First Day: BISD students reap new benefits in pre-k - Brownsville Herald: Local News

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First Day: BISD students reap new benefits in pre-k

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Posted: Wednesday, August 14, 2019 9:00 pm

In classrooms across the Brownsville Independent School District, teachers welcomed students back on Wednesday, the first day of classes all across Texas.

Teachers and school staff have been getting ready for the big day for weeks, so the first day was a little like a well-rehearsed drill even if a little rusty from lack of use over the summer.

At Benavides Elementary School, 3101 McAllen Road in Brownsville, students, teachers and staff didn’t miss a beat. From 3-year-old pre-kindergarteners on up, they followed well-established routines for when to go to the cafeteria, first for breakfast, then lunch, and when instruction starts.

In Veronica Padilla’s kindergarten classroom, students finished their breakfasts while watching a video about, you guessed it, their A-B-Cs.

Padilla said there are two main goals in kindergarten: “establish a daily routine so the students will be able to prosper, and then, academically, letter sound recognition and blending with the goal that they attain fluency.”

Principal Sherry Stout said this year’s kindergarteners had the benefit of all-day 3-year-old pre-kindergarten instruction. Benavides has three such classes this year, in addition to a collaborative Head Start class. This year’s kindergarten classes for the first time include students who had Pre-K 3 instruction.

“The sooner we can get them started in this educational framework, we see the results the next year,” Stout said.

“When they went to Pre-K 4 last year, the teachers were like they went to a whole new level, so we’re already telling the kindergarten teachers they’ve got to be ready. It’s really beneficial.”

Benavides held it’s “Meet the Teacher” event Monday afternoon, and Stout said the halls and classrooms were full of students and their parents.

On Wednesday, the hall outside Padilla’s classroom was quiet.

“You don’t hear a lot of criers. That’s the parents getting their kids ready for school,” Stout said. “It takes all of us.”

Benavides has an enrollment this year of about 900, an increase from last year.

“We’re honored because a lot of the people choose us,” Stout said. “Were here to serve the families, the kids, and provide for a top notch education.”

Last year, Sonia Garcia from Benavides was named the BISD elementary teacher of the year, Guadalupe Del Monte was the classified employee of the year and Flor Alaniz, the cafeteria manager, was the manual trades employee of the year.

glong@brownsvilleherald.com

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