Category: Education

HP Foundation Endows English Chair

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rsz_jgunn

Jennifer Gunn

For the first time, the Highland Park Education Foundation has endowed an English department chair at Highland Park High School. The chair is named after longtime HPISD superintendent John Connolly, and Jennifer Gunn now holds the position.

Gunn comes to Highland Park from Rockwall-Heath High School with nearly 20 years of experience. She is a reader for the AP English Language and Composition exam, and she has been a board member for the Cowan Center for Education Teacher Alumni Advisory Board for eight years.


Construction Stinks For SMU Dorm Residents

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It turns out the stink being raised by students in SMU’s Virginia-Snider residence hall were for a good reason.

Construction crews ruptured a sewer line that runs underneath that dorm, as well as the Umphrey Lee Center communications building and an adjacent dining hall, forcing an evacuation on Wednesday that could continue until Friday.

The Dallas Morning News has more details on the incident, which forced students to stay in a nearby hotel at the university’s expense. Meanwhile, classes were able to resume on Thursday morning.


Happy First Day of School Parkies

Panthers walk to University Park Elementary early on Aug. 24. (Photo: Tanner Garza) 0
Panthers walk to University Park Elementary early on Aug. 24. (Photo: Tanner Garza)

Highland Park ISD students flocked back to school this morning. We were there at Bradfield and University Park elementary schools. Send us your “first day” pics to editor@peoplenewspapers.com and we’ll post them here.

Don’t forget PTA moms and dads to add that email address to your contact list. We look forward to seeing your Panthers, Eagles, Broncos, Huskies, Raiders, and Scots grow and learn this year!


Bradfield Librarian Shared Love of Reading

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Claire White

Claire White

Before Aug. 6, 1945, Clara Haden, then 18, prepared to travel to Denton to start her junior year of college at Texas State College for Women.

Edward White, 19, stationed in Austria after completing combat service in Europe, trained with other GIs to invade the Japanese mainland.

On Aug. 6, 1945, the United States dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. Nine days later, Japan surrendered, ending World War II — and Edward’s need to train.

Three years later, at Fondren Library on the SMU campus, Edward met Clara, or “Claire,” a reference librarian. Edward, decorated twice with the Bronze Star for heroism during combat in Europe, was a 1943 Highland Park graduate who’d enrolled in SMU after returning from Europe in 1946. Their relationship wound up lasting more than a half-century.

Claire, a former longtime librarian at Bradfield Elementary School, died in July at age 88 at her home in Amarillo.


HPHS Athlete Chairs School Supply Drive

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Jack Kozmetsky

Jack Kozmetsky

Highland Park High School junior Jack Kozmetsky has enough on his plate, with offseason workouts in football and lacrosse and the usual slate of social activities for a teenager.

Yet this summer he’s gone above and beyond by acting as a chairman for School is Cool, a program run by Shared Housing Center that provides school uniforms, shoes, and backpacks with school supplies for homeless children in Dallas.

“Even at this early stage of his life, Jack already exemplifies characteristics of a servant leader,” said Maria Machado, executive director of SHC. “The children at Shared Housing are truly fortunate and blessed to have his guidance, energy and involvement.”

On Saturday, those efforts will culminate with a party for about 300 kids that includes food and games before handing out the goodie bags. You can still donate by stopping by between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday at 2625 Floyd St., or by contacting Machado at 214-821-8510 or mmachado@sharedhousing.org.


Newsweek Shows Some Love For HPHS

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We’re not the only ones who think Highland Park High School is one of the best high schools in the country. Newsweek thinks so, too.

The magazine listed HPHS among its top 500 high schools in the country in its latest survey, listing it at No. 112. The survey cited the school’s 100 percent graduation rate, the college readiness of its students, test scores, student retention, and student-counselor ratio, among other factors.

You can find the entire list here, which, by the way, includes Highland Park High School in suburban Chicago at No. 263. Take that!


HPISD Officially Calls Bond Election

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Highland Park ISD officially called its November bond election with a unanimous vote at last night’s board meeting. Side note: it was superintendent Tom Trigg and communications director Jon Dahlander’s first official board meeting in their respective roles.


