District recognizes top mentor, volunteer, and business partner with 2017 Community Service Awards

2016-2017 Community Service Awards-April 2017 LTISD Board of Trustees Meeting

2016-2017 Community Service Awards-April 2017 LTISD Board of Trustees Meeting

Michelle McCabe, Dandi Hole, and Lexus of Lakeway are the recipients of the 2017 Lake Travis ISD Community Service Awards for their outstanding volunteer efforts and contributions to Lake Travis schools.

“Year after year, our volunteers and mentors contribute hundreds of hours, their talents, and countless other resources to help students succeed,” said Holly Morris-Kuentz, LTISD Assistant Superintendent for Administrative and Community Services.  “Each spring, campuses select one Volunteer of the Year and one Mentor of the Year.  From these groups, district administration selects one district-level Volunteer of the Year and one Mentor of the Year as part of our Community Service Awards program.  The program, which is in its second year, is intended to recognize and celebrate the contributions of the top volunteer, mentor and business partner as well as to increase awareness of the importance of parental and community involvement.”

The Mentor Me LT Award recognizes the mentor for his/her dedication to the spirit of mentoring, including regular visits with his/her student, the quality of time spent, and the concern and enthusiasm with which he/she has approached the mentor-student relationship.  The 2016-2017 Mentor Me LT Award recipient is Michelle McCabe, Bee Cave Elementary School.

"Michelle visited weekly with two different students throughout the school year,” said Dionne Burnett,” LTISD Community Programs Coordinator.  “She played games and helped them hone their reading skills. Most importantly, Michelle gave these students much needed companionship.”

The LOVE (Leader in Outstanding Volunteer Efforts) for LT Award recognizes an individual who has contributed quality time and extraordinary effort towards improving the learning climate at an individual campus.  The 2016-2017 LOVE for LT Award recipient is Dandi Holec, West Cypress Hills Elementary School.  

“Dandi has volunteered more 200 hours throughout the current school year,” Dionne continued.  “Some of her accomplishments include organizing and managing the school's fall book fair, serving as a Destination ImagiNation team leader, and personally servicing the school's die cutter and poster printer.”

The Most Valuable Partner (MVP) Award is presented to one civic or business partner.  This award recognizes an exceptional partnership impacting an individual campus or the school district.  The 2016-2017 Most Valuable Partner Award recipient is Lexus of Lakeway.

“Lexus of Lakeway is a Founding Level Partner of the District's Video Display Board program and has sponsored numerous events and programs districtwide during the current school year,” said Dr. Kevin Claypool, LTISD Director of Development and Corporate Relations.  “We thank Lexus of Lakeway for their continued support of our students and programs across the district.”

April 17-21 is designated as Public School Volunteer Week.

LT Middle School Winter Guard Wins State Level in Inaugural Year

Comprised of students from both Hudson Bend and Lake Travis middles schools, the LTISD Middle School Winter Guard successfully completed its first season.   The group had an undefeated year that concluded with winning first place at the Texas Color Guard Circuit State Championships. 

What began last spring as 'just a thought,' Whitney Stone, LTISD Color Guard Director, Charles Aguillon, LTISD Director of Fine Arts, and the high school band directors made the idea a reality.   The recruiting and auditioning process took place from late-October to mid-December, culminating with a group of students in 6th, 7th, and 8th graders—11 from LTMS and 14 from HBMS.  

The students made the most of one intense practice per week as well as several Saturday camps, putting together a three-minute competitive program involving dance, swing flags, and 6-foot flags.   The LTISD Middle School Winter Guard won each of its four competitions by a margin of at least six points. 

"All involved are excited the program came together so well, and they are already looking forward to what the future holds for them," Mr. Aguillon said.  "It's important that we recognize and thank the high school band program, the families of these students, and everyone else who supported this first time endeavor." 

Lake Travis Combined Middle School Winter Guard

Lake Travis Combined Middle School Winter Guard

Members are: Elizabeth AdamsDayana AgisBianca BallinasTania BerrumDelaney CarterReagan ChristiansenAlbino CruzRachel CupitoRia DeSouzaJamey EtheridgeRebekah FreelandAna GarciaJackie GarciaLitzy HernandezSkylar HicksKate Horton, Charlotte KendrickRiley OpiolaDelaney PiantanidaAshley RodriquezAlexis RomeroAlexandria SandersAudrey ShermanAlanis VasquezCecily WinzerJosephine Winzer

LTMS Student Places 7th at State-level National Geographic Geo Bee

Jakob DeBlock, 7th grade student at Lake Travis Middle School, finished in 7th place in National Geographic Society's 2017 Texas National Geographic State Bee.  Jackob completed the first round with a perfect score.  He then successfully progressed to the tie-breaker round, finishing in the top 10.

