Septem ber 2018
Leslie & Scott Milder
Friends of Texas 
Public Schools
Est. 2004
Schneider Electric logo


Founded in 2016 by Margaret Kilgo, Standards First, Inc. seeks to place importance on the national and Texas state standards in Reading, Writing, Mathematics, and Science. Click to learn more about offered workshops and resources to help improve student education and change the make-up of current standardized testing!

DK Haney Roofing is a certified TIPS and TXMAS vendor dedicated to helping schools get roofing projects done. Schools have been our specialty for 23 years, so we can help you navigate insurance claims and board approvals. Our state-of-the-art roof management portal provides instant access to all your roofs and reports. Call 866-379-4846. 

With more than a million hits annually on our website and more than 60,000 e-news subscribers, we are pleased to offer advertising and sponsorship opportunities available to organizations wishing to reach school leaders across Texas who support Friends of Texas Public Schools. 

For information on getting your organization's message out to Friends of Texas Public Schools followers and readers, please email Jennifer Storm.  


By educating Texans about Texas Public Schools and their many strengths and achievements, we aim to:

* Underscore the significance of them;
* Unite Texans around them;
* Restore pride in them;
* Strengthen confidence in them;
* Lift spirits among them; and
* Inject resources into them...

...all of which will lead to even greater performance.

Graduation Rates Continue to be at the Top in America

The May 2018 e-edition of The National Center for Education Statistics reports that Texas ranked near the top in the country in graduation rates 
as measured by the adjusted cohort graduation rate (ACGR).
This indicator examines the percentage of public high school students who graduate on time, as measured by the adjusted cohort graduation rate (ACGR). State education agencies calculate the ACGR by identifying the "cohort" of first-time 9th-graders in a particular school year. The cohort is then adjusted by adding any students who transfer into the cohort after 9th grade and subtracting any students who transfer out, emigrate to another country, or die. The ACGR is the percentage of students in this adjusted cohort who graduate within 4 years with a regular high school diploma.

Dear Friends,
As Hurricane Florence was hitting the east coast, I could not help but think back to last year during this time as Texans were in recovery mode following Hurricane Harvey.  One of the most rewarding memories was how educators stepped up to help their fellow teachers, campuses, and districts work to get their doors reopened.  There were many stories of schools adopting other campuses and classrooms to help restock supplies and furniture.  Bottom Line, our educators showed why they are selfless and willing to do whatever it takes to meet the needs of students.  Just another reason why we must tell our communities about the "Great Things Happening in our Public Schools!"

Another opportunity to celebrate our public schools will be taking place December 5 th  at Baylor University's McLane Stadium as we host the 14th  annual Friends of Texas Public Schools Gala.  We will be recognizing three outstanding individuals and their contributions to public schools.  I hope you will make plans now to attend since tickets are already in demand.

Thank you again for your support!

Blake Cooper
Executive Director

Friends of Texas Public Schools will honor three Texans at its 14thannual awards gala on December 5, 2018 at the Baylor Club, McLane Stadium in Waco.
Michelle Smith, PhD, Director of Governmental Relations, 
Raise your Hand Texas
Bobby J. Rigues, Founder, Make Education a Priority & 
Trustee, Aledo ISD
Don Rogers, EdD, Executive Director
Texas Rural Education Association
The Friend of the Year Award was established to honor the rare individuals and organizations who step up as champions for those who learn and work in our schools. Honorees clearly see beyond the sensational headlines and often negative politics and understand that the success of Texas public education is everyone's business. This year's honoree is Dr. Michelle Smith PhD, Director of Governmental Relations for Raise your Hand Texas. "Dr. Smith is an outstanding leader and true Friend of public schools" said Leslie Milder, Founder, Friends of Texas Public Schools. "Dr. Smith's time in the classroom, boardroom and capitol has quietly transformed public education advocacy. Her focus on collaboration has brought many people together to fix issues and address challenges."
The Ambassador of the Year Award was established to highlight the efforts of an inspiring educator as a champion for the public school children of Texas. Their work builds public confidence and admiration for the profession of public education. This year's honoree is Bobby J. RiguesFounder, Make Education a Priority & Trustee, Aledo ISD. "Bobby has proven to be a voice championing public education through his involvement as a member of the Aledo ISD Board of Trustees for 14 years and co-founding the Make Education a Priority Organization.  Friends of Texas Public Schools desires to carry this banner into the future with the same enthusiasm Bobby has since its inception"said Blake Cooper, Executive Director, Friends of Texas Public Schools. 
The Founders' Distinguished Service Award was created to highlight a lifetime's effort to strengthen the public schools of Texas. This year' honoree is Dr. Don Rogers EdD, Executive Director, Texas Rural Education Association. "Dr. Don Rogers' 59 years of service to public education in Texas has left an indelible mark. His deep involvement and long history of serving as a teacher, coach, school Superintendent and Executive Director of the Texas Rural Education Association has imbedded him in the successful fabric of our schools. Not only has he championed rural education, he has created a better future for all Texas students" said Steve Risser, President, Friends of Texas Public Schools.
Please continue reading for more information and career highlights on each of these honorees. For Gala ticket and sponsorship information, visit  or email


Google for Education is a proud partner of Friends of Texas Public Schools.  Google has designed a set of cloud based tools to help schools collaborate, communicate, and teach in a digital age. To meet the future's biggest challenges, students need an adaptive set of skills. We have created programs to ensure digital readiness in both students and teachers and directed Google tools and funding toward expanding computer science education. We're inspiring educators to teach creatively, efficiently and innovatively with new tools and features. 

Thank you to our Affiliate Partners!

Belfor - Cornerstone - Government Capital - Pfluger Architects -  Powell & Leon - Right at School -  Symmetry  Turf - Texas Association of School Business Officals (TASBO)  - Texas Association of School Personnel Administrators (TASPA) - TransCend4
Our team at  Walraven is here to help ease your school budget by working with regional and local sponsors to provide your school with the supplies needed. Let  Walraven do all the hard work, we have an easy enrollment process for our schools and sponsors. This school year  Walraven sent hundreds of thousands of weekly take-home folders, school calendar magnets, carpool tags, and more to schools all across the state of Texas.  We've been in business 100 years with continued passion to help students and schools.  Our products are high-quality, durable, and help promote school spirit and community. Schools can trust  Walraven to find family-appropriate sponsors for items put in the hands of their students and families.

Join other schools across Texas that count on  Walraven!
Please contact us today at or (800) 442-4748. 

Walraven - Keeping Kids Covered...since 1918