Highlander Band Marches Into New Year

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Can't wait for football season? Catch the sounds of the Highlander Band on Thursday night. (Photo: Tanner Garza)

Can’t wait for football season? Catch the sounds of the Highlander Band on Thursday night. (Photo: Tanner Garza)

There will be plenty of opportunities this fall to see the stellar Highlander Band in action on the football field. But for those who can’t wait, the band will offer a “sneak peek” performance at 8 p.m. Thursday at Highlander Stadium.

The free concert will culminate 85 hours of pre-season marching practices. It will include a mock marching fundamental rehearsal, a brief demonstration of a drill rehearsal, and an excerpt from the band’s marching program for this season, entitled “Spellbound.”

You might have also seen the band during its annual march-a-thon fundraiser on Saturday, in which it marched from Highand Park High School to Snider Plaza and back again.


Reminder: Welcome Trigg Today

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Tom Trigg (Photo: Jim Barcus)

Tom Trigg (Photo: Jim Barcus)

This is your friendly reminder that this evening is your chance to welcome Dr. Tom Trigg and his wife, Julie, to Highland Park. Stop by Highland Park Middle School any time between 5 and 6 p.m. to say hello. There will be refreshments, in case you need additional motivation. Come on, show that Scot spirit.


New Superintendent Knows Equation For Excellence

Incoming HPISD superintendent Tom Trigg and his wife, Julie, meet with Bradfield Elementary principal Christine Brunner. (Photo: Tanner Garza) 0
Incoming HPISD superintendent Tom Trigg and his wife, Julie, meet with Bradfield Elementary principal Christine Brunner. (Photo: Tanner Garza)

Tom Trigg stepped into the role of Highland Park ISD superintendent on July 27, but the real work is just beginning.

Trigg, who stayed in the Blue Valley School District in Kansas until July 24 to help finalize a new budget, now brings that spirit of dedication and tenacity to Highland Park.

“When you hear Highland Park, you think of the school district and quality,” he said. “One thing I think you have to look at is the match. Blue Valley is also a suburban, high-performing district, but the difference is there are three times as many students as Highland Park. I looked at the skill set that I have, and there was a really good match.”

Among those similar qualities, Trigg lists high academic scores and values as well as community involvement and the quest to continue improving.


Welcome Tom Trigg Next Wednesday

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Tom Trigg (Photo: Jim Barcus)

Tom Trigg (Photo: Jim Barcus)

As you already know (unless you live under a rock), Highland Park ISD has a new superintendent: Dr. Tom Trigg, who joins us from Overland Park, Kan. You have the opportunity to greet him and his wife, Julie, from 5-6 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 19 in the foyer of Highland Park Middle School. There will be refreshments.

Did you know HPISD has only had eight (counting Trigg) superintendents in its 101-year history? Well, now you do.

In other news, the first day of school is Aug. 24. Make sure to get your proof of residency in here. Back to School Sign Up also closes at 4 p.m. this Friday, Aug. 14. Fill out your student’s packet here or head to the administration building on Westchester Drive to use the computer lab there.


Camp Invention Unlocks Creative Minds

Lucy Baird and Claire Millet race their push cart, doused by student volunteers Paco Lopez, Jenna Peck and Sarah Minto-Sparks. (Photo: Don Johnson) 0
Lucy Baird and Claire Millet race their push cart, doused by student volunteers Paco Lopez, Jenna Peck and Sarah Minto-Sparks. (Photo: Don Johnson)

Laci Rosen’s advice is meant to apply to her team of aspiring young inventors, but it could easily serve all walks of life.

“When you’re cutting wires, only cut one at a time or else it’s really hard,” said Laci, a fourth-grader at Hyer Elementary School. “You have to have a lot of teamwork.”

Laci’s quartet in the Camp Invention summer program was busy trying to figure out its latest challenge — how to disassemble a common household electronic device and use its components to create a prototype for a maze-inspired video game.