Todd Hunter on Harvey, Flour Fest, and Tire Recycling Are Topics of FBBA Meeting

Around the State, Business, Community Organizations, Flour Bluff, Front Page
State Representative Todd Hunter addresses Flour Bluff Business Association (Photo by SevenEleven Photography)

     “Don’t let anybody tell you that we’ve dodged a bullet,” said Hunter referring to Hurricane Harvey, a storm that in just 56 hours grew from a regenerated tropical depression over the Gulf of Mexico into a Category 4 hurricane that made landfall in the area late on August 25, 2017.  “We were the first to be hit by a Category 4 hurricane, and I have never seen such togetherness and camaraderie as we experienced in our community immediately following landfall,” he told a group of about 30 people at the Flour Bluff Business Association regular monthly meeting held October 11, 2017, at Funtrackers in Flour Bluff.  In attendance were council members Paulette Guajardo and Greg Smith, County Commissioner Brent Chesney, Pct. 2 Justice of the Peace Thelma Rodriguez, and FBISD school board members Michael Morgan, Jennifer Welp, and Shirley Thornton.

     Hunter spoke of how he fears that our area will be forgotten in a few weeks.   “They’re already doing it in some ways,” Hunter said referring to the individuals and agencies who have been fundraising and providing assistance for storm victims.  “Paul Simon came into the area, but not here.  There was even a benefit held in Austin – for Houston.”

     “Port Royal looks like a MASH unit with outdoor showers, management under a tent with computers, outdoor bathrooms.  But, guess what? They’re holding a press conference at 1:30 today to give a positive plan of when they’re going to reopen.  This is how the Coastal Bend and South Texas are responding.  I want everyone to know who we are and how we’re setting the example for the rest of the nation,” he said referring to the multiple natural disasters occurring across the United States.  Hunter went on to say that he and Brent Chesney had visited almost all of the towns in the Coastal Bend hit by Harvey.  He explained that there is still a great deal of work to be done and that people showing up with tools ready to work is what is needed more than anything else.

     Hunter went on to talk about the effect of the storm on local schools.  “Right after the storm, Port Aransas had no school.  Nobody from government was communicating to my area – again.  I got on the phone to the Commissioner of Education, who did not call me back.  So, I called the governor’s office, and all of a sudden I got a call from the Commissioner of Education, who has never talked with me since I’ve been in office or since he’s been in office,” he said.  Hunter then related that he suggested to the commissioner that a hotline  be set up so that parents  could get information regarding what to do if their child’s school was closed.  “He said this was a good idea, and the hotline was created,” said Hunter.   (That number is 512- 463-9603.)

     “Flour Bluff must be applauded.  They took in Port Aransas kids. I don’t think the state realizes what you’ve done.  You’ve used your local tax dollars to take care of people.  You, the taxpayer residents, took the burden.  For that I am grateful, and it shows what a great community you are.  Gregory-Portland did it for Rockport.  You need to be helped, not forgotten.  So, I’m going to ring the bell more than you’ve ever heard over the next two years.  I’m talking about school funding.  We fund schools through property taxes, but you can’t levy a property tax if there’s no property.  I get a kick out of seeing all the appraisal district vehicles out there.  What are they appraising?  Some people in Port Aransas received tax bills last week on houses that are no longer standing.  In the next legislative session, we’re going to have to take up school funding to figure out what the real formula should be,” said Hunter.  He also spoke of how illogical it is to impose the state test on districts affected by the storm.  He added that he was making no headway in this area.

     Hunter then talked about another hot topic for the next legislative session, mental health.  He explained how it is a real concern, not just a “touchy-feely” topic.  Hunter related a story about displaced children who lost everything in Harvey, including all their clothing and toys.  These items were replaced through donations.  “When the recent rains came, these children cried to their teachers that they needed to go home to put their new clothes and toys on the bed so that they wouldn’t lose them again,” he said. “These are feelings of families and children that the rest of the state doesn’t understand.  I’ve had public officials cry in my arms because they have nothing. This affects a person’s mental health, and this is a serious issue that needs to be funded.”

     Seven days after the storm, the health department called Hunter to let him know they would be spraying for mosquitoes.  “They were going to spray only as far south as Refugio.  I asked them if they knew who got hit first,” he said.  As a result, they sprayed Nueces, San Patricio, and Aransas counties.

     Hunter then spoke about the top complaints after Harvey.  The first two involved FEMA and TWIA.  The third was the Red Cross and their refusal to serve Ingleside. “The fourth was debris hauling, but that seems to be going since most of the haulers have contracts with FEMA.  At one point the road to Port Aransas had a quarter mile long, 25-foot high pile of debris.”  Hunter also explained that he personally experienced eye abrasions from irritants in the area and that asbestos fibers that are floating around could be the problem.

    “If you have concerns in any of these areas, let my office know.  And just know that there’s a lot of fraud and scams going around.  If someone is knocking on your door asking you to sign something, think twice,” he said.  Hunter had such an experience because of the Equifax security breech. He received multiple notifications that he had made a FEMA claim, which he had not.  A group got his information and sent in two FEMA applications with his identifying information and address but a fake phone number and email.  “What happens is that FEMA issues checks to the Green Dot Bank.  Even when I got the Texas Rangers to contact FEMA, they wouldn’t talk to them.  This is your tax money being sent to thieves,” he said.  He explained that the Green Dot Bank is an internet fund where the money is deposited and then just disappears.  He told of how these groups also get credit cards in the victims’ names and do an address switch through the U.S. Post Office.  “You need to have a banker do a credit check to see if anything has been opened in your name without your knowing it,” Hunter suggested.

     “The final thing is that we learn from these situations.  I will be working quite a bit with the schools to make sure their protected in the next session.  I am worried that we’ll have public officials from other areas of the state trying to tell us what to do, which we don’t need.  We’ll have funding proposals that don’t apply well here.  We’ll have new thoughts on education and curriculum that don’t apply here.  We’ll have new catastrophe management concepts that don’t apply here.  And I’m sure we’re going to see wind storm reform come back.  So, just be ready.  My plan is to protect the area,” Hunter said.  He also reminded everyone that desalination would be discussed at the Ortiz Center on November 2 with an update on Hurricane Harvey to be given on November 14, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  John Sharp of Rebuild Texas will be coming in to discuss the aftermath of the storm in Nueces, Kleberg, Aransas, and San Patricio counties.

     “Don’t tell people we’re shut down,” Hunter said.  “We are turning around.  This negative will prove to be a positive.  I’m proud of all of you and of this community.  You continue to set the tone for the area, the state, and the nation.  We will keep the effort moving, so contact us if you need anything.”

