There are several exciting changes in our district as we start the new school year in a couple of months. First, we are opening our STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Academy at Cannon Elementary for any student that resides within GCISD limits (not just Cannon area residents). The STEM program is integrated within the Cannon curriculum for all students attending the school. We are also continuing our two-way bilingual program at Cannon, which offers the opportunity to English speakers to learn Spanish within their regular core courses. We offer similar two-way language programs at Silver Lake and Timberline Elementary schools.
I would also like to welcome June Ritchlin to the Timberline Elementary family. Mrs. Ritchlin will be the new principal at Timberline, after a few years successfully leading Colleyville Elementary. We are looking forward to Mrs. Ritchlin's work at this school, as we continue to improve our STAAR scores, prepare our students as they move into Cross Timbers Middle School and continue the implementation of the Franklin-Covey's Leader in Me program.
GCISD is starting their first magnet school, the Aspire Academy, for grades 1 through 4 at Glenhope Elementary. The students attending this academy were chosen based on IQ test scores, interviews and past work in their Gifted and Talented classes. The academy will expand to 5th grade in 2014 and to 6th grade at Cross Timbers Middle School in 2015.
Finally, this year we are expanding the Exito Hispano program to our two high schools. Exito Hispano is a parent engagement program focused on increasing Hispanic parent participation in our secondary schools. The program started at Cross Timbers Middle School in 2011, and was implemented at Grapevine Middle School last year. Once per month, we invite Hispanic parents to our schools to discuss topics like STAAR, GCISD goals and strategy, bullying prevention programs, Family Access system, curriculum, Career and Technology courses and College Night.