Friday, May 27, 2016

Week of May 30

Week at a Glance
Chris Bowling accepted scholarship for his
enlistment in the US Navy.
Sat, May 28 - Graduation at 11:00 a.m.
Mon, May 30 - Memorial Day
Tue, May 31 - Staff Development in BRES Cafeteria
Wed, June 1 - Staff Development in BRES Cafeteria
Thu, June 2 - Campus based staff development
Fri, June 3 - Campus based staff development
Mon, June 6 - Summer School begins

Senior Awards Night
Congratulations to BRHS seniors for their accomplishments and scholarships awarded.  The 2016 senior class earned over $1,100,000 in scholarships.  That is a huge accomplishment and a testament to the caliber of students we are sending out into the world.  Congratulations seniors and parents for all that you have done to raise such fine students.

Another great accomplishment is that every senior has met the EOC requirements and has earned the required credits to graduate.

Congratulations Blue Ridge HS Seniors of 2016!!!

The B_Ridge to Excellence
There are commencement ceremonies of several forms happening at Blue Ridge.  First, our seniors will talk their final walk as Blue Ridge Tiger students as they graduate on Saturday, May 28 at 11 a.m.  We pray that the Bridge to Excellence that we have provided gives them a firm footing in the college and career pathway of their choosing.

But there is another form of commencement taking place, and we would like to celebrate them at this time.  We have Blue Ridge employees ending their career in education as they commence their next phase of life, retirement.  We would like to recognize these outstanding individuals for all of the efforts they gave to serve kids as their B_Ridge to Excellence.

  • Sandra Goodman, BRISD Librarian, 8 years of service in BRISD.
  • Rebecca Hopper, BRISD Nurse, 17 years of service in BRISD.
  • Betty Harris, Food Service, 18 years of service in BRISD.
The B_Ridge to Excellence is not a motto, and it's not about programs or positions.  It's all about people, and we thank our retirees as well as all of our employees for being the bridge that prepared every senior to graduate with the skill as well as the will to reach the highest levels of excellence.

Summer Learning
Summer is here, but that doesn't mean learning should stop.  Over the summer, did you know that kids regress and actual return to school lower academically than 3 months earlier when they finished the year?  It is critical that we all view summer as a different kind of learning, exploratory and recreational.  Taking your kids places and exposing them to historical markers, museums, shows, new places and reading will help them maintain their present level of performance.  To help you, our elementary library will have a summer reading program (see below).  Additionally, our athletic programs will have several camps to get your students active.  No matter what you do or where you go this summer, always remember that learning never stops and the experiences you give your children will ensure that their learning never stops.

Celebrate Excellence
Congratulations to our Blue Ridge educators who are being selected to present at regional and national conferences.
  • Rene Sawatsky, BRES Assistant Principal, was selected to present at the 2016 National ALER Conference in South Carolina, (Association of Literacy Education Research).  The topic of her presentation is "Promoting the AR360 program to improve reading comprehension through the use of this technology."
  • Dr. Scott Leslie recently presented at the Region 10 Authentic Learning conference. this past week.  His topic was structuring authentic learning through scaffolding, observation and rubrics.
Congratulations to our Blue Ridge staff for being recognized and selected to share their expertise with the education community. 

Friday, May 20, 2016

Week of May 23

Week at a Glance
Congratulations to BRISD Board Members
who were sworn in to office this week.
From left:  Seth McGinnis, Joe Harvey,
Brad Duncan, Mike McCreary

Mon, May 23
  • PTO Lunch at BRHS Break Room
  • BRES Open House from 5:30 - 7:00 p.m.
Tue, May 24 - BRHS Academic Awards
Wed, May 25 - BRMS Field Day
Thu, May 26
  • 8th Grade Promotion Ceremony at 7 a.m.
  • Freshman Orientation at 6 p.m.
Fri, May 27  Last Day of School
  • Sr Breakfast at 7:30 a.m.
  • 5th grade awards and Final Walk at 9 a.m.
Sat, 5/28 - Graduation at 11 a.m. at BRHS Gym
Mon, 5/30 Memorial Day (Staff Holiday)
Tue, 5/31 - Staff Development Kagan Training

Congratulations to BRHS Beta Club

To honor the dedication and commitment to academic excellence, Blue Ridge High School has been named a 2015 – 2016 National Beta School of Merit. The BETA club received this prestigious honor as their Beta Chapter includes all eligible grade levels on their school’s campus.
This week, we received a congratulatory letter and a National Beta School of Merit window decal to proudly display as a symbol of our school’s accomplishment. In addition, a list of National Beta School of Merit recipients will be publicized at the 2016 National Beta Convention.
BRHS BETA sponsor is Gayla Brummett.

Blue Ridge Alumni Scholarship Open

Are you a Blue Ridge Alumni or do you know a Blue Ridge alumni who attends Texas A&M
BRMS 6th and 8th graders left on their 3-day trips today.
BRMS goes above and beyond to give our kids
experiences beyond the classroom.
University-Commerce and would like to apply for a scholarship.  Blue Ridge High School is taking applications right now for the Blue Ridge Alumni Scholarship which is a 1 year scholarship that is renewable by application.  Requirements for the scholarship include the following:

  •  Graduate of Blue Ridge HS (any year)
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Applicant must submit 3 letters of reference
  • Applicant must write a 500 word essay,
For more information, please contact Angela Doan, BRHS Counselor at 972-752-5554 ext. 735 or email her at

BRISD Approves Chromebook Purchase & Sale of iPads
The BRISD School Board approved purchasing 215 Chromebooks using state funds, and the Chromebooks will be placed on all campuses.  More information about the use of Chromebooks will be forthcoming.