School Bees were held in schools with fourth- through eighth-grade students throughout the state to determine each school champion. School champions then took a qualifying test, which they submitted to the National Geographic Society. The National Geographic Society invited up to 100 of the top-scoring students in each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Department of Defense Dependents Schools and U.S. territories to compete in the State Bees.

Lake Travis High School hosts successful TEDx event "On Being Human"

The TEDxLakeTravisHigh Student Leadership Team hosted “On Being Human" Saturday, April 1 at Performing Arts Center Lake Travis High School

TEDxLakeTravisHigh is an independently organized event around the spirit of TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) Talks. 

TEDxLakeTravisHigh was born out of the desire to offer students the opportunity to engage in a learning experience that asks them to explore, research, formulate, and present talks that impact not only their personal and academic growth, but that also engage an authentic audience.

Other student and faculty presenters included Elizabeth Daves, Shannon Aguirre, Curtis Gerstner, Katie Willsey, Emily Flores, Ethan Martin, and Nolan Weinschenk.  The event was sponsored by Lexus of Lakeway

Lakeway K9 Unit Visits BCE

Lakeway Police Department K-9 officer Sheldon Banta and his partner Cory spent some time with third grade students at Bee Cave Elementary April 4.

Officers Banta visited classrooms, answered questions, and let students explore his police vehicle. Students were also able to pet Officer Cory. 

"Dedicated officers like these help keep our students and staff safe," Melanie Cravey said, third grade teacher at Bee Cave Elementary.  "We appreciate Officer Banta for taking the time to share his experiences with our students."

A+ Education Foundation Offering Grant Opportunities for Teachers

Professionally-certified educators (PreK - 12th grade) in the schools within A+ Federal Credit Union's field of membership are invited to apply for grants up to $1,000. Completed applications must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. Sunday, June 4, 2017

The A+ Education Foundation, established in 2005 by A+ Federal Credit Union, provides charitable grants to fund programs, projects, material and training for educators.

For more information, including testimonials, FAQs and to apply, visit the A+ Education Foundation website.

Lake Travis HS Cheer announces JV, varsity squads for 2017-2018

The Lake Travis High School Cheer program is pleased to announce its junior varsity and varsity teams for the 2017-2018 school year.  Annie Clay is the sponsor for Lake Travis Cheer.

Lake Travis High School Junior Varsity Cheer Squad

Lake Travis High School Junior Varsity Cheer Squad

Lake Travis High School Varsity Cheer Squad

Lake Travis High School Varsity Cheer Squad

Five Minutes Added to the Instructional Day Beginning Fall 2017

Beginning with the 2017-2018 school year, five (5) minutes will be added to the instructional day at each campus, Lake Travis ISD officials announced recently.

The additional minutes are needed to:

  • comply with the state-mandated minutes of instruction (75,600 annually);
  • add professional development days for teachers and staff;
  • maintain a week off at Thanksgiving; and
  • end the school year for students before Memorial Day.

The five additional minutes also creates an opportunity for transportation services to operate more efficiently as well as to accommodate the projected increase in student ridership district wide.

Last fall, the Lake Travis school board approved a resolution designating Lake Travis ISD as a District of Innovation (DOI).  The DOI designation gives school districts more local control and increases their ability to decide what best suits their needs and the needs of their students and staff.  Specifically, the DOI designation allows Lake Travis ISD to pursue exemptions from several provisions in the Texas Education Code, including the flexibility for school districts to set their preferred first day of instruction.

In January, the LTISD school board adopted the 2017-2018 instructional calendar with the first day of instruction set for Wednesday, August 16, 2017 and the last day of instruction set for Friday, May 25, 2018.  The board’s adoption of the calendar included the addition of five (5) minutes to the instructional day at each campus.  

Listed below are current instructional day start and end times, as well as start and end times for the 2017-2018 school year:

Questions or concerns regarding the additional minutes and their potential impact on specific campus activities and programs should be addressed to the respective school principal. Download the 2017-2018 Lake Travis ISD Instructional Calendar.   

For more information, contact the Lake Travis ISD Office of Communications at (512) 533-6046.

Lake Travis High School PTO to Host Motivational Speaker Elaine Pasqua

The Lake Travis High School PTO will host Elaine Pasqua, a nationally-known Certified Speaking Professional.

