Friday, May 19, 2017

Volume VIIl, Issue 34

“There’s only corner of the universe you can be certain of improving and that’s your own self.” – Aldous Huxley

Good afternoon LISD,

The library at L.J. Christen Middle School proudly bears the name of LISD’s first woman superintendent. This morning the LISD Board of Trustees dedicated the Christen Library in honor of Graciela C. Ramirez who dedicated 40 years of her life to our school district. The library was filled with friends, family, and co-workers who attest to her standards of excellence. LISD Board Vice-President Hector Noyola recalled her dynamic leadership and how she labored to improve the quality of education and maximize our resources. Romeo Rodriguez, who was a principal under Mrs. Ramirez, spoke about how she mentored him and prepared him to become superintendent at Zapata ISD. Rodriguez is currently the Chancellor for the Catholic Diocese of Laredo. Cyndee Ramirez, who also became an educator, talked about her mom with great affection and respect. Mrs. Ramirez’ influence continues to this day with the many leaders she helped to develop in our community. 

LISD’s most committed educators were recognized during our Annual Banquet on Tuesday evening in The Ballroom of the Jesus Martinez Performing Arts Center. The ceremony celebrated the outstanding careers of LISD’s very best educators. The evening began by presenting tokens of appreciation to 54 retirees for their years of service and dedication to the school district. The nominees for Secondary and Elementary Teacher of the Year, and the Para-professional of the Year from each campus were recognized and presented with a plaque by LISD Board of Trustee’s President Hector “Tito” Garcia and Board Secretary Rick Garza. Jorge Mendoza from the Hector J. Garcia Early College High School was named the Secondary Teacher of the Year. Fernando Martinez who teaches music at Kawas Elementary School was named the Elementary Teacher of the Year. The Para-professional of the year is Anna Nanez of Cigarroa High School. Mendoza and Martinez will represent LISD in the upcoming Region 1 Teacher of the Year competition. Congratulations to all our nominees and winners and thank you to all our retirees for your years of service to LISD.

On Wednesday we acknowledged and honored another illustrious group of hard working and devoted employees during the Service Awards Ceremony. It was an honor to stand with our board members in recognizing those employees who have dedicated 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, and 45 years of service to the district. The loudest applause of the evening was given to Vilma Kirkpatrick from Macdonell Elementary School, who has 55 years of service to the district. Trustee Garza noted that she was his teacher in third grade. 

I met with the members of the LISD Superintendent's Student Advisory Council for the final time this week. The graduating seniors serving on the Council received their black cords and will wear them proudly during their commencement exercises. This group of kids has been near and dear to my heart for the eight years that I have proudly served this school district. I watched them grow up in elementary school and will enjoy seeing them graduate from high school. Working with this organization the last eight years, I can proudly say that I have met so many outstanding young men and women who are now actively serving the Laredo community and beyond. I wish the members of the Superintendent's Student Advisory Council the best of luck always. 

“A Legacy of Honor” was the theme for the 2017 National Police Week. The LISD Police Department participated in many events organized in their honor. Officers saluted their fallen colleagues during a somber ceremony on Monday morning at Jarvis Plaza, followed by a Blue Mass at San Agustin Cathedral. I want to publicly thank LISD Police Chief Robert Villarreal and all our officers for keeping our children and staff safe.

Have a great weekend.

Dr. Marcus Nelson

“Every child deserves a champion: an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists they become the best they can possibly be.” – Rita Pierson

“Toda creatura merece un campeón. Un adulto que nunca se rendirá por el, alguien que entiende el poder de la conexión y insiste que sean lo mejor que pueden ser.” – Rita Pierson  

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