Other FBBA Business

  • October 20:  Funtrackers Trunk or Treat Event from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. in the parking lot.  For details visit the Funtrackers website:  https://funtrackers.com/event/trunk-or-treat/
  • Flour Fest:  will be held at Parker Park on Graham Road from Noon to 8:00 p.m., on Saturday, October 28, 2017.  This family-friendly event will feature live music, food trucks, Kids Zone, local vendors, safety demonstrations by ESD#2 Firefighters, and the Flour Bluff Citizens Council kid-and-dog costume contest, Fur Fest.  FBBA would like to thank the Flour Fest sponsors: County Commissioners Brent Chesney and Mike Pusley, Michael Morgan of State Farm, Roshan Bhakta of Candlewood Suites, Javier Wiley of HEB, Dr. Hassan of the Children’s Center, Walmart #490, Whataburger #123, and the Flour Bluff Citizens Council.

  • Flour Fest Kids Zone Events:
    • 1:00  Corn Hole Contests  (candy and toy prizes)
    • 1:30  Sack Races  (candy and toy prizes)
    • 2:00  Three-legged Races  (candy and toy prizes)
    • 3:00  Fur Fest:  This event is open to kids 12 and under with dogs of any age.  Prizes will go to Scariest, Cutest, Funniest, and Best Couple.  Dogs must be on leashes at all times.  No biters, please.  Judging begins at 3:00 p.m.  Prizes awarded immediately following judging.
    • 4:00  Egg and Spoon Races  (candy and toy prizes)
    • 4:30  4-Way Tug of War
    • 5:30  Pastry Wars (First 15 contestants to sign up in the 10 and under, 11 to 16, and 17 and up categories will compete for Walmart gift cards.)
    • Bounce house all day
  • Tire Recycling Program: The FBBA, in conjunction with Nueces County and DeGoLa Resource and Conservation Development District, will host a tire recycling program on Saturday, November 4, 2017, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., to   The FBBA encourages everyone to take part in this program since the city will not pick up tires during the brush and bulky item pick up.
Photo courtesy of Creative Commons
  • FBBA Board Elections: Three board members are up for re-election.  They are Roshan Bhakta, Tom Hollingsworth, and Jonathan Vela.  Dr. Hollingsworth will not be seeking re-election.  Elections and succession planning will take place at the November general meeting.  Nominations may be submitted to Jennifer Welp.
  • Membership Drive:  If a new member joins in the last quarter of the year, the annual dues of $65.00 will include the following year.
  • Community Christmas: This event will take place December 8, 2017, at Funtrackers.  Toy boxes will be set out in November at area businesses.  Let Jennifer Welp know if your business is willing to accept a box for toy donations. This is an opportunity for the businesses to give back to the community we love so much.
  • Next FBBA General Meeting: Wednesday, November 8, 2017, at Raceway Cafe’ at Funtrackers

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

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Kim Sneed Updates FBBA on FBISD News

Business, Community Organizations, Education, Flour Bluff, Front Page

FBBA president, Jennifer Welp, and FBISD Public Information Officer, Kim Sneed (Photo by SevenTwelve Photography)

     Kim Sneed, FBISD Public Information Officer, addressed the Flour Bluff Business Association at its regular monthly meeting held at noon on September 13, 2017, at Funtrackers in Flour Bluff.  Sneed, who took Lynn Kaylor’s place nearly two years ago, has over a decade of experience in public information.  Sneed spent the first part of her career with Corpus Christi ISD.  Sneed introduced Tracy Dennis, the new Director of Instruction, who joined the district from Judson ISD before speaking to the group about what has been happening at Flour Bluff ISD.

     Sneed said, “Just before Hurricane Harvey came to visit us, the Flour Bluff Board of Trustees adopted the 2017-18 budget of about $52 million, which included a 3% raise for all employees, something a lot of districts have not been able to do.  The board, finance department, and superintendent worked hard to make this possible while keeping the effective tax rate a little below last year’s rate.”

     Sneed went on to give an accounting of the 2013 Bond projects.  “A lot of our bond projects have been completed.  We just finished up at the end of the year the Primary and Elementary library, and it is a beautiful facility.”  She described the library as a place that houses books and study tables in the main area, while providing separate classroom and meeting spaces for the two campuses.

     “The junior high is still experiencing construction on the expansion of the cafeteria.  This campus is also in the process of getting an additional gym.  The bids were just accepted, and the work will be starting soon,” said Sneed.  “Over the summer, the swimmers were able to get into the new natatorium and test the waters.  That gave Coach Hutchinson, who is also the natatorium supervisor, an opportunity to learn the facility and learn to use the state-of-the-art equipment.  They have been having practice in there.  Brian wanted me to let everybody know that the district is working on a plan to allow swim lessons and lap swimming for the public.  The first step to that is to make sure we have lifeguards.”  Sneed went on to explain that more information regarding public use of the pool would be forthcoming in the next few weeks.  She ended the update on bond projects by telling the audience that the bus wash would soon be under construction now that the board has accepted the bids.

    “Hurricane Harvey has created some new challenges for the district.  The district experienced minimal damage, consisting of a few uprooted trees, some water seeping in, and debris on the grounds, but nothing that would impede our work or operations,” said Sneed.  “After taking a drive to Port Aransas, we realized that many kids would be displaced and would need a place to call ‘home.’  We put a plan in place pretty quickly and started school up one week after the original start date.  We held a special registration at the high school for these kids.  It was awesome, and it was emotional.  Many of the Port Aransas folks hadn’t seen each other since before the storm.  They were hugging each other and were so overwhelmed by the support from this entire community.  To date, we have enrolled close to 250 kids mostly from Port Aransas, but also from Aransas Pass, Rockport, Woodsboro, and Houston.”

     Sneed went on to tell of a conversation she had with a close counterpart in Gregory-Portland ISD.  “As of today, they have enrolled 1300 kids.  They were able to accept all of them because they just opened a new elementary school, and they have a sixth-grade campus – that had been a junior high campus – that they were able to reopen.  It has been an entire Coastal Bend area effort to ensure that these kids have some sense of normalcy.”  She went on to thank the City of Corpus Christi, AEP, and out-of-state utility companies that helped get the school back on line.  Sneed thanked the joint efforts of Walmart and the Corpus Christi Police Department for donating school supplies and other groups who made certain the displaced children had appropriate clothing for school by donating spirit shirts to help them feel like part of the Flour Bluff family.