According to her website, Ms. Pasqua is one of the most dynamic and popular speakers addressing high-risk drinking, sexual health, drug abuse, and social media. She is scheduled to speak at 6:30 pm, Tuesday, April 18 at the Lake Travis High School - Annex Recital Hall. 

According to the PTO, this energetic and humorous motivator has been presenting her message for more than two decades, transforming the lives of more than a half a million people. She will speak about the latest high-risk trends that teens and college students are experiencing nationwide. Parents will take away numerous preventive strategies to help empower their children with the skills to make responsible and positive choices. 

Registration is free but tickets are limited. 

Elaine Pasqua

Elaine Pasqua

Elaine Pasqua is an acclaimed author, columnist, producer and director.  She has been featured in USA Today, NY 1 News, Time Warner TV, NPR and Knight Ridder News Service. She has worked with more than 500 universities across the country, countless professional organizations, and 28 teams including the NFL, NBA and MLB. Ms. Pasqua is a five-time nominee for Best Speaker of the Year for Campus Activities Magazine Readers Choice Awards. 

Hudson Bend Middle School principal named principal of Bowie High School

Mark Robinson, Hudson Bend Middle School principal, will serve as principal of Bowie High School in the Austin school district beginning in the fall of 2017, Lake Travis ISD Superintendent Dr. Brad Lancaster announced. Austin ISD trustees approved the appointment during their regular board meeting held March 27.

“Mr. Robinson will continue to serve as HBMS principal until the end of the current school year in June,” Dr. Lancaster said.  “In the interim, we will begin the process of hiring a new principal right away. Barring any unforeseen circumstances, I expect to name a new principal before the end of the current school year. Without a doubt, Mr. Robinson will be difficult to replace.”

Mr. Robinson began his tenure at LTISD in 2007 as Assistant Principal at Lake Travis Middle School. From 2008-2011, he served as Assistant Principal for Curriculum and Instruction at Lake Travis High School. For the past six years, Mr. Robinson has served as principal of Hudson Bend Middle School. He has worked hard to raise the bar for excellence in academics, athletics, and fine arts, including the prestigious ‘Texas Schools to Watch’ designation in 2014 and the recent re-designation in 2017. Mr. Robinson’s leadership and personable style, depth of knowledge in secondary education, and high expectations for all students will serve him well in his new role as high school principal.

“I ask that the Lake Travis ISD community join me in extending its congratulations and support for Mark, his wife Ann, and their family as they prepare to embark on a new and exciting journey,” Dr. Lancaster added.

LTHS students receive national DECA honors

Lake Travis High School seniors Jordan Grulke and Julia Wezio have received national recognition from DECA, Inc., a nonprofit organization which prepares emerging leaders and
entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management in high schools and colleges around the globe. The two were among nine Texas DECA members to be featured on the DECA Direct website

Jordan, past LTHS DECA president, is the recipient of the 2017 DECA Emerging Leader Honor Award.  The award recognizes students in marketing, finance, hospitality, and management and their academic preparation, community involvement, responsibility, and experienced leadership through participation in DECA.  The award recipient must be a DECA member in his/her senior year of high school with a cumulative grade point average of 3.2 or better for each high school semester.  Jordan has also been awarded the National Society of High School Scholars Scholarship.  She is the daughter of Brad and Laura Grulke. 

Julia, current LTHS DECA President, has been awarded the Harry A. Applegate/PDC Productions Scholarship, a program funded by corporate supporters. Scholarships are awarded based on DECA involvement, leadership ability, community service and academic performance. Julia is the daughter of Roger and Jadwiga Hermann.

Both Jordan and Julia will accept their awards at the International DECA Career Development Conference in Anaheim, CA on April 29.  

Jill Oates and Amy Johnson are co-advisors of the LTHS DECA program.  For more information, visit DECA.org or TexasDECA.org.

LTHS Students Nominated for Greater Austin High School Musical Theatre Awards


The Lake Travis Travis High School musical theatre cast and crew have received six nominations for excellence in performance and production as part of the 2017 Greater Austin High School Musical Theatre Awards.

Throughout the 2016-2017 academic year, more than 30 Austin-area high school productions were considered for the coveted awards as determined by a panel of arts professionals.  Winners will be announced at a Tony Awards-style ceremony on Thursday, April 13 at the Long Center for the Performing Arts. The ceremony is hosted by The University of Texas at Austin College of Fine Arts and ZACH Theatre. 

