Two South Texas Independent School District (STISD) high schools – STISD Medical Professions in Olmito and STISD Science Academy in Mercedes – and the district itself will be recognized at the upcoming Texas Association for Bilingual Education (TABE) Conference for the growth and achievements of their Emergent Bilingual (EB) students.
The campuses and district were recently notified of their selection as 2022-2023 School and District of the Year finalists, signifying recognition as top English as a Second Language, or ESL, campuses and district in Texas in terms of guiding students in achieving substantial growth on their TELPAS in 2023.
According to the Texas Education Agency, the Texas English Language Proficiency Assessment System (TELPAS) is an English language proficiency assessment aligned to the Texas English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS). This assessment is designed to assess the progress that emergent bilingual (EB) students make in learning the English language. TELPAS fulfills ESSA requirements for assessing EB students in kindergarten through grade 12 in four language domains: listening, speaking, reading, and writing.
Online instructional and language development program Summit K12 will recognize finalists for their work during the conference to be held in McAllen in October.
Brenda de la Garza, Ed.D., STISD Special Programs Director, commented on what this recognition means to her department and the district as a whole, “We are honored to have two of our high schools and our district nominated for this achievement in such an important area. It is amazing what can be accomplished when you are intentional and focused on student learning. Our special populations have been and continue to be a priority for us as a district, and this is a testament to our efforts to ensure each and every student succeeds.”
With continued growth in its special populations, STISD has further developed its Special Services Department and expanded available resources in recent years to provide students with needed supports. STISD established its partnership with Summit K12 during the 2021-2022 school year to support students in their English language development within the Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing domains across all content areas regardless of where they are on the learning continuum.