     The Port A ISD faculty and staff have been working hand-in-hand with Flour Bluff to look out for the children from Port Aransas and help them feel more at ease in their new environment.  “We really appreciate their efforts,” said Sneed.

    Attendees were encouraged to take part in H.O.S.T.S. (Helping Our Students To Succeed).  It is a mentor program established in September 2014 to be a partnership of FBISD and dedicated community member serving the needs of our students in grades 3 – 12.  For anyone interested in being a mentor, Sneed encouraged those in the audience to contact Dr. Linda Barganski at Central Office.  “The volunteers usually meet with the kids once a week for 30 minutes to an hour and just be that positive role model for them.”

     “Football season has started!  We only have three home games this year, and one of those is Homecoming on Friday, October 13.  The Homecoming Parade will begin at 6:00 p.m. on Monday, October 9, and will travel along Waldron from Compton to Hornet Stadium where we will have the Swarm and the burning of the FB.  There will be many activities for the students throughout the week, so look for that,” Sneed informed the group.

     “Mr. Schuss and Dr. Alvarado will be in Austin on Friday with intermediate math teacher Jack Marley as he receives recognition as the ESC Region II Teacher of the Year.  Because of Harvey, the actual service center announcement and celebration was postponed but will take place on Thursday, September 21, at ESC II downtown,” added Sneed.

     Several people in attendance asked about the traffic issues.  “We have had a few issues with new bus routes and just getting in sync the first days of school.  We’ve also had changes in start and release times that have added to the traffic problems,” replied Sneed.  She explained that many of the displaced students must be driven to school, which adds to the traffic problems.  “To help alleviate some of this, the displaced students are going to be picked up at Schlitterbahn.  We just ask for your patience,” said Sneed.  Everyone was encouraged to check out flourbluffschools.net for more information.

More FBBA News and Community Announcements

  • Flour Fest is October 28 at Parker Park. Volunteers are needed.  Please contact Jonathan Vela, Special Events Coordinator.
  • High school Homecoming Mums will be customized by the PTA for the displaced students.
  • Add info@flourbluffbusinessassociation.com to your address book so that you can receive emails from FBBA.
  • Javier Wiley from HEB told the group that the new Hornet football helmets are part of a donation from HEB. Curbside is now open as another shopping option.  Shipt is also still available.  Visit hebtoyou.com.  HEB put in an official request to public affairs for disaster relief in Port A (i.e. mobile showers, mobile kitchens, mobile pharmacies).  Wiley handed out $2000 in gift cards to Port A citizens and $1000 to Flour Bluff.  Welp thanked HEB for always being the last to close and the first to open when disaster strikes.
  • The FBBA is partnering with Nueces County and and organization called DeGoLa (Dewitt, Goliad, and Lavaca Counties), a Resource, Conservation, and Development District, to hold a tire recycling program event in Flour Bluff on Saturday, November 4, 2017, and again in March of 2018.
  • Next FBBA General Meeting: October 10, 2017, at noon, at Funtrackers

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

Please follow and like us:

County Commissioners Show Support for the FBBA and Flour Bluff Community

Business, Flour Bluff, Front Page

 

 

     The Flour Bluff Business Association held its regular monthly meeting at noon on March 8, 2017, at Funtrackers in Flour Bluff.  A crowd of about 40 small business owners and government officials listened as Pct. 4 Nueces County Commissioner Brent Chesney updated the group on issues at the county level.  In closing, Chesney and Pct. 1 County Commissioner Mike Pusley awarded the association a total of $4500 as part of a program that allows each commissioner to distribute funds for community development as they see fit.  Chesney contributed $2500, Pusley $1000, and County Judge Loyd Neal $1000.

     “I was so impressed with how this seed money was used for Flour Fest last year.  It was a huge success.  There were lots of people in attendance even though it was really hot!”  said Chesney.  He went on to thank the FBBA for doing such a great job on the event.  “I certainly hope they do this again.  What a great first year!  It was a lot of fun for everyone.  The food and music were great.  The events were fun.  It was just a huge success.  Those are the kinds of things that I, as a county commissioner, can get involved with personally.”

     Commissioner Chesney, keynote speaker at the event, expressed how much he appreciates all that the FBBA does for the Flour Bluff community and how much he enjoys being a part of what is going on in all areas of his precinct and “not just being around at election time.”  Chesney, elected in 2014, was sworn in as Nueces County Commissioner, Precinct 4 on January 1, 2015.  “In Flour Bluff, there’s not a lot that the county can directly do because everything out here is in the city limits,” said Chesney. “However, there are many ways that we indirectly impact your community.”

     Chesney opened his talk by recognizing the various entities in Flour Bluff that help the community thrive.  He was especially complimentary of the students, staff, and programs of Flour Bluff Independent School District, saying, “There’s none finer than FBISD.”  He went on to describe how proud he was of Coach James McMinn, his friend and former high school teammate, and the FB girls basketball team for winning their way to the final 4 of the State Girls Basketball Championship.  Chesney said it was thrilling to attend the game in San Antonio.  “It was fun to be there.  And, what a great student body!  Those kids were so well behaved and so fired up.  You should be very proud of the Flour Bluff School District; they really do a great job.”  He was especially happy to announce that the county health fair held at FBISD was a success and something he hopes to continue in the future.

     Chesney handed out other accolades, as well.  He complimented Melanie Hambrick for her efforts in cleaning up Redhead Pond on Laguna Shores Road with Friends of Redhead Pond saying, “This is a project that is special to me and that I’ve been involved in, but Melanie is the one who really got this thing going and is doing what Melanie does, just going after full force.”  He thanked the Flour Bluff Citizens Council, a local advocacy group formed in October 2016, for keeping the people of Flour Bluff people informed and pointed out that he became a lifetime member to show his support for the group.  Chesney thanked Monette Bright for her work with Operation Graduation, a program he personally supports through contributions. He also thanked Jeff Craft of The Flour Bluff Messenger for allowing him to write a column to keep people apprised of what the county is doing with taxpayers’ dollars.

     Turning to County business, Chesney reviewed what has been happening and how the commissioners are working to be “a business friendly county.”  He first recognized Constable Mitchell Clark who was in the audience.  Constable Clark took over as the Pct. 2 constable following the death of longtime constable Jerry Boucher.  “Jerry was a great man.  He was a mentor of Mitchell’s, and we all miss him,” said Chesney.  “But, at the same time we are very excited about Constable Clark because he is who Jerry wanted in that job.  Jerry would only want someone out here who would be a great asset to the area.  Get to know him.  He’s a great guy who’s going to work really hard for Flour Bluff.  You’re also very fortunate to have Judge Thelma Rodriguez out here who works so well with the school in handling truancy cases, a task she took on herself.  We just have a lot of great county officials out here, and she’s one of them.”