Lake Travis High School's production of Disney's The Little Mermaid is nominated in the following categories:

BEST MUSICAL DIRECTION
BEST LIGHTING DESIGN
BEST ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE - Maddie Reese as Ariel
BEST ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE - Jessica Askey as Ursula
BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE - Gracee Street as Flounder
BEST FEATURED PERFORMER - Clara Cable as Chef Louis

For more information about the event, including ticket sales, visit the Greater Austin High School Musical Theatre Awards website.

‘Destination ImagiNation’ teams qualify for state tournament

'Aces 2.0,' ‘The Serene Hills Superstars,’ ‘DI Demolishers,’ 'DIverse Squad,' and 'xDI' are teams of elementary and middle school-aged students from Lake Travis ISD who will put their creative talents on display at the Destination ImagiNation State Affiliate Tournament scheduled for April 7-8 in the Lubbock Independent School District.    

Destination ImagiNation—or DI— is a non-profit, school-based program devoted to helping students gain practical life skills through interesting, entertaining, and mind-boggling challenges.  Teams are tested to think on their feet, work together and devise original solutions to satisfy community service, technical, scientific, fine arts, improvisational, and structural challenges.  Participants learn patience, flexibility, persistence, ethics, respect for others and their ideas, and the collaborative problem-solving process. 

More than 2,400 students comprising 385 teams in multiple categories of competition took part in the Capital Area Regional Destination ImagiNation tournament held March 4 at Westlake High School.  LTISD fielded 22 Challenge-based teams and six Rising Stars teams for the early learners.  In all, the teams were comprised of 172 students from Lake Travis, Lakeway, and Serene Hills elementary schools, as well as Hudson Bend and Lake Travis middle schools.  The event was the largest for the Capital Area region.

LTISD state-qualifying teams include:

Bee Cave Elementary:  Aces 2.0
Leaders:  Brenda Atchley, Teresa Joy and Viju Viswanathan
Team members: Satvik Kumar, Nathan Gonzalez, Ishaan Mishra, Mia Antony, Emily Gurasich, Prakul Sherikar, Hudson Atchley

Serene Hills Elementary:  Serene Hills Superstars
Leaders:  Paige Shelton and Jennifer Ozuna
Team members: Adeline SheltonParker DukeSiena AubertCarly KrotheChristian OzunaColten MechuraAvery Wighaman

Serene Hills Elementary:  DI Demolishers
Leaders:  Alicia Pounds and Kaori Hornbaker
Team members:  Colson HornbakerAnnabella GonzalesJosiah GonzalesKeira StalloneMaxwell StalloneKeller FarnsworthThomas Pace

Lake Travis Middle School & Hudson Bend Middle School: DIverse Squad
Leaders:  Katy Blossman and Jana Valiton
Team members:  Madison Blossman, Lauren Blossman, Ella Blossman, Delaney Piantanida, Charis Rodriguez

Lake Travis Middle School & Hudson Bend Middle School: xDI
Leaders:  Laurie Higginbotham
Team members:  Jack Alsaffar, Avery Ho, Olivia Manley, Ben Platt and John RorerBrendan Malone

Other teams from LTISD schools who participated at the regional tournament included:

Bee Cave Elementary : Super 7, Bee Cave Ballers, Mystery101, Terrific Tardigrades, Bee Cave's Mellow Yellows, Atchley
Serene Hills Elementary : Spicy Space Spy Squad, The Dabbers
West Cypress Hills Elementary : Crazy Inventors, The Awesome Squad, #uniqueunicorns, The Wolf Gang, Terrific Terrifying Tigers
Lake Travis Elementary : Purple Ponies, Green Gummy Bears, Infected Paper Cutz
Lakeway Elementary : Super Smart Silver Cyborgs

For more information, visit www.destinationimagination.org.

District receives demographic update

Population and Survey Analysts (PASA) of College Station, TX recently completed a Demographic Update for Lake Travis ISD.  The comprehensive report highlights housing projections, economic trends, ratios of students per household, student enrollment projections, and long range planning.  According to PASA president and chief demographer Dr. Pat Guseman, PASA projects student data for a school district by using forward‐looking techniques, and does not rely strictly on past rates of change.   

Considering a moderate growth rate scenario, PASA estimates that Lake Travis ISD could have an enrollment of more than 15,700 students by the 2025-2026 school year.  In October 2016, Lake Travis schools recorded a total enrollment of 9,825 students.

