HSS-Austin will present its 2021-2022 Science Fair Awards Ceremony on Thursday, February 3rd. We look forward to revealing our top 3 students and taking a quick view of projects that our students have created this year. If you would like to see the amazing projects and support the participants, please join us.

Let’s be all about Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math for our STEAM Spirit Week!

Makerspace Monday – wear a creation you & your parents have designed for your shirt, hat, socks, hair, a full costume or anything you can imagine…get creative and build something amazing!

Technology Tuesday Nerd Day – show us how smart you are & wear your nerdiest outfit with glasses, suspenders, a tie or bow tie, a sweater vest or whatever will get you in a nerd kind of mood!

Wild About STEAM Wednesday – wear your favorite animal print shirt, hat, socks, face mask.

Totally Out of This World Thursday – wear your favorite space or computer type shirt or

We’re on 100…High Frequency Friday – it’s the 100th Day of School so wear something to represent 100 and/or mix it up and wear neon or bright colors, your favorite HSS Spirit shirt, a shirt with a tiger image and/or sunshades.

Join us for an informational meeting for all parents of our ESL students on Thursday, January 20th from 5:30-6:30pm.   The Zoom meeting link will be sent to parents from our ESL Coordinator, Mrs. Cox.

In observance of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday there will be a student and staff holiday on Monday, January 17th. Enjoy your long weekend.

We’re so excited to have our Spelling Bee on Friday, January 14th.  We have 37 participants this year who are studying very hard to do their best to compete.  The winner of our campus bee will have an opportunity to move on to compete in the Scripps Austin Regional event and beyond.  This event will be recorded via livestream on our Facebook page.

In accordance with the Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted/Talented students, Harmony Public Schools will begin taking referrals for all interested students in grades K-12 for Gifted and Talented (G/T) screening.
Anyone interested in the educational welfare of these students may nominate them for assessment. Students in grades 1 & up who were tested in Fall 2021 are not eligible to test in Spring 2022. Referral forms are available at the front office and on the school’s website (see below).
The referral forms must be returned or emailed to the front office by January 31, 2022. The Spring GT testing window is set by the campus in February or March. Campuses may elect to use NWEA MAP scores as a prescreening criterion for GT Testing.
For more information about the screening and identification process, parents may contact the school’s GT Coach/teacher.
De acuerdo con el Plan Estatal de Texas para la Educación de Estudiantes Dotados / Talentosos, Harmony Public Schools comenzará a tomar referencias para todos los estudiantes interesados en los grados K-12 para la evaluación de estudiantes dotados y talentosos.
Cualquier persona interesada en el bienestar educativo de estos estudiantes puede nominarlos para dicha evaluación. Los estudiantes en los grados 2 y superiores que fueron evaluados en el otoño de 2020 no son elegibles para la prueba en la primavera de 2021. Los formularios de referencia están disponibles en la oficina y en el sitio web de la escuela.
Los formularios de referencia deben devolverse a la oficina de la escuela antes del lunes 31 de enero del 2022.
Para obtener más información sobre el proceso de selección e identificación, los padres pueden comunicarse con el entrenador / maestro de GT de la escuela.

Re-Enrollment for current Harmony families who plan to return next school year is January 4-28, 2022.

Re-Enrollment for the 2022-2023 school year for Harmony families begins soon.

During this time of year each January, we ask families to complete a simple, online Re-Enrollment process, letting us know they’ll be joining us for another great year of learning and fun next school year, which starts in August 2022.

This simple step allows us to make sure each current student’s spot at Harmony is reserved for the following school year, and assess how many new student seats we have available for other applicants.

Re-Enrollment at Harmony Public Schools runs January 4-28, 2022. Look for more details in your email inbox, via Skyward, or on our Facebook page soon.

In the meantime, check out these 6 things families need to know about Re-Enrollment at Harmony Public Schools.

#1 – When is Re-Enrollment season?

For the 2022-2023 school year, re-enrollment will be January 4-28, 2022.

#2 – How do I apply for Re-Enrollment?

