All of us in the Highland Park Independent School District are looking forward to the first day of school on Monday, Aug. 22. To get the year off to a smooth start, here is some helpful information to keep you in the loop. Scroll down for news about upcoming events and other important details.
Back to School Sign Up is underway
Back to School Sign Up for the 2016-17 school year is now open and will close at 4 p.m. on Friday, Aug 12. The process can be completed anywhere in the world with Internet access, so if you have not yet completed your students' packets, click here to begin. To log in, use your Skyward username and password.
Back to School Sign Up allows parents a convenient one-stop shop to provide important information to HPISD, its PTAs and other support organizations. As a result, parents do not have to sort through piles of paperwork and write multiple checks at the start of the school year.
Back to School Sign Up payments can be made with either credit cards or ACH e-checks. Using ACH payments will save you and the PTAs money on transaction fees, as the ACH convenience fee is only $1 for your entire order.
If you do not have Internet access or if you need assistance with Back to School Sign Up, the computer lab will be open for your convenience from 9 a.m-4 p.m. Aug. 5 and Aug. 8-12 at the HPISD Administration Building, 7015 Westchester Drive. HPISD staff and volunteers will be available in the lab to assist you. Technical support will also be available by phone at 214-780-4040 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org during those hours.
Are you withdrawing a student? Have you changed addresses?
Please notify your campus immediately if you are withdrawing a student from HPISD or if you have a new mailing address. Parents are not able to update their mailing address in Skyward and must contact a campus to have it updated.
Join UP Elementary for a retirement celebration for Dr. Lynda Carter
The University Park Elementary staff and PTA will honor Principal Dr. Lynda Carter with a retirement celebration from 4-5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 16 in the UP Elementary Library.
Dr. Carter announced her retirement this summer after an exemplary 46-year career in public education. She joined Highland Park ISD to lead University Park Elementary in 2003, which she called one of her "greatest privileges."
During her tenure at UP, Dr. Carter helped establish and maintain many special campus traditions, including the KPAW Morning News, Pumpkin Day, International Day, Camp Read-A-Long and Camp Write-A-Lot.
Thank you, Dr. Carter, for your 13 years of service to HPISD!
HPISD's annual proof of residency protects taxpayers' dollars
Every family with students attending Highland Park ISD is required to submit updated documents to verify proof of residency prior to the start of school on Aug. 22. This annual requirement is standard practice in many other school districts and is intended to protect the taxpayers whose dollars pay for the excellent education our students receive.
Please read the 2016-17 requirements carefully, as the process has changed slightly from last year:
If your student's residency paperwork is current and complete, you will only need to submit all pages of a water or electric bill. (Gas is not accepted.)
The bill must show dates of service (not billing dates) during June, July or August 2016.
The name of each student, his/her campus and grade must be also be provided with the bill.
The bill can be submitted in two ways:
If possible, please complete the online submission form located on www.hpisd.org, attach a scanned or photographed copy of the bill, then click submit.
As an alternative, please bring a hard copy of your bill to the Administration Building where staff will scan the bill, obtain the required student information, and submit the bill electronically for you.
The City of UP has updated its utility billing page to make it as easy as possible for UP residents to get the information they need. Click here to access the page.
Town of Highland Park residents can obtain a copy of their water bill by clicking here.
The Extended School Day (ESD) program is designed to provide an informal, enjoyable school experience for families needing supervised care in a group setting for their children after normal school hours. ESD is available for students in kindergarten through fourth grade at HPISD elementary schools, and fifth through eighth grade at MIS/HPMS.
The program operates on regular school days from school dismissal until 6 p.m., and is staffed by HPISD employees. Nutritious snacks are served daily, and homework time and indoor and outdoor play are provided. Registration for the 2016-17 school year will be available from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. beginning Tuesday, Aug. 9, at the Academy for Lifelong Learning office in the HPISD Administration Annex, 6915 Westchester. Students should be registered by Friday, Aug. 12, to begin attending ESD the first week of school. The registration fee is $75, and monthly tuition is $300. For more information, please call the Academy for Lifelong Learning at 214-780-3380.
Campuses and offices will be closed Monday morning, Aug. 15
HPISD faculty and staff will attend the Superintendent's Convocation Monday, Aug. 15, and all campuses will be closed until approximately 11 a.m.
