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Klein News
Klein ISD Hosts Graduation Ceremonies
May 27 2016 - 08:54:00 am


Summer is almost here, and the graduating class of 2016 is ready for commencement ceremonies, taking place at NRG Stadium. More than 3,000 students are set to cross the stage on Saturday, June 4, 2016.

 

Ceremony times are as follows:

Klein High School – 9 a.m.

Klein Forest High School – noon

Klein Oak High School – 3 p.m.

Klein Collins High School – 6 p.m.

 

Beginning this year, all four ceremonies will be available on a live stream that will be found at www.kleinisd.net on June 4, 2016. A splash page will direct website viewers on how to proceed.

 

For family and friends attending the ceremonies, parking is available in the South Kirby Lot, Kirby Dr. and South Loop 610. Guests will enter through the Amegy Bank entrance of NRG Stadium. Students will enter to the left of the Amegy Bank entrance. Guests in wheelchairs will enter through the Amegy Bank entrance and proceed to the top level which is reserved for persons in wheelchairs and their families.

 

The parking fee is $12 per car. Students must arrive one hour and 15 minutes prior to the ceremony.

 

After graduation ceremonies are completed, all students and guests must vacate NRG Stadium, exiting at the Ford entrance.  Please consider making a plan to meet family members at a specific location outside the stadium. Click here for a parking map and a map of the facility.

 

A professional photographer, Loyds Photography and Video, will take  pictures of the graduates as they receive their diplomas. Friends and family are not allowed on the floor of the stadium. A DVD of the ceremony will be available for purchase. For more information on pricing, please visit your student’s school website.

 

Please direct all questions to your student’s campus. Congratulations to the class of 2016!

Klein ISD Education Foundation Hosts Banquet Honoring Top Graduates
May 23 2016 - 09:46:00 am

The Klein ISD Education Foundation (KEF)  hosted the 14th annual Academic Banquet where the top ten graduates of the four Klein ISD high schools were honored for their accomplishments. The winner of the Donald R. Collins Distinguished Educator award was named. Banquet underwriters were Perdue Brandon Fielder Collins & Mott, LLC., and Campus Kids, LLC. The banquet was sponsored by PBK, Inc., and a special thanks to Dahill, A Xerox Company, for donating the keepsake programs. The event was attended by parents, family, faculty, and local business partners who supported students for their achievements.

 

The keynote speaker was Dayna Hernandez, a Klein High School graduate from the class of 1991. She holds a bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas at Austin and a master’s degree from Sam Houston State University. She is the new principal at Mahaffey Elementary that will be opening in the fall of 2016.


The Academic Banquet allows each student to select a teacher whose influence has been instrumental to them.

 

The top ten graduates from each campus include:



Every year, one student from each high school is selected to speak at the banquet. Students who chose to participate underwent a selection process with their peers and administrators. The student speakers reminded each other of this special moment in their lives and what it took to get here. 

 

Speakers were as follows: Ashley Akin of Klein High, Julieann Nguyen of Klein Forest, Ross Hardin of Klein Oak, and David Li of Klein Collins. 

Jim Laminack, a former teacher and educator in Klein ISD is the 2016 recipient of the Donald R. Collins Distinguished Educator Award, sponsored by Klein Equities. 


The KEF was established in 2000, and is designed to provide direction and support for innovative academic and enrichment projects and staff development activities for Klein ISD. KEF is a non-profit organization and its mission is to generate and distribute resources to the Klein ISD to enrich, maintain, and expand programs needed to meet the district’s stated mission of excellence in education. 

For more information on the KEF click here.  To view pictures from the banquet, click here.
Cain Earns Inaugural Klein ISD Lifetime Achievement Award
May 20 2016 - 02:33:00 pm
KLEIN, TX – How do you get more than 400 people to keep a secret? By telling them only hours before the big reveal! The 400+ crowd kept quiet about the Lifetime Achievement Award presented to Klein ISD superintendent Dr. Jim Cain during the Klein ISD annual staff banquet held on Thursday, May 19, 2016.

Earlier this school year, Dr. Cain announced his plans for retirement effective June 30, 2016. This award recognizes all that Klein ISD’s beloved leader accomplished during his 36 years in the district and total of 47 years in public education.

Dr. Cain is an institution in the district. His Klein career began in 1978, and he has worked in multiple capacities that including: assistant principal, principal, instructional officer for technology, director of school administration, assistant/associate superintendent of school administration and currently as the district’s superintendent. 