The preferred method for re-enrollment is through the student’s online Skyward account. (A link to Skyward can be found at the top of your campus homepage or you can simply click here.). Parents without internet and/or Skyward access may also request a paper re-enrollment option from their child’s campus.

#3 – What is the difference between Re-Enrollment and Open Enrollment?

Re-enrollment is intended for current Harmony students planning to stay at their current campus the following school year, or who will naturally feed upward to a new campus (e. from elementary to nearby middle school). Open Enrollment is for new students, or current students who wish to change Harmony campuses for personal reasons (ex. transferring to a campus closer to home).

#4 – If a student plans to stay at the same school next year, are they automatically guaranteed re-enrollment if they complete the re-enrollment process before the deadline?

Yes, so long as their family completes the re-enrollment process.

#5 – What happens if a parent does not submit their re-enrollment information before the deadline?

If a parent misses the deadline to complete the re-enrollment process, then the student will lose his/her reserved space for next school year and must apply during Open Enrollment, held November 1-February 10 each school year. To apply, visit www.HarmonyTX.org/Apply.

#6 – What does a Harmony parent need to do if they would like to stay with Harmony, but transfer to a different campus for the next school year?

If a parent would like to change Harmony campuses for the following school year, they must submit an application for the desired school at www.HarmonyTX.org/Apply.

Are you considering joining our school for the 2022-2023 school year and you want to learn more about our campus?  Then join us as we host several Open House and Tour events.

Please review the Open House dates available and reserve your tour spot today:  HSS-Austin Open House

January 12th, 4:30-5:30pm

January 26th, 4:30-5:30pm

February 9th, 4:30-5:30pm

 

We hope to see you there!

The HPS Central Texas District will be hosting a Fall 2021 District Safety Meeting. 

If interested, please join the zoom link at 9:00 A.M. on Thursday, July 22, 2021.

 

If your student is struggling in a subject, or just has a question about tonight’s homework assignment, Harmony Public Schools has a solution.

Harmony is proud to now offer free tutoring 24/7 with TutorMe.

Through TutorMe, students in Grades 3-12 have free, 24/7 online access to verified experts in more than 300 fields.

Check out the video below to learn more, or look for the TutorMe option inside Clever in your family’s MyHarmony Portal account.

Let’s get ready to READ!!! The super exciting Scholastic Book Fair will be on campus soon! This year’s theme is: “Books Bring Us Together”.

This year will be a bit different, there will not be any before or after school purchases.  All purchases must be done during student class visits.  Purchases will be made by the Scholastic E-Wallet, which makes it easy and effective for parents and students.  You don’t have to worry about your student bringing money to school and possibly losing it.

Parents load their student’s E-Wallet with the amount of money you would like for them to spend.  A report will be generated showing the amount for each student’s E-Wallet for their purchases when they attend the Book Fair with their class.  More details will be released soon.

Online shopping is also available from November 11th – 24th.

In honor of the brave men & women that have sacrificed for our country to provide protection & freedom….we salute you!  Let’s show our honorable spirit and have a Red, White & Blue Day!  Get creative with some hair designs, or make a shirt or just wear red, white & blue shirts or accessories with uniform bottoms on this special day.

Harmony Public Schools is excited to offer an online parent webinar regarding the Pfizer Covid vaccine for children ages 5-11. This informative session will be hosted by Texas Children’s Hospital providers on November 4th, 2021 at 6pm CST! Registration is required and there is a limit on the number of attendees, so please be encouraged to sign up early to reserve your spot.

 

Topic: Harmony Public Schools-Pfizer Vaccine with Texas Children’s Hospital

When: Nov 4, 2021 06:00 PM Central Time (US and Canada)

Please complete the Zoom registration form for this event:

https://esc4.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_NiNEQZrqQeaWAaf3nCW1Wg

 

Once you complete the Zoom registration form, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the event.  Please do not share the Zoom connection information with anyone else. It will be a unique link that will identify you.

Now is the time to capture your student’s class memories with their classmates. We will have Class Picture Day on Thursday, November 4th.  All homeroom classes must be in school uniform on this day.

