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Fort Bend & Sugar Land Schools,
Sports, and Students December 2017


(L-R): Janice Knight, Andrea Lopez and Pedro Chapa.

(L-R): Janice Knight, Andrea Lopez and Pedro Chapa.

Lamar Educational Awards Foundation Helps New Teachers Get Started

Lamar Educational Awards Foundation Executive Director Janice Knight recently presented a $100 bill to Lamar CISD’s newest teacher, Andrea Lopez, who is starting her teaching career at Thomas Elementary this year.

This year, L.E.A.F. awarded $100 to every teacher entering Lamar CISD with no experience. Lopez is the 93rd teacher to receive $100 to buy supplies for her classroom. Pedro Chapa is the Lamar CISD recruiter who helped place Lopez at Thomas.

 

 

(Front row, l-r): April Valdez, Hailey Ansley, Zyah Evans, Aracely Reyes, Elena Jarnot, Jalena Nguyen, Emiah Rice, Kelsea Lake (FBJSL), Deon Brown, and Haley Knobler; (kneeling): Annie Dang, Madison Le, and Amenah Savage; (back row): Coach Toni Woods, Genesis Munoz, Gillian Parker (FBJSL), Iyana Mahan, Madison Alexander, Lola Miertchin, Breana Shed, Jennifer Mendez, Samantha Shelander, Ameera Adams, Skylar Bergen, Kemi Ikemefuna, Laura Taylor (FBJSL), Colleen Fox (FBJSL), and Coach Karen Efron.

(Front row, l-r): April Valdez, Hailey Ansley, Zyah Evans, Aracely Reyes, Elena Jarnot, Jalena Nguyen, Emiah Rice, Kelsea Lake (FBJSL), Deon Brown, and Haley Knobler; (kneeling): Annie Dang, Madison Le, and Amenah Savage; (back row): Coach Toni Woods, Genesis Munoz, Gillian Parker (FBJSL), Iyana Mahan, Madison Alexander, Lola Miertchin, Breana Shed, Jennifer Mendez, Samantha Shelander, Ameera Adams, Skylar Bergen, Kemi Ikemefuna, Laura Taylor (FBJSL), Colleen Fox (FBJSL), and Coach Karen Efron.

Sugar Land Middle School Girls’ Volleyball Teams Raise Money For FBJSL

The seventh and eighth grade Girls’ Volleyball teams at Sugar Land Middle School recently collected donations from their friends, families, and teachers in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October. The funds were pooled for a donation to the Fort Bend Junior Service League’s (FBJSL) Breast Cancer Fund.

Two years ago the girls’ donation to FBJSL’s Breast Cancer Fund was around $700. In spite of everything the local community has experienced with the recent destruction of Hurricane Harvey, the young ladies were able to raise an astounding $1,375 this year. The teams and their coaches presented the check to members of the FBJSL Board of Directors on Oct. 5. FBJSL President Jen Rizzo said, “No matter which team ends up winning on the court, these girls are already winners. They are learning at a young age how important it is to work together as a team and to give back to their community. We wish the best of luck to the Sugar Land Middle School Volleyball Teams this season. And a huge ‘Thank you’ for helping beat cancer.”

FBJSL’s Breast Cancer Fund was established in 2009 as a means to provide financial support for programs and services designed to improve quality of life, provide access to early detection and treatment, and diminish suffering for Fort Bend County breast cancer patients. Funds are raised in conjunction with partnering organizations as part of an ongoing, collaborative effort to further the community’s fight against breast cancer. To date, Eclipse Soccer Club, Travis High School, Crockett Middle School, Kempner High School, Sugar Land Middle School, Nolan’s Sweet Heat, and Methodist Sugar Land Hospital have partnered with FBJSL in contributing to the Breast Cancer Fund. Together with Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, FBJSL has presented $19,789 in proceeds to the American Cancer Society as a result of these partnerships.

 

 

Colony Meadows students have fun and creative ways to celebrate the ABC’s.

Colony Meadows students have fun and creative ways to celebrate the ABC’s.

Colony Meadows Kindergarteners Celebrate ABC’s

The alphabet was on parade recently when Colony Meadows Elementary kindergarten students celebrated the alphabet with a parade and party on Oct. 13. Each student selected a letter of the alphabet and dressed in a costume to represent that letter. From “L”ions, “T”igers, “B”ears, and more, the students really got creative. The parade began with the students singing the ABC song, then they even sang it backwards. After the parade, students enjoyed an alphabet snack with their parents in the classroom.

 

 

Briscoe Junior High Band Director Mark Keene leads the Honor Band during rehearsal.

Briscoe Junior High Band Director Mark Keene leads the Honor Band during rehearsal.

Briscoe JH Honor Band Earns National Recognition

The Briscoe Junior High Honor Band in Lamar CISD is one of the select musical groups chosen for the Foundation for Music Education’s Mark of Excellence program. The Honor Band was chosen as a Commended Winner.

The Mark of Excellence project seeks to recognize and award outstanding achievement in performance by high school and middle school bands, choirs and orchestras. The project gathers entries from throughout the United States and provides valuable feedback for all entrants. A unique competitive environment is created which allows ensembles to compare their performance quality to other outstanding groups from across the country. The top 25 percent of entrants are recognized as National Winners, with the second 25 percent named as Commended Winners.

 

Local Competitors On Roster For Special Olympics USA Games In Seattle

More than 4,000 Special Olympics athletes and coaches from all 50 states and the District of Columbia will gather in Seattle in July for the 2018 USA Games to compete in 14 sports before tens of thousands of spectators and volunteers. The games will showcase the limitless talents of people with intellectual disabilities.

