Katy Texas Schools, Sports, Students, January 2017

| January 1, 2017

(L-R): Janet Theis, Katy ISD Education Foundation; Amy Lehr, Chick-fil-A; Stephanie Rundell, Pattison Elementary; Wendy Reinwald, Chick-fil-A; and Chick-fil-A local operator, Rusty Wylie.

(L-R): Janet Theis, Katy ISD Education Foundation; Amy Lehr, Chick-fil-A; Stephanie Rundell, Pattison Elementary; Wendy Reinwald, Chick-fil-A; and Chick-fil-A local operator, Rusty Wylie.


Chick-fil-A customers nationwide helped select the recipients of more than $1.1 million in grants, thanks to the new Chick-fil-A One app. The 2017 True Inspiration Awards honor and provide financial support to 22 nonprofits in 16 states to help further their work with youth, fostering leadership skills and developing an entrepreneurial spirit. For the first time since the awards program began in 2014, Chick-fil-A utilized its new mobile app to allow customers to vote for organizations in their local communities. As a result, the Katy ISD Education Foundation was selected as a $15,000 award recipient. The foundation was the only Houston-area finalist and one of four nonprofit finalists in the Southwest region .

Chick-fil-A’s True Inspiration awards recognizes community organizations that align with the Chick-fil-A Foundation’s mission to enable children to be all they were created to be. The Katy ISD Education Foundation rewards teacher inspiration of students by funding innovative classroom projects that go beyond district budget limitations. The Foundation was nominated by local Chick-fil-A operator Rusty Wylie, who said “Our community has more than its fair share of the brightest kids around. If we can help our children develop a love for learning while giving them hands-on, fun educational experiences, we’ll give them the tools and encouragement they need to be great leaders. I’m just grateful Chick-fil-A can be a part of what is great about our community.”

The Katy ISD Education Foundation is an independent nonprofit  that, in its first four years, has awarded more than $725,000 in grants to Katy ISD teachers all across the district.  Its fifth year of grants will be awarded in May 2017.

To learn more,  call  281-396-2461, visit the website, katyisdeducationfoundation.org or email foundation@katyisd.org.



Sarah Rush

Sarah Rush


Sarah Rush, a senior at Seven Lakes High School, has earned the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest honor in Girl Scouting.  The award recognizes girls in grades 9-12 who demonstrate extraordinary leadership through sustainable and measurable community service projects that require a minimum of 80 hours to complete. Less than five percent of Girl Scouts earn the award.

To earn the award, Rush organized and hosted a three-day horse-themed camp for children that attend Neighborhood Kidz Club, a local non-profit organization. Camp activities included crafts, games, a presentation about horses, therapeutic horsemanship and service animals.  During the last day of the camp, participants visited Paloma Trails, a ranch in Brookshire, where they spent time feeding, grooming and leading miniature horses.

“By helping children interact with horses, I hoped to help them gain the benefits of horse interaction such as building confidence, building patience, being open minded and reducing stress, “ said Rush.

During her project, Rush led a group of 12 volunteers in running the camp and organizing car washes that served as fundraisers. Nine of the volunteers were trained at the ranch prior to the camp and managed each station visited by participants.

“The camp would not have been successful without these volunteers, including the staff at Neighborhood Kidz Club who supervised and helped run the camp, helped with organization and facilities and transportation,” said Rush. “Ms. Paige, the owner of Paloma Trails, was also instrumental in making the camp a success.”

Rush, who has always loved horses and children, gained a special interest in therapeutic horsemanship when she completed her Girl Scout Silver Award, the highest honor a Girl Scout in middle school can achieve.

“Earning the Gold Award has been my goal since the beginning of high school, because I learned so much from my Silver Award project and knew I could learn even more from earning the Gold,” said Rush. “I wanted the chance to make an even bigger difference in my community.”

According to the Girl Scout Research Institute’s report, The Power of the Girl Scout Gold Award: Excellence in Leadership and Life, Girl Scout Gold Award recipients receive greater lifetime benefits than their peers with regard to positive sense of self, life satisfaction, leadership, life success, community service, and civic engagement thanks to their experience in Girl Scouting, including earning their Gold Award. To learn more about the Girl Scout Gold Award, which turned 100 in 2016, visit girlscouts.org.


Foluso Faseyitan shares Nigeria with Educator Kendall Steifel.

Foluso Faseyitan shares Nigeria with Educator Kendall Steifel.