First day carpool information for parents
To ensure the safety of all our students, please be aware of the morning drop-off procedures at our campuses.
Doors open at 7:30 a.m.
Students should remain on the tiled area in front of the entry door until the 7:50 a.m. bell rings.
Students then proceed to their classroom and be ready to begin class when the 8 a.m. bell rings.
On the first day of school, all students should go directly to their advisory class.
After the first day of school:
Fifth-graders who arrive before 8:10 a.m. should report to the cafeteria.
Sixth-graders who arrive before 8:10 a.m. should report to the auditorium.
Seventh- and eighth-graders who arrive before 7:50 a.m. should report to the cafeteria or the appropriate tutorial class.
The student entrance on Westchester Drive will open at 6 a.m. A security monitor will be stationed at the door to check student IDs and to issue volunteer badges.
The front entrance on Emerson will open at 7:15-8:10 a.m. A security monitor will be stationed at the door to check student IDs and to issue volunteer badges.
The north/vending machine entrance will be open from 7:15-8:10 a.m., with a security monitor stationed at the door.
Students who wish to study or meet in the building before or after school are asked to use the library, cafeteria or a classroom. The library and cafeteria will close at 4 p.m.
Athletics Department offers optional Scots Sports Pass for students
The HPISD Athletic Department is offering an optional sports pass for purchase again this year for students in grades 7-12. Like last year, the pass will admit students to all HPHS and HPMS home athletic games, totaling more than 300 contests.
The cost is $90 for the entire 2016-17 school year, and the pass is available for purchase during Back to School Sign Up. Once a pass is purchased, the information will be uploaded to the student's ID badge, and the badge must be scanned at each game for entry.
Please note: The Scots Sports Pass should not be confused with the ACE fee, which is the fee for students to participate in HPISD sports.
Access important information via district and campus websites
Please be sure to bookmark the district website and your campus websites to quickly find important forms, handbooks, maps, schedules and more. The URLs for each site are:
Town of Highland Park to spray for mosquitos tonight and tomorrow
The Town of Highland Park has reported that mosquito samples in the southwestern portion of the townhave tested positive for West Nile virus.
In response, the Town will conduct ground spraying in accordance with the Town's Mosquito Control Policy. The spraying, which takes place from 10 p.m.-5 a.m., occured last night and will occur again tonight and tomorrow night.
The mosquito season typically runs from May to October, with peak activity in August.
It is wise to take precautionary measures by using insect repellent containing DEET, especially during outdoor activities. Parents of elementary students may want to apply a long-acting DEET product before sending their children to school if their doctor advises them to do so, as students will be outdoors for recess and PE classes.
The City of University Park has more information about West Nile virus on its website, including the following tips:
To protect yourself and family members:
While outside during dawn and dusk hours wear long, loose and light-colored clothing.
Use insect repellents that contain DEET.
To control mosquito breeding:
Drain all areas of standing water.
Change water in wading pools, pet dishes and birdbaths several times a week.
Keep backyard pools clean.
Keep unnecessary plant growth cut back.
Cover trash can containers so they will not collect water.
Use automatic sprinkler systems wisely. Make sure systems are checked to avoid leaving standing water.
Clean or replace clogged roof gutters and downspouts.
HPISD Communications Department to host public relations meeting Aug. 30
Teachers, administrators, coaches and parents who will be handling public relations duties for their campuses, teams or student groups are invited to a training meeting hosted by the HPISD Communications team. Choose one of two sessions - either 10 a.m. or 4 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 30, in the HPISD administration building board room, 7015 Westchester Drive.
Update your family's mobile numbers in Skyward to receive emergency texts
Highland Park ISD launched an emergency communication system in January 2013 that will send alerts to parents', students' and staff members' cell phones via text message. This service will be used in addition to our existing web and email notifications.
Users must "opt in" to begin receiving text alerts from HPISD.
Like Highland Park ISD on Facebook to get the latest HP news & photos
Highland Park ISD now has a presence on Facebook, giving the Park Cities community another way to connect with the district.
Click here to visit the page, and be sure to like it.
The HPISD Facebook page will feature news and information, as well as photos and videos of students' and staff's accomplishments, plus weather-related school closing information.
Parents, students and staff members can send the HPISD Communication Department stories for the Facebook page and the Friday eNewsletter
through this online form.
