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December 2011

Galloping The High School Newsletter




Greetings from ! desk of P#ncipal Serrano!

By the time you read this, we will be nearing the end of the fall semester. We’ve accomplished quite a bit this semester as we’ve been “the difference” in many ways. We had a successful Transition Fair where the students had the opportunity to meet various college/university and agency representatives to give them a taste of the resources that are available outside of TSD to support their post-secondary goals. Hats off to the Career and Transition Services staff for doing a wonderful job. As you know, we’re moving forward into the new state assessment program, STAAR (State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness) and all current 9th graders will be required to take End-Of-Course assessments in English 1, Algebra 1, Biology and World Geography. Teachers teaching the STAARtested courses have been trained and have attended Region 13 to partake in workshops to learn more about STAAR and how they can prepare their students for the assessments. Please remember that for 9th graders taking general STAAR EOCs, the results will make up 15% of their course grade. However, this does not apply to students taking modified assessments. For current 10th to 12th graders, they will continue to take TAKS and in several years, TAKS will be phased out. If you need additional information about the new assessment program, please feel free to contact me anytime. Teachers have been busy participating in various training to try new instructional strategies for their students. We’ve taken Language Planning training learning about different topics such as the use of ASL and English, differentiated instruction and technology integration in classroom. Teachers have been working together to share ideas and resources to improve the quality of instruction especially now that we are using CSCOPE for the first time this year.

For more information about CSCOPE, please refer to the CSCOPE article in this newsletter. I’m excited to announce that we’ve finally implemented our iPad Pilot Program for a small group of teachers. The goal is to use iPads in the classroom with students using a variety of educational applications to enhance learning. We have partnered up with several Ph.D candidates from University of Texas to observe and collect data on how we can best serve our students using iPads. We will use the information to determine how we can move forward with iPads in the future and we’re excited about this partnership. We recently set up a new pilot course called “Achieving College Success” and it was first brought up by several motivated seniors who felt they wanted a course to specifically focus on getting ready for college. So far, it has been a tremendous success and several seniors taking this course have really benefitted form it. As a result, we’ve decided to continue to offer this course as an elective course for seniors next fall 2012. I’m working on setting up a committee to explore the possibility of setting up new elective classes that address a variety of topics such as study skills and transition in the near future. It is with mixed feelings to announce that our administrative assistant Claire Champagne has accepted a part-time position as a TSD interpreter starting on November 21st. However, on the bright side, she will continue to work in HS Office part-time in the afternoons. Karen Salvo from the Director of Education Office will work in the morning to fill in for Claire. We are happy for her new opportunity and we’re grateful that she will continue to serve HS in a part-time capacity. In closing, I would like to take the time to thank you all for your partnership and for trusting us to serve your child(ren). Enjoy the holidays with your family and loved ones! With Ranger Pride, John A. Serrano

2 Transition Fair:

3 MentorPlace

5 The Untold Story

8 Path, Goals, Dreams..

Passport to your Future

IBM MentorPlace is online

The TSD Ranger Stampede

mentoring program...

5K, believe it or not...

9 What is CSCOPE?

According to the students’ survey, 78% desire to attend

4 Hispanic Club &

6 Diamante Poetry

Full Accreditation

7 Deaf Culture Trivia,

College/technical school...

Danielle Goyette &

No, it’s not the name of...

10 Holidays Recipes 11 Scholastic Book Fair

Claire Champagne


Transition Fair: Passport to your Future! On Friday, November 4th, Career & Transition Services (CTS) hosted a Transition Fair for our 14-22 year old students to explore and gather more information about their options after high school graduation. The Transition Fair event was also open to parents and mainstream programs from all across Texas. The furthest a mainstream program came from was Houston. There were well over 200 students, 11 college/training program recruiters, 15 community agencies, a DARS presenter, four career panelists, and even service dogs from Austin Dog Alliance in attendance for the Transition Fair!   According to the students’ survey responses, 78% of the students desire to attend a College/technical school after they graduate.  At the Fair, there were diverse postsecondary school options for students: five 4-year programs for bachelor degrees, four 2-year programs for associate degrees/certificates, and two employment and independent skills training programs. Students had the opportunity to attend three post-secondary school presentations to learn more about different post secondary schools’ academic and student life programs.   During the last hour, the college recruiters and community agency representatives had their booths set up for students to obtain further information. Students had an opportunity to use their elevator speech, an approximately 20-30 seconds long ‘commercial’ about her/ himself which was practiced during the advisory workshops. The elevator speech includes the student’s name, class standing, career interests and any relevant

