June 7, 2022
A Message from Dr. Shetzer
Greetings Pershing Community!
School is officially done for the 2021-2022 school year! This year has been filled with ups and downs, but in the end, everyone persevered. We can now enjoy some much needed time to rest and relax.
Today your child will receive their report card during Homeroom. Any student who has to attend summer school or make up attendance, should have received a letter. For students who failed to meet course requirements and/or had too many unexcused absences, they will have to attend summer school from June 13 – July 7. Some students who had excessive absences can make up those attendance hours on Thursday, June 9 from 8:30 – 11:30. Your child’s letter will explain which option they qualify for.
I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your unwavering support of Pershing Middle School. I am so incredibly proud of the work we have done this year and am looking forward to next year. I hope all of you have an amazing summer and that you are able to spend time with family and friends, whether in town or on vacation. 
Our office will be open Monday-Thursday from 8:30 – 4:00. We will be closed on Fridays.
Thank you and have a great summer!

Steven Shetzer, Principal
Panda Praise and Highlights
Pershing Middle School Awarded 2 Year Monarch Heroes Grant by National Wildlife Federation 

National Wildlife Federation has awarded a two-year grant to Pershing Middle School to create a Monarch Heroes Schoolyard Habitat and the school is now an active NWF Monarch Heroes campus. A major goal of the project is long-term sustainability of the project by bringing together the community through crowdsource scientific observations of what is living in our campus and providing direct learning for current and future Pershing students.  

The trio of 6th grade Pershing teachers, Ms. Aniyah Hector-Wyatt (Science), Ms. Sara Lyons (Art & Social Studies), and Ms. Renee Hawk (Science Enrichment/PBL STEAM) teamed up to secure the funds and created the pocket prairie community space in support of the Monarch butterfly, outdoor learning, and Houston’s participation in the global Resilient Cities Network. Houston Mayor’s Urban Prairie Resiliency is a Resilient City initiative that focuses on integrating green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) and restoring the urban prairie ecosystem that once covered much of Houston.    

The teachers used the NWF Funds to transform the visible area under the Pershing marquee sign along Stella Link and Blue Bonnet into a live habitat and prairie ecosystem over the course of the school year. Students from each of the 3 teachers’ homerooms collectively prepared, solarized, and designed the space while NWF’s Monarch Heroes lesson materials were incorporated into classroom curriculum. The native pollinator plants and grasses they planted are now in bloom. Citizen scientist opportunities and dedicated events for students and community members planned for next school year will include tagging the monarch butterflies that visit the nectar plants to collect valuable health and migration data. 
Teachers of all subjects, including Performing & Fine Arts, can incorporate project-based activities relating the prairie and native plantings to Monarch migration and Houston cultural icons including Day of the Dead, Houston’s Black History Trail Riders and Black Cowboys, human migration stories, and creating cultural artifacts such as plein air paintings. Pershing’s Monarch Heroes team and NWF personnel will take photographs and short videos to chronicle how the native plants and other changes made to the monarch butterfly garden increases the biodiversity of the school campus over time.

Pershing students, families, and neighbors are invited to get involved by following the Instagram page for events and ongoing volunteer opportunities and to post their own observations and photos of the flora and fauna that visit the habitat over the Summer.  
Gulf Coast Texas Allegiance For Minority in Engineering (T.A.M.E.) Pershing MS Chapter competed in the State Engineering Design Competition.  

Students in grades 6-12 from 70 different regions in Texas competed in teams to solve an Engineering Design Challenge. 
They were to build a working Space Elevator.  

2022 GCTAME Space Elevator Champions are:

Sofia Antanaitis      8th grade
Audrey Blackman     8th grade
Melody Cruz-Ayala    8th grade
Glenna Raphael       8th grade
Roderick Stanfield      8th grade
Megan Varghese       8th grade
Eric Veal               8th grade
Eva Hindmarch        7th grade
(Texas English Language Profiency Assessment System)

Our 2022 data is amazing and the largest percentage we’ve ever had. This is a result of the hard work of our EL teachers and our students .

Our 2019 TELPAS Data (Students who progressed at least one proficiency level):
Grade 6        26%
Grade 7        41%
Grade 8        25%
Our 2022 TELPAS Data (Students who progressed at least one proficiency level):
Grade 6        59%
Grade 7        67%
Grade 8        61%

TELPAS tests listening, speaking, reading and writing for our English Learners.
The goal is that they progress at least one proficiency level (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced, Advanced High) and the ultimately be exited from the program. 

Thanks to a generous $20,000 Project Lead The Way (PLTW) Gateway grant from Chevron and Verizon, Pershing Middle School is expanding their Project Based Learning (PBL) program as part of the Houston Independent School District’s initiative to expand PLTW implementation across the district.  

