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Klein News
Klein High Orchestra Earns Top Distinction
Oct 27 2016 - 03:43:00 pm


Congratulations to the Klein High School Chamber Orchestra, and directors Creston Herron and Tanatchaya Chanphanitpornkit, for being named as the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) 2016-17 Honor String Orchestra. This honor is equivalent to being named state champion.

 

When school resumed in Aug. 2016, these students began preparing their selections and held a taping concert Oct. 14, 2016, only eight weeks after school started. They submitted their tape along with 46 other schools across the state and earned the Honor Orchestra selection for the state. As a result, they will now prepare a program and perform at the TMEA Convention in San Antonio in Feb. 2017.

 

The Klein High School Chamber Orchestra is now the 36th Klein ISD Music Ensemble selected to perform at the TMEA Convention since 1986, the most for any school district. Remarkably, this is the very first time that any Klein ISD high school string orchestra has been honored in this capacity. Past campuses selected include: Hildebrandt ('86, '88) and Doerre ('04) Intermediate String Orchestras, Klein Oak ('89, '93, '95), Klein Forest ('90, '94), and Klein High ('98, '01, '03, '08) Full Orchestras have also been selected previously.

Klein ISD Student Serves on Commission Invited to Washington D.C.
Oct 18 2016 - 11:07:00 am

In Sept. 2016, the C-STEM Youth Commission traveled to Washington D.C. and successfully advocated for STEM Public Policy to address the need for a standard STEM definition to be adopted nationally. Klein Collins High School student Kindall Walker was among only 10 high school students selected from the Houston and Detroit areas.

 

“I felt honored to be chosen,” said Walker. “The high-status of the C-STEM organization was a bit daunting, so to be chosen was an honor and a privilege.”

 

The C-STEM Youth Commission was formed about a year ago thanks to a grant of $86,000 to launch the program from local State Farm agent Tiffany Jones.

 

“I am excited about the STEM public policy advocacy work being led by students on behalf of students,” said Jones. “The C-STEM Youth Commission project helps students gain a better understanding of STEM-focused education. Who better than these high school students to share and advocate for improvements in STEM education on behalf of youth nationally.”

 

While in Washington D.C., the Youth Commissioners briefed The White House and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development on their white paper, “The Case for Implementing a Common Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Definition to Improve Upon Access to High-Quality Enrichment Programs for Minorities and Females.” Additionally, the Youth Commissioners share their work at the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) discussion and Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson’s STEM Brain Trust, “The STEM Melting Pot: Addressing the Importance of Diversity.”

 

After these successful presentations, the C-STEM Youth Commissioners have been invited back to The White House to share their white paper through participation on a panel later this month.

 

“It was an amazing opportunity to get to go to Washington D.C. as a 15 year-old and work on public policy,” said Walker. “We were able to meet so many important people including an advisor to President Obama, a congresswoman, and other advisors to our state representatives.”

Klein ISD Police 2016 National Bus Safety Week Initiative
Oct 14 2016 - 09:21:00 am


National School Bus Safety Week is October 17-21, 2016. Klein ISD Police officers will once again team up with Department of Public Safety Troopers, Harris County Sheriff’s Deputies and Harris County Pct. 4 Constables to encourage drivers to obey state laws by not passing school buses while loading or unloading, if visual lights are flashing or stop signs displayed. Officers will follow and/or ride school buses to identify drivers who break the law.

 

During the period when children are entering or exiting the buses, drivers who fail to follow state law place the children at substantial risk of injury or death. 

 

“It is our hope that through the continuation of this initiative we can maintain a proactive approach for the public’s awareness of traffic laws related to buses when loading and unloading and avoid any potential tragedies,” stated Klein ISD Police Chief David Kimberly.

In the United States approximately 26 million students ride a school bus daily (NHSTA). Texas Education Agency estimates 1.5 million students ride school buses daily in Texas.  In Klein ISD, approximately 20,000 students ride school buses daily.  The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) states that “an average of 18 school age occupants die in transportation related crashes each year.”

 

According to Texas statute, drivers traveling in either direction must stop when approaching a school bus that is stopped and operating a visual signal. The driver may not proceed until one of the following occurs: the school bus resumes motion, the operator is signaled by the bus driver to proceed or the visual signal is no longer activated.

 

It is also important to know that if a road is divided only by a left-turning lane, drivers on both sides of the roadway must stop for school buses when red flashing lights are activated.

Klein Girl Scout Revitalizes Arboretum and Earns Prestigious Service Award
Oct 12 2016 - 02:32:00 pm

Alyssa Chebetar, currently a ninth-grade student at Klein Oak High School, has earned the Girl Scout Silver Award, the highest service award a Girl Scout in sixth, seventh or eighth grade can achieve. 

 

To earn the award, Chebetar revitalized the arboretum located at Hildebrandt Intermediate School and started the first-ever Botany Club to maintain the arboretum.

 

“The school arboretum hadn’t been used or fixed since 2008, and there was trash cluttering and killing the overgrown plants,” said Chebetar. “This motivated me to make our community eco-friendly and beautiful again.”

 

Chebetar also wanted to offer students interested in natural science an opportunity to explore more of what they are passionate about, so she started the Botany Club and promoted the group to the student body by creating posters and making announcements over the public address system. The Botany Club met in the spring to plant flowers and maintain the flower beds.