experiences. According to the student survey that was sent out after the Transition Fair, nearly 75% reported that practicing and developing their own elevator speech helped them become prepared to talk with recruiters at the booths.   The Career Panel was made up of four people from different fields: technology, construction, counseling, and home business bakery.   Two student moderators asked the panelists various questions such as how they decided on a specific career, their transition from graduation to work experiences, challenges they faced, and advice they had for students. Their answers varied, but they all had a similar underlying message to our students, which was to follow their passion and their skills. One cannot go wrong if you are pursuing a career in something that you are passionate about and at the same time, be realistic with your career planning and decisions.   Now that Transition Fair is over, does this mean that one should stop thinking about her/his career plans? Most definitely not, students can make an appointment with their career counselor (Karen Henry or Alicia Borgongo) at CTS to discuss their interests and goals. Be well, Daniel P. Veit Transition Specialist Career & Transition Services


IBM MentorPlace is online mentoring program that links the knowledge, dedication and enthusiasm of teachers and students with talent and skills and volunteering spirit of IBM employees. A year ago, IBM employees Bill Huber and Molly Worthington proposed working with MentorPlace and Texas School for the Deaf students. These selected students visited IBM. IBM employers came to TSD a couple of times getting to know our students. MentorPlace covers over 35 countries more than 6000 IBM employees are providing academic support and career guidance to over 7000 students from ages 8 to 17 years old. Mentor Place provides a realworld framework to support employee volunteerism and connects IBM mentors to students using online activities that correspond directly to classroom lessons or support. Benefits for students: - Opportunity to learn and practice new academic skills - Exposure to the world of business and its requirements - Connection with adults who care about them - Motivation to succeed - Use technology while honing skills, writing, spelling and typing. Give high fives to these students who are involved: Jonathan Ford, Zane Howell, Amy Johnson, Erin Lambert, Tozzie Smith, Jaime Utzman, Page Vaughan, Rigoberto Vieyra. Their classroom advisors are also actively involved too.


Hispanic Club Hola! Hello!! What’s new about Hispanic Club for this school year 2011-2012? We now have ‘DOS’ sponsors. Who is the second one? AL JIMENEZ!! You all may know him from last year. He works with the Spanish teacher here. Welcome to our new officers; President Jasmina Sifuentes, Vice President Omar Valdovinos, Secretary Lydia Doucette, and Treasurer Joshua Moore.

Our goal for this year is to add new members. To become a member, you will need to pay ten dollars.

Meetings are held at DSC from 3:30-4:15 pm. Keep an eye on the Hispanic Club bulletion board for the dates & updated information.

Our second goal this year is to host the BEST Cinco de Mayo Party ever!!!! With delicious Mexican meals such as Menudo soup and tamales!! YUMMMY!!!! It is highly possible we will have someone come over and teach us how to make homemade tamales!!!








Dear Texas School for the Deaf Community Congratulations on a job well done! The team was simply WOWed by your achievements from the appearance of the campus, to the quality of classroom instruction, to the leadership of the staff, the SGT chairs and the Board,  the teamwork of the staff, the wonderful technology the great students the wonderful supportive programs in the dorm, student life, health center, business office,maintenance, support services, HR, outreach, our amazing parents and community and each and every one of you that shared your glows and grows for and about TSD.

Accreditation is a community effort and it takes each of us contributing to the overall mission, vision and beliefs that guide our school to have this kind of a successful visit. The CEASD team was humbled by the hospitality provided to them. Every single team member left feeling that deaf students at TSD do indeed have a

incredible place to learn, grow and belong because of our incredible staff. Our visiting team has requested that our selfstudy, our Evidence Room design and our schedule of events become a model for other schools.  How about that for validation!

We will post the exit Powerpoint on the website, but be aware these are big picture commendations and recommendations for each of the 12 Standards, and the final report will have much more detail. When we receive that, it will give us cause to consider the team's recommendations and determine which of them should become part of our future action plans. So, in closing, thank you to EVERYONE for you support and help in this process. With Ranger Pride, Claire, Russell and Twyla 5

The Untold History Behind TSD’s Ranger Stampede 5K Run The TSD Ranger Stampede 5K, believe it or not, is going into its 4th season and the 5th Ranger Triathlon will be this Spring in 2012!