PLTW is a nonprofit organization that provides classroom tools and teacher training for a transformative hands-on learning experience for K-12 students across the U.S.  that builds confidence and grows interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). Independent studies have shown that PLTW students outperform their peers in school, are better prepared for post-secondary studies, and are more likely to consider careers as scientists, technology experts, engineers, mathematicians, healthcare providers, and researchers compared to students who have not experienced PLTW courses. 
 “We are honored to be selected by PLTW to receive this unique STEM education opportunity for our students. The grant not only benefits the students taking Project Based Learning (PBL) Science Enrichment classes, but will benefit our school community,” explains Renee Hawk, Pershing PBL STEAM (STEM + Art) Science Enrichment teacher and PLTW Coordinator. Students who walk through Project Based Learning (PBL) PLTW classroom doors will transfer the collaboration, problem solving, creative thinking and communication skills they gain through their interactions with classmates in other courses at Pershing and beyond. 
This year’s initial grant installment has enabled Hawk to embed the PLTW Energy and the Environment curriculum into her PBL STEAM /Science Enrichment classrooms. Next year’s remainder of the grant disbursement will fund classroom supplies and professional development for PLTW Automation and Robotics and industry-competitive VAX robotics technology and interested students in grades 6-8 are invited to be a part of the launch of Pershing Robotics Club. 

President's Message
Hello Pershing Panda Families!

Woohoo!! We made it to the end of a fantastic, and sometimes challenging, school year! I’m looking forward to a restful summer. Thank you so much for allowing me to be your PTO president. It has been a joy! I am really looking forward to next year and all the fun events we are planning. If you would like to help over the summer or next school year please email me! We are always looking for friendly faces!!
Have a wonderful summer!!

Alison Moorhead
PTO President
Don’t forget to clean out your closets.
Tops and bottoms are accepted.
Bins are located opposite of the attendence window.
7th Grade Awards Ceremony
End of the Year Field Trips
Giant Panda thank you to everyone who contributed to the Custodial-Cafeteria-Crossing Guard Thank You Fund! 

We collected $3,008! There are 16 employees who each received $188 to start their summers off! 

Great start to a new tradition on our campus!
8th Grade News
8th Grade Event Dates

8th Grade Promotion - June 7th, 10:00 am at Butler Stadium

Fun was had by all at the
8th grade picnic! 
NJHS, PALS and Yearbook put on a
fun show at the first ever superlative award ceremony!
Thank you, Panda Partners!

The support Pershing received from the surrounding community has been incredible this year! These 18 Panda Partners donated general-purpose funds to help the PTO enrich our school’s academic, fine arts, and athletic programs. They also sponsored specific items such as appreciation breakfasts and lunches for teachers, the school musical, the first school dance in 3 years, auction items and prizes for our spaghetti supper and bingo fundraisers, and the tent in the courtyard last fall. Please thank them for their generosity to Pershing whenever you visit them!

Exclusive Titanium Partner
Houston Orthodontic Specialists

Platinum Partners
Ascent Emergency Medical Center, Greater Houston Orthodontics,
and Houston Orthodontics

Gold Partners
Event Yard Greetings and Martha Turner Sotheby’s International Realty

Silver Partners
Cammarata, Shisler & Taylor Pediatric Dentistry Group,
Chick-fil-A — Holcombe & Buffalo Speedway, Greenwood King Properties,
Nothing Bundt Cakes-West University, and Texas Citizens Bank

Bronze Partners
The ‘401, Budget Blinds, Contemporary Dental & Orthodontics, Copy Dr.,
Firehouse Subs, Graves Law PLLC, and SmooTea

And a special thank you to Kona Ice for donating 20% of weekly sales at Pershing. Your children’s love of shaved ice really showed in a big donation to our school!
Need Assistance?
Here are some frequently asked questions from parents who have been looking for assistance.

  1. Where can I find contact information for my child's teacher? Our website directory is an excellent place to find our faculty and staff email addresses.
  2. How can I monitor my child's grades? HISD Connect Parent Portal is the spot! Click here for information on setting up an HISD Connect Parent Portal account.
  3. I have a question, but I'm not sure who to reach out to for an answer. If you have a question, you can reach out to your child's Homeroom teacherCounselor, or Assistant Principal for assistance.
  4. I need to schedule a meeting with a teacher, what do I do? Please email the teacher(s) you wish to meet with and allow them 24 hours to respond. Teachers are provided with a planning period each day, so they will send you those times to schedule a meeting. You can also call the main office at 713-295-5240 and leave a message for the teacher.
  5. I feel disconnected now that my child is in middle school. How can I get involved? This is easy. Join the PTO and attend the regularly scheduled meetings. We also recommend you attend the sporting events, fine arts performances, and PTO events throughout the year.
Contact Information
Campus Administration Team

Steven Shetzer, Principal

Carrie Curtis, 6th - 8th Grade & Compliance Assistant Principal

Maria Jackson, 6th Grade Assistant Principal

Tyesha Beller, 7th Grade Assistant Principal

Alberto Fernandez, 8th Grade Assistant Principal (Discipline)

Amy Ford, 6th - 8th Grade Assistant Principal (8th Grade Activities)

Grisury Candelaria, Magnet Coordinator

Hope Goodson, Dean of Instruction

Campus Support Team

Sherman Parker, 6th Grade Counselor

Enitsha Allen-Cooper, 7th Grade Counselor

Sara Graur, 8th Grade Counselor

Alesha Rushing, Wraparound Specialist

Jolynn Vallejo, CIS Social Worker
Important Links

Know someone who needs to receive the Panda Post for this school year? 
Please share this link to get signed up.

Proud Panda Sponsors
Learn more about Corporate Partners on the PTO Website.