According to the update, during the 2015-216 school year, Lake Travis ISD’s total percent growth was second highest at 6.35%, behind Dripping Springs ISD at 7.01%.   For the past five years, Lake Travis ISD has been the overall leader in percent growth, at 32.56%, followed by Dripping Springs ISD at 31.03%.  In the area of standardized testing, in spring 2016, 93.4% of LTISD students passed the STAAR, compared to 73.26% statewide.  This ranks Lake Travis ISD third among all 129 districts in the state with more than 8,000 students.  

Other socioeconomic characteristics of similar-sized districts like Lake Travis ISD are updated annually by the American Community Survey.  Recently released data from 2015 indicate that Lake Travis ISD’s population is:  

1.       Significantly older – The median age is 42.5 years old, compared to the Austin-metro area median of 34.3 years old.  LTISD also has the highest percent of 60-plus year olds (20%) compared to the Austin, Eanes, Leander and Round Rock school districts, due to the heavier proportion of empty nesters living in LTISD.  

2.       Fewer millennials – Lake Travis has 8% of its residents who are aged 25‐34, compared to Austin ISD’s 23%, Eanes ISD’s 10%, and Leander ISD’s 13%–partially due to the higher prices for homes in the suburban districts.

3.       More educated –  Fifty-eight percent of the population holds a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to 43% in the Austin-Metro area.

4.       More affluent – The median household income in Lake Travis ISD is $102,771, compared to $67,195 in the Austin consolidated metro area.

5.       Commuting longer than most – The mean travel time to work (one‐way) is 31.7 minutes.  This figure has increased steadily over the last several years.  The Austin-metro area has also increased travel times in the last several years.

The complete LTISD Demographic Update - February 2017 is posted on the Lake Travis ISD website.

(Please note, this is a large file which may take several minutes to download.)

LTHS Art Teacher Published

(All copy and images courtesy of author Eric Gibbons)  What do you get when you combine history, geography, international languages, rhyme, and art? You get the newest book from Firehouse Publications titled "If Picasso Went on Vacation." This inter-curricular collection of poems and illustrations, was created by 40 art teachers from all over the world, including local art teacher Amber Forgey of Lake Travis High School

From Renaissance works to more modern pieces of Pop, each participant chose an artist from history to emulate. These teachers stepped into the shoes of historic greats and created a work of art of a famous landmark that artist might have made.

We have artists from all over the globe, from different periods of time, male and female, black, white, native peoples, and everything in between. We also chose a very diverse approach to the media including traditional paintings and illustrations, to collage, mosaic, and even an example of quilting in the style of Sarah Mary Taylor.
— Eric Gibbons, "If Picasso Went on Vacation" Author

Each artwork is accompanied with a unique poem that tells a bit about the artist, their genre, and the landmark subject. Each poem ends by teaching the reader how to say yes, no, and hello in the local language. Each illustration is accompanied by a globe that indicates where on earth that landmark exists. The author has even uploaded a free extended learning packet readers can download and explore themes of geography, poetry, research, history, language, and more.

Books will initially be available through teacher Amber Forgey,  Amazon.com and several museum bookstores across the USA, and directly from the publisher

LTISD RECOGNIZED BY STATE AG DEPT. FOR LOCAL PRODUCTS CHALLENGE

(left to right) Kathryn Dunphy, Traci Miller and Ryan Mikolaycik; not pictured is Alysse Northcutt

(left to right) Kathryn Dunphy, Traci Miller and Ryan Mikolaycik; not pictured is Alysse Northcutt

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller and the Texas Department of Agriculture honored the Lake Travis ISD Food and Nutrition Services (FANS) department with a Best of the Bunch Award for its achievement in the commissioner’s 2016 Local Products Challenge. Winners of this award successfully incorporated local ingredients from Texas in at least three of the following meal components: milk, protein, fruits, vegetables or grains. These winning schools also offered students an opportunity to learn about agriculture and local food.

Participation in TDA’s Local Products Challenge continues to grow year-after-year. More than 140 school districts participated in the 2016 Local Products Challenge. Seventy-seven districts earned a Best of the Bunch Award representing their commitment to serving three or more local products in the school meal served to students. 

Local products offered at LTISD include but are not limited to potatoes, oranges, watermelon, apples, dairy, squash, green beans and mini pizzas. 

Our Food and Nutrition Services team works tirelessly throughout the year to prepare healthy and appealing school meals, ensuring our students are ready to learn and achieve their academic goals.
— Brad Lancaster, LTISD Superintendent

To learn more about the nutritious food options available at LTISD schools visit the FANS webpage.

Traci Miller, RD, LD serves as the Director of Food and Nutrition Services. 