How did it all begin and why? Back in 2002-2004, A parent challenged the Elementary PE teacher, in a good and caring way, to bring our students out into the Austin community to engage with others in various health-related events like running 5K’s, 10K’s, or even Kid’s K’s? So then it was decided, simply, that TSD could encourage students and their parents to try a local 5K run. The first was the Hula Hut 5K run in Austin, which, back in 2003, TSD 2nd grader Amelia Hamilton did along with her mother, father and brother. She remembers her younger brother being pushed 3.1 miles in the stroller while she forged ahead on the hilly route through the neighborhood. This was Amelia’s first 5K run, which to a 2nd grader is quite a big deal, as she remembers, reflecting back.

Amelia, today, explains how this 5K experience had left a lifelong impression on her.

It made her think about

the value and importance of exercise, especially how it makes her feel: alive and vibrant, full of energy! She also has also done the TSD Ranger Triathlon each year, 3 times as a participant and once as a volunteer because she broke her foot. She feels proud to be the only TSD HS student to participate in the 2011 Ranger Triathlon and would like to see more HS students share in the experience with her because it would make the race more fun as she could talk about it with other HS peers.

Amelia was asked how this could be fun, especially when doing a triathlon is so hard, Amelia said that, yes, it’s hard, but it CAN be done. “You just have to fight through the challenge just like you have to fight through challenges in life. If one can overcome a triathlon, one has gained the confidence and willpower to take on any challenge in life,” Amelia shares. “And when you cross the finish line, do you truly understand why it’s fun and rewarding.”

So with very few students venturing off campus to try a 5K run or a kid’s triathlon, it was decided that we would host the 5K run and the Ranger Triathlon at TSD in hopes that more would be involved. As a result, TSD has increased the number of participants doing the monthly 5K runs since Amelia was the only runner at a 5K back when she was a 2nd grader in 2003. We have come a long way and still can go a long way by encouraging one another to make a healthy choice through running and/or walking.

Since the initial effort from the concerned and caring parent to create more fitness opportunities for students at TSD back in 2003, continued efforts have enabled TSD to create even more opportunities to bring fitness to each student. Community members who have participated in the Ranger 5K and the Ranger Triathlon have asked if they, too, could host their own fitness-related events as well. As a result, we have added the Manzano Mile, Run to Hear 5K, JV and Varsity Triathlon, The Deaf-Blind Walk.

Through the efforts of the School Health Advisory Committee, TSD has added middle school cross country as a sport, which enables any student regardless of fitness level and/or running ability to participate as an athlete under the notion that anyone can be an athlete. As a matter of fact, TSD is the host to the first ever Austin Interscholastic Parochial League (AIPL) Cross Country Championships on Saturday, October 29, 2011.

The Ranger Stampede 5K and the Ranger Triathlon are all about community within and outside of TSD, especially given that it is open to anyone. Community members from off campus have come to run the Ranger Stampede 5K over the years, new friendships were made and partnerships were formed, and even further opportunities were created.


Through the Ranger 5K and the Ranger Triathlon, we have garnered support from local businesses such as Fair Bean Coffee, 1379 Family Sports Store, The Expedition School, Jack and Adam’s Bicycles, Austin Fit Magazine, and Pam LeBlanc’s Austin-American Statesman online blog to name a few. All of these opportunities have been created for you to encourage others to achieve fitness and wellness goals in a positive, encouraging, nurturing environment.

See you at the monthly Ranger Stampede 5Ks and 1 Milers, the Ranger Triathlon, The Manzano Mile, and all the other 5K runs!!!!

And THANKS to parent and advocate, Betty Layton, who gave us the initial push and to TSD student, Amelia Hamilton, for setting the example all these years! -Nick Bannon

RUNNING HARD Some students in Mrs. Judi Pate’s English classes wrote Diamante poetry, which has specific rules: Remember that the first and last words of a cinquain are synonyms—the last word of the poem renames the first. Diamantes, however, are poems about opposites: the first and last words have opposite meanings (or convey opposite ideas). A diamante has seven lines that follow this sequence: Line A: Topic A (must be a noun) Line B: Two vivid adjectives that describe Topic A Line C: Three interesting “-ing” action verbs that describe Topic A Line D: Two concrete nouns about Topic A and two about Topic G Line E: Three interesting “-ing” action verbs that describe Topic G Line F: Two vivid adjectives that describe Topic G