Stay in the loop with the new version of HPISD iPhone/Android app now available in your App Store
A new version of the HPISD mobile app has been released to fix an error with iPhones newest operating system, iOS 9. Visit the app store on your phone today to download the newest version - just search for "Highland Park ISD."
Parents can use HPISD's app to view their child's grades, attendance information and lunch account balances for students in grades 5-12.
All parents and students can also stay in the loop with HPISD by using the app to:
Read the latest news announcements from the district
View a staff directory that includes phone numbers and email addresses, including the option to "favorite" staff members for quick access
Browse the activities calendar, which includes the option to sort events by campus
Watch HP videos on the district's YouTube channel
The app was made possible by a generous contribution from Briggs Freeman Sotheby's International Realty.
To download the app, search for "Highland Park ISD" in the Google Play or Apple App Store, or click here on your Apple device. Your device must have iOS 7 or later or Android 4.0 or later to run the app.
Get the latest news, even after graduation
Due to popular demand, HPISD will keep parents of graduating students in the newsletter group so that they can continue to be in the know about the latest school district news. If you wish to unsubscribe from district emails at any time, please follow the "Safe Unsubscribe" link at the bottom of the newsletter.
High School News
Attend Freshman FISH Camp & avoid swimming upstream
Last year's eighth-graders are now Highland Park Scot freshmen. To make the introduction HPHS special, we are offering our annual HPHS FISH Camp - a Freshmen Orientation event. FISH Camp will be held on Friday, Aug. 19, at Highland Park High School. Freshmen whose last name begins with A through L will arrive at 8:15 a.m., and will finish at 11:30 a.m. Freshmen whose last name begins with M through Z will arrive at 10:15 a.m., and will finish at approximately 12:30 p.m.
At FISH Camp, freshmen will be assigned a FISH Camp Counselor who is a volunteer HPHS student. The FISH Camp Counselors will guide the students through the registration process, answer questions, and serve as mentors for freshmen during the first semester. FISH Camp activities will include:
Receiving schedules, locker assignments and textbooks
Yearbook/ID photographs. Please note, HP tradition is that boys wear a suit/sport coat and a tie (typically with khaki shorts and tennis shoes). Girls will want to look their best (no spaghetti straps, halter tops or strapless tops)
Touring the school and enjoying a pep rally and a style show that will outline the HPHS dress code
Previewing HPHS clubs and organizations
Each student will be provided a lock for his or her locker at no charge.
If a student is unable to attend on this day, his/her schedule may be picked up in the cafeteria on the first day of school.
Each freshmen should receive a phone call from his/her FISH Camp Counselor prior to FISH Camp as a reminder, if a working phone number is in the district's system.
Questions? Please contact Elaine David in the HPHS counseling office.
Orientation For 10th, 11th, and 12th Grade Students Who Are New to HPHS
10th, 11th, and 12th grade students who are new to HPHS for the 2016-17 school year are invited to attend a New Student Orientation in the HPHS Counseling Office from 10 a.m. to noon Friday, Aug. 19. Students will receive a tour of the school, have an opportunity to ask questions, and attend the Pep Rally Program.
Internship Program seeking professionals to provide real world experiences
HPHS provides seniors with the opportunity to explore and prepare for their post-secondary education and career interests. As a part of this exploration, students have the opportunity to take on real-world projects from organizations, shadow practicing professionals, and/or participate in a 2-3 month non-paid internship.
HP can only provide these experiences to them with the help of professionals in the community.
The HPHS Senior Internship Program invites you to post your opportunities for student interns through the following options:
To post a non-paid internship position, click here.
To post 1) a short-term shadowing opportunity, 2) volunteer to serve as a quest speaker, or 3) a project/short term job for student assistance, click here
To learn more about the program and becoming a community partner
click here. You can also email
Edna Phythian with any questions.
Highlander Band to hold March-A-Thon Aug. 13
The Highlander Band will take it to the streets at 9 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 13 for a community event filled with marching, music, and fun. Spectators are invited to come out and cheer on the students as they march in parade formation along a 3K route from HPHS, through the streets of University Park, past Goar Park, and ending in Snider Plaza. Click here to view the route.
HPISD Superintendent of Schools Dr. Tom Trigg will serve as this year's Grand Marshall and will be joined by Walter Kelly, HPHS Principal. The community is invited to walk with the band or meet them at approximately 10:15 a.m. for a concert by the Fountain Circle.
