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Students and staff are celebrated for outstanding achievements

November 27, 2023
Marble Falls ISD celebrates outstanding achievements of students and staff

Superintendent’s Award
Cassidy Redman and Colton Higgins, students at Marble Falls Elementary, have been recognized for their exceptional character and commitment to academics. Described by her teachers as a model student, Cassidy shines in GT projects, showcases leadership skills, and is dedicated to academic success. Her positive spirit and perseverance make her an inspiration to her peers and a true pleasure to have in the classroom.

A quiet leader, Colton's work ethic and commitment to helping others inspire those around him. He demonstrates leadership through action, guiding and supporting his peers. Colton's dedication to education, kindness, and community service make him a role model within the school community and a star student at Marble Falls Elementary.

“These students who are leaders in the classroom today will become leaders of the future, all while helping others along the way. We are thankful and proud to have kids with strong character and work ethic like Cassidy and Colton in Marble Falls ISD,” said Superintendent Dr. Jeff Gasaway.

Going the Extra Mile (GEM) Award
Mrs. Darlene Achee, a 5th-grade teacher at Marble Falls Elementary since 2019, has been honored with the Going the Extra Mile (GEM) Award. Mrs. Achee's impact on learners over the past four years is immeasurable. She is a thoughtful and reflective educator, consistently seeking ways to improve her craft and mentor her colleagues. Mrs. Achee's dedication to fostering a love of learning, leading student council, and coaching UIL teams exemplifies the district's vision statement. Her colleagues praise her organizational skills, open heart, dedication, and self-reflection, making her a truly inspiring educator.

Spotlight on Engagement Award
Marble Falls ISD is pleased to share the success of the student-driven initiative titled "Flavors of Our Countries," which the Spotlight on Engagement Award is centered on this month. The MFHS Welcome Center serves Newcomer Emergent Bilingual students through multiple sheltered classes, classes in language acquisition and acculturation, and one-one academic support for their other classes. The Welcome Center also provides instructional support for all Emergent Bilingual students. An idea arose by students in the Welcome Center who wanted the opportunity to share recipes and food from their culture with the school, and Lori Reed, Dominque Pfeifer, and Ashley Arteaga listened and acted.

Ms. Reed, Ms. Pfeifer, and Ms. Arteaga engaged and facilitated students in cooking lunch for all teachers, administration, and staff. This cross-curricular project incorporated language arts, social studies, and social-emotional well-being. The project involved listening, speaking, reading and writing, providing an opportunity for students to celebrate their cultures' traditions and foods. The event, a first of its kind, was a resounding success, and the district looks forward to making it a tradition.

Principal Patrick Hinson said to the three award winners, “Thank you for thinking outside the box, thank you for loving our kids, and thank you for the support and inspiration you give.”

Spotlight on Excellence
The Spotlight on Excellence Award was given to high school art teacher Arturo Garcia who was nominated by three colleagues. Mr. Garcia is recognized for his unwavering dedication to creating a loving and inspiring classroom environment where students are encouraged to thrive academically and emotionally.

Kim Thomas, MFHS advanced art teacher, said, “He lives the MFISD vision every day! He works hard to give kids a space to be themselves and think bigger and deeper about themselves and about life. He gives them opportunity to be celebrated and recognized by working hard on their art display. On many occasions I have seen him purchase supplies, share his lunch, and provide safe space for students in need.”

Mr. Garcia found his drive to become an exceptional teacher from a desire to follow in the footsteps of his fourth- grade teacher, who impacted his childhood so deeply. Mr. Garcia’s commitment to students will have a lasting impact long into the future through the students he is reaching here in Marble Falls ISD.

Cross Country State Results
Coach Chris Schrader introduced Nicholas Dahl and Tyler Hamblin who finished in an impressive 14th and 15th place this year in the state cross country meet. Dahl, a senior, finished the Class 4A 5K course in 16 minutes and 17.2 seconds for 14th in the individual standings, while Hamblin, a junior, finished in 16:18.2 for 15th overall.

They have run with MFHS throughout their high school career, and are consistent leaders of the cross country team. The level of improvement seen over the years is significant, as pointed out by Coach Schrader. He attributes their success to their commitment to putting in the hard work and many practice hours, rain or shine.