Hope Food Pantry Austin is a partner agency with Central Texas Food Bank.  They collaborate with community partners to help alleviate hunger in the Austin community.  HSS-Austin would like to help in this initiative by hosting a Thankful Food Drive.

We want to encourage our students to be helpful and to serve others that are in need.  Our students will take part in their classrooms by sorting and counting their homeroom contributions and having meaningful conversations about the importance of our service to the community.  We appreciate your support in this endeavor by speaking to your student at home and work together as a family to participate.

Items requested:  shelf stable items like breakfast cereal, other breakfast items, pancake or muffin mixes, cartons of shelf stable milk, cans of vegetables–corn, green beans, peas etc., cans of diced or whole tomatoes, canned fruit, soup, chili, ravioli, peanut butter (smaller than 18 oz), canned meats (tuna, chicken or salmon), pasta, bags of rice and beans, granola/protein bars, condiments.

 

Please follow the following guidelines before sending your food items to school:

  • NO opened, dusty, old/dented containers
  • NO glass products
  • NO EXPIRED ITEMS or PACKAGES OVER 2 POUNDS
  • Please donate stable boxes or plastic totes to hold large food items during our food drive

 

To learn more about Hope Food Pantry and their mission, visit their website: http://hopefoodpantryaustin.org/

Giving Day is November 30, 2021

Giving Day is November 30, 2021

Giving Day is Tuesday, November 30th

Please consider supporting Harmony students and their families by donating to our newest family outreach program, HARMONY GIVES. Harmony Gives is a compassion project from Harmony Public Schools which provides extra assistance and resources to students and families struggling with a variety of crises that fall outside the traditional school support model. Make a monthly or one-time donation at HarmonyTX.org/HarmonyGives to Harmony Central Texas.

Anyone who gives $25 or more will receive a Pop It Toy.

Anyone who gives will be added to a raffle for a Nintendo Switch (1 winner per district)

———–

El Día de Dar es el martes, 30th de noviembre
Por favor considere apoyar a los estudiantes de Harmony y a sus familias donando a nuestro programa servicio de asistencia, HARMONY GIVES. Harmony Gives es un proyecto de compasión de las Escuelas Públicas de Harmony que proporciona ayuda y recursos adicionales a estudiantes y familias que luchan con una variedad de crisis que caen fuera del modelo tradicional de apoyo escolar. Haga una donación mensual o una sola vez en HarmonyTX.org/HarmonyGives a Harmony Central Texas.

Cualquier persona que da $25 o más recibirá un juguete Pop It.

Cualquier persona que dé se añadirá a una rifa para un Nintendo Switch (1 ganador por distrito)

One of the questions we hear most from prospective parents interested in applying to Harmony Public Schools is “I’ve been looking at schools near me, but I don’t understand – what is the difference between a charter school and an ISD public school?” 

Public charter schools have grown exponentially in the past 25 years – both in Texas, and around the country – but we understand why many parents who grew up in a traditional independent school district setting themselves may still have questions.

That’s OK. We’ve got the answers to all of your biggest questions about charter schools.

So, what exactly is a charter school?

A charter school is a public school, and in many ways very similar to a traditional ISD school as you might think of one.

  • Charter schools do not charge tuition or application fees.
  • Charter schools accept every student who applies, as long as the school or grade level has not reached its enrollment capacity.
  • Charter school students take the same core classes and state tests (ex. STAAR) as ISD students. 
  • Charter schools are held to strict standards of financial and overall accountability by the Texas Education Agency.
  • Charter schools offer a full range of special services, including special education, English as a Second Language (ESL), Dyslexia, and 504. 

However, what makes charter schools different is what we believe makes them special. In a word, that difference is “choice.”

Way back in 1995, the Texas State Legislature decided that even though there were a lot of great schools in Texas, a one-size-fits-all approach to education might not work for all families. Each child is unique: some with special gifts, others with special challenges, and all with special dreams for their futures.

To help better serve every Texas student, the Texas public charter school system was created to allow independent, education-based nonprofit organizations called Charter Management Organizations (CMOs) to open and operate free public schools for Texas students with the promise that they would provide a new school choice in education for local Texas families.