Pct. 2 Constable Mitchell Clark

     Chesney told the group that coastal parks in Nueces County are now on the short list for millions of dollars in grants from the BP oil spill and that Padre Balli Park and I.B. Magee Park in Port Aransas are expected to receive $7.5 million in funds from the Restore Bucket 1 grant program.  “These dollars will be used to increase and improve the coastal parks, which will help you.”  Chesney pointed out that the coastal park is one of the few revenue-generating areas of the county and that the $7.5 million will give the county a ten-year jump-start on their master plan. “Mr. Pusley and I are always looking for ways to generate revenue for county projects that benefit everyone in the county – without increasing taxes,” which Chesney pointed out is one of the most effective ways the County can serve the people of Flour Bluff.

Pct. 1 County Commissioner Mike Pusley

     Chesney talked about how much he really enjoys being a county commissioner.  “Things are going well in the county.  We don’t always agree, but we have civil discourse, shake hands, and walk away knowing that we will probably agree on the next ten issues.  That’s how it’s supposed to work in government.”

     Chesney and Pusley addressed the ongoing issues with ADA compliance at all county buildings. “It’s important that we make our facilities accessible to all.  We just want to see some flexibility if – let’s say – a ramp shifts a quarter inch, and it’s no longer in compliance,” said Pusley.

Pct. 4 County Commissioner Brent Chesney receives Certificate of Appreciation from FBBA President Jennifer Welp, March 8, 2017.

Other Announcements from the FBBA

April Spotlight of the Month:  Bob Westrup, owner of Papa Murphy’s in Flour Bluff

New members:  Julie Armstrong of Cubit Contracting and Neal Ekstrom of NCE Waste Environmental Services were accepted as General Members; and Misty Svoboda of Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Real Estate Center was accepted as an Associate Member.

April 1, 2017:  Coastal Bend Troop Support Crawfish Boil and Military Tribute, 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Briscoe King Pavilion, 15820 SPID, Corpus Christi, TX  (Contact them to donate items by visiting coastalbendtroopsupport.com)

April 8, 2017:  Special Olympics (Contact Lori Eureste, President FB Special Olympics Booster Club at 361-658-9701 or lage1988@yahoo.com.)

April 17, 2017: Flour Bluff Citizens Council General Meeting, 6:00 p.m., at Grace Community Church on Flour Bluff Drive (Visit the website https://www.flourbluffcc.org/ for more information.)

April 22, 2017: Earth Day Community Clean-up with HEB

April 22, 2017:  First day of Litter Critter Program in Flour Bluff  (Check the FBCC and FBBA websites for more details.)

NEXT MEETING:  Wednesday, April 12, 2017, at noon at Funtrackers  (The speaker will be Pct. 2 Constable Mitchell Clark.)

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

Please follow and like us:

The Mystery of the Hornet

Flour Bluff, Front Page

 

     I have long heard that the Flour Bluff Hornets took the name of their mascot from  the USS Hornet, the carrier associated with Lt. Commander John Charles Waldron, for whom Waldron Road in Flour Bluff was named.  However, this does not seem possible according to the historical documentation from a January 11, 1938, Corpus Christi Times news article about the Flour Bluff Hornets and various other sources.

     According to the USS Hornet Sea, Air & Space Museum website, the following timeline describes the birth of the carrier:

  • Identified initially as Hull #385, USS HornetCV-8, she was built at the Newport News shipyard in Norfolk, Virginia, starting in September of 1939.
  • The Hornetwas launched in December 1940 by Mrs. Frank Knox, wife of the Secretary of the Navy.
  • On October 20, 1941, the Hornetwas commissioned.  Her commanding officer was Captain Marc “Pete” Mitscher, who would become a recognized master of carrier warfare during WWII.

     The Bureau of Naval Personnel Information Bulletin No. 317 (August 1943), offers this information concerning the connection between Lt. Cdr. Waldron and the Hornet:

     The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to Lieutenant Commander John Charles Waldron (NSN: 0-58825), United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism in operations against the enemy while serving as Pilot of a carrier-based Navy Torpedo Plane and Commanding Officer of Torpedo Squadron EIGHT (VT-8), attached to the U.S.S. HORNET (CV-8), during the “Air Battle of Midway,” against enemy Japanese forces on 4 June 1942. Grimly aware of the hazardous consequences of flying without fighter protection, and with insufficient fuel to return to his carrier, Lieutenant Commander Waldron resolutely, and with no thought of his own life, led his squadron in an effective torpedo attack against violent assaults of enemy Japanese aircraft fire. His courageous action, carried out with a gallant spirit of self-sacrifice and a conscientious devotion to the fulfillment of his mission, was a determining factor in the defeat of the enemy forces and was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

     So, where did we get our name?  In one Flour Bluff School newspaper prior to 1938 the Sandburs is the name of the mascot.  Any and all documented information would be appreciated to solve the mystery of how the Flour Bluff Hornets really got their name.

UPDATE:  The Flour Bluff school newspaper, The Grassburr, reported in its first edition published on November 4, 1937:  “Another first for Flour Bluff High School.  After much deliberation, students selected the HORNETS to be the name of their athletic teams, which will be under the leadership of Coach Sam Chandler.”  The reason for choosing the name is not given, and no mention of the Hornet can be found in the handwritten school board meeting minutes from 1937 or 1938.  Coach Sam Chandler is mentioned and his salary given at $1500 per year.

Miles Graham, lifetime resident, said that he recalls W.R. Duncan, member of a founding family, telling the story of how the Hornets got their name.  He was watching a basketball game in 1937 and said that the boys looked like a bunch of hornets swarming around the player with the ball.  That suggestion, Graham believes, stuck with the kids, and they chose the hornet as their official team mascot, which was chronicled in The Grassburr.

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

Please follow and like us:

A Message from Jeff Rank, FBISD School Board Candidate

Education, Flour Bluff, Front Page, Government and Politics, Personal History

     The August morning heat bounced off the pavement as I stood in our carport, thirty-six years ago.  I was five years old.  It was my first day of kindergarten at Flour Bluff.  Yarn held a laminated, yellow, construction-paper cutout of a bus around my neck.  It read, “Jeff Rank / Mrs. Cook’s class / Bus #3.”  Little did I know then that was to be the start of a long journey that would shape me into the man I have become today.