New this year, the Highlander Band has partnered with Snider Plaza businesses to create the March-A-Thon Card, available for purchase for $20 each. The card entitles the cardholder to receive 20 pecent off purchases at more than 25 participating stores in Snider Plaza on March-A-Thon Saturday, Aug. 13. March-A-Thon cards may be purchased directly from a band student or online at www.hphsband.com and will be sold at Snider Plaza on the day of the event.
The Highlander Band Drum Majors - Head Drum Major Abigail Lindwall, Senior Drum Major Caroline Kibby and Junior Drum Major Sydney McDuffie participated in Drum Major training camp this summer at the University of Texas at Arlington, along with approximately 150 representatives from 66 other schools. The camp was hosted by Solutions and Specialized Innovations (SASI), an organizational improvement group dedicated to developing student leaders.
The HP drum majors returned with the following awards:
Most Outstanding Drum Major Team
Abigail Lindwall - on of four Outstanding Veteran Drum Majors
Caroline Kibby - Most Outstanding Rookie Drum Major
2016-17 Lads & Lassies named
The HPHS Choir Department is pleased to announce the members of the 2016-17 Lads & Lassies. Click here to view the list.
Calling all Eagle Scouts: senior yearbook photo scheduled
Class of 2017 Eagle Scouts should mark their calendars for the traditional senior yearbook photo. Plan to meet at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, August 21 at the gazebo in Goar Park. Click here for more information, and contact Lisa Mead with questions.
Replay Sports begins equipment collection drive Aug. 13
Pass it. Catch it. Share it.
ReplaySports is an organization that helps Dallas area need-based youth sports programs. The group collects football, basketball, baseball, soccer and lacrosse sports equipment and cleats that are in good repair. Please drop off your sports equipment:
8 a.m.-noon, Saturday, Aug. 13 - HPHS Highlander Stadium
8 a.m.-noon, Saturday, Aug. 20 - Highland Park Middle School
Replay Sports is run by HPHS students. This year's officers include:
Recent grads earn honors in songwriting competition
HP 2016 grads Lauren Michels and Nina Marguglio were named local first runners-up in the national Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge for High School Students. They will each receive commendation certificates from the National Endowment for the Arts.
In its pilot year, the Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge for High School Students is only available to high school students in three metropolitan locales: in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota; Dallas County, Texas; and, Seattle and King County, Washington. More information on The Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge for High School Students can be found at arts.gov/songwriting. Follow the conversation about the Songwriting Challenge at #IWriteSongs16.
Lady Scot honored as Track & Field All-Star
HPHS senior Falyn Reaugh, a member of the 2015-16 Lady Scots Track and Field Team, was selected by the Texas Girls Coaches Association as a Class 5A/6A Track & Field All-Star. There were twelve juniors selected for this honor in Class 5A/6A in Texas.
Reaugh represented the Lady Scots at the TGCA Summer Clinic July 13, where she went through a series of dynamic stretching, speed specifics, hip mobility with hurdles, and core work demonstrations with the other eleven All-Stars.
Stewart Brown discusses skill mastery in Positive Coaching Alliance video
HPHS teacher and Girls Soccer Head Coach Stewart Brown is featured in a video posted on the Positive Coaching Alliance website.
In the video, entitled "Focusing On Mastery vs. Winning," Brown explains why he he prefers to focus on effort and performance, making sure that each athlete walk off the field with pride, win or lose.
The Highland Belles drill team will kick off the first home game of the 2016 Highland Park High School football season with its annual Spaghetti Supper and auction/raffle fundraiser on Aug. 26. This year's theme, "Belles of the Ball," builds on the Belles 33-year Spaghetti Supper fundraising tradition, hosting hundreds of HPISD families for dinner. Amore Italian Restaurant will again partner with the Belles for the 21st year.
The Highland Belles additionally seek community support through underwriting, a silent auction and raffle sales. There will be more than 400 silent auction items which have been generously donated by community businesses and friends along with raffle baskets filled with fantastic prizes. Dinner tickets are $10 each and raffle chances are $5 each or 6 for $25.
This is the only fundraiser for the Highland Belles, and proceeds from the event will fund many of the drill team's essentials including bus transportation to football games, props and equipment for performances, choreography, sound systems and competition expenses.