For some charter schools, that new choice might be a curriculum that focuses on dual-language learning. For others, it might be helping students who have dropped out of the traditional school setting reclaim their path to graduation.

At Harmony Public Schools, we specialize in hands-on, project-based learning with a heavy emphasis on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), as well as advanced college preparedness and character education.


DID YOU KNOW?

Of the roughly 100 schools in Texas certified as official Texas STEM Academies be the Texas Education Agency, 23 are Harmony Public Schools high schools – more than any other school system in Texas!

Thirteen Harmony high schools have also been named among the Best STEM High Schools in the U.S. by Newsweek.


 

Who can attend a charter school?

As long as a student lives within its geographic boundaries of the school, any child can attend a Texas public charter school. However, unlike traditional ISD schools where students usually must attend whichever nearby campus they are “zoned” to, public charter school geographic boundaries are generally very large – often covering multiple communities or counties. These large geographic boundaries are another way Texas public charter schools offer Texas families a choice in their student’s education, and are unique from traditional ISDs. For example, rather than sending their child to an ISD campus near their home address, a parent may prefer for their child to attend a school near a grandparent’s home, or the parent’s place of work. Or they may prefer to send their child to a campus that specializes in a specific curriculum, like STEM, or with a higher TEA accountability rating than their neighborhood ISD school. All of these are options with Texas public charter schools.

Do public charter schools charge tuition?

Texas public charter schools are free to attend. Applying to a Texas public charter school is also free.

How do charter schools choose who gets to attend?

They don’t. Charter school students are never “cherry picked” from an applicant pool. Any student who applies to attend a charter school will be accepted, so long as they meet three basic criteria:

  1. They live within the schools geographic boundaries;
  2. They are applying to a grade taught by that specific school;
  3. Available seats are open in the grade-level to which the family is applying. At Harmony, if more students apply than there are available openings, the campus will hold a “blind” lottery to ensure fair an equal opportunity for enrollment to all new applicants.

RELATED: Learn more about Harmony Public School’s application, enrollment and lottery processes

When and how can a student apply to a charter school?

A student can apply to a charter school at any time during the school year and be accepted if space is available. However, most Texas public charter schools also offer an open enrollment period each year specifically for prospective new students. During this time, families can learn more about their charter school options and enter their name for the enrollment lottery, which is held in the event there are more applicants than available seats. For Harmony Public Schools, open enrollment runs each November 1 through February 10. 

MORE INFO: Learn more about how to apply to Harmony Public Schools.

How is a charter school funded?

As opposed to a traditional ISD school, which receives its funding primarily from the taxes local homeowners pay each year combined with additional funding from the state, charter schools receive their primary funding from the state and federal governments. Additionally, charters often receive both public and private grants to fund many of their innovative academic programs. For example, in recent years Harmony Public Schools has received grants of varying amounts from the U.S. Department of Education, the Texas Education Agency, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, and the Elon Musk Foundation, among others.

Are Texas public charter schools for-profit?

No. By law, Texas public charter schools must be nonprofit entities. All funds received are used in the service of our students and school teams.

Do charter schools require uniforms?

That’s a decision that’s up to each charter school. At Harmony Public Schools, we do have a uniform policy. (Our students do get regular “free dress” days, though.)

Do charter schools offer the same types of programs and extracurricular activities as ISD schools?

Charter schools offer almost all of the same programs and extracurricular activities as ISD schools, though just like at an ISD school, the exact selection of extracurricular opportunities varies from campus-to-campus. Traditionally, charter schools specialize in offering a wide variety of academic-focused extracurriculars. For example, at Harmony Public Schools, some of our most popular extracurricular activities are our groundbreaking eSports clubs, LEGO robotics, rocketry, computer coding, and biomedicine. Our schools also compete in a wide variety of sports, including basketball, volleyball, soccer, and football. 

What level accountability do charter schools have to maintain?

Just like traditional ISDs, Texas charter schools must remain in good academic and financial accountability with the Texas Education Agency. That includes annual inclusion in the TEA’s Financial Integrity System of Texas (FIRST) and Overall Accountability ratings. Charter schools that do not meet these standards face closure by the TEA. Finally, to help families easily understand how their charter school is performing, the TEA has created a Charter School Performance Framework (CSPF), which grades charter districts on overall academic performance and closing achievement gaps.

