Brishaun Sutton has been selected as the new principal for Kate Bell Elementary School. Sutton has been an educator for 20 years and has served in various roles, from teacher to assistant principal. She began her career at Turner Elementary as a second-grade teacher and served as an instructional specialist and teacher development specialist. Since 2012, she has been the assistant principal of Bell Elementary School. Sutton earned her bachelor’s degree in computer information systems from University of Houston Downtown and her master’s of Education at University of St. Thomas.
Making sure that parents feel welcomed and valued at their children’s schools is a key component of HISD’s Family Friendly Schools program, and that’s why the district’s Family and Community Engagement (FACE) Department recently recognized four campuses for their successful implementation of that program.
A group of educators from HISD, including three librarians—Jo Reed (Scroggins ES), Cheryl Hensley (MacGregor ES), and Sue Carnes (Bell ES; now retired)—was recognized recently with the Wayne Williams Library Project of the Year Award for 2015 by the Texas Library Association.
The librarians were selected for coordinating schoolwide reading campaigns at their respective campuses based on the Lunch Lady series of graphic novels by Jarrett J. Krosoczka. The project not only built on students’ enthusiasm for graphic novels, but also increased their awareness of health and nutrition through a cleverly organized partnership with HISD Nutrition Services Dietician Jennifer Lengyel that connected daily meal offerings to literature.
The project was so successful that at Scroggins, interest in graphic novels spurred the principal to quadruple the school’s collection of that type of book from 12 to 48. At MacGregor, circulation of the Lunch Lady books increased by 90 percent. And at Bell, the demand for graphic novels increased so much that emergency rations of books had to be secured.
The Wayne Williams award is designed to recognize a project that exemplifies the highest levels of achievement, professional standards, and inspiration to other libraries. Reed and her colleagues were formally honored during a special ceremony held on April 15 at the Texas Library Association’s annual conference in Austin.
A dozen Houston ISD schools took part on the All-Earth EcoBot Challenge at Reliant Center last weekend, which allowed students in grades 5-8 to show off their engineering skills.
Teams of four students designed, built, and programmed autonomous robots. The teams then used their robots to complete a series of missions that connect to the commercial and industrial future of energy exploration, transportation, technological innovation, medical research, and environmental sustainability.
Everyone’s a winner just for competing in the HISD K-2 “Name That Book” contest, which was held March 3-7 at MC Williams Middle School. There were 10 winners — two winners on each of the five days — out of almost 80 participating elementary schools: Askew, Bell, Briargrove, Condit, Lockhart, Lovett, Mandarin Chinese, Valley West, West University, and Wharton Dual Language elementary schools. Each school can enter only one team. Students received medals and certificates for competing.
The annual K-2 competition prepares younger students for upper-level competition, which includes all grade levels and continues through April 17. Unlike the upper-level students, K-2 students only compete on one day. Middle school finalists – Black, Briarmeadow, Energized for Excellence, Energized for Stem Southwest, Grady, Johnston, Pin Oak, T. H. Rogers – compete at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, March 14, at the Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center. See the full contest schedule here.