The district will be selling its iPads to the community from May 24 to June 20.  

Here is a link to show the prices of the iPads and laptops.

If you would like to purchase an iPad or laptop in advance, please contact Amy Hopkins.  Contact information is in the link above.

Mr. Wink interviews with BRHS AV Production Class

Check out my first interview as Blue Ridge superintendent with the AV production class. Thank you to Kourtney Wheeler who conducted the interview.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Week of May 16

Good luck to Ty Agan at the
UIL State Tennis Tournament this week.
Week at a Glance
  • Mon, 5/16 - BRISD School Board Meeting at 6 p.m. 
  • Tue, 5/17 
    • FFA Banquet at 7 p.m. at BRHS
    • Special Olympics
  • Sun, May 22 - Baccalaureate at 2 p.m. at Methodist Church
  • Sat, May 28 - Graduation at 11 a.m. at BRHS Gym

Blue Ridge Band ends the Year in Style
 The Blue Ridge bands completed the year with their end of year concert on Tuesday night.  It was exciting to see how far the beginners, 7th grade band and high school have come since the beginning of the year.  We are very proud to announce that 9 students will be participating at UIL State Solo and Ensemble contest in Pflugerville in a couple of weeks, and we are proud of the band for earning a first division in Sight-reading at UIL Concert and Sight-reading contest

This year, the Blue Ridge school board approved expenditures to upgrade the band's instruments and marching uniforms, and the instruments are here and the kids are very excited and appreciative.  To the right, Tessa Williams performed her marimba solo for the audience on the new marimba purchased this year.

Special thanks to Blue Ridge band director, David Terry, for all of his hard work in his first year to build a successful band program.  The kids are fired up about band.  The parents are extremely please with all of his improvements, and the school district is grateful that he is our band director.

The Media Center has New Hours
To help teachers gain more access to the media center, our new hours at the media center are 7 a.m. - 4 p.m.

BRHS receives the district's first 3D Printer

Kenneth Williams came back from Region 10 with a brand new piece of equipment that has the potential to impact instruction in new and different ways.  Blue Ridge High School now has its very own 3D printer which can be used to design 3 dimensional products.  To the right is our 3D printer and below is the first project created on our new printer by Kenneth Williams.  We are excited about the possibilities that this new device will bring to our students.

Your Input is Valuable
If you didn't have time to check out the Blue Ridge ISD Excellence Survey that was sent out last week, please take time to complete it this week.  CLICK HERE to access and complete the survey.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Week of May 9

Good luck to Jacob Stroup
and Brevin Wiggins at the
State Track Meet
Week at a Glance
Sun, May 8 - Happy Mother's Day

Mon, May 9 - STAAR Testing 3, 4, 6, 7 Math and 5 & 8 Math Retest

Tue, May 10
  • STAAR Testing 3, 4, 6, 7 Reading and 5 & 8 Reading Retest
  • BRHS & BRMS Band Spring Concert at 6:30 p.m.
Wed May 11 - STAAR Testing 5 & 8 Science

Thu, May 12
  • STAAR Testing 8 Social Studies
  • Special Olympic Banquet at 6:00 p.m.
Fri, May 13 
  • BRE Field Day and Carnival
  • UIL State Track Meet
Mon, May 16 - BRISD School Board Meeting at 6 p.m.

What is the B_Ridge to Excellence?
When I think of Blue Ridge ISD, I think about how much the school does to prepare all kids for a prosperous future.  To put that a better way, Blue Ridge is essentially a bridge to every student's future, and we all want it to be an excellent one.  In order for that to happen, we must be the Bridge to Excellence by working together to achieve our common goal of Excellence for Every Tiger, and that includes all students and all staff.

This webpage will serve as my weekly communication to the Blue Ridge ISD community.  It will inform you of upcoming events and important information.  To make sure you don't miss out on the B_Ridge to Excellence, I encourage you to subscribe by email in the upper right hand section titled, "FOLLOW BY EMAIL".  In the upper left section , you can also subscribe to posts in your feed.  At the bottom, there is a section for you to leave a comment, post questions and make suggestions  Please note that all comments are moderated before they are published.  My goal for this weekly communication will be to inform and facilitate two-way communication between the school and the community.

The BRidge to Excellence Starts with You
To the students, teachers, parents and community members of Blue Ridge, I would like to say thank you for your warm welcome.  This week blew by so fast, and you all made this a fantastic week.  I met so many great people at every campus and one thing is certain.  Everyone wants Blue Ridge students to be the best they can be.  As we wrap up the year, I would like to ask for your help and input by answering a few questions for me.
  1. What is great about Blue Ridge that we want to continue?
  2. What are areas for growth that we need to address this summer and next year?
To get your input, I would like to ask you to complete the following Google Form.  Please know that your input is valuable.  With it, we will be able to create processes and systems of supports to better help all students learn, but without it, we will never know what you think is needed to make our schools the most effective and efficient that they can be.  We value and appreciate your input.