     With great pride, I recently filed to run for election to the Flour Bluff I.S.D. School Board.  It felt like things were coming full circle.

     My father’s career in the U.S. Navy brought us to Flour Bluff in 1980.  He retired here, and I stayed in Flour Bluff I.S.D. from kindergarten all the way through my graduation from FBHS in 1993.  I felt the impact of great teachers like Mr. Bartling, Mr. Krnavek, Mrs. Chapman, and Mrs. Thornton (to name only a few).  They, quite literally, changed my life.

     When I graduated and went to Texas A&M, I felt I had a leg up on most of the other students because of the things I learned at Flour Bluff.  College chemistry was a piece of cake after what I learned in Mr. Schwierzke’s class.  Trigonometry was no sweat after Mr. Warren.

     I went on to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Sciences, a Master of Science degree in Oceanography, and finally my law degree.  When I became a father, and it was time to choose where my children would go to school, there was never any doubt; it had to be Flour Bluff.

     It is with great pride that I now serve my community as “The Bluff Attorney.”  I have done my time at a think-tank in Washington D.C. and at a big law firm in Houston, and it only served to underscore how happy I am to be here now.

     I am running for Flour Bluff I.S.D. School Board, Seat 3, to give back to the school and the community that has given me so much.  I am deeply proud of being a Hornet.  Every day I use the education that started twenty-six years ago when I stepped onto Bus #3.

     I want to know that my children – and all Flour Bluff students – will continue to feel that they have a leg up when they graduate and move on to whatever the next phase of life brings for them.  I want to keep great teachers in Flour Bluff, enable education for our kids that goes beyond passing standardized tests, and ensure that Flour Bluff remains the top school district in South Texas.

     I humbly ask for your support in the upcoming Flour Bluff I.S.D. School Board election.

Jeff Rank

 

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

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Flour Bluff ISD Superintendent Announces Retirement: Board Names Lone Finalist

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The Flour Bluff ISD Public Information Officer Kim Sneed released the following on Friday, July 29, 2016:

 

     During the Regular Board Meeting of the Flour Bluff ISD Board of Trustees on Thursday, July 28, the Board accepted the retirement of Superintendent Joe Kelley. His retirement will be effective September 30, 2016.

Joe Kelley FBBA
Joe Kelley addressing FBBA in 2015

     In a letter provided to the Board of Trustees, Mr. Kelley thanked the members of the Board for their support during his three years as Superintendent.  His decision to retire is to be closer to family and spend more time with his four grandchildren. Mr. Kelley was named Superintendent of Schools in 2013 and is retiring after 35 years of service in education.

Schuss Family
From left: Cannon, Theresa, Brian, and Kaia Schuss

     Additionally, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to name Brian Schuss as the lone finalist for the top position at Flour Bluff ISD. Mr. Schuss is in his 8th year as the Flour Bluff ISD Assistant Superintendent for Business Services. Prior to coming to the District, he was the Business Manager in Port Aransas ISD. Mr. Schuss also served in the New Mexico State Legislature Finance Committee and worked closely with the state’s Public Education Department. His education career began in the classroom as an Economics and Secondary Mathematics teacher.

     Mr. Schuss and his wife, Theresa, have two children, Cannon and Kaia.

    Under state law, the Board of Trustees must wait 21 days before officially naming the superintendent of schools. The Flour Bluff ISD Board of Trustees anticipates voting on a contract and naming a superintendent before the 2016-2017 school year begins on August 22.

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

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Flour Bluff Schools: A Winning Formula

Education, Flour Bluff, Front Page

Hornet Country

     Why do families flock to Flour Bluff and Padre Island?  Many, it turns out, want their children to attend Flour Bluff Schools, a place with a rich history and a commitment to educating the whole child.  In the beginning, ranching, oil and gas, and the Navy grew this little community nestled between the Cayo del Oso and the Laguna Madre, which in turn grew the school for many years.  Now, the school is returning the favor by continuing to draw people into this unique and strongly independent community that offers a hometown environment for raising kids, one complete with Friday night lights, homecoming parades, a Santa float at Christmastime, and an eclectic group of small businesses co-existing among the giants, such as Walmart, Whataburger, and HEB.

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     The pre-K through early-college school is not like any other. All the campuses and school facilities are within walking distance of each other and are surrounded by quiet neighborhoods, something that has helped keep the kids close in proximity and in spirit.  Students who live within the boundaries of the district but not within walking distance find it easy to be part of the school community since FBISD provides bus service to and from school.  Parents who choose to drop their children at school map out their route and move from campus to campus without having to drive in and out of multiple neighborhoods.

     Flour Bluff students have a reputation for success in academics and extra-curricular activities.  The following is a list of awards received by students and faculty just in the 2015-2016 school year:

  • Accountability Awards

    ECC, Primary, Elementary, Intermediate, Junior High and High School Campuses – Recognized
    District – Recognized

  • High School Academics 

    National Hispanic Scholars – 2 students
    National Merit Commended Scholars – 5 students
    AP Scholars – 12 students
    AP Scholars with Honors – 1 student; with Distinction – 2 students
    Student Congress Team – 3 students advanced to State
    Caller Times/Citgo South Texas Distinguished Scholars – 2 students
    BPA (Business Professionals of America) – 31 students advanced to State; 2 students received Torch Awards
    KEDT Challenge Team – 1 student selected to All Star Team
    Robotics Team – 2 Teams qualified for the Alamo Regional Championships; 2 Pink Lady Robotics students received the
    National Center for Women & Informational Technology (NCWIT) Aspirations Award
    Science Fair – Student placed at Regional and State – Regional: 1st Place in Microbiology and recipient of Valero Energy
    Award; State: 3rd Place in Microbiology and attending Intel International Science and Engineering Fair
    La Posada Art – 7 students recognized – 1 student won overall
    Visionarios Art Competition – 1 student– 1st place
    VASE (Visual Arts Scholastic Event) 1 State medal
    Art Center for the Island – 17 students recognized: 1 Best of Show, 5 students – 1st place; 2 students – 2nd place; 3 students –
    3rd place; 3 Honorable Mention
    South Texas Journalism Conference – Waldron Street Journal Newspaper 2nd place overall; Publication Team Sweepstakes
    Award
    Craft Training Center – 4 students won Top Dog awards in welding


