Students spread holiday cheer through music

Updated: Nov. 16, 2017 at 3:30 p.m.


NBISD students will be busy spreading holiday cheer with several holiday performances this year. Events include public performances at Wassailfest, choir concerts, band concerts, musicals, caroling and sing-a-longs.


November 28

NBMS - 6:00 p.m., Choir Performance at Festival of Trees at Milltown Historic District


December 4

ORMS  - 6:00 p.m., Beginner Band Concert in ORMS Gym

ORMS  - 7:00 p.m., Advance Band Concert in cafeteria


December 5

NBMS - 6:30 p.m., Beginner Band concert in NBMS Gym

NBMS  - 7:30 p.m., Honors Band concert in NBMS Cafeteria

Walnut Springs - 6:00 p.m., 2nd Grade Sounds of the Season performance


December 6

Little Christmas Band - The Little Christmas Band will be touring all elementary schools


December 7

NBMS, ORMS, and NBHS Steel Drums- Wassailfest performance from 6:00-8:00 by the entrance to the Farmers Market

Carl Schurz – 6:00 p.m., Wassailfest performance in front of the Century 21 Building

Memorial - 6:20-6:45 p.m., Wassailfest performance in front of the Century 21 Building

County Line - 6:50 p.m., Wassailfest performance at the Randall Morris Building at 190 S. Seguin Ave.

Veramendi - 7:25 p.m., Wassailfest performance for 2nd graders in front of the Century 21 Building

Klein Road – TBD, Wassailfest performance at the Gazebo


December 11

NBMS Choir Concert - 6:30 p.m., Cafeteria


December 12

ORMS - 6:00 p.m., Fine Arts Holiday Performances in the cafeteria

NBHS – 7 p.m. Holiday Choir Concert


December 14

Lamar - 6:00 p.m., Elfis and the Sleigh Riders performance in the gym

Seele - 6:00 p.m., 2nd and 3rd Grade present “The Incredible Reindeer” in the cafeteria        

Carl Schurz - 6:00 p.m., Holiday choir and Recorder Ensemble concert

NBHS – 7 p.m. Holiday Band Concert


December 18

ORMS - 6:30 p.m., Holiday Choir Concert in the cafeteria


December 19

Lone Star - 8:30 a.m., Blue Pod Holiday Program

Voss Farms - 6:00 p.m., 2nd Grade Christmas program


December 21

Veramendi - 5:30 p.m., Kinder through 2nd grade Holiday Music Event in front of school

Klein Road- 6:00 p.m., 5th Grade musical/theater performance” Happy the High-Tech Snowman” in the gym.    

Club Fridays held monthly at several elementary schools


One Friday each month, several elementary schools in New Braunfels ISD host “Club Fridays”, a time dedicated during normal business hours to host a variety of hobbies and activities for the students to experience.

According to Carl Schurz Elementary Principal Duane Trujillo, around 30 percent of students in elementary schools are involved in extracurricular activities. He says that by offering club time during school hours, more students can have an opportunity to get involved in activities they may not normally be exposed to otherwise.

“A lot of families can’t afford after school activities like karate, soccer and football. Our goal was to find a way to give every student an opportunity to find their interests.”

The variety of clubs offered is sizable. Carl Schurz Elementary for example hosts more than 30 clubs that range from technical STEM subjects like robotics and engineering, to outdoor activities like insect collecting, sports and gardening. Other club offerings include cooking, photography, dancing, art, recycling and journalism, to name a few.

With around 20 clubs at Seele Elementary, Principal Leah Droddy says that everyone participates in hosting clubs. There are even special guests.

“Our librarian and P.E. coach have clubs and even our administration shares a club,” said Droddy. “We have special guests that come to help host clubs like [parent] Mr. Hunt for our robotics club and Mr. and Mrs. Buck for pottery.”

Other parent volunteers (and even parents of teachers) stop by on Club Fridays to support clubs that may need extra help like cooking and cake decorating.

Trujillo noted the other benefit of having club time at school is the sense of community it builds.

“It gives the students and teachers an opportunity to break out of their classrooms and get to know the rest of the school,” he said.

Droddy added by offering clubs during school, the students can also get to know their teachers on a different level, which further enhances the sense of community.

Other schools in the district also offer Club Fridays. Veramendi has already launched this initiative in its first year and offers 25 clubs each First Friday of the month.  Lamar Elementary also host 15 different clubs on the First Friday of the month for the students.

The other elementary schools in NBISD also offer clubs, but not in a Club Friday rotation. Students at Klein Road, County Line and Walnut Springs can join the school’s robotics club or get involved with Student Council.