By Joaquin Rodriguez

By Guadalupe Castellon

By Carlton Moore  




Hyper, Crazy

Orange, Hot

Bright, Brilliant

Laughing, Swinging, Jumping

Playing, Reading, Running

Dazzling, Sparkling, Shining

Different, Yet the Same

Football, Outside, Sleeping, Inside

Daylight, Sunlight, Nightfull, Dusk

Hooting, Fighting, Stomping

Sleeping, Working, Watching

Sleeping, Crying, Resting

Bigger, Faster

Black, Gray

Dark, Black



Night 7

DEAF CULTURE TRIVIA Which famous Deaf American's portrait has appeared on a $5 dollar bill? Find me on Page 10 :-D

Danielle Goye%e

Wow, time really flew. It seems like it’s still my

Claire Champagne

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Two

first week here at TSD. My experience here at TSD

grading periods are behind us and a long break is in

has been an enriching one! I learned so much from

our near future. I look forward to spending time

my mentor teacher, Ann Meredith, and from other

with my son, baking and crafting homemade gifts,

staff here. I really enjoyed my time here; it was a

and traveling to visit family.

challenge in the beginning to memorize everyone’s

I have accepted a part-time job in Interpreting

name! However for the last several weeks, I got to

Services and will be working in the High School from

know everyone by his or her personalities and sense

12:30-4:00 p.m. Never fear, Karen Salvo will be

of humor. I would like to thank the High School

filling in during the morning hours. You can

department for their warm welcome and making me

continue to send emails anytime of day to

feel really involved. While here at TSD, I attended or

several sport events and had chances to meet

call (512) 462-5461 for assistance.

everyone here at TSD, and everyone kept asking me

Happy Holidays!

if I would like to work here as a staff member and I was not hesitant with my answer, I said “of course!” Again, thank you! Happy Holidays! 8

KJ CAL BALOGUN Path, Goals, Dreams, Ideas, Motivation, Passion, Aim & Driven by each of our own.

Born and raised in White Plains, New York. I was born to explore and appreciate life in the fullest. I seek to learn, to grow, to positively influence others, to empower others, to see new generations to blossom and able to prosper beyond any limits.

Growing up, I’ve been limited with access to communicate, to express, to prosper until a very dear friend of mine saved my life by simply saying, “You’re smart. Why are you in ‘special class’?!” Ever since that day, I realized that I can do anything as long as I put my mind, heart and soul into it. Dream your life. Live your dreams. (From the movie, Scrapple)

When I was told that I’d no longer needed to be in ‘special class’, I was thrilled because I was given an opportunity to prove to the whole school that I will do well in classes (as long as there are ASL interpreters provided). Sadly a peer of mine in school saw this as a pessimistic way to go, because he felt that he will not be able to do well in mainstreamed classes. This reminds me of a quote, “The pessimist looks at

opportunities and sees difficulties; the optimist looks at difficulties and see opportunities.” (Anonymous)

I did wonder why my friend, who I knew was as smart as I was, didn’t believe in himself. I did try to encourage my friend to do well in school so that in his future, he would go beyond. I was imagining what he would be like if he did believe in himself instead of being in fear of life itself: “Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a second’s encounter with eternity.” (Paul Coelho, The Alchemist) Years later, in my adulthood, I realized that I was, in spirit, following Eleanor Roosevelt’s quote, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent”.

Today, this generation and the younger generations are so fortunate that the advancement of technology is right in their hands. I praise them to have all that access, and I do hope that every one of the students will or do realize the convenience, and appreciate what’s been given to them and make a good use of them. My adventures: Dance, Golf, Photography, Acting, Drawing, Billiards and boldly go where I never thought I’d gone to before. :-D 9

DEAF CULTURE TRIVIA ANSWER Erastus "Deaf" Smith - "Was a hero of the Texas War of Independence. He was called by General Sam Houston to become a spy. Because he was a skilled lipreader, he discovered the Mexicans' plan to cross the bridge and attack the Texans. The Texas Army decided to destroy the bridge to make it impossible to cross and trap the Mexican Army. Texans honor Deaf Smith as a hero. If he were not there, the Texas Army probably wouldn't have won the Battle of San Jacinto and Texas would not have gained independence from Mexico. Deaf Smith's portrait appeared on the $5 dollar bill of The Republic of Texas." (Cited at:

