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August 14, 2018

EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT!

Self-awareness is a good thing, even when it arrives after a person is over a half-a-century old. Recently I have begun to notice things that seem to impact the quality of my day. For instance, my attitude for a whole day can be formed by the first news I hear.

I am an early riser, putting my feet on the floor at 5:00 a.m. or earlier. Fortunately, there is a morning news program that I enjoy at that hour, and my newspaper has most often already been thrown. So, I usually have a choice of news sources. Will the first news of the day, whether viewed on television or read in the newspaper, be uplifting or depressing? The answer is important to the quality of my day.

On the days that a newspaper has arrived early, I usually go to the sports page first. Typically there is a heartwarming story about an underdog who has overachieved or one of an athlete who has overcome some life obstacle to reclaim some level of success. Now, those kinds of stories can put a song in my heart and wings on my feet. With an inspirational tale, my whole day just seems to go better. Not so much if I begin with the front page of the newspaper or with the television news programs.

News programs and the front page of the metropolitan newspapers seem to focus on politics these days. To find joy or inspiration in the political stories of today, one must love seeing a political foe trashed, pummeled, or slammed. Not much good political news these days. On those days that politics begins my day, my attitude resembles an old movie, “Grumpy Old Men”. On those mornings, it might be best to avoid me until I have had a heavy dose of caffeine!

If news about other people and events have an impact on our attitudes, what kind of influence do messages from others about our own worth have on our attitudes? Maybe most adults’ self-images can withstand an occasional insult or barb, but what child or young person is prepared for a steady barrage of insults and putdowns from those who are supposed to love and nurture them?

Fortunately, youngsters who face a less than positive environment when they are at home have the chance to encounter positive people who love them and who can help to restore their self-image when they are in school. Educators are fantastic about seizing on the smallest positive trait and building on it! However, it is important to remember that these children will be coming to school after a morning of negative talk. They may be like Grumpy Young People; not ready for positive chatter.

It has been said that in successful marriages, positive comments between the couple must outnumber the negative comments at least ten to one. When thinking of building positive self-images in children that standard would seem to be a good measuring stick. Since the only safe place for some children is school, you and your staff have a huge challenge and a huge responsibility.

Good luck this school year as your schools work to build an environment where every child is nurtured and supported!


TACS MEMBERSHIP

With the fact in mind that many of you have a fiscal year that begins on September 1st, TACS will be jogging your memory about membership with the delivery of an invoice on or about August 20th. If you receive an invoice, and you have already sent your membership, please ignore the reminder with our thanks. Your participation in TACS is important, especially in a legislative year. Educators are much more effective when working with legislators if we are unified. Lend your voice this year with membership in TACS. If you miss the invoice, don’t worry. You can create your own here. Thank you for all you do!

SAN ANTONIO'S TRICENTENNIAL CELEBRATION

Participants in this year’s TACS SAN ANTONIO CONFERENCE sponsored by School Specialty on September 9th, 10th, and 11th will be in for a treat. 2018 marks three hundred years since the founding of the first mission in San Antonio, and the city is pulling out all of the stops in celebration of this milestone.

One of the places conference attendees may want to explore while in the city is Pearl. The old 1894 Pearl Brewery is now home to Hotel Emma. With five hundred residents and over 2,000 people living within walking distance, Pearl is an evolving and active community.

Thanks to efforts to maintain Pearl Brewery’s original architecture, each of Emma’s guest rooms is unique, from top-floor suites with private terraces to the lower-level rooms with exposed brick walls and claw-foot tubs. You can dine in one of the hotel’s captivating restaurants, each featuring industrial brewing artifacts, and dance off the in-house Texan cuisine at JAZZ.

Until September 16th, Pearl will spice up San Antonio’s Tricentennial with 
Olé, San Antonio, a celebration of the city’s Spanish heritage through food, music, dance, design, and architecture. Free and open to the public, each day will provide unique and exciting entertainment.

Pearl may be on your must-do list while in the city, but our conference is definitely must do! In addition to a fantastic program, the food and fun planned for the conference take a backseat to no one. Sunday morning, golfers will begin early with a 9:00 tee time at SilverHorn Golf Club of Texas thanks to US Employee Benefits Services Group. Sundayevening brings the Siesta Tea Time Reception and a buffet dinner at Casa Rio Mexican Restaurant, a mainstay in downtown San Antonio since 1946. Be sure to thank our friends with A. Bargas & Associates; Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson; Parson’s Roofing; MP2 Energy; Prime Source Roofing; and Walsh Gallegos Treviño Russo & Kyle for dinner. After the meal join everyone in Tex’s River Walk Sports Bar for a Football Party hosted by Government Capital Corporation and Walsh Gallegos Treviño Russo & Kyle. Sunday is a day for fun!

Monday morning brings a delicious full breakfast thanks to Government Capital Corporation before a day of learning. Don’t forget to get your second wind at a reception Mondayafternoon at the Lone Star Café sponsored by Eidex before some time exploring the River Walk. Breakfast Tuesday morning fuels everyone for a bit of learning before checkout atnoon.

Throughout the conference, drawings for door prizes will be held. More about the door prizes next week.

Trust me, the 2018 TACS SAN ANTONIO CONFERENCE sponsored by School Specialtyis something you do not want to miss. For more information and to register click here. Also, TACS is a registered provider for continuing education for school board members. There are already some school board members who are registered for the conference. Do you need to include some of yours?


TEA ESTABLISHES Answers ONLINE VIDEO LIBRARY 

Commissioner of Education Mike Morath announced recently that the Texas Education Agency (TEA) has established an online video library to house its new Answers…in About a Minute video series. 

Answers…in About a Minute videos are designed to share basic information on various TEA initiatives and programs. Each video in the series is less than two minutes and directly answers specific questions in a user-friendly format that is clear and concise. 

The inaugural series of Answers videos will focus on the A-F State Accountability Rating System for school districts, which will be used for the first time on Aug. 15.


“Parents want the best for their child’s education and often seek information that will help them make good decisions,” said Commissioner Morath. “The Answers…in About a Minutevideo series is one direct way we can provide information on issues such as state accountability ratings, as well as other public education topics in Texas.”

Answers…in About a Minute videos are among the available tools created by TEA to help parents and community members learn about the A-F system. The videos and other A-F resources are posted at https://tea.texas.gov/A-F/. More videos will be available leading up to Aug. 15. 

In addition, the online video library will continue to grow to encompass more questions on additional topics. Videos will be added on a regular basis. 


SPEAKING OF A-F

Tomorrow morning the Texas Education Agency will release the letter grade rating for each school district in Texas. At that time superintendents will be inundated with questions from patrons and the media about their schools’ grades. TASA and TSPRA have both prepared talking points to help you better explain the new system to your community. Both are excellent! If you haven’t already, you might review them now. 

Click here to download the A-F talking points from TSPRA and here for the TASA talking points. 





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Texas Association of Community Schools
1011 San Jacinto Blvd., Ste. 204
Austin, Texas 78701-2431
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