Coach Cowen Is a Winner!
Thursday, May 18, 2017
Lady Marlins Head Coach Stephanie Cowen was awarded TABC 2016-2017
2A Dean Weese Outstanding Coach Award.
Academic Excellence Awards 2016-2017
Monday, May 22, 2017
The Academic Excellence Recognition Ceremony for Olsen Elementary
School & Brundrett Middle School for the 2016-2017 school year was
held at the Port Aransas Community Center.
During the ceremony Dylan Merchant received the
Accelerated Reader of the Year award. Bill Furlow, son of the late
Barbara Furlow, presented the award that was given in his mother's
memory. Bill was able to speak about his mother and her love for
L to R: Bill Furlow, Dylan Merchant, Molly Furlow,
June Furlow & Bruce Furlow (seated)
2017 PAEF Grant Awards total over $124,000!
community for your support!
PAEF Treats PA High School Art Class to a CC Museum
of Art Trip
In 2014, PAEF funded a field trip for the Port
Aransas art class to the Corpus Christi Museum of Art. Use the link
below to view a video of their trip.
Art Adventure Video
A Letter to Members of PAEF
I recently read an article discouraging young people
from becoming teachers. The teacher-author said that if he had it to
do over again, he would never choose a career with such low pay,
little appreciation, and lack of support from parents, community,
and society. Bless his heart. He didn’t work in Port Aransas.
In Port Aransas, in April, teachers feel
appreciated. Our community is there for us all year, sometimes in
the forefront, sometimes in the background. But in April, we see the
culmination of their hard work, generosity and selflessness, as the
members of the Port Aransas Education Foundation award teachers and
students at PAISD thousands of dollars in grants.
I am buoyed by your support. It keeps me afloat when
standards and assessments change and paperwork and pressure threaten
to drown me. It lifts my spirits when I am struggling to get seniors
to understand that graduation is not in March but in June. It
provides a smile when I have given my lunch up three days in a row
to tutor a struggling student. I am there because you are there. We
are a team.
Of course, the grants you gave me this year will
have tangible results as well: I am already adding paper and digital
books to my classroom library, and planning for the phenomenal
national English teacher conference in Boston in November. These
things will directly and positively impact my students.
But more than the tangible is the intangible. I have
a student right now who wants to be an English teacher. I will show
her the article by the teacher who says, “Don’t do it!” And I will
tell her: Bless his heart. He didn’t teach in Port Aransas. Thank
(also published in South Jetty, April 25, 2013)
What Teachers Have to Say:
PAEF Funded iPads in Class
Last year, PAEF awarded Kris Jones a grant to
purchase iPads for use in his classes.
The world geography textbooks provided by the state
are over ten years old now. Mr. Jones uses them as a resource, but
of course much has changed in the world in the last decade!
I follow TCEA (instructional technology group) on
Twitter, and noticed they had sent out a tweet about the National
Geographic World Atlas app being offered for free in the App Store
on that day. I let Mr. Jones know, and he was able to download the
app for free on his classroom iPads. Later, I visited Mr. Jones’
World Geography class and observed how the students are using iPads
in the classroom.
students are studying Central and Southwest Asia. Part of the key
understandings for each unit of geography are climate, land
coverings, settlement patterns, and resources. Mr. Jones had them
working in groups on an assignment to help them understand the key
understandings. Each group was using textbooks and a paper world
atlas as resources, but each group also had an iPad with the
National Geographic app loaded. This app is updated regularly, so
the information is current. The students were also using the
internet on the iPad to learn more about climate changes, reasons
for settlement patterns, etc. in this region.
Thanks again for funding grants that allow our students to learn in
the best way possible!
Sharon McKinney Recognized by TASSP
PAEF congratulates Sharon McKinney, our Port Aransas
High School principal. Texas Association of Secondary School
Principals (TASSP) recently recognized Sharon McKinney as
Outstanding Principal of the Year in the organization’s Region 2,
the coastal area of South Texas. The accolade also makes her
eligible to win the state’s Outstanding Principal of the Year next
McKinney has initiated advancements in technology
studies and college preparation during her three years as principal.
One initiative McKinney has helped advance is the
expansion of dual credit classes in which high school students can
earn both high school and college credit simultaneously. The online
curriculum, which was originally limited to online recovery courses,
has also been expanded to include many additional classes such as
advanced placement biology and physics.
Click here to read more...
Ms Cook and Ms Martinez ask: "How would you picture
Marilynn Cook and BMS art teacher Philina Martinez
put together an exciting program for BMS students. Based on the
Picturing America project of the National Endowment for the
Humanities, this program incorporates art history into reading and
critical thinking skills.
The students are challenged to act as art curators
for an art exhibit at Brundrett Middle School. Their task is to help
select the 15 pieces of art work for our exhibit.
to visit the website and learn more about this exciting program.
Melanie Mayer Wins Two Prestigious Awards!
PAEF congratulates and is proud of PAHS ELA teacher/PAISD ELA
Coordinator Melanie Mayer for having earned not one but TWO
prestigious statewide awards! Melanie has been a recipient of PAEF
grants multiple times and we greatly appreciate her dedication to
First, she has been selected at one of the 2011 Outstanding
Teaching of the Humanities Award by Humanities Texas.
Humanities Texas presents these awards annually to Texas social
studies and language arts teachers who have made exemplary
contributions in teaching, curriculum development, and
extracurricular programming. Each recipient, chosen from a pool of
applicants, receives a $5,000 prize, with an additional $500 for his
or her school to purchase instructional materials.
Representatives from Humanities Texas were here on January 2,
2012 to present the award to Melanie.
Second, Melanie has been named a recipient of the Texas Exes
Award for Outstanding Teachers.
Each year, in cooperation with the Texas Exes alumni association
and the UT College of Education, the University recognizes ten Texas
high school teachers and two elementary school teachers with the
Texas Exes Award for Outstanding Teachers. She will receive a $2250
Melanie will be honored at a ceremony in Austin on February 24,
Marilynn Cook Gives PAISD AND PAEF International
Marilynn Cook spoke about the Port
Aransas Education Foundation (PAEF) and the recent PAEF-funded
"Lunch and Learn" program at the Kappa Delta Pi International
Convocation Crossroads of Excellence 2011 Idea Swap in November
In her brief overview of the program, Marilynn plans
to tell the international audience that, in the "Lunch and Learn"
program, students in the Port Aransas Independent School District (PAISD)
conducted a study in neuroscience to uncover how the brain learns.
The goals of this project were to help students understand their
unique learning strengths and to raise awareness about learning
challenges. Students used what they learned in the project to
understand and overcome their own learning challenges and help their
fellow students have the same success.
During a brief history of the funding of the
project, she will let the convocation attendees know that the PAEF
is focused on creating exceptional and enriching educational
experiences for the students, projects that encourage students and
teachers to "think outside the test."
Marilynn will talk about the success of "Lunch and
Learn" as she shares quotes from some of the students and tells the
story of students who discovered their best way to learn and then
became more successful in class and more confident in their ability
to learn. She will also mention the continued success of the program
through the students' participation in Brain Awareness Week, a
program form the Dana Alliance that increases public awareness of
the progress and benefits of brain research.
Click here to
read Marilynn's handout for her presentation at this prestigious