From the Houston and Gulf Coast area, 30 competitors, nine coaches and four alternates were named to Team Texas. Local members of Team Texas include tennis athlete Kristen Rausch of Richmond; volleyball athlete Matthew Weiser of Katy; Unified Partners Kimberly Weiser and Rebecca Weiser of Katy, both in volleyball; and athlete Shaun Linsey of Fulshear and Unified Partner Mark Linsey, both in golf. Special Olympics Unified Programs bring together athletes with and without intellectual disabilities to train and compete on the same team.

 

 

Jennifer and RoseAnn Leonetti holding bouquets surrounded by Leonetti Elementary Principal Joy Schwinger (center) and FBISD Trustees KP George, Board President Kristin Tassin, Grayle James and Dave Rosenthal.

Jennifer and RoseAnn Leonetti holding bouquets surrounded by Leonetti Elementary Principal Joy Schwinger (center) and FBISD Trustees KP George, Board President Kristin Tassin, Grayle James and Dave Rosenthal.

Donald Leonetti Elementary School Dedication

FBISD Superintendent Charles Dupre and FBISD Trustees dedicated what was known as Elementary #48 in Sienna as Donald Leonetti Elementary on Oct. 22. The school slogan and lion mascot are synonymous with Donald Leonetti, whose spirit was that of a big kid with a lion’s heart.

The newly formed fourth- and fifth-grade choirs sang a beautiful rendition of the song Tomorrow Needs Us Today under the large lion mural in the school’s auditorium before Donald’s wife, Jennifer, and his mother, RoseAnn, took the podium as keynote speakers. Their words brought both laughter and tears as they spoke of Donald, whose company Leonetti Graphics, has designed – and in many situations donated – t-shirts, logos and signs for FBISD schools for almost two decades.

Jennifer relayed how it was only after his passing that she and her family realized the breadth of Donald’s impact on the community. She said he was an amazing husband, father, brother, uncle and friend, and also a great businessman. With his partner and best friend, Paul Price, he converted an old Missouri City fire station into the corporate headquarters of the company. She relayed how he was “that guy” who would buy a coat for someone homeless on a cold night, mentor youth and business men alike, and leave “thinking of you” notes along with a caricature on the toilet paper.

RoseAnn talked of how as a single mother bringing up two children, it took “a village” to raise them, crediting her parents, brother Damon Leonetti and his wife, Candy, with the tremendous influence they had on Donald’s giving nature. She relayed how Donald kept a promise to his grandfather, and at age 19, legally changed his name to Leonetti. In an emotion-filled voice, his mother also said that two years after his tragic death, she wasn’t hearing his name as often and how sad that had made her feel. “Now,” she said, ” he will always be remembered.”

Lion’s principal Joy Schwinger’s address to the audience about her goals for her teachers and students echoed the traits the Leonettis had spoke of in Donald: family first, a positive attitude, a strong work ethic, service to others and to have fun while achieving these. Schwinger said she did not know Donald personally, yet after the naming of the school was announced, people would come up to her and tell her, “I knew Donald,” and then go on to share their story about him.

The school’s pledge sums it up: “We are the Leonetti Lions. We are kind, and we are smart. We are the Leonetti Lions. The strength of our pride is in our heart.” —­ Text by Lisa Glenn

 

 

Sixth-grade students (l-r): Gracie Peschel, Brooke Thompson, Sophia Vrielink, Avery Upchurch, Katie Breedlove, Bo Sanders and Sadie Brown.

Sixth-grade students (l-r): Gracie Peschel, Brooke Thompson, Sophia Vrielink, Avery Upchurch, Katie Breedlove, Bo Sanders and Sadie Brown.

(L-R): Fort Bend Christian Academy seniors Mindi Warren and Julia Welch.

(L-R): Fort Bend Christian Academy seniors Mindi Warren and Julia Welch.

Eighth-grade students (top row, l-r): Tami Dang, Nate Ali, Franklin Trinh, Kim Ramos, Erin Kram, August Vrielink, Mark Tong; (bottom row): Payton Dailey, Darian MacMillan, Grace Fiore and Samantha Nguyen.

Eighth-grade students (top row, l-r): Tami Dang, Nate Ali, Franklin Trinh, Kim Ramos, Erin Kram, August Vrielink, Mark Tong; (bottom row): Payton Dailey, Darian MacMillan, Grace Fiore and Samantha Nguyen.

Fort Bend County Fair Student Art Awards

Fort Bend County students recently received awards at the Fort Bend County Fair for their artwork.

Fort Bend Christian Academy seniors Mindi Warren and Julia Welch were the 2017 Fort Bend County Fair Open Youth Grand Prize winners. Warren won “Best of Show” and “Outstanding Entry Rosette” for Division One 3D Fine Arts, and Welch won “Best of Show” and “Outstanding Entry Rosette” for Division Two 2D Fine Arts.

Middle school students from FBCA also received recognition for their art at the fair. Sixth-grade student winners include Gracie Peschel, Brooke Thompson, Sophia Vrielink, Avery Upchurch, Katie Breedlove, Bo Sanders and Sadie Brown.

Eighth-grade students who won awards include Tami Dang, Nate Ali, Franklin Trinh, Kim Ramos, Erin Kram, August Vrielink, Mark Tong, Payton Dailey, Darian MacMillan, Grace Fiore and Samantha Nguyen.


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