“His commitment to the profession of education and to the success of all students is unsurpassed,” stated Klein ISD Board President Steven Smith.  “Further, his impeccable character has earned him the utmost respect from the Klein ISD Board of Trustees, the Klein ISD staff and the community at large. He indeed will be missed by all.” 

Throughout Dr. Cain’s 12-year tenure as superintendent, the district has experienced significant academic strides. Under his leadership, graduation rates increased and dropout rates decreased. Student performance scores are consistently above state and regional marks on standardized tests and college entrance exams. Fine arts have flourished in the district and Klein ISD is nationally known for its 21st-century culture and push of digital learning.

Growth in the Klein ISD with Dr. Cain at the helm has been exponential. The district grew by more than 13,500 students, 14 new campuses opened, and three bonds totaling more than $1 billion passed to support educational needs.

Dr. Cain is also a proponent of character education, making it a key factor in educating students in the Klein ISD. This goal of producing students with good character led to a partnership with Anti-Defamation League (ADL). Each school in the district is a designated ADL No Place for Hate campus. Dr. Cain also implemented an adult group, the Unite for Understanding Council, which works on bringing together the diverse cultures in the Klein area.

“Whatever the position, Dr. Cain served the district with class, style, character, insight, and foresight,” expressed Judy Rimato, Klein ISD associate superintendent for communications and planning. “He is so very deserving to receive the inaugural Klein ISD Lifetime Achievement Award.”

As hard as it was to keep a secret from the man who has his pulse on everything in the district, Dr. Cain was pleasantly surprised as he accepted his award.

“Well what a nice surprise,” said Dr. Cain. “I so appreciate the support I have had from the Klein ISD Board of Trustees. I can only tell you that it has been a labor of love to serve this school district. I never cease to be impressed by the quality of our teachers, administrators, and support staff, as we continue to work hard and work smart, the girls and boys of Klein ISD will continue to be the beneficiaries. I have enjoyed it every step of the way.”

Click here to view a video of Dr. Cain accepting the Lifetime Achievement Award.
Krahn Elementary Earns Grant from Lowe's
May 19 2016 - 09:47:00 am


Krahn Elementary is the recent recipient of the Lowe's Toolbox 4 Education Grant, funded by the Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation. This organization has supported thousands of grassroots community and school projects.

 In an effort to find ways to encourage reading both in and out of the classroom, Krahn applied for a grant in the hopes of creating a whimsical outdoor reading area where students, teachers, and faculty could go to enjoy their silent reading or group reading activities.

 It is the hope of Krahn administrators that the Reading Garden will become an area that students will love to visit where they can sit, enjoy the outdoors, and immerse themselves in their books.
Klein ISD Names Employees of the Year
May 17 2016 - 10:07:00 am

Each year, the district hosts the employees of the year at its annual staff banquet to celebrate the hard work and dedication of its teachers, administrators, staff and retirees. This year we recognize the following employees of the year: 

 

Professional Support: Beth Gilleland

Beth Gilleland has made big advances in her 28 years with Klein. She has served the last two years as an instructional officer at the Klein Instructional Center. Gilleland has lead and supported numerous initiatives throughout the district. Her primary focus has been intradepartmental support and collaboration. In response to the state accountability needs, Gilleland has lead the development of behavioral initiatives that establish a standard positive behavior approach. In addition, Gilleland has created a character education hub with more than 70 lessons for elementary and intermediate school students. She is quick to respond to any challenge. Gilleland is an asset to the district.

 

Police: Jeffrey Kirkland

Officer Kirkland has made many contributions to the Klein ISD Police Department in addition to his daily tasks. He currently runs the "Police Pals" kids fingerprinting program for the department, facilitates a group at Kuehnle Elemarty for the Leadership Academy, and is a School Liaison Officer responsible for fostering positive relationships with students, parents, and staff. Officer Kirkland recently completed a specialized training program to assist the district and community in crisis. In his 18 years with the district, Officer Kirkland has stepped up for volunteer programs without hesitation and has shown what a team player looks like for both the district and the community.

 

Transportation: Billy Young

Bus driver Billy Young has been with the district for six years and has a perfect attendance record. He has one of the more challenging bus routes but still takes on extra assignments when asked. He has built strong relationships with both students and parents filled with trust and respect. Every student is greeted with a hug, fist bump or a high-five. Young's former students even bring their children to meet him and share family news. 