    NJROTC – Received perfect score on their annual inspection
    NJROTC – Placed 2nd in State Competition
    NJROTC – Advanced to the National Academic Bowl in Washington, D.C.
    NJROTC – Unarmed Team 3rd Place Overall and Armed Team 9th Place Overall at High School Grand National
    Championship
    UIL Calculator Team– 1st place in District; 2 Individual Regional qualifiers
    UIL Current Issues Team – 1st in District; Individual Regional qualifier
    UIL Lincoln Douglas Debate – Individual Regional qualifier
    UIL Literary Criticism Team – 1st in District; 1st at Regional; State qualifiers
    UIL Mathematics Team – 1st in District; Regional qualifiers
    UIL Number Sense Team – 2nd in District; Regional qualifier
    UIL One-Act Play 4th place in District
    UIL Poetry Interpretation – 1st at Regional; State qualifier
    UIL Press Conference Team – 2nd Place Feature Photo, 2nd Place Sports Action Photo, 3rd Place Tribute Ad
    UIL Science Team – 1st place in District; Regional qualifier
    UIL Speech – 2nd in District
    UIL Spelling & Vocabulary Team – 1st place in District; 2 Regional qualifiers
    Honorable Mention Sports Feature, Honorable Mention Academic Photo
    HS Cheerleaders – 2nd place Southwest Regional Championship

  • Junior High Academics

    https://i2.wp.com/www.flourbluffschools.net/assets/photos/campus_photos/jrhigh.jpg?resize=337%2C125

    MathCounts Team – 1st place in Region (31st consecutive year) #10 out of 80 teams in state
    TMSCA (Texas Math Science Coaches Association) – 1st place in State (31st consecutive year)
    TMSCA – 2 students were State champions
    TMSCA – 7th grade – 1st Place Sweepstakes (Team); 1st Place Number Sense (Team); 1st Place Calculator Application
    (Team); 1st place Number Sense (Student); 8th grade – 1st Place General Math (Team); 1st Place Science (Team); 1st Place
    Number Sense (Student); 1st Place Calculator Application (Student)
    UIL Academic Meet – 7th Grade: 1st Overall; 1st Calculator Applications; 1st Number Sense; 1st General Math
    UIL Academic Meet – 8th Grade: 1st Overall; 1st Calculator Applications; 1st Number Sense; 1st General Math; 1st Science;
    1st Spelling; 1st Listening
    UIL Academic One-Act Play – 3rd Place
    Texas A&M Kingsville Javelina Cup Scholarship winners – 7 students
    Regional Science Fair: 2nd place Physics and Astronomy and 3rd place in Plant Sciences
    Science Olympiad – 2nd place at regional meet
    Science Fair – 2 students advanced to the Coastal Bend Science Fair
    Scripps Regional Spelling Bee Winner; Advanced to Regional Bee
    Voted Reader’s Choice 2015 by the Corpus Christi Caller Times

  • Performing Arts

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    HS TMEA (Texas Music Educators Association) All District Band – 28 students
    HS TMEA (Texas Music Educators Association) All Region Band – 21 students
    HS TMEA (Texas Music Educators Association) All Area Band – 7 students
    HS TMEA (Texas Music Educators Association) Region Orchestra – 4 students
    HS UIL – Region Marching Band Division 1 rating; qualified for Area Marching Contest
    HS UIL – 27 Division 1 rating for Solo and Ensemble
    HS UIL – 12 Instrumentalists and 2 Twirlers advanced to State Solo and Ensemble
    HS UIL – High School Symphonic Band UIL Contest Division 2
    HS UIL – High School Honors Band UIL Contest Division 1
    HS UIL – High School Wind Ensemble UIL Contest Division 1
    TMEA All-State Choir auditions – 23 District members / 9 Region members / 3 Area members / 1 alternate to State
    HS UIL Solo/Ensemble – 17 students and 1 Madrigal Ensemble received 1 ratings / 5 soloists and 1 Madrigal Ensemble
    advanced to State
    HS UIL CHOIR Concert/Sight-reading:
    Varsity Treble Choir – Division 2 on stage and Division 2 in sight-reading
    Varsity Tenor-Bass Choir – Division 3 on stage and Division 4 in sight-reading
    Varsity Mixed Choir – Division 3 on stage and Division 2 in sight-reading
    JH UIL Band Concert/Sight-reading –
    Honors Band received 1 on stage and 1 in sight-reading (9th consecutive Sweepstakes)
    Symphonic Band received 1 on stage and 1 in sight-reading;
    Concert Band received 2 on stage and 3 in sight-reading
    JH UIL Band Solo/Ensemble – 37 students received 1 solo ratings
    JH All-Region Band – 28 students qualified
    HS All-Region Band – 1 JH student qualified
    HS All-District Band – 2 JH students qualified
    JH All Regional Junior High/Middle School Choir – 22 students
    JH Mixed Choir received a ‘2’ in Concert and a ‘2’ in Sightreading
    JH Treble Choir received a ‘1’ in Concert and a ‘2’ in Sightreading

