David Webb
Monitor Correspondent
KEMP–Kemp Independent School District recently unveiled a new Internet website that administration officials touted as an enhanced information tool to better inform the community about school district policies and activities.
KISD’s new website is www.kempisd.org, which replaces the old website administered through a Texas Education Agency Region 10 portal. Anyone attempting to access the old website will be redirected to the new one.
KISD Director of Technology Tobin Brown told the Board of Trustees at the April 18 meeting that the new website would be easier for administration staff to update, and that it would provide more information to students, parents and other residents seeking information about the school district. He noted the community will now be able to see pictures of the school district’s staff along with their contact information, and that there would be more news disseminated to the public. “It has a much cleaner design,” Brown said.
Brown said there will also be better communication among the campuses and the administration building and improved Internet service as a result of technological advances undertaken by the school district. The trustees approved the installation of Fiber Internet Service by Century Link at a contract cost of $573 per month for 36 months and new network equipment by SHI Co. of New Jersey at a cost of $7,063. “We’re going to have a tremendous amount of speed compared to what we’ve had,” Brown said

Apr

22

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : April 22, 2016

More information, easier to update, cleaner design will enable greater communication

By David Webb
Monitor Correspondent
KEMP – Kemp Independent School District recently unveiled a new Internet website that administration officials touted as an enhanced information tool to better inform the community about school district policies and activities.
KISD’s new website address is www.kisd.org, which replaces the old website administered through a Texas Education Agency Region 10 portal. Anyone attempting to access the old website will be redirected to the new one.
KISD Director of Technology Tobin Brown told the Board of Trustees at the April 18 meeting that the new website would be easier for administration staff to update, and that it would provide more information to students, parents and other residents seeking information about the school district. He noted the community will now be able to see pictures of the school district’s staff along with their contact information, and that there would be more news disseminated to the public. “It has a much cleaner design,” Brown said.
Brown said there will also be better communication among the campuses and the administration building and improved Internet service as a result of technological advances undertaken by the school district. The trustees approved the installation of Fiber Internet Service by Century Link at a contract cost of $573 per month for 36 months and new network equipment by SHI Co. of New Jersey at a cost of $7,063. “We’re going to have a tremendous amount of speed compared to what we’ve had,” Brown said.
Prior to the start of the meeting, two Kemp High School senior honors students addressed the trustees during the public forum time. They complained about having too much work to accomplish during the semester because of special projects designed to orient them to college workload requirements. The two female students said the pressure of the projects had caused them significant stress because of their regular academic and extracurricular pursuits.
“I don’t even want to go to college anymore,” one of the students said. The student said the stress had caused her difficulty in going to sleep at night. Several other students who did not address the trustees attended the meeting in support of the students who spoke.
Administration officials told the trustees that previously the students received the project assignments at the end of the school year for completion during the summer. They said some students tended to wait until the last minute to start the projects, and that students could not benefit from communication with teachers during the summer break. The officials said they recently gave the students an extra week to complete the projects, increasing the time from 13 weeks to 14 weeks.
Trustee Jerry Gilbert said the students’ complaints worried him because he feared the school district had “stripped away the hours” needed to complete the projects by moving the projects from the summer to the regular school semester in the Spring.
Trustee President Charissa Roberts told the students their concerns would be reviewed by the trustees and administration officials.
In other action, the trustees:
• adopted new policy for summer band camp at Southwestern Oklahoma State University to keep students “safe and secure.” Male and female students will ride to OSU on separate buses, stay in separate dormitories and remain an extra night to avoid late night bus rides to the Kemp area. Students attending the camp must be recommended by a teacher and receive a clean disciplinary report from the principal to be eligible for the trip. Supt. Phil Edwards said a rumor had circulated that there would be no camp this year due to behavioral problems by some students last year. That was never the case, he said.
• learned the school district lost 26 students from March to April. Administration officials attributed the decrease to six students living at a community shelter relocating, a family with eight students moving out of the area and several at-risk students not returning after Spring Break.
• approved a $74,900 contract with Z Floor Co. to replace the gym floor at the Intermediate Campus.
• approved disposal of 8,225 outdated books.
• approved a plan to extend Pre-K for 2016-17 to a full-day schedule. Some parents are unable to place students in the current half-day program because they have no place for the children to go afterwards
• approved a plan to allow district employees to register their children in the Pre-K program at a cost of $15 per day.
• learned administration wants to increase pay for teachers with three to 11 years experience to be more competitive with other districts.. KISD teachers with 1 to 2 years experience are already compensated in line with other schools, they said.
• approved a plan for KISD to pursue Local District of Innovation Plan status along with other school districts in the area because it gives public school districts benefits similar to those enjoyed by Charter schools that enjoy for autonomy.
• scheduled an April 27 meeting to work on the budget for 2016-2017.