To learn more about the Club Fridays, watch the related video story.

Middle schools students named to Region Choir

On Nov. 4, a total of 24 students from New Braunfels Middle School and Oak Run Middle School earned a spot in this year's All Region Honor Choir. Each student performed prepared choral pieces for a panel of judges and earned top marks, gaining them a seat in the prestigious choir.

NBMS Region Choir members


NBMS choir members include: Tenor 1 - Andrew Juarez (7th chair), Matthew Schalk-Virge, Paxton Stoker; Tenor 2 - Nicholas Burdine, Sam Smith (2nd chair); Bass - Garnett Gonzalez (8th chair), Andrew Robinson (6th chair), Zach Whited (5th chair); 7th Grade Alto - Jane Briggs, Devonie Price (4th chair), Avrianna Powell, Allyson Salas, Asiah Webster, Lily White; 8th Grade Soprano 1 - Clohie Warns; 8th grade Soprano 2 - Allison Lazaga, Dominique Villalon; 8th grade Alto – Bailey Burgess (10th chair). NBMS Choir Director is Sara Trammell


ORMS Region Choir Members


Oak Run choir members include: SA Choir Alto Section - Makayla Escareno; TTB Choir Bass Section - Garrett Starnes; SSA Region Choir Soprano 1 Section - Emilie Soucie and Maddie Wartsbaugh; SSA Region Choir Soprano 2 Section - Trinity Smith; and SSA Region Choir Alto Section- Devin Towery (6th chair). ORMS Choir Director is Chris Thomasson.

"I am especially proud of the way that both the NBMS and ORMS Unicorns supported and encouraged each other at the contest, clinic, and concert," said ORMS Choir Director Chris Thomasson. "The future looks bright for the Unicorn Choir!"

Burlington Stores donates $10,000 to Carl Schurz Elementary

Carl Schurz Elementary Principal Duane Trujillo accepts a donation in the amount of $10,000 from Martin Elizardo, the New Braunfels Burlington Store Manger (11/10/2017).

Burlington Stores, Inc., through its partnership with, made a surprise visit to Carl Schurz Elementary on Nov. 10 to announce the donation of $10,000 to Carl Schurz Elementary in celebration of its new store opening in New Braunfels.


During the Veteran’s Day Ceremony held the morning of Nov. 10, representatives from Burlington Stores presented a “big” check to Principal Duane Trujillo. The monies will be equally divided among the classroom teachers at Carl Schurz to purchase supplies they need for their classrooms through provides teachers with an online marketplace of nearly 30 school specialty and office supply vendors where they can purchase the materials and tools they need.


CAPTION: On Nov. 10, Carl Schurz Elementary Principal Duane Trujillo accepts a donation in the amount of $10,000 from Martin Elizardo, the New Braunfels Burlington Store Manger.

NBISD holds collection drive for SOS Food Bank

NBHS Student Council collects more than 1800 pounds of food during the 2017 Can the Cougars Collection Drive benefiting the SOS Food Bank

For several years, the student councils at Canyon High School and New Braunfels High School have challenged each other in a friendly competition to benefit the SOS Food Bank with an annual food drive. From Oct. 26 through Nov. 2, the NBHS student council challenged the NBISD community to "Can the Cougars" and donate items for the SOS Food Bank. This year, the drive resulted in more than 1,800 pounds of food collected.


On Nov. 2, the NBHS student council recruited the help of the NBISD Child Nutrition Department to go by each campus and pick up all of the donated items. The items were then delivered and weighed.


Klein Road Elementary students collected the most food in weight and will win a visit from the Unicorn mascots - Eunice and Eugene. Thank you to everyone that participated in this year food drive.


CAPTION: NBHS Student Council members Christopher Greenwell, Jonauh Casaus, Corey Boenig and Sebastian James sort the items that were collected during the Can the Cougars Food Drive at the SOS Food Bank on Nov. 2, 2017.

Annual Reduce, Reuse, Recycle program held for sixth-grade students

Sixth-grade students at Oak Run Middle School take part in the recycling games held during this year’s Reduce, Reuse and Recycle presentation (10/23/17).

NBISD and the City of New Braunfels Solid Waste and Recycling Division hosted their annual Reduce, Reuse and Recycle presentations for all of the district's sixth-grade students in October.

The award-winning program, recognized last year by the Texas Chapter of the Solid Waste Association of North America, consists of sessions that include fun games like tin-can bowling, recycling relays and the soda can tower challenge. This year's presentations took place over two days at each middle school and include lessons to educate students about waste generation and recycling. 