 

"I have spent 28 years in education as a teacher, coach, and administrator; and Billy Young has one of the best professional relationships with students that I have seen," said transportation associate director Steven Ilten.

 

IT: Chris Cummings, Will Lang, Chad Greene

With a combined 26 years in Klein ISD, team managers Chris Cummings, Server Manager, Will Lang, Business Information System Administrator, and Chad Greene, Software Applications Manager, work to support numerous projects and applications throughout the district. ID management is one of their most recent projects. 

 

"This team of young men is a prime example of how departments collaborate and work together for the benefit of the district," said Candace Threadgill, director of information technology.

 

Manual Trades: Clint Klenk

A founding family member, Clint Klenk has been with Klein for 26 years, working in the maintenance department as a licensed master electrician. One of his projects is to provide new and updated electrical outlets to all of the schools. He also helps provide power to the temporary buildings. Klenk is always willing to work overtime and often volunteers to assist at football games.  He is considered an outstanding and model employee by his supervisor August Wunderlich. 

 

Plant Operations: Estebana Pacheco

August 2016 will mark 15 years of dedicated service for Ms. Pacheco. Pacheco has worked with six head custodians and has shared her knowledge and training with fellow custodians. She is always looking for opportunities in and outside her assigned area of responsibility to improve her campus. "Ms. Pacheco is the perfect example of the type of employee Klein Plant Operations wants and expects," Pacheco's supervisor Willie Huggins said. 

 

Teacher Assistant: Joshua Lawson

During his three years at Wunderlich Intermediate, Joshua Lawson has dedicated countless hours both in and out of the classroom. Lawson works on campus in the PASS program as well as working with students identified under the campus behavioral RTL program. In addition to his position as a teacher's assistant, Lawson often volunteers his time as a DJ to support campus and district events such as Klein Police Department's CSI Night, Wunderlich's OSCAR ceremony, eighth grade recognitions, and the annual talent show.

 

Clerical: Connie Green

She has dedicated 20 years of service to Klein ISD, particularly Benfer Elementary. Green is currently the school's financial secretary and secretary to Benfer principal Katie Steele. She serves on the Benfer leadership committee and participates in the recently implemented Professional Learning Communities (PLC) initiatives. In addition to her daily tasks, Green hosts a "Blanketeers" club every semester. She teaches 48 students to sew and assists them in making quilts. Once the quilts are complete, they are donated to Project Linus,which gifts quilts to children in need. "Blanketeers" is one of the most sought after clubs on campus. Steele described Green as the backbone of Benfer Elementary due to her organized manner, warm smile and big heart. 

 

Food Service: Claudia Flamenco

Claudia Flamenco is the manager of food services at Klein Collins High School. She earned her position in 2014 after being promoted from kitchen manager at Schultz Elementary. Flamenco leads more than 30 colleagues each day and guides them to uphold standards and regulations. She was promoted through the training program quickly because of her natural leadership qualities and hard-working, positive attitude. Flamenco serves as the secretary for the Klein Association for School Nutrition (KASN) and volunteers her time on nights, weekends, and during the summer to serve as a leader for the team. 

Dr. Cain Announces Superintendent’s Initiative Award Recipients
May 16 2016 - 10:40:00 am

Klein Superintendent Dr. Jim Cain recognizes employees who have made a significant impact with programs or services that either enhance student learning or highlight programs in the Klein ISD. This year’s Superintendent’s Initiative Award winners are:

 

Ron Webster, Executive Director of School Administration:

Webster has served in many capacities during his tenure with Klein ISD. He has worked with students in the classroom as a former math teacher and prior to entering school administration served as the principal at Klein Oak High School. In his current role he has helped re-write the district’s policies on safety and security and credits the help of the many committed school administrators. He has implemented new safety programs to establish a model that involves all campuses and departments. For the first time, the district received the Texas State School Safety Certificate.

 

“His actions support the priority of the Klein ISD for safety and security for all students and staff which is directly related to the district’s mission, goals, and ideals,” said Dr. Jan Marek, associate superintendent of school administration.

 

 

David Kimberly, Klein ISD Police Chief & Christina Haggard, Klein ISD Police Officer:

Kimberly and Haggard worked together to create the Klein ISD Leadership Academy, a character education program, where Klein ISD police officers work with campus counselors and students. The program brings about an innovative means to educate children not only in character education, but to have one on one communication with multiple agencies within the Klein ISD framework. The academy was funded by a grant from the Klein ISD Education Foundation. Haggard has completed a 40-hour specialized training course. She is committed to promoting the Leadership Academy.

 

“This unique program will align with the district’s strategic plan for character education and will continue for years,” said Beth Gilleland, instructional officer for guidance and counseling.

 

 

Klein Oak High School teachers, Daniela Lankford, Lindsay Nalley, Jennifer Schiebel & Tanner Ledford:

Together this group has worked to organize the school’s “Books Love Art” program that showcases student artwork with the school and community. This event is completely volunteer based and these teachers work hard to make this project come to life. This year’s event included the art of dance and other visual arts and featured a muralist who worked at the campus the day of the event. The event has gained momentum and size each year.

 

“Programs like “Books Love Art” bring together students from multiple disciplines that may seem quite different,” said Klein Oak principal Dr. Brian Greeney. “However, whether it’s a sketch drawing, a musical score, dance routine, a great novel, or a piece of molded clay, these platforms are learning opportunities for students.”

 

 

Klein Instructional Center, Dr. Susan Borg, Dr. Angie Anderson & Stephanie Edgar:

When considering the next steps in advancing the district, it became apparent the teacher voice and supportive campus leadership were the key. The Transform Academy was born: a vision that began with Borg and Anderson and was put into motion with the expertise and creative efforts of Edgar. Together they have initiated numerous programs to benefit teachers across the district. The academy relies upon the collective work of many to encourage the identification of best practices, outstanding resources, and progressive learning environments along with the reduction of standardized practices.

 

“This type of innovative thinking has led to the beginning of a cultural revolution in the district that encompasses versatile learning furniture, a variety of technologies, restructured library spaces, and introduced progressive school building designs,” said Dr. Mary Rosenberg, executive director of student support services.

 

 

Schindewolf Intermediate School teachers, Jared McCoy, Shauna Simonson, Courtney Hornsby, Charlene McDonald & Lisa Owen:

At the beginning of the school year, Schindewolf was met with many students in its developmental classroom with significant disabilities. The extent was well beyond what the staff could handle on their own. This group of teachers stepped up to help until additional staff was hired. Each gave extra time including lunch breaks, and time before and after school to ensure that each of these children’s needs were met. Each teacher embodies the mission of Klein to provide a safe and nurturing environment for our students. Once a full staff was in place, these teachers continued to be regular visitors to the class.

 

“Their ability to identify a need and act to meet that need demonstrates that they embrace Klein’s core belief that “leadership is a shared role and responsibility,” said principal Dr. Curtis Simmons.

 

 

Rachel Heallen, Grace England Early Childhood and Pre-K Center teacher:

Heallen has enjoyed working with the special needs children at Grace England since the campus opened in 2012. Since then she has devoted her time, energy and efforts to working with her students so that they each have an opportunity to receive a good education. She is a team player who has applied for grants from local organizations. To date, she has received more than $23,500 for the staff and students at Grace England. She has served in additional roles at Grace England and most recently helped the campus establish its No Place for Hate designation from the Houston Anti-Defamation League.

 

“As a teacher of little people with big needs, she takes on the challenge with enthusiasm and patience,” said principal Ann Dristas.

 

Judy Rimato, Associate Superintendent for Communications & Planning, Cindy Doyle, Director Community Relations & Education Foundation, and Beth Gilleland, instructional officer for guidance and counseling:

Our community was affected by flooding in mid-April and a district-initiated response was led by Rimato, Doyle and Gilleland that began making a difference in our community’s lives in a matter of days. They worked tirelessly to open the Klein ISD Multipurpose Center to coordinate donations and volunteers to help those in need. For several days, this group made sure that the donation center was not only open, but operating in an organized fashion to help everyone in our community.

 

“When the need arose, these ladies did not stop working and coordinating until they knew that every donation was received and until every person in need had been helped,” said Superintendent Dr. Jim Cain.

Dora Salas-Sanchez, Schultz Elementary:

As a bilingual first-grade teacher, Sanchez recognized the need for parents of bilingual students to become more involved. After attending a conference, she worked to crate Schultz’s Parent University to benefit not only the students and the parents, but the school community as well. This initiative invites parents of bilingual students to become an active part in the school through informational sessions in their native language. Sanchez has been instrumental in the success of this program from the planning and implementation of each detail. She is also recognized as a hard worker, fiercely dedicated to her students.

 

“Parent support is essential for the success of a school and the district,” said Schultz principal Sherri Davenport. “It is imperative that we embrace our diversity and make all of our stakeholders feel welcome. The Parent University addresses this need and goal in every aspect.”

Getting to Know Dr. Bret Champion
May 11 2016 - 01:46:00 pm

Before he was Superintendent, Bret Champion was another child growing up in Goldthwaite, TX, a small city located about 100 miles north of Austin. Growing up in such a small town, Champion was able to compete in football, play in the band, participate in FFA, and perform in theater. He later attended the University of Houston where he met his wife, Marcee.

 

After joining Teach For America, Champion taught in Houston ISD, Baton Rouge Parish and landed in Leander as a theater arts teacher in the early 1990s. Over the past 23 years he served Leander as a teacher, assistant principal, principal, executive director, assistant superintendent, and, for the past eight years, has been the superintendent of the fast-growth district.

 

He and his wife Marcee have two sons, both graduates from Leander High School. The eldest, Alan, is currently attending the Colorado School of Mines, which is a public research university devoted to engineering and applied science. The youngest, Nicholas or “Nico” is attending Trinity University in San Antonio.

 

“They are both excited,” said Champion. “Nico, who is interested in education, he gets it. Although he does have a summer job with the YMCA and he is wondering where he will live,” he added. “Our family really rallies around each other and is supportive. Kids are resilient and together we will make the adjustment.”

 

The Champion family enjoys traveling and vacationing together, he describes it as a time when his family is at its best. They love to go and do. Over the years, they have taken a host of “nickel-and-dime” trips as he describes them. Driving tour vacations led them to destinations in Texas, Louisiana, New Mexico and Arizona. One of his most memorable trips was in New Mexico where they visited the Sangre de Cristo Mountains outside of Santa Fe. He and Marcee honeymooned in New Mexico and he said it was an exciting experience to revisit it years later with their sons. Their sons were extremely thrilled about visiting the Area 51 Museum as well. They also had the privilege of visiting Europe as a family as his children were getting older.

 

Champion and his wife enjoy hiking and camping, and most things outdoors, as well as home improvement projects. Champion enjoys running and reading and says he’s excited about his jogs in Houston, because the land is flat so his run times are faster. They are also very involved in their church and are excited to get involved in the Klein community.

 

“I am the cook in the family,” he said. “It’s a survival technique that if we are going to eat anything decent, then I cook. Marcee is very capable she would just rather not cook and I love to do it,” he added.

 

Over the years the Champions have owned many pets. Currently, he says his wife has a cat named Grizzle.

 

Dr. Champion’s biggest concern and fear about getting started in Klein ISD is not knowing the history. He acknowledges that the school district has a very rich history, and he has been in Leander for so long he knows the history there. Starting over and learning all Klein’s deep roots will be challenging but he is excited about it.

 

Champion’s philosophy about education is that there is not one right way to do things, and he believes that is the most challenging thing about the profession.

 

“Klein ISD is in great shape,” he said. “I’m not interested in changing things that are going great for kids. I want people to recognize that I recognize that good things are happening.” 

 

Champion vows to work with all stakeholders to gather input, feedback, and thoughts so that we can all work together to continue making Klein ISD a great place. It’s important for him that we all continue moving forward.

 

If you haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Champion yet, be prepared to smile and laugh a lot. This is not only part of his philosophy, but his true personality. The public has the opportunity to meet Dr. Champion at his Welcome Reception from 4 pm to 6 pm, on June 1, 2016 at the Klein Multipurpose Center. 

Karen Palapar Named District Elementary Teacher of the Year
May 06 2016 - 03:15:00 pm


“My parents said that since we were poor, having a good education was the only inheritance they could give me,” Kaiser Elementary teacher Karen Palapar said.  “It’s an inheritance that will secure my future and wherever I go, I will be able to survive and live a decent life.”

 

Palapar came from humble beginnings. She walked five miles to school every day with the same pair of shoes on her feet carrying a backpack with minimal school supplies.

 

“Poverty did not serve as a hindrance to reaching my goals in life. Instead, it motivated me to persevere in my studies,” Palapar said.

 

Growing up in a third world country exposed Palapar to political unrest, economic instability, violence, corruption, and human rights violations.

 

“These different forms of injustices were just a few things that made me realize I cannot just close my eyes and pretend that all of these problems do not exist,” Palapar said. “With these experiences, a seed ignited a higher calling in my life, the purpose to serve and make a difference…become a teacher.”

 

Palapar is currently a fifth grade English language arts and social studies teacher at Kaiser Elementary where she was just named the 2016 Klein ISD Elementary Teacher of the Year.