Deaf Smith's portrait on the $5 dollar bill of The Republic of Texas. (

Read more about Erastus Smith at this link:

What is CSCOPE? No, it’s not the name of a new microscope for our science labs. It’s a comprehensive and resourceful curriculum management system that is aligned to the current state standards for teachers to use. TSD has decided to implement CSCOPE this year in response to our current 5-year Strategic Goals and all Science teachers and World Geography teachers are required to use CSCOPE for their instruction. This year, we’ve seen an increase in academic expectations and rigor in the classrooms as teachers continue to learn how to use CSCOPE and its resources. To get more information about CSCOPE, please take the time to visit the parent portal using the provided website below:


Something smells fishy in Ms. Pate’s classroom – literally! We’re cooking up new words and recipes just in time for the holidays! We’ve discovered we all like to read and write about good food. We unanimously agree that the best test to take is the taste test! Many of our awesome high school teachers pitched in and shared their favorite recipes with us. Here’s a few of the wonderful recipes they shared:

Science Teacher Pia Marie Paulone shared with us one of her favorite simple recipes! Many students agree it sounds delicious, and we can’t wait to try it out at home. You can find that recipe online: Recipe/cranberry-salsa-2/detail.aspx.

Directions 1. Melt butter in large saucepan over medium-high heat. 2. Add green beans and cream of mushroom soup. Stir to mix well and heat until warm.  3. Stir in slivered almonds. 4. Transfer to Crockpot and keep warm on low setting until time to eat (stir occasionally).

If you have a sweet tooth, there’s the traditional dessert of the pumpkin pie. History teacher Ralena McDevitt has shared an easy and great way to make it!

Cranberry Salsa Ingredients • 1 (12 ounce) bag cranberries, fresh or frozen • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped • 1 bunch green onions, cut into 3 inch lengths • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced • 2 limes, juiced • 3/4 cup white sugar • 1 pinch salt Directions 1. Combine cranberries, cilantro, green onions, jalapeno pepper, lime juice, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a medium blade. Chop to medium consistency. Refrigerate if not using immediately. Serve at room temperature.

Michelle Halvorson shared with us her mother’s, Jennifer Long, recipe a great way to eat green beans:

Slivered Almond Green Bean Casserole Ingredients • 2 T butter • 6 cans of Del Monte seasoned green beans • (with pimentos and onions) • 1 large family size can cream of mushroom soup • 1 small bag of slivered almonds

Pumpkin Pie Ingredients • Double-Layer Pumpkin Pie (from Kraft) • 1 pkg (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened • 1 cup plus 1 Tbsp. milk, divided • 1 Tbsp. sugar • 1 tub (8 oz) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed, divided •1 HONEYMAID Graham Pie Crust (6 oz) •1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin •2 pkg. (3.4 oz. each) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger • 1/4 tsp.  ground cloves Directions 1. BEAT cream cheese, 1 Tbsp. milk and sugar in large bowl with whisk until blended. Stir in half the COOL WHIP. Spread onto bottom of crust. 2. WHISK remaining milk, pumpkin, dry pudding mixes and spices 2 min. (Mixture will be thick.) Spread over cream cheese layer. 3. REFRIGERATE 4 hours or until firm. Serve topped with remaining COOL WHIP.


Hello everyone! It's time for the winter Scholastic Book Fair.  It will begin Monday, November 28 and run through Friday, December 9. The holidays are almost here, so in-between, let's enjoy a relaxing time looking through some great books.  All reading classes will come at their normally scheduled time.  If you do not have a scheduled time, please contact me and schedule to bring your class. I will definitely have several days with after school hours for students and staff to drop by. Teachers can also contact me if individual students have brought money and want to purchase books. As usual, there will be something great for everyone. Holidays are on the way, and hopefully some free time for reading a good book!  Books also make the perfect gift. Scholastic has promised a variety of items on many different levels.  Checks, credit cards, and cash will be accepted. Please keep in mind that in addition to promoting a love of reading, this event also funds additional books for our library! I'm looking forward to seeing you all!                                                                          A good book is meant to be read and then shared.   Susan Anderson Librarian/Textbook Coordinator 512.462.5550


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1102 S. Congress Austin Tx 78704 / Voice or VP: 512 410-1014 /



Galloping Rangers - December  

Texas School for the Deaf's High School Newsletter

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