Frisco ISD eNewsletter: October 8, 2020

Oct 08, 2020

Extraordinary Time Calls for Extraordinary Effort

Frisco ISD teachers are working hard to design engaging and rigorous lessons for students no matter their learning environment. COVID-19 and efforts to maintain physical distancing have created a new dynamic in face-to-face classrooms. See how teachers are finding creative ways to involve students in hands-on learning.

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School Board Adopts Lower Tax Rate

Property owners in Frisco ISD will pay the lowest tax rate the District has seen in more than 20 years. Since 2017, Frisco ISD’s combined tax rate has dropped from $1.46 per $100 valuation to $1.3102 in 2020. That amounts to a $241.68 reduction in property taxes for the owner of the average FISD home in 2017 despite an increase in appraised values over that time period. House Bill 3, the comprehensive school finance reform bill passed by the state legislature in 2019, ties the maintenance and operations (M&O) portion of the tax rate to property value growth and allows school districts to lower the tax rate while maintaining funding.

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Waiver Allows FISD to Distribute Free Meals

Frisco ISD will provide school meals at no-cost now through Dec. 18, thanks to a waiver and reimbursement from the federal government. The District has been approved to offer breakfast and lunch at no cost to all students, both on-campus and virtual learners, as well as to children age 18 and younger who are not enrolled in FISD. To receive a free meal, on-campus students must select a complete meal with a fruit or vegetable. No sign up is required.

Parents of virtual learners, as well as non-FISD students, who are interested in picking up free to-go meals should complete the sign-up form for the remainder of the first nine weeks. There will be a separate, additional sign-up form for the second nine weeks (Oct. 19 - Dec. 18) because of the opportunity for students to switch instructional environments. In order for the District to qualify to provide free meals, Frisco ISD had to modify the pick-up locations for families participating in virtual instruction.

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Elementary Art Teachers Take Their Show on the Road

FISD reimagined many elements of the 2020-21 school year in light of COVID-19. Among them was having some elementary art teachers move their instruction to students’ homerooms as opposed to students transitioning during specials’ time. Art teachers say they feel like rock stars when they wheel their carts into students’ homerooms, and that the time is especially critical for students to process their feelings and emotions. “It’s all about the process and journey and not necessarily the product,” Gunstream Elementary art teacher Kimberly Caldwell. “During this tumultuous time, these moments for contemplative creativity are vital to their development and processing of the pandemic.”

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Virtual Fun Run is Chance to Support Teachers and Students

The Frisco Education Foundation is bringing a creative approach to its annual Gary Burns 5K & Fun Run in the age of COVID-19. Unable to host the race in-person this year, FEF is planning a virtual event Oct. 17-31. Funds raised will have a direct impact on the number and amount of grants awarded to FISD teachers later this fall and college scholarships awarded to members of the Class of 2021 in the spring. “We are asking everyone to get involved in helping us make a difference for our deserving students and teachers,” said FEF President Sunitha Cheruvu. “Friends and family can participate too, no matter where they live. Together, we hope to continue the community’s long-standing support for education and student opportunities within Frisco ISD.”

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