 

“Now that I am a teacher, I know I have a big role to play in the lives of my students,” Palapar said. “I only have one goal in mind, to make sure that every student in my class succeeds and achieves their highest potential.”

 

She has been teaching for 10 years, five of those in Klein. She has dedicated her time to a variety of clubs and organizations which include: Campus Instructional Development Council (CIDC), Technology Liaison, SCRATCH club, Writing & Reading Parent Night, Typhoon Yolanda Project, and  Destination Imagination, as an appraiser. She has served as the chairperson for pre-k, kindergarten, first and fourth grades, as a Professional Learning Committee (PLC) officer, and a district curriculum writer. Other positions she has held also include  Texas Education Agency (TEA) Panelist-proclamation 2014, gifted and talented (GT) teacher, chess club sponsor, robotics coach, technology club sponsor, after-school tutor and the Student Success Initiative.

 

“It is not easy to be a teacher, it takes courage, dedication, and determination to stay in this profession,” Palapar said. “To be recognized in this field, it requires you to commit your time to work long hours, stay after school, and to support the district and campus initiatives.”

 

“I didn’t expect to win, so I was really surprised,” Palapar said. “There are so many great teachers in Klein and being chosen as the District Elementary Teacher of the Year is a great honor and humbling experience.’”

 

While teaching presents its own challenges, Palapar remains dedicated and passionate.

 


“As teachers of public school students we are expected to accommodate to the new rigor and ensure that our instructions are highly effective to master state standards skills,” Palapar said.  “However, despite this challenge, a true educator never quits but instead we rise to the challenge.”
Klein ISD Celebrates National Nurses Day
May 06 2016 - 10:20:00 am


On Friday, May 6, we take the time to salute each of our school nurses and all that they do for our staff and students day in and day out. This year is extra special as six Klein ISD nurses were selected as part of the top 115 nurses in the Houston area by the Houston Chronicle.

 

Brandy Bowlen – Epps Island Elementary

Bowlen is noted as an exceptional school nurse by providing quality care for the students in her school. She embraces the precepts of Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child. Shortly after she joined Klein ISD in 2010, she was awarded a National Association of School Nurses SCOPE grant to combat childhood obesity. The Trim Epps program was also born under her leadership and continues to this day due  to her pursuit of grant funding. She was most recently involved in the Epps Island team that was awarded a Lead the Spark! Grant from the Klein ISD Education Foundation for the development of a Kinesthetic Reading Lab. Bowlen has built a culture of wellness in her school and the community that engages students, staff and parents. She has cultivated community partners that support the mission of health prevention and support of healthy lifestyles.

 

Susan Chilton – Doerre Intermediate

Chilton is an exceptionally warm and nurturing nurse with a winsome personality. She is mothering and caring towards both students and staff members, making the whole Doerre community feel well-cared for. She is thoughtful and checks in on students and staff beyond the expectations of her job. Being able to help children and their families through the difficult early adolescent years is her favorite part of the job as well as enjoying the funny things the students say and do.

 

Katina Hebert – Kreinhop Elementary

Hebert has been the nurse at Kreinhop since the day the doors opened. She gives 100% each day and goes above and beyond the call of duty. She completes her job with amazing efficiency and heart. She works hard to build positive and trusting relationships with every student, family and staff member at the school. Her knowledge, professionalism and willingness to help is simply amazing. In addition to all the daily expectations of her nursing responsibilities, she shares her talents with Klein ISD by serving as a mentor to numerous nurses who are beginning their journey as a school nurse. She also provides multiple districtwide trainings and courses throughout the school year.

 

Brenda Hoelscher – Krahn Elementary 

Hoelscher has been the nurse at Krahn, caring for sick or injured students and staff for the past 12 years. She has been a registered nurse for 27 years, working in many areas of healthcare. Not only is she the campus medical advisor, she mentors new school nurses, has developed a school garden club, serves as the Kleinwell Healthy Living Program wellness ambassador, trains faculty and staff in CPR, and plans and implements school health fairs.

 

Ginger Jacob – Klein High School

Jacob has been a nurse at Klein High for more than five years. Prior to working at Klein High, she was a nurse at Kleb Intermediate. She has also worked as a nurse in intensive care for many years. With almost 4,000 students, the clinic at Klein High can be a busy place on a daily basis. Her compassion and care for the students and staff exemplifies her professionalism in such a demanding field. 

