HPISD Seeking Feedback on English Language Arts Materials

Highland Park ISD officials are working to select new English language arts materials for grades K-8 and are seeking feedback from district stakeholders.

The search is part of the process of phasing out the Lucy Calkins’ Units of Study materials published by Heinemann, which have been in use since 2019.

District officials hope to have the new materials in place by the start of the 2022-2023 school year.

As of June, a subcommittee of the board of trustees, including trustees Bryce Benson, Maryjane Bonfield, Stacy Kelly, Assistant Superintendent for Education Services Lisa Wilson, and Superintendent Tom Trigg, narrowed the field of potential replacement english language arts materials for grades K-8 to eight options. 

The options include the Open Court Reading Foundational Skills Kit from McGraw Hill Education and Reading Horizons materials for K-3, Open Court Reading from McGraw Hill Education, HMH Into Reading from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and Amplify’s Texas Elementary Literacy Program materials for grades K-5, and HMH Into Literature, SpringBoard ELA materials from CollegeBoard, and Amplify’s Texas ELAR materials for grades 6-8.

Materials are available for review online or in-person through Thursday, June 16 in the William P. Clements Jr. Leadership Center, at 6900 Douglas Avenue. The district is asking for members of the community to submit feedback via this form by 6 p.m. on June 19.

“This is not simply a resource replacement issue. We’re looking at our ELA framework, we’re revising it. My understanding is…that it’s already much more robust,” Benson said. “I just feel really positively that what we’re doing in terms of the work – foundational work – over the summer is going to be really transformational for our district in a really positive way.”

The Highland Park ISD board of trustees approved phasing out the Units of Study materials in April and the district hired Robyn Hartzell, a former teacher who also has experience as an instructional coach, interventionist, trainer, consultant, and program coordinator at the campus and regional levels, and Dr. Thea Woodruff, professor at the University of Texas, Meadows Center researcher, and the principal author of the Texas Reading Academies, as consultants to guide the district through the process of adopting new materials.

Rachel Snyder

Rachel Snyder, deputy editor at People Newspapers, joined the staff in 2019, returning to her native Dallas-Fort Worth after starting her career at community newspapers in Oklahoma. One of her stories won first place in its category in the Oklahoma Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest in 2018. She’s a fan of puns and community journalism, not necessarily in that order. You can reach her at rachel.snyder@peoplenewspapers.com

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