"Our ultimate goal is to provide fun, engaging activities that inspire sixth-graders to go back into the community and apply what they have learned in science," said Robin Wright, NBISD's K-12 Science curriculum specialist. "Through this program, we have the opportunity to help create life-long habits that will certainly have a positive impact on our city's recycling program."

CLICK HERE to view photo gallery.

CAPTION: ORMS sixth-grade students Madison Canham, Katelyn Madera, Aubrie Sanchez, Bailey Fuller, and Lola Daffin take part in the recycling games held during this year’s Reduce, Reuse and Recycle presentation held in conjunction with the City of New Braunfels Solid Waste and Recycling Division.

Principal accepts challenge as part of National Young Readers Week

Memorial Elementary Principal Nicole Haecker took part in Principals’ Challenge and read to her students all day as part of National Young Readers Week (11/08/2017).

On Nov. 8, Memorial Elementary Principal Nicole Haecker spent the day at work reading to all of her students as part of the Principals’ Challenge issued by The BOOK IT! Program in recognition of National Young Readers Week held Nov. 6-10.


She read from the first bell to the last bell on that school day as part of the challenge designed to raise awareness for the importance of literacy and generate a passion for reading among young people.


“Accepting the challenge was an incredible experience,” said Principal Haecker. “I highly encourage anyone in an administrative role to take the time and opportunity to set a valuable example that reading matters!”


She teamed up with the school librarian, Mrs. Cabada, to have classes sign up for her to read to them throughout the school day. Mrs. Cabada went a step further and set up the office foyer to look like a living room with a huge rug, furniture and a fireplace so they could all relax and hear a story read by Haecker.


Principal Haecker took a leisurely approach and wore her pajamas to school along with the students. She spent the day reading through an enormous stack of children's books and was able to experience many new books, such as Duffy TimeTurkey Tot, and more! 

NBISD schools host programs for Veteran’s Day

salute to veterans

The students and staff at a majority of the schools in NBISD are getting ready to host Veteran’s Day programs this week to honor our veterans and active military and their families. Below is a list of Veteran’s Day programs in NBISD.


Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017

New Braunfels Middle School - 9 a.m., Assembly in the gym honoring family members of current students

New Braunfels High School – 3:10 p.m., the Marine Corps Birthday and ceremony on the front lawn

New Braunfels High School – 7 p.m., Band Concert in the auditorium


Friday, Nov. 10, 2017

Veramendi Elementary – 7:45 a.m., Ceremony with 5th grade in the cafeteria and an Honor Wall

County Line Elementary – 8 a.m., Flag Ceremony and a Parade in the hallways

Klein Road Elementary – 8 a.m., Ceremony in the gym followed by a reception honoring the veterans in attendance

NBHS Ninth Grade Center – 8:20 a.m., Flag Raising Ceremony in front of the school

Lone Star Early Childhood Center - 8:30 a.m., Ceremony in the gym featuring singing by the 4-year-olds

Walnut Springs Elementary – 8:45 a.m., Parade in the hallways followed by a flag ceremony and program in the cafeteria

Memorial Elementary – 9 a.m., Ceremony and reception in the cafeteria

Seele Elementary – 9 a.m., Ceremony in front of the school

Voss Farms Elementary – 9 a.m., Parade in the hallways followed by a ceremony and reception in the cafeteria

Lamar Elementary – 9:55 a.m., Ceremony in the gym followed by a reception for the veterans

Carl Schurz Elementary – 11 a.m., Ceremony in the gym featuring bagpiper and trumpet soloists


CLICK HERE to view event photos that will be posted as they become available.

Denise Ortiz named Ambassador for EcoRise

Denise Ortiz named Ambassador for EcoRise

EcoRise has announced the selection of Denise Ortiz, a teacher at New Braunfels High School, for its 2017-18 Teacher Ambassador Program. Ortiz, who teaches 11th and 12th grade AP environmental science and aquatic science, is one of six educators nationwide, including four from the state of Texas, named to the program.


Ortiz’s involvement in the ambassador program will run through August 2018, during which time she will benefit from several exclusive opportunities, including professional development training, priority access to new pilot programs and initiatives, and the chance to present at conferences on behalf of EcoRise.


“I am pleased to be able to work with other teachers by sharing my experiences,” said Ortiz. “Not only do I have the opportunity to assist other teachers, but I am also excited to hear about other teachers' ideas and proposals. Truly a teacher’s desire is to see others’ excitement!”