HBMS Re-designated as a Texas Schools to Watch

The Texas Middle School Association has re-designated Hudson Bend Middle School as a 'Texas Schools to Watch®.'

Schools are selected for academic excellence, responsiveness to the needs and interests of young adolescents, and commitment to helping all students achieve at high levels. In addition, each school demonstrates strong leadership, teachers who work together to improve curriculum and instruction, and a commitment to assessment and accountability to bring about continuous improvement.

These schools demonstrate that high-performing middle grades schools have a clear focus on academic growth and achievement. They also recognize the importance of meeting the needs of all of their students and ensuring that each and every child has access to a rigorous, high-quality education. These schools serve as models from which others can learn.

The success of our students starts with a commitment to building a strong academic community and supporting our students each and every day.
— Mark Robinson, HBMS Principal

Selection is based on a written application that required schools to show how they met criteria developed by the Forum.  Schools that appeared to meet the criteria were then visited by state teams who observed classrooms, interviewed administrators, teachers, students, and parents, and looked at achievement data, suspension rates, quality of lessons, and student work. Schools are recognized for a three-year period, and at the end of three years must repeat the process in order to be re-designated. The schools vary in size from several hundred to several thousand students and represent urban, suburban, and rural communities.

Hudson Bend MS was originally designated in 2014 and has fulfilled all the requirements to be re-designated for the next three years.

Lake Travis Middle School Gives Back on Day of Service

Students at Lake Travis Middle School visited 43 locations throughout Lake Travis and Greater Austin on March 10, beautifying local parks, mentoring younger students, and working with the elderly during the school's first Day of Service.

Program organizers indicate the Day of Service is a way to give back to the community and instill a nature of caring in students.  LTMS used a similar model to the Hudson Bend Middle School Day of Service which is held each November prior to the Thanksgiving Break.

LTHS Students Earn National Recognition in Art & Writing Event

Lake Travis High School students Elliot Ward, Maddie Sutton and Sara Flinn are national award recipients of the 2017 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. 

Elliot Ward is the first LTISD student to win a coveted Scholastic Art and Writing National Gold Key for his highly-realistic pencil drawing of vintage cameras. As a Gold Key winner, Elliot and his art teacher, Amber Forgey, have the honor of attending the national award ceremony at Carnegie Hall in New York City on June 8. Elliot studied Art 1 with Laurie Carswell (formerly of LTHS) as a freshman, Advanced Drawing and Painting with Forgey as a sophomore, and AP Studio Art Drawing and Design Portfolios as a junior and senior also under Forgey.

"Elliot has worked diligently throughout his high school career to advance to this level of success," said Forgey. "He is a product of the highly successful, award-winning visual arts program at LTHS." 

Maddie won a National Silver Key for her sculpture. She is the first LTISD student to win a scholastic national silver medal for a 3D artwork.  Sara won a national silver medal for poetry and is the first LTISD student to win the award for writing.

The Scholastic Art & Writing Award is the nation’s longest-running and most prestigious recognition program for creative teens in grades 7–12. Within the awards’ 29 categories, which include poetry, photography, sculpture, humor, editorial cartoons, and video game design, a record-breaking 330,000 works of art and writing were submitted for adjudication at the regional level this year. Approximately 30,000 advanced to the national level, and 2,500 were selected to win a national award including Silver Key, Gold Key, National Gold Key Portfolio, National Silver Key with Distinction Portfolio, and a variety of individual category awards.  

The complete list of LTISD students competing at the national level for the 2017 season were:

Jowi Cordray
Maya Obregon, 2 artworks
Zachary Coldewey
Julia Ojeda
Madison Sutton, 3 artworks
Julia Wolfe
Kiara Dietze, 2 artworks
Kristin Ormsby
Lauren Paulson
Natasha Tiffany, 3 artworks
Hunter Tran
Elliot Ward, 2 artworks

Our wonder and amazement at the creative output of our country’s youth —and the dedication of our extraordinary educators—never ceases, and this year is no exception,
— Virginia McEnerney, Executive Director of the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers

LT Symphony Orchestra Receives UIL Sweepstakes

The Lake Travis High School full orchestra, consisting of both band and orchestra program students, earned Sweepstakes at the University Interscholastic League Concert and Sight-reading Contest in March. Sweepstakes is the highest honor for orchestras at UIL competition, averaging a superior rating in both concert and sight-reading portions of the competition.  

Richard Hicks directs the Lake Travis High School Band program; Anna Macias directs the Lake Travis High School Orchestra program.