Charter School students donate thousands of aluminum pull tabs to Ronald McDonald House
Students in the Junior Jacks Give Back program at SFA's Charter School collected approximately 12,000 aluminum pull tabs to donate to the Ronald McDonald House in Houston, which will be delivered to the house this week. Proceeds from the recycled pull tabs will help with the house's expenses.
Students enrolled from kindergarten through fifth grade have been participating in this project since August. Jan Wisener, who teaches fifth grade, served as the teacher/sponsor responsible for coordinating the project.
Junior Jacks Give Back offers students an opportunity for engagement in service learning. During the semester, students deliberate, plan, implement and reflect on a special community service goal, such as donating to the Ronald McDonald House.
"SFA Charter School Junior Jacks Give Back concept was developed to allow children opportunities to do good for others and begin to launch the next generation of generosity," said Lysa Hagan, principal and CEO of the SFA Charter School. "Our students collaborate with teacher sponsors to determine easily accessible, age-appropriate opportunities that have meaning to the children and our school community. Junior Jacks Give Back is one way we strive to support social and emotional development as our school community focuses on educating the whole child."
The Ronald McDonald House in Houston is a home away from home for families with children being treated in Texas Medical Center member institutions. The SFA Charter School plans to make a second donation to the house in the spring.
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SFA Charter School receives Texas Honors Circle Award from comptroller
The SFA Charter School is a recipient of the Texas Comptroller's 2013 Texas Honors Circle Award, which recognizes districts and campuses that achieve academic success through cost-effective operations. Award recipients achieve strong academic performance while spending relatively less compared to their fiscal peers.
"We are so honored to have received this award," said Lysa Hagan, CEO and principal of the school. "This award was possible because of the huge support provided by the university and the James I. Perkins College of Education, the expertise of our classroom instructional leaders, the proficiency with financial responsibility of our administrative managers, and the strong cooperation of our school families."
Texas Comptroller Susan Combs has announced that 55 Texas school districts and 317 school campuses received the Texas Honors Circle Award as a result of their outstanding performance in the 2013 Financial Allocation Study for Texas.
FAST, mandated by the 2009 Texas Legislature, is an annual study that examines both academic performance and financial efficiency to identify school districts, charter operators and campuses that deliver high-quality education at relatively low costs. Combs created the Texas Honors Circle Award program to recognize districts and schools that receive high marks in the FAST analysis.
"In these challenging times when schools are under pressure to do more with less, it is more important than ever to shine a spotlight on those that are achieving strong student performance with cost-effective spending," Combs said. "Your efforts to help our state and local governments wisely manage educational spending while preparing students for success in college or the work force is crucial to the future of Texas."
The Texas Honors Circle Program awards certificates bases on FAST results. Districts and charters receiving the Texas Honors Circle Award have achieved a Five-Star FAST rating. Elementary campuses receiving the award achieved a five-star FAST rating, while middle and high-school campuses tapped for the honor achieved at least a 4.5-Star FAST rating. (Middle and high schools have a slightly lower threshold because they are less likely than elementary schools to achieve high academic progress scores.)
To view FAST's result and to see the list of all Texas Honors Circle award recipients, go to www.FASTexas.org.