What other differences are there between charter schools and traditional ISD schools?

There are a few other differences between Texas public charter schools and ISDs, but most don’t impact the day-to-day campus life of our students. For example, charter school boards consist of appointed volunteers with a unique interest in education, rather than private individuals who have chosen to run for election. However, charter school board meetings are still open to the public to attend and participate.

What about …?

We couldn’t possibly share all the things that make charter schools a unique and important part of the Texas educational environment in just one article. So if you have more questions, we’d love the opportunity to tell you more. Just tell us what you want to know in our Let’s Talk family communication platform, and we’ll reach out with an answer soon!


Now is the time to capture your student’s class memories with their classmates.  We will have Class Picture Day on Thursday, November 4th.

Please be sure that all students arrive to school on time by 7:45 so they don’t miss their scheduled homeroom class picture time.

All homeroom classes must be in school uniform on this day.

Join the web of fun and show us some tricks while we treat ourselves to a Spooktacular Week!

Don’t forget that all spirit day attire must still be school appropriate according to our Harmony Free Dress Policy. No face masks or fully painted faces during class…we must be able to recognize you.

Monday – Fall Plaid Monday:  Get ready for fall and wear your favorite plaid shirt or socks with jeans (no rips or tears)

Tuesday – 50’s Throwback Tuesday:  Let’s celebrate the 50th Day of School with a 50’s Throwback theme

Wednesday – Pink Out Wednesday:  Honor Breast Cancer Awareness & wear anything pink (shirt, socks, hat, bows)

Thursday – Disney Thursday:  Wear your favorite Disney t-shirt or other character attire

Friday – Book Character Friday:  Dress up as your favorite book character

Don’t forget to post your Spirit Week Photos on our Facebook page (#HSSAustinSpirit) to appear in our next edition of Tiger Talk!

This year every child at Harmony Public Schools is eligible to receive free lunch and breakfast each day from our child nutrition team.
However, Harmony would like to remind parents of the need to still submit one of our critical Harmony forms instead of the application normally associated with qualifying for Free & Reduced Price Meal Programs.
Each year, Harmony Public Schools is required to collect and report the socioeconomic status of each student to the Texas Education Agency for purposes of the annual state accountability ratings and for federal reporting. The data collected is used by educational agencies to determine funding which may be used for a variety of programs and educational opportunities.
Today, we are asking parents to please complete the online form “Household Income Information” in Skyward. Upon login to Skyward, this form is accessible from the main screen. If you have any questions, please contact the Child Nutrition Assistant at your child’s school.

 

Last week, Gov. Greg Abbott officially signed into law a new education funding bill that will allow public schools like ours to offer full virtual learning to up to 10 percent of our student body enrolled in Grades K-12.

 

Under the law, to be eligible to participate and remain in virtual learning, students must meet all of the following criteria:

 

  • Students must have passed the most recent STAAR exams (if applicable to grade level). If student did not take STAAR, NWEA grade-level proficiency is required, AND;
  • Students must have earned a “C” grade of higher in “foundation curriculum” courses taken virtually or remotely in the previous school year (ex. Math, reading), AND;
  • Students must have no more than 10% unexcused absences during the previous school year, and maintain less than 10 unexcused absences in a six-month period.

 

Recently, we asked families to log into Skyward to let us know if they prefer for their child to attend virtual learning or continue in-person learning on campus. The deadline to make your selection is Wednesday September 15, 2021. For those who select “Virtual Learning,” we will cross-checking their student records to determine their eligibility status. Those selected will be notified by their home campus soon and given further directions on how to begin online learning.

 

For those not selected for virtual learning or who wish to remain in-person learning from campus, Harmony will continue to offer its “remote conferencing” option on an as-needed basis. Under this program, students can learn from home for up to 20 instructional days if they have a pre-existing medical condition, or are forced to quarantine due to positive COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure. Additional days may be granted upon TEA approval with required documentation.