 

Donna Streeter – Schindewolf Intermediate

Streeter helped open the doors at Schindewolf in 2002 and has been an integral part of the school, working selflessly to serve the needs of the students and staff. She continues to exemplify professionalism each and every day, and always has a kind word and a smile on her face. It is evident that she cares about the students and staff, not just their health, but also their well-being. In the past, she was awarded one of the “100 Great Nurses” for her nursing excellence from the city of New Orleans.

 

A special thank you to each and every one of our nurses!

Klein Oak to Host Simulated “Live Your DREAMS” Program
May 05 2016 - 01:56:00 pm

Motor vehicle collisions are the number one cause of death among teens in the United States and most are preventable. Unfortunately, the number of motor vehicle traffic fatalities is on the rise in Texas. One of the most concerning areas in all of Texas for MVCs is the Greater Houston Area. Within the 25 districts of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), the Houston district (which encompasses Brazoria, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Montgomery and Waller counties) accounted for 27% of all Texas crashes in 2014, which is the largest percentage in the state among the districts. Memorial Hermann “Live Your DREAMS” program aims to reduce impaired and distracted driving among teens in the Houston district utilizing funding from TxDOT and Texas Trauma Institute. The “Live Your DREAMS” program uses strategies to reduce the initiation of teenage risky behavior, increase parent involvement and encourage peer-to peer interaction. 

At the beginning of the school year Spring Fire Department Fire Fighter Kevin Price, Memorial Hermann-Texas Trauma Institute educator Sarah Beth Abbott and Klein Oak High School instructor Jeff Philen discussed the possibility of having Klein Oak host a Live Your DREAMS program. The three tiered program will include an awareness event, curriculum and hospital-based prevention.

On Wednesday May 18, with strong community support, Klein Oak High School has organized an additional element to the program a mock-crash to demonstrate the physical and emotional consequences of driving under the influence or distracted. The activities throughout the day will reflect upon student’s choices. Selected students, parents and faculty will travel to Memorial Hermann – Texas Medical Center for an intensive educational evening. These guests were selected based upon their role and ability to be a champion to their peers. The students will reconvene with their peers during an overnight retreat. Participants and other community advocates will speak on Thursday May 19 during two assemblies for the junior and senior class that will be hosted prior to the “Live Your DREAMS” awareness event.  The Memorial Hermann injury prevention champions will join community partners Houston Fire Department, MADD, Aaron’s Buddies Against Drunk Driving, Spring Fire Department, Cypress Creek EMS, Harris County Sheriff Office, Klein ISD Police Department, Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission and Watch UR BAC to bring motor vehicle safety education to the entire student body of Klein Oak High School. The “Live Your DREAMS” awareness event is the perfect opportunity to positively engage students with the community partners.

“Memorial Hermann is committed to bringing awareness to our community by working with collaborative organizations and educating our teens at motivated high schools such as Klein Oak High School,” said Memorial Hermann-Texas Trauma Institute educator Sarah Beth Abbott.

“The conversations sparked and education acquired during this event will reduce the initiation of these risky behaviors in their community. Our program aims to enable teens to achieve their dreams as young adults and beyond. Spring Fire Department FF Kevin Price, Mrs. Cathy Arellano and Mr. Jeff Philen’s support was essential to the success of the program at Klein Oak.” 

Update: On Wednesday, May 18 Klein Oak Lane will be closed for the Live your DREAMS program.

Klein Oak Administrator Named District Assistant Principal of the Year
May 03 2016 - 04:15:00 pm




Klein, Texas - “That I was a positive person that thrived on taking negative situations and pulling the good out of them.”


That’s the legacy Klein Oak High School Assistant Principal Lance Alexander wants to leave. Judging by the lives he’s touched and the opinions of his peers, it’s a safe bet to say his legacy is etched in stone.


Mr. Alexander was named the Klein ISD Assistant Principal of the Year for 2015-2016 and will be honored at the annual staff banquet in May.


“My dad told me when I was in college going into education that ‘it’s never about you, it’s all about the kids. And when it becomes about you, then it’s time to get out,’” Mr. Alexander said. “I think it shows in the love I have for these kids that I’ve kept that belief.”


Mr. Alexander, who is wrapping up his fourth year as Assistant Principal at Klein Oak, said he attributes his love for all students to the 11 years he spent teaching special education classes at Klein Forest.


“I taught special education classes for many years before getting into administration,” he said. “I love working with kids with special needs because they don’t have bad days and they really, really treasure positive attention.”


Someone who knows a lot about the positive attention Mr. Alexander shows is his boss, Klein Oak High School Principal Dr. Brian Greeney.


“He cares about people,” Dr. Greeney said. “He makes me want to be a better principal, a better father, and a better man. That’s who he is. When you are around him, you can’t help but want to be better.”


Dr. Greeney said that Mr. Alexander goes out of his way all the time to help students and anyone else in need.


“He has a heart for those who have struggles,” Dr. Greeney said. “He believes in serving first. I have never met a human being who cares as much about other people as he does.”


From placing American flags on the street of a Klein Oak graduate who died in combat, to meeting with a grieving father once a week just to talk, to organizing a letter-writing campaign to a heartbroken family, Mr. Alexander embodies sacrificial love.


“All of us put students first, that’s what makes educators special,” Dr. Greeney said. “Mr. Alexander sacrifices. It is not about what is good for him. He doesn’t do anything because it's good for him. He always puts himself second.”


Dr. Greeney said that it's Mr. Alexander's “others-first mentality” that makes him so effective as an educator and a leader.

“Mr. Alexander cares about others. That’s something that we should all strive to do.”

Congratulations to Mr. Alexander on this great honor.

Biology Instructor Dubbed Klein ISD Secondary Teacher of the Year
May 03 2016 - 01:45:00 pm

KLEIN, TX – “I said I was going to transact my business of teaching very differently,” stated Klein Oak biology teacher Albert Kisangi. “I took my summer break to do a lot of intense reading and to reflect on how I was going to conduct my learning environment.”

His summer reflection has created a great return on investment as he is now the 2016 Klein ISD Secondary Teacher of the Year.

As a lifelong learner, Kisangi practices what he instills in students. He received his kindergarten through 12th-grade education in the rural areas of Kenya and an undergraduate degree from Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya. He completed his graduate work in Japan. He is now a veteran teacher with 16 years in the classroom, the last seven at Klein Oak High School where he teaches on-level and pre-AP courses.

During that summer break, Kisangi asked himself what he could change in the teaching/learning environment. He also asked himself what were the one or two things that he could do that did not require any resources. This thought process led to the creation of a learning environment that goes by the moniker of 2G2R.

“I came to the conclusion that there were four things I was going to pursue this year,” he said. “One is growth mindset, try to shift the thinking of my students from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset. And secondly, grit. And then I said much as these things are important, the only way you will be able to support them is to create a rigorous learning environment that makes learning relevant to the kids. I want the kids to embrace this.”

He believes that combining these four elements, growth mindset, grit, rigor, and relevance, assist his students in learning and achieving at a higher cognitive level. Dr. Brian Greeney, Klein Oak principal, stated that Kisangi even has a Twitter handle, @2G2Rclassroom, that outlines his four tenets.

“Twitter is where he communicates his thoughts about 2G2R and those of experts,” said Greeney. “Mr. Kisangi values academic conversation. His goal is to deliver engaging instruction continuously, create opportunities that are rich, meaningful, challenging and relevant to the learner. I will tell you that this is something that is more than just a goal, it is something he does every single day.”

This year for Kisangi is one that has left an indelible mark on his life.

“It means a lot to me,” he expressed. “I think this is a remarkable year. This experience is going to be engraved in my mind and my heart for the rest of my life.”
Former Klein Administrator Named Substitute of the Year
May 02 2016 - 08:21:00 am

Frank Lemmon is not only a great leader but also a role model whose expertise is invaluable to those around him. It’s this type of influence that earned Lemmon the 2016 Klein ISD Substitute of the Year award.

 

Lemmon previously served the district as an associate superintendent. For the past 12 years, he has dedicated his time to helping our staff and students. His experience has made him an invaluable resource in responding to the variety of responsibilities a substitute encounters.

 

As a substitute, Lemmon works closely with campus leadership and collaborates with administrative teams to achieve goals. His day is spent covering a variety of areas including instruction, discipline, parent conferences, campus events, ARD meetings and more. Character education is a focus of his day as he builds relationships with students and encourages young children to make good choices in their lives.

 

He is committed to Klein ISD and provides help whenever he is needed, even if that means rearranging his personal schedule, many times on short notice. He is thoughtful, caring and flexible and willingly accepts every challenge.

 

Lemmon has substituted in all grade levels, in all administrative capacities, and continuously exhibits initiative and enthusiasm in every assignment. Those who have had the privilege to work with him have a great deal of respect for Lemmon and for these reasons, he has earned this great award.

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