  • Athletics

    Image result for Flour Bluff athletics

    HS Football – 3 way tie for 3rd place in District
    Shriner’s All-Star Football Game – 5 athletes selected to participate
    All-Star Coastal Bend Coaches Association Basketball Game – 1 boy athlete; 2 girl athletes participated
    HS Volleyball – Area Champions, Regional Quarterfinalist; Freshman District Champions
    HS Volleyball – All State Academic Team – 11 students
    HS Volleyball – Max Preps Player of the Year – 2 students
    HS Team Tennis – Undefeated District Champions 9 years in a row; Area Champions; Regional Qualifiers
    HS Spring Tennis – District Boys & Girls Champions; Regional Qualifiers; State Qualifier
    HS Cross Country –1 Girl Regional Qualifier
    HS Boys Basketball –District Champions; Area Finalists
    HS Girls Basketball – Bi-District Champions; Area Champions; Regional Semifinalists
    HS Girls Basketball – All-Region and All-State Teams for Texas Girls Coaches Association – 1 student
    HS Golf – Academic All District – 7 students
    HS Girls Track – 2nd in District, 3rd in Area; & State Qualifier
    HS Boys Track – 2nd in District; 2nd in Area; Regional Finalist & State Qualifier
    HS Girls Swimming – District Champions; Regional Qualifiers; 6 State Qualifiers
    HS Girls Swimming – 1 student Academic All American; 5 students Academic All-State
    HS Boys Swimming – 2nd in District; 4th at Regionals; 6 State Qualifiers
    HS Boys Swimming – 2 students Academic All-State
    HS Girls Soccer – 1st place in District; Bi-District Champions; Area Finalists; 5 students Academic All-State
    HS Boys Soccer – District Champions; Bi-District Champions; Area Finalists; 5 students Academic All-State
    HS Baseball – 2nd in District; Bi-District Champions; Area Champions; Regional Quarter Finalists
    HS Softball – 2nd in District; Bi-District Champions; Area Champions; Quarter Finalists; Regional Semi-Finalists
    JH 7th & 8th Grade Girls & Boys Swimming – District Champions
    JH Volleyball – 8th Grade “A” District Runner-up; 8th Grade “B” Undefeated District Champions; 7th “A” District Co-
    Champions; 7th “B” finished 3rd in District
    JH Football – 8th “A” Undefeated District Champions; 8th “B “ Undefeated District Champions; 7th “B” District Co-
    Champions
    JH Boys Basketball – 8th Grade “A” Undefeated District Champions; 8th Grade “B” Undefeated District Champions; 7th
    Grade “A” Undefeated District Champs; 7th Grade “B” District Champions
    JH Girls Basketball – 8th Grade “A” Undefeated District Champions; 8th Grade “B” Undefeated District Champions; 7th
    Grade “A” 2nd in District; 7th Grade “B” 2nd in District
    JH Girls Track – 8th grade 1st in District; 7th grade 2nd in District
    Athletic Signings: 1 student in Volleyball @ University of Georgia; 1 student in Softball @ University of Houston at
    Victoria; 1 student in Football @ Texas A&M Kingsville, 1 student in Football @ Sam Houston State University; 1 student
    in Football @Texas Lutheran University; 1 student in Baseball @New Mexico Junior College; 3 students in Baseball
    @Schreiner University; 1 student in Baseball @Howard Payne University; 1 girl student in Basketball @Simpson College; 1
    girl student in Basketball @Coastal Bend College; 1 boy student in Soccer @University of North Georgia; 1 boy student in
    Soccer @Texas A&M University-Texarkana; 1 girl student in Swimming @Centenary College of Louisiana; 1 boy student in
    Track @Naval Academy Preparatory School

  • Early Childhood Center

    Science Fair – 6 students advanced to the Coastal Bend Science Fair
    Science Fair – 1 Regional Science Fair Winner

  • Primary School

    Science Fair – 6 students advanced to the Coastal Bend Science Fair
    Science Fair – 1 Regional Science Fair Winner

  • Elementary School

    Science Fair – 6 students advanced to the Coastal Bend Science Fair
    Science Fair – 1 Regional Science Fair Winner
    UIL Academics – 3rd grade: 1st place Music Memory and 1st Place Sweepstakes; 4th grade – 1st place Music Memory, 1st Place
    Art (Student); 1st place Art (Team); 1st Place Sweepstakes

  • Intermediate School

    Image result for Flour Bluff Junior High

    Science Fair – 13 students advanced to the Coastal Bend Science Fair
    Science Fair 4 Regional Science Fair Winners
    UIL District – 5th grade: 1st place Maps, Charts & Graphs; 1st place Science; 1st place Number Sense; 1st place Listening; 3rd
    place Sweepstakes Trophy
    6th grade: 1st place Sweepstakes Trophy; 1st place in Maps, Charts and Graphs, 1st place Listening, 1st place Chess Puzzle,
    Calculator and Art; 2nd place Spelling, Number Sense, Dictionary and Math; 3rd place Science
    TMSCA (Texas Math and Science Coaches Association) – 1st place at State
    Staff Awards
    James McMinn – Region 30-5A Basketball Coach of the Year
    Catherine Graham – ESC, Region 2 Elementary Teacher of the Year
    District Awards
    Schools FIRST (Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas) – Superior Rating

 

Flour Bluff ISD is in the middle of a $48 million facilities bond project approved by voters in 2012 and started in 2013.  In addition to some much needed upgrades to the existing facilities, a field house (complete) and natatorium (under construction) are part of the big picture.

Capture

  Go Hornets!

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

Please follow and like us:

Flour Bluff ISD Offers Many Summer Programs in Academics and Athletics

Education, Flour Bluff, Front Page

In just a few short weeks, summer break will begin, and the students will find themselves free of the daily school routine.  For some, this will mean days of doing little or nothing.  For others, it will be a time to take up a new sport, sharpen skills in a particular area of study, or simply stay involved with friends.  Flour Bluff ISD may have just the program.  Below is a list of the programs approved by the Board of Trustees to be made available to FBISD students this summer:

Summer Programs 2016

Summer Programs 2016 2

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

Please follow and like us:

You’re Invited to the Big Event!

Education, Flour Bluff, Front Page

FBISD Foundation

Big Event

 

 For More Information, Contact:

Dr. Alicia Needham

694-9220

Get Tickets Here

Cost: 

Table Sponsor $1000 (seats 8)

Individual tickets $100

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

Please follow and like us:

Lynn Kaylor Has Left the Building!

Education, Flour Bluff, Front Page, Personal History

Lynn Kaylor Hornet     Lynn Kaylor, Flour Bluff ISD Public Information Coordinator, retired in January after faithfully serving the district for twenty-four years.  Hired in 1992 as an administrative assistant to Leroy Dehaven and Carol Goodman, Kaylor began a job that allowed her to work where her kids went to school and have the same days off as they did.  In those first days, she had no idea what her job would become when administration handed her the first of many tasks that changed the face of Flour Bluff schools.

     Dehaven put Kaylor  in charge of planning and executing the school’s 100-year celebration, which came with a homecoming parade.  Being a King High School graduate, Lynn knew only a little about Flour Bluff from her husband Jimmy and his family and friends who grew up in the area.  That quickly changed.  During her research into the beginnings of the school, she interviewed many people whose families settled Flour Bluff or taught in the district in the early years. She collected memorabilia, listened to stories from locals, and became immersed in the rich history of a little community dubbed “Gateway to Padre Island.”  Before long, Kaylor didn’t just live in Flour Bluff; she lived Flour Bluff.  She was evolving into a Hornet!  The transformation was so evident that people often asked her what year she graduated from Flour Bluff.

IMG_4465

    “Everybody thinks I went to school in Flour Bluff. They always want to know what year I graduated and are quite surprised when I tell them that I didn’t attend Flour Bluff at all. It’s just that I’ve been here so long, and I know so many people through my husband Jimmy, my kids, and all my contacts through work.”

