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Home | Tag Archives: wiggs middle school

Tag Archives: wiggs middle school

El Paso ISD Ranked Third in State for High-Performing Schools; 11 Campuses Honored

According to new figures released by the Texas Education Agency (TEA), El Paso Independent School District (EPISD) has 11 campuses that earned all available distinction designations available to them during the 2018 accountability ratings period.

“Our focus on Active Learning has helped us reach unprecedented goals in student outcomes,” said Superintendent Juan Cabrera. “EPISD is one of the best school districts in the state, and our students and teachers are showing that innovation in the classroom works.”

With 11 total campuses on the list, EPISD has the most high-performing schools in the region and is third in the state for districts with schools earning all available distinctions given by the Texas Education Agency this year.  Only two school districts – Houston and Dallas ISDs — have more schools with all distinctions in the state.

The distinctions show students in those campuses are performing at elevated levels in all tested areas, and show academic growth that puts them on track to be college and career ready by the time they graduate high school.

The schools that earned all academic distinctions are: El Paso, Silva Health Magnet and Chapin high schools; Wiggs Middle School; and Hughey, Lamar, Milam, Collins, Cielo Vista, Polk and Green elementary schools.

“Earning one or several campus-level distinctions is notable and should be applauded by a community as an outstanding achievement,” Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath said. “For a school to earn every potential distinction applicable to their campus is difficult, but a reflection of some truly amazing work by our educators.”

The distinctions include measurements of proficiency and growth based on student performance on the State of Texas Assessment of Academic Skills (STAAR) and End of Course exams.

The distinctions measure academic achievement in English, math, science and social studies, as well as growth in categories like college readiness and closing learning gaps.

Wiggs Middle School Student Represents EPISD in National Spanish Spelling Bee

For incoming seventh-grader Iker Pérez, perseverance is spelled E-N E-S-P-A-Ñ-O-L.

The Wiggs Wolverine represented his school, the El Paso Independent School District and El Paso a whole in the Concurso Nacional de Deletreo en Español, or the National Spanish Spelling Bee. The event was began last Thursday and ended on Sunday in San Antonio.

Pérez, who earned his spot among the nation’s top Spanish spellers by winning the competitive EPISD Spanish Spelling Bee in March, made it through the first rounds of the spelling bee before bowing out.

“He did an excellent job, as the competition was extremely challenging,” district coordinator Guadalupe Pineda said.

Pérez last word got the best of him. He was unable to correctly spell lengüeta, which means shoe tongue in Spanish.

However, Pérez left the competition proud of his participation and ready to commit to another year of Spanish spelling bee. School officials said Pérez already is practicing for a return trip to nationals.

Pérez was not alone in the trip. His parents, his older brother and Wiggs teacher Jerusha Hunt traveled to San Antonio to support him. They all wore custom made orange-and-blue jerseys donning the EPISD seal and a special Wiggs Spanish Spelling Bee logo.

Nearly 50 contestants from 11 states participate at the national level. This is the eighth year that the Spanish spelling bee is organized.

Author: Alicia Chumley / Photos courtesy EPISD

Summer Band Camp lets Ross, Wiggs Students Practice Their Skills

For students Ross and Wiggs middle schools, the summer break meant much more than long naps and time in front of the television. For these students, most of whom are new to band, the first part of the long break was spent jamming on percussion, woodwind and brass instruments.

“The summer band camp helps students stay in shape over the summer. Our main goal is to keep them playing,” Wiggs band director Jaime Orpinel said. “We want them to keep those skills up and start the year strong.”

Although the final concert has a patriotic focus, students are allowed to cut loose and play music outside of their usual repertoire.

“We like to do pop selections that are fun for the kids to play,” Orpinel said. “These songs have little thing they aren’t even aware they are doing, such as chromatic scales. The camp also gives students an opportunity to expand on their playing and even learn different instruments.”

The camp is divided into beginning and advanced classes. New students can get a jump on playing their instruments before the start of the semester and returning band students can work on techniques they have learned throughout the previous school year.

Ross eighth-grader Michael Genera loves practicing his skills on the tuba. This is the second year he participates in summer band camp.

“I have been playing for two years, and it’s awesome because music really expands your mind,” he said. “This is a great program to get you out of the house and instead do something. I get to hang out with my band mates and play with students from other schools.”

Former summer band students volunteer every year to help serve as mentors and motivate students to continue playing at the high school level. El Paso High students welcomed Wiggs student Amber Carrillo into the fold.

“I already feel like I am part of the band. The band family has already said, ‘hey come play with us,’” Carrillo said. “Summer band shows your commitment to the band program and that you really want to do it.”

The three-week summer band camp ended with a combined concert, featuring music from the Beatles and the Marches of the Armed Forces.

Wiggs Eighth Grade Student Honored with Valor Award for Anti-Smoking Advocacy

Eighth-grader Ashley Jerome may be the youngest person ever to receive the Smoke Free Paso Del Norte’s Chester L. Bryant Valor Award, but there’s nothing small about her contributions to a world where tobacco products are not in use.

The work of the Wiggs Middle School student over the past three years as a mentor and advocate for tobacco control policies has earned the attention of the Paso de Norte Foundation, which presents the award to an individual or organization for their contributions in reducing the negative impact of tobacco in the community.

“I have been in Teens Against Tobacco Use since I was in sixth grade,” Jerome said. “It felt really amazing to receive this award, especially since I am the first middle-school student to get it.”

To qualify for the award, an individual or organization must meet criteria in four areas: prevention, cessation, policy and special populations.

Tobacco use is something that has affected Jerome personally.

“My dad has been smoking since he was around my age. He had a heart attack when I was in second grade,” she said. “Seeing what can happen really made me want to join the program because it’s important to teach about the dangers of tobacco.

Jerome talks to students at Mesita and Lamar elementary about the dangers of tobacco, preparing special presentations for them throughout the year.

“We show them the dangers of tobacco and how to deal with peer pressure to smoke,” she said. “We show them the negative effects. Let’s say you want to be a football player, it affects you because you won’t be able to run as fast.”

She thinks it’s important to hear this message from a fellow student.

“It’s important for kids to learn about this when they are little,” Jerome said. “I think when young people hear that message from someone their age they really stop and listen to what you have to say and how it will affect them and those they love.”

 Author – Alicia Chumley | Photos by Leonel Monroy – EPISD
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