According to Oritz, Eco-Rise is a fabulous program that helps students not only connect to the real world, but it also provides an avenue for students to have ownership of their school by offering them the opportunity to implement sustainability efforts on their campus. All projects her students developed last year were to help curb plastic from entering our waterways.  


EcoRise is a school-based curriculum organization inspiring a new generation of leaders to design a sustainable future for all. The program focuses on enhancing STEM education, promoting sustainability, introducing students to green careers, and helping students develop 21st century skills.


“Working closely with teachers who are not only skilled in teaching sustainability, but who can match their skill with an enduring passion for developing the next generation of problem solvers and leaders, is core to the mission of EcoRise,” said Gina LaMotte, Founder and Executive Director of EcoRise. “We are delighted to welcome our new class of Teacher Ambassadors, whose achievements in their classrooms have impressed and inspired the EcoRise team.”


Each Teacher Ambassador is an experienced EcoRise teacher who has demonstrated a strong interest in and commitment to the EcoRise mission and core values. Throughout their year in the program, ambassadors have an important role in attending and presenting at conferences with the goal of recruiting and training new teachers to deliver sustainability education. They will provide valuable ongoing feedback to the EcoRise staff that will drive improvements to EcoRise’s curriculum and school-based program. To learn more about the EcoRise mission and school-based program, visit

Two NBHS athletes to play in San Antonio Sports All-Star Football Game

 Ryan Redding, the quarterback for the NBHS Unicorns, was selected to play in the San Antonio Sports All-Star Football Game on Jan. 6, 2018     Weston Wright, an offensive tackle for the NBHS Unicorns, was selected to play in the San Antonio Sports All-Star Football Game on Jan. 6, 2018

Two New Braunfels High School athletes were selected to represent the Unicorns in the San Antonio All-Star Football game.  Quarterback Ryan Redding (pictured first above) and Offensive Tackle Weston Wright (pictured second above) will both play for the East team in the game presented by H-E-B on Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018 in the Alamodome.

In the 40th anniversary of the battle between the East vs. West, the players will take the field at 5 p.m. following the 2018 U.S. Army All-American Bowl that kicks-off at noon.

The game will showcase more than 100 top players from 54 local high schools who are either committed to play for some of the top universities in the country, or are looking for an additional chance to impress college scouts that have potential scholarships to offer. More than 40 seniors that played in last year’s All-Star Game went on to play college football.

The players were nominated by their high school coaches and chosen by a selection committee. Head Smithson Valley High School Football Coach Larry Hill will coach the East and Keith Kaiser from Boerne Champion High School will coach the West.

Tickets are available at the 
Alamodome Box Office  and through for $20. One ticket serves as admission for both the All-American Bowl and the All-Star game.   

NBHS students recognized as national scholars

From left to right: Zaynslee Bednorz, Lauren Callahan, Cameron Gridley, Lucy Muir and Clancy Forlano.


New Braunfels ISD is proud to announce that a total of six students from New Braunfels High School have been recognized in the National Merit® Scholarship Program and the National Hispanic Recognition Program (NHPR). The group includes one National Merit® Semifinalist, five National Merit® Commended Students and one National Hispanic Recognition Program Scholar.


The following students were honored at the Oct. 16 monthly Board meeting for their accomplishments:


National Merit® Semifinalist – Clancy Forlano

National Merit® Commended Students – Zaynslee Bednorz, Lauren Callahan, Steven Clark (pictured to right), Cameron Gridley and Lucy Muir

National Hispanic Recognition Program Scholars – Steven Clark (pictured to right)

Steven Clark, 2017 National Merit Commended Student and National Hispanic Recognition Program Scholar from New Braunfels High

The National Merit® Scholarship Program is an academic competition for recognition and scholarships that began in 1955. High school students enter the National Merit Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) – a test that serves as an initial screen of approximately 1.5 million entrants each year – and by meeting published program entry/participation requirements.


The national scholarship programs recognize students from all over the country for outstanding academic achievement by making a high score on the PSAT/NMSQT®. Students in the National Merit® Program are selected from the highest achievers and designated as either a Commended Students or Semifinalist in the first round. Only semifinalists advance to the final round to be named National Merit Finalist. 


In addition, The College Board’s National Hispanic Recognition Program (NHRP) honors about 5,000 of the highest-scoring students from more than 250,000 Hispanic/Latino juniors who take the PSAT/NMSQT. NHRP does not provide scholarships, but being named is an important academic recognition that colleges and universities recognize.


For more information, go to



From left to right: Zaynslee Bednorz, Lauren Callahan, Cameron Gridley, Lucy Muir and Clancy Forlano. Not pictured: Steven Clark