BLEED PURPLE: SEMERE
If you have never met Semere, you are missing out! This young man joined us on January 14, 2016. I know this because he told me that was the date he started school in America! I walked into the common space while he was working on a chrome book with his lunch on a desk. I asked him what he was doing and he simply stated that he was working on this Khan Academy Math because he was aiming for a 100 in math class. He also asked me if I wanted to see his grades and he proceeded to open up Skyward like a pro. He quickly turned the screen towards me to show me that he already had all A’s, but he still wanted to make sure he had even better grades. Semere is from Eritrea and his journey to America is inspiring. His smile is contagious, his competitive nature is sharp and he loves to learn. I still remember when he arrived in 5th grade and the desperation many teachers felt because he did not know a word of English. He is now in 7th grade competing and working to reach his personal best each and every day! He did not do this alone. It has taken many amazing teachers who believe that he can learn to help him get to where he is now. Kudos to you!! Teachers what you do matters each and every minute of the day!! Thank you Semere for your tenacity and voracious desire to learn!
BLEED PURPLE: JEFFERSON HILL
The teacher who inspired Semere to continue working on his math is Mr. Hill. As a Khan Academy Ambassador, he has inspired students to work on improving their math skills from anywhere. Students have worked very hard for him and he has offered to reward the top ten students with their very own Ti-84 calculators. I do not remember a time when a teacher got students work so hard for a calculator. Teachers who love what they do, inspire students to challenge themselves every day in and out of school!!
BLEED PURPLE: LAURA STEPHENS
What happens when you prepare for a UIL contest for the first time in the history of your district? You sweep it!! This is exactly what Mrs. Stephens did with UIL Chess this school year! Alvarado had ever competed in it and she took it on without hesitation. All of the 5th grade students who competed brought back 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. The fourth graders brought back 2nd and 3rd place. No one would have thought that a novice district like Alvarado would show up and win on the first attempt!! Our kids can learn and compete at high levels when we expect them to do so! Congratulations to Mrs. Stephens for stepping into unknown territory and staking an Alvarado Indian flag tall and proud in Academic UIL standings! Alvarado ISD students can take on high level intellectual challenges.