     The Public Information Office, created by former Superintendent Carol Moffett to advertise what was going on in Flour Bluff ISD, became Kaylor’s home base.  There she performed a myriad of duties, which included handling all district media and publications, running the print shop, organizing special events such as Relay for Life, setting up the Hornet Spirit Shop, creating t-shirt designs, developing an employee wellness program, tending to student registration, working with all the booster clubs, maintaining the district website and social media sites, taking care of employee service awards, helping former graduates with their reunions, building relationships with local businesses, and anything else that no other department in the district managed.  In her early days with the district, Kaylor used the school van to pick up kids to register for summer school if they had no way of getting there.  “I just did whatever they asked me to do to serve the kids of this district.”

     “Mrs. Moffett gave me this job along with a bunch of duties.  I started visiting with Realtors, giving tours of the district to families wanting to move in,” said Kaylor.  “I come to work every day with a mission, knowing what I need to do, and it rarely happens.  Once I get here, I get a phone call to take pictures or meet with the media or set up tours.  Even people just lost on the street who see ‘Information’ on this building come in to ask about city bus schedules and things like that.  I would let them know that I didn’t have that kind of information, but I always try to help them by looking it up or putting them in contact with the right person.”  Kaylor has also worked with law enforcement to give them information about former students and was once asked to provide old yearbooks for an investigation by NCIS of Naval Air Station Corpus Christi.

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     Kaylor said that she faced many challenges during her tour of duty with Flour Bluff ISD.  Her husband, Jimmy Kaylor, served on the local school board for many years, and some people often thought that she received special treatment because of that.  “That couldn’t be any further from the truth,” Kaylor said.  “If anything, it made my job harder because of other people’s wrong perceptions.”  She went on to say that it even made it difficult to visit with a teacher about one of her children.

      One of the biggest challenges, according to Kaylor, is “heading off the negativity from the media.”  She explained that FERPA and privacy laws prevent her from offering some information that may be crucial to understanding the full story of a particular incident.  “All I can do is sit back silently and listen to the rumors.  I wanted to say ‘Let me tell you what really happened’, but I can’t.  The media often reports just a part of a story that comes from something a person said, which sometimes shines a negative light on the teachers, administrators, and kids, which they don’t deserve.”  Kaylor said, “I’ve made a lot of friends in the media, and I know they have to do their jobs.  But, they can respect me, and I can respect them.”

     “What I like most about working here,” Kaylor said, “is the diversity of the kids, who come from all kinds of backgrounds.  The Navy base brings in lots of families from around the world, and we get their children who have been all over the world.  Every student learns something through these military kids’ experiences just by going to school with them.”

     “I also like the way we’re set up with all of our campuses on one block.  In larger districts, there are feeder schools.  Here the kids move from campus to campus and know about the buildings and the teachers and principals before they ever get there.”  Kaylor explained how the students move with the same basic group of friends from building to building, play on the same teams, and get to work together, in some cases, from kindergarten through twelfth grade.  “Everybody knows everybody else.”

Flour Bluff

     One of Kaylor’s favorite projects is the yearly homecoming parade.  “It’s been such a staple in this community, and it is a lot of hard work. There is a lot of behind-the-scenes work that has to be done ahead of time.  But, when you’re standing down there that night lining up everybody and you see the kids all excited and the streets lined with hundreds of people watching, it’s great.  It’s like a wedding.  You work really hard to make it a memorable time for everyone, and when it’s over, you can finally relax.”  Because Kaylor runs back and forth constantly checking to make sure that every float is in place and that nothing happens along the way, she has never been able to sit and watch the 24 parades she has put in motion.  “It is so much work, but it is so worth it!”

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Homecoming Parade

     Throughout her career, Kaylor collected anything pertaining to the school.  “When I did the 100-year celebration, people brought in all kinds of things for us to display.  They didn’t want it back, so I kept it.  For many years, in the back of my mind, I had a vision for a school museum.  I just felt we needed to put up a display of what we have and highlight the past.  What other district functions the way we do?  How many districts brought in an old aircraft hangar and made it into a gym?  Nobody does that kind of thing.”

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     Kaylor has displayed many items on the walls of the building where she spent her career.  It is the start of the Flour Bluff ISD Museum.  Behind a locked door in the same building, pieces of Flour Bluff school history rest in boxes, on shelves, in filing cabinets, and on tables awaiting the return of a retired Lynn Kaylor who will finish out the vision.  “When I’m digging through these old records and pictures and such, I get even closer to this school.  It makes me feel like I grew up here. I just hope the district doesn’t grow so much that this room becomes real estate that they need for something.”  Among the memorabilia is a collection of Hornet mascots, designed by Kaylor and drawn by Joungsik Chung, a local artist.

     “When Coach Mike Crowe came in 1998, he thought we needed a more ‘intimidating’ Hornet.  He, along with Mrs. Moffett, asked my help to come up with a new look that showed power and strength.  That’s when I contacted Chung, and from there it’s history.  We just kept making Hornet after Hornet to represent every activity, group, club, and organization of the district.  I even have one of Elvis,” Kaylor said with a smile.

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Kaylor’s collection of Hornet mascots

     “I call Lynn Elvis because she is such a huge fan of Elvis,” said Flour Bluff Superintendent Joe Kelley.  “And, like Elvis, her legend will live on in a positive way for many years to come. Her dedication to the kids of this District has been steadfast for twenty-four years and is greatly appreciated. She is a trusted friend and colleague, and I will miss our day-to-day interaction. I wish her the best in retirement.”

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      January 30, 2016, brought to a close Lynn Kaylor’s career with Flour Bluff ISD.  “We plan on being in the community, and I am keeping my season football tickets.  I’m never going to give those up.  People know they’ll be able to call on me to help serve on committees or volunteer in the district;  they know I’m not just going to walk away.  I will still help with the Foundation for Educational Excellence, another thing I helped start.  I want to continue to be a part of the community because I feel I still have something to contribute,” said Kaylor about how she plans to stay involved with the district.

     Kaylor said of her replacement, Kim Sneed (resident of Flour Bluff with two children attending FBISD) who will use her skills and knowledge from working with the Corpus Christi ISD Office of Public Information to follow Kaylor’s lead, “She’s going to be great.  She just has to put her mark on it.”  There is no doubt that Lynn Kaylor left her mark on Flour Bluff ISD, a school she continues to love and serve in any way she can.

IMG_4480
Lynn Kaylor and Kim Sneed with quilt made by Kaylor

Retired from education after serving 30 years (twenty-eight as an English teacher and two years as a new-teacher mentor), Shirley enjoys her life with family and friends while serving her community, church, and school in Corpus Christi, Texas. She is the creator and managing editor of The Paper Trail, an online news/blog site that serves to offer new, in-depth, and insightful responses to the events of the day.

Please follow and like us: