Sehba Shares: Balancing Academic Excellence and Joy

KIPP Texas families,

It has been 14 days since the first day of school, and I am amazed at what I’ve witnessed across our four regions. I have been fortunate to see so many of you as I have visited more than 37 schools since day one! I can’t wait to see the brilliance and excellence in the remaining 20!  

Meeting so many amazing Little and Big KIPPsters has been a whirlwind of joy and inspiration. I have left each school so grateful because it is evident that our entire Team and Family is committed to Chasing Excellence in every classroom every day. Last week, I visited KIPP Liberation’s (Houston) 6th grade math teacher, Ms. Pruitt, who engaged her class in a roaring celebration when all but three students mastered the class exit ticket. You could hear the cheers all the way down the hallway.

I also sat in a KIPP Paseo Primary’s (Austin) PK-4 classroom where Master Teacher, Ms. Nadia Abdalah, taught our four-year old babies how to engage in a turn n’ talks with academic discourse. It was incredible! 

Meanwhile, up the road at KIPP Somos Collegiate (San Antonio), Lilian De La Rosa, AP literature teacher, planned intentionally on how to teach her KIPPsters to vigorously debate during a seminar on A Streetcar Named Desire. She created oral sentence stems and modeled the habits of discussion. In fact, KIPPsters were so engaged and felt so safe that they continued to debate the prompt after class was over! 

During my visit to KIPP Voyage Academy (Houston), I got to reconnect with 5th grader Sarah, my shadow-a-KIPPster buddy! I spent the day shadowing her and her 4th grade teammates last spring at KIPP Legacy Preparatory next door! See our picture below!

As we enter week three of the school year, we will continue to Bring Joy into our classrooms every day and give our Little KIPPsters specific praise for the excellent and hard work they do daily in our classrooms and throughout our schools. Please watch this video of Ms. Couch, a distinguished kindergarten teacher at KIPP Explore Academy in Houston who uses positive narration to bring so much joy in her classroom. 

Excellent positive narration by Ms. Crouch, Kindergarten teacher at KIPP Explore Academy in Houston! 

Let’s share the joy with our friends and family to join our KIPP Texas Team and Family. We are still enrolling students with limited seats across San Antonio, Austin, Houston and Dallas. View which schools and what grades are open here and refer a friend today to join your Little KIPPster because school is more fun with family and friends! Or share this post with your family and friends! 

Thank you, KIPP Texas families, for the strong start on our A+ First Days of school and for bringing your Little KIPPster to school every day. We were ready for our Little KIPPsters and ignited to Chase Excellence as We Are On Our Way to A!

Enjoy a long weekend to rest and recover as we celebrate Labor Day on Monday, September 4.

With Gratitude,

Sehba Ali 


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