 

Harmony thanks you for your ongoing support and patience as the situation regarding virtual learning unfolded these past few weeks. Whether your student is attending virtual or in-person, we look forward to a great school year with you and your family.

– – –

 

La semana pasada, el gobernador Greg Abbott promulgó oficialmente una nueva ley de financiación de la educación que permitirá a las escuelas públicas como la nuestra ofrecer aprendizaje virtual completo para hasta el 10 por ciento de nuestros estudiantes.

 

En consecuencia, Harmony Public Schools se complace en anunciar que comenzará a ofrecer una opción de aprendizaje virtual a partir del lunes 4 de octubre para los estudiantes elegibles, según lo permitan los límites de inscripción.

 

Según la ley, para ser elegible para participar y permanecer en el aprendizaje virtual, los estudiantes deben cumplir con todos los siguientes criterios:

 

 

  • Los estudiantes deben haber aprobado los exámenes STAAR más recientes (si corresponde al nivel de grado). Si el estudiante no hizo STAAR, se requiere competencia de nivel de grado de NWEA, Y;

 

  • Los estudiantes deben haber obtenido una calificación “C” o superior en los cursos del “plan de estudios básico” hechos de forma virtual o remota en el año escolar anterior (por ejemplo, matemáticas, lectura), Y;

 

  • Los estudiantes no deben tener más del 10% de ausencias injustificadas durante el año escolar anterior y mantener menos de 10 ausencias injustificadas en un período de seis meses.

 

Recientemente, les pedimos a las familias que inicien sesión en Skyward para informarnos si prefieren que su hijo asista al aprendizaje virtual o que continúe con el aprendizaje presencial en el campus. La fecha límite para hacer su selección es el miércoles 15 de septiembre de 2021. Para aquellos que seleccionen “Aprendizaje virtual”, verificaremos sus registros de estudiantes para determinar su estado de elegibilidad. Los seleccionados serán notificados por su campus de origen pronto y se les dará más instrucciones sobre cómo comenzar el aprendizaje en línea. 

 

Para aquellos que no hayan sido seleccionados para el aprendizaje virtual o que deseen seguir aprendiendo de manera presencial desde el campus, Harmony continuará ofreciendo su opción de “conferencias remotas” según sea necesario. Bajo este programa, los estudiantes pueden aprender desde casa durante hasta 20 días de instrucción si tienen una afección médica preexistente o si se ven obligados a ponerse en cuarentena debido a un diagnóstico positivo o exposición a la COVID-19. Se pueden otorgar días adicionales con la aprobación de la TEA con la documentación requerida.

 

Gracias por su continuo apoyo y paciencia mientras se desarrolló el aprendizaje virtual estas últimas semanas. Ya sea que su estudiante asista virtual o presencialmente, esperamos tener un gran año escolar con usted y su familia.

 

We will host an informational meeting for all parents of our newly nominated Gifted & Talented (GT) students on Tuesday, August 31st from 5-6pm. If you would like more information about the Gifted & Talented Program, please attend this meeting. For questions, please contact Mrs. Cox: coloma.cox@harmonytx.org

Join in on the fun for our 1st Spirit Week of the School Year!  Let’s show our College Ready mindset and show your school spirit the entire week!

Please remember all Spirit Week attire must be school appropriate according to Harmony Free Dress requirements.  If students are not participating in Spirit Week attire on any day students must be dressed in school uniform.

Monday: College Life Pajama Day – wear your favorite pj’s (must be school appropriate with tennis shoes on, no spaghetti straps or tank tops, shorts should be knee length)

Tuesday: Highlight Your Future – wear bright or neon colors or just wear your shades if you’re too cool for school.

Wednesday: College Tailgate Day – wear your favorite college gear, college colors or college football game attire.

Thursday: Hats Off to Your Education – wear your favorite hat (graduation caps are great) or just go all the way with crazy hair.

Friday: Tiger Pride Day – wear your favorite HSS Spirit shirt, a shirt with a tiger image or orange & black attire.

Friday, September 24th will be a Student Holiday and Staff Professional Development Day. Enjoy your long weekend!