Northwest ISD hosts partnership rally

By David Talley | Published Saturday, September 23, 2017

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Northwest ISD Tuesday held a rally for the district’s Partners in Education to give area community partners and agencies a chance to interact and network with district and campus representatives.

Representatives from Chick-Fil-A, iOffice, Costco and Gateway Church were among the 40 companies and congregations in attendance to meet with liaisons from each of the district’s 26 campuses.

The program partners businesses and community members with schools by either facilitating contributions or projects or by bringing volunteers into classrooms to mentor or read to students.

District Communications and Community Engagement Coordinator Jerry Cantu told the crowd partnerships aren’t limited by location.

“You can work with any campus; it doesn’t matter what community it’s in or what city it’s in,” he said. “Some of our business partners were interested in working and targeting their efforts for a specific community. Through that, we formed the adopt-a-school program. What that does is form a partnership with a specific campus.”

To adopt a school, Cantu said business representatives sit down with the administration to develop a one-on-one relationship. There is not a specific monetary or time commitment required. Instead it’s about having a partner at the ready to help with campus needs as they come up.

“It just creates that relationship and a situation for a principal to pick up the phone and call you if they’re in a situation where they need something,” Cantu said. “It removes that awkwardness from the relationship.”

Per district flyers, adopt-a-school partnerships can range from teacher workroom treats and supplies to a campus beautification project and generally result in partners having better knowledge of public education and volunteer and community recognition.

“These kids are looking for role models,” Cantu said. “Through these programs, partners have opportunities to come in and be that for them. This is what a role model looks like.”

Superintendent Dr. Ryder Warren also addressed the crowd with information on the district’s growth.

“This is a very unique school district,” he said. “We encompass 14 different communities. That’s three counties and eight elected statewide leaders. And as of yesterday, we were at 23,135 kids. That’s 1,114 more than we had this time last year.”

Warren said partnerships with the community are necessary to help the district manage this growth and continue to provide a quality education.

“The thing is we’ve got to have this,” he said. “And we also understand these partnerships are earned. There’s a lot of responsibility on our end to make sure we’re a district you can support.”

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