Katy ISD’s Beck Junior High, located in Cinco Ranch, recently celebrated its annual “International Day” festival for sixth grade students. The event was chaired this year by PTA volunteer Usha Machiraju, who represented India, and supported by more than 30 parent volunteers. This annual event allows Beck students to enjoy the culture, history and food from many countries in one setting hosted by student parents who proudly and playfully engage the students in a “trip around the world.” This year, 15 different countries were represented: Argen­tina; Australia; Belgium; China; Colombia; India; Iran; Ireland; Japan; Mexico; Nigeria; South Africa; The Netherlands; Great Britain; and the United States.


The Tire-Flipping Relay was one of the most enjoyed events of the games.

The Tire-Flipping Relay was one of the most enjoyed events of the games.


Taylor High School FFA started the Ag Olympics for all the Katy high school FFA students back in 2010 when they had just a handful of students participate. This year the event grew to 355 FFA students from all seven Katy high schools competing against each other in fun Ag related games called the Ag Olympics. The teams were made up of students from each school who competed for points at each of the 10 different games. The games ranged from Greasy Pumpkin Relay and Ice-Bucket Musical Chairs to Balloon Stomp and Tire-Flipping Relay. The Grand Finale featured boys and girls from each school competing in a Tug-O-War into the mud.

Cinco Ranch HS won first place beating second place Taylor HS by only one-half of a point and Seven Lakes HS took third place. This  event allowed all of the Katy FFA students to get to know each other and have a friendly competition with lots of laughing and getting dirty.


Jordan Chanelle McCullough

Jordan Chanelle McCullough


Jordyn Chanelle McCullough, a senior from James E. Taylor High School in Katy is one of more than 650 high school cheerleaders and dancers from across the U.S. who will be representing Varsity Spirit in the world famous London New Year’s Day Parade 2017.

Jordyn will be among parade performers from all over the world. The theme of this year’s parade is “Lights, Camera, Action” and will pay homage to the wonders of film and television. Cheerleaders, dancers, marching bands, acrobats and more will make up the 10,000 performers representing 20 countries worldwide in the 2017 parade. Established as one of London’s biggest events, the parade is seen by nearly 300 million people around the world. In addition to cheering in the parade, Varsity All-Americans will be able to celebrate the holiday’s European style with the chance to tour some of London’s most historic sites during their seven-day stay.

“For my entire high school experience, I have waited for this moment and feel extremely blessed to be chosen amongst my fellow teammates to have an experience that we will cherish for the rest of our lives,” Jordyn said.

The individuals invited to perform in the parade qualified for the trip after being nominated as an All-American at one of the summer camps hosted by Varsity Spirit and are selected based on superior cheerleading, dancing and leadership skills. Only the top 10 percent of the more than 325,000 cheerleaders and dancers who attend the 5,000 camp sessions earn the chance to march in the holiday spectacular.

“This is the 33rd year we’ve been able to bring these talented cheerleaders and dancers to London, where they can showcase their skills to a very enthusiastic international audience, and explore the rich cultural heritage of this great city,” says Ginger Hauser, the London Tour/Special Events Coordinator for Varsity Spirit.

For more information, visit varsity.com.


Firethorne Marketing Director Janet Burkett congratulated Lamar Consolidated ISD Superintendent Dr. Thomas Randle on the opening of the new schools.

Firethorne Marketing Director Janet Burkett congratulated Lamar Consolidated ISD Superintendent Dr. Thomas Randle on the opening of the new schools.


Fulshear High School Charger cheerleaders enthusiastically welcomed community guests to their new Lamar Consolidated Independent School District (CISD) campus for the dedication of Churchill Fulshear Jr. High School and Dean Leaman Junior High School. The ceremony included performances by the Charger Band and school choirs, as well as remarks by the schools’ respective principals, Dan Ward and Michael Semmler, District Superintendent Dr. Thomas Randle, and Leaman family representative Lee Leaman.

“The overriding theme for the dedication is that we are part of a ‘Charger Nation,’” said Janet Burkett, Firethorne marketing director, noting Fulshear and Leaman are the new designated Lamar CISD schools for residents of Firethorne West.  The District’s Kathleen Joerger Lindsey Elementary School is under construction and slated to open in Firethorne in August 2017.  It will mark the District’s first-ever school in Katy.


Category: Katy Texas Schools, Sports, Students, Katy Kid

Comments are closed.