Tickets go on sale June 15, so contact your favorite Belle to make a purchase or donation. The entire community is encouraged to attend the silent auction held in the HPHS cafeteria during the supper. A fun-filled family night is planned to rally HP spirit before the Highland Park vs. Rockwall football game.
Get your tickets now for the Scots' CANIAC supper
Your 2016 Highland Park Football Team is proud to host the Annual CANIAC Supper & Fundraiser on Friday, Sept. 9 in the HPHS Cafeteria. Please support your Scots and buy tickets from your favorite football player today. Dine-in and take-out Raising Cane's Chicken will be served right before the Scots take on Mansfield Timberview at Highlander Stadium. Fans of all ages won't want to miss this exciting neighborhood pregame tradition!
Cheerleaders & Scotsmen to host annual Hamburger Supper in September
The HPHS Cheerleaders and Scotsmen will host their annual Hamburger Supper fundraiser on Sept. 16 in the HPHS Cafeteria. Jack's Burger House will provide burgers and fries, Plaza Health Foods will supply delicious frozen yogurt and cookies from J.D.'s Chippery will also be available.
Tickets are $10 in advance or at the door. Take out will be provided from 4:30-6 p.m. The raffle will include five fabulous theme baskets filled with exciting items! Raffle tickets are $5 each or 6 for $25. Please help cheer on all the outstanding athletic teams at HPHS by supporting the Hamburger Supper!
Save the date for the annual BBQ with the Band, Blue Out, auction & raffle
The Highlander Band will hold its annual BBQ with the Band dinner, catered by Peggy Sue BBQ with entertainment by the legendary Dixie Scots jazz band, from 5-7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14 before the Blue Out football game against Mesquite Poteet. During the dinner in the HPHS cafeteria, there will be an extensive silent auction and a drawing for raffle baskets. Please plan to support the band during this fun and family-friendly evening which provides over one-third of the band's annual operating budget.
Mark your calendar for HP103 Centennial Dance fundraiser
HPHS students Meghan Welp, Jack Kozmetsky, Mary Stewart, Max Holsomback, Caroline Keith and Barrett Graham will co-chair HP103, the fourth annual Centennial Dance to celebrate HPISD's "next 100 years." It is a Texas Tux event for all high school students and will feature a casino, prizes, dancing, a photo booth and refreshments, and will be held from 8-11 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 5 at Edison's.
Tax-deductible underwriting donations, which include guaranteed reservation and a T-shirt, will be available during Back to School Sign Up. Remaining individual tickets will go on sale in the fall at www.hpef.org. Funds raised will benefit The Tartan Fund, and will be designated for HPHS.
McFarlin Bridge construction expected to be completed in October
Due to bridge construction just south of the Williams Park Pond, McFarlin Blvd. remains closed to through traffic from Shannon to Golf. This closure will impact motorists who approach the Intermediate/Middle School campus from the west. The City suggests University Blvd. as an alternate route. Weather permitting, the project will be completed, and the street will reopen, in early October.
Join the Raider Challenge and support MIS/HPMS
Even with generous parent contributions, current funding resources are not meeting the needs of MIS/HPMS. This has prompted the PTA and school to create a general underwriting campaign, Raider Challenge.
The intent of the general underwriting campaign is to provide an opportunity for parents to give directly to the school in the most efficient and cost-effective way. The dollars raised will have an immediate impact in several key areas throughout the school for the 2016-17 school year: technology, instructional materials, active learning spaces, and library and auditorium enhancements.
Donations may be made online during Back to School Sign Up which is open until Aug. 12.
HP volleyball players offer clinic for middle school players Aug. 17-18
The Lady Scot volleyball team is offering a pre-tryout clinic for incoming seventh- and eighth-graders from 9 a.m.-noon Wednesday and Thursday, Aug. 17-18 in the HPMS gym. The clinic is an opportunity to:
Learn from current high school players
Practice drills specific to middle school tryouts
Have your questions answered
Focus on skill training, position training, ball control and court movement
The goal is to have each player prepared and ready for tryouts.
The cost is $75 and all proceeds benefit the Volleyball Booster Club.
Please print out and complete the required waiver form and mail with a check payable to Mitsi Westendorff to 4300 Hyer Street, 75205. Space is limited.
HPISD students and their families are invited to participate in the 2nd Annual UP Public Library Splash Bash - Last splash of the summer from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 26 at the Holmes Aquatic Center, 3501 Lovers Lane. Click here for an event flier.