 

“This project really taught me how to take action,” said Chebetar. “I spoke to Ace Hardware, Lowes, and other people in our community willing to donate and I learned business skills that will help me in the long run.”

 

The project took nearly 70 hours and was completed in early August. Congratulations to Chebetar on her accomplishments. 

Klein Forest Teacher Named as Nominee for National Award
Oct 12 2016 - 02:31:00 pm

The Texas Association of Student Council (TASC) named Antoinette Hernandez, Klein Forest Student Council advisor, as the state nominee for the Warren Shull National Advisor of the Year Award.

 

Hernandez has been an extremely active student council advisor who has guided her council to numerous Outstanding Student Council and Sweepstakes Awards.  Under her leadership, Klein Forest has served as a TASC state officer school more than once.  She currently serves on the TASC Board of Directors.  Hernandez is a long time leadership consultant for the TASC summer leadership workshop program.   In addition, she is an instructor for the TASC Student Leadership Course Curriculum Academy.

 

TASC is the largest student leadership organization in the United States, and Hernandez represents those council advisors across the state who give their time and knowledge to ensure student success.

District Dietitian Shares an Inside Look
Oct 12 2016 - 10:11:00 am

Dietitian Chantal Dybala shares her story about the excitement of being the district dietitian

Originally, I’m from Louisiana, but got to Texas as soon as I could. My love for food actually developed from the outstanding cuisine native to central Louisiana. I’ve been the dietitian menu planner for Klein ISD for a short three months; however, child nutrition is not new to me. I’ve worked with the district for over 4 years and have 8 years of experience in the child nutrition field. I’ve been married to my husband for 11 years. We have a 7 year old son and a 4 year old daughter. My family is my inspiration for what I do. Nutrition and health are directly related. I believe in making a positive impact on health through proper nutrition. Nothing is more important than providing 1.48 million breakfasts, 4.71 million lunches and 8400 suppers annually to the students of this community to help shape their futures. 

 

My day consists of supporting our customers, our students. I do this by creating healthy menus that meet federal guidelines and planning special diets. Menu planning really happens all year. 90% of the menu is complete in April for the following school year. Our menus are partially created from the taste tests we conduct with our students biannually. The menu planner is like a puzzle solver. Some of the puzzle pieces are cost of food items, student acceptability, availability, federal, state and local compliance, variety, quality, safety, sanitation, operational implementation, ease of recipes or menu item, and nutrition guidelines. 

 

We offer some of the same trends you see at some of your favorite restaurants. Trending now is homemade/scratch items, clean label, whole grains, whole foods, and going local. We already do several homemade items, like homemade whole grain cinnamon rolls, homemade whole grain kolaches, homemade whole grain rolls, lasagna and several sauces. Many of our products have clean labels, like our burgers, orange chicken, roasted turkey and pulled pork. We have a build your own salad bar line at high schools, similar to Salata. It is our goal to continue these trends. We are constantly innovating our program and strive to be the best in all we do. 

 

We have some exciting projects we've been working on. We are proud to participate in a few local programs. October we participated in Texas Department of Agriculture's local challenge. We are very proud to serve 13 local products, like Texas watermelon, oranges, grapefruit, pizza from Waller Texas, sausage from Yoakum, Texas, and biscuits from San Antonio, just to name a few. We also participate in farm to school, where we bring in fresh US produce, and Texas produce when possible. Our plan is to continue to source and serve more local products in the future. 

 

Last year, at high schools, we started a sandwich of the month concept. A few of the sandwiches were, pork Cuban, chicken cordon bleu, and twice spice sandwich (spicy chicken and jalapeños) It was a great success, this year we are not only doing sandwich of the month, we’re also featuring pizza of the month. We’ve already offered BBQ pork and buffalo chicken. November we will do a play on thanksgiving with a gobble turkey hoagie (roasted turkey, mozzarella and gravy) and gobble, gobble pizza (turkey two ways: roasted turkey and turkey bacon). It offers some variation and a bit of an upscale flair.

 

 

 

Two years ago, we started our fresh vegetable line. We found that many of the vegetables we are required to offer, cooked vegetables, we going into the trash. As a result, we created a fresh veggie line. Students and staff can select from fresh vegetables, like baby carrots, cucumbers, grape tomatoes, edamame, and romaine. Homemade reduced fat, low sodium dressings are available for dipping, like ranch, cool down (chili lime), and fire up (sriracha) sauces. 

 

There are also a few misconceptions I’d like to touch on. We do not fry. In fact you won't find one single fryer in any of our kitchens. Almost all of our grains are whole grain, even our cookies. We offer fresh healthy produce items daily, not just frozen or canned items. In fact, last year we served just under 1 million dollars of fresh produce to our students. Most products are reduced fat, like cheeses, sour cream and lean cuts of meat. We use real products, like real eggs, and burgers without soy fillers. All of our chips are baked, not fried. Our menus also have low sodium requirements. This is a challenge to meet, but we do a good job by offering other flavors and herbs, like chipotle cinnamon on our sweet potato fries and herb garnishes and seasonings. 

 

I couldn't do my job without the support of all involved in the department, especially our hardworking kitchen managers and specialists in the campuses. They are the ones who make it all happen out there on the lines
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