Park Crest Middle School


  • The Most Important Week at PCMS!

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 3/6/2017 3:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas!

    With Spring Break taking place next week, I thought it would be more useful to send out this week’s principal’s blog early in the week. Don’t worry, there are plenty of great things to share with you!

    The Most Important Week:

    This week is perhaps one of the most important weeks for kiddos as it is a pivotal time in the 9-weeks, and in the year. The reason is because the 9-weeks ends almost immediately after returning from Spring Break. We return to school on Monday, March 20th, and the 9-weeks ends on Tuesday, March 21st. This gives students a false illusion that they have more time to fix, finish, and turn in work. PLEASE advise your students to take advantage of this week to bring all grades as high as they possible can.

    Also, the 2016-17 STAAR Tests are quickly approaching. Although the majority of our State Testing occurs in May, we kick of testing as early as March 28th! Below is a breakdown of this year’s testing dates.

    Grade 6 Reading and Math         

    • 6th Grade Math - Monday, May 8, 2017         
    • 6th Grade Reading - Tuesday, May 9, 2017

    Grade 7 Reading, Math, and Writing      

    • 7th Grade Writing - Tuesday, March 28, 2017
    • 7th Grade Pre AP Math – Wednesday, March 29, 2017
    • 7th Grade Math - Monday, May 8, 2017      
    • 7th Grade Reading - Tuesday, May 9, 2017

    Grade 8 Reading, Math, Science and Social Studies

    • 8th Grade Reading - Tuesday, March 28, 2017
    • 8th Grade Math - Wednesday, March 29, 2017 
    • 8th Grade Science - Wednesday, May 10, 2017
    • 8th Grade Social Studies - Thursday, May 11, 2017

    End of Course      

    • STAAR EOC Algebra I - Wednesday, May 3, 2017


    I will be sending more information about these tests when we return from break, but I wanted them on every parent’s radar as they are important to your child, and this campus as indicators of our combined hard work this year. I am extremely confident in the work of our staff, and our students up to this point. All we need now is for our kiddos to show up, be focused, and give their best.

    Speaking of Testing:

    Friendly reminder: A few times a year we get together for our Campus Academic Advisory Council (CAAC). During these meetings we discuss our current data, State Testing data, campus plan, and other important topics on how to help PCMS keep improving, always, in all ways. If you would like to take a look at our 2015-16 school year data for State Testing or our campus plan you may do so at any time via our website at this link: DATA & PLAN Both documents can also be found in our front office.

    Choir Concert:

    No plans Wednesday night? Come on out to the PCMS cafeteria to join me at the Choir Concert! The concert will be held from 7:00 – 8:00pm, Wednesday, March 8th.

    The PfISD Big Event – PCMS Video:

    Did your child come home talking about the Big Event on Friday? If they participated, I sure hope they came home and told you about their positive experience. The event has been featured in the Statesman, Pflugerville Pflag, KVUE, KXAN, KEYE, and of course, all over Facebook. Our extremely talented Ms. Layman has put together a video showing the experience from start to finish. To view it, please visit us on Facebook using this link: PCMS FACEBOOK PAGE Or you can view our video directly using this link: PCMS BIG EVENT 2017

    *Don’t forget to like our page and share our video!

    A Bunch of Ghosts Spotted in the PCMS Library!

    No, not real ghosts. I mean our copies of the book Ghost have arrived! Please encourage your child to pick up a copy and be a part of this year’s campus wide Read It Forward. Although it looks like a lot of copies now, they will go fast!


    PCMS March Madness Event:

    Mirroring the widely popular NCAA March Madness Basketball Tournament, PCMS Library is hosting our own March Madness Tournament. However, our event will crown the 2017 Book of the Year, as determined by PCMS. Registration begins on March 9th through the PCMS Library Website. Here is a link to the PCMS Library Symbaloo (resource page) where voting will take place: PCMS LIBRARY RESOURCES


    Here is a sneak peak of our 32 teams, I mean books, that are in this year’s tournament.


    PCMS is Always Up for an Opportunity to be Gold Medal:

    2017 IT’S TIME TEXAS Community Challenge!

    We are proud to announce PfISD’s participation in the 2017 IT’S TIME TEXAS Community Challenge! This Challenge is an exciting opportunity for all of us to join together, celebrate healthy living, and showcase our efforts to improve our health as individuals and as a community. The five winning communities will receive funds to put toward future health-related projects!  Right now we are in 2nd place in the Midsize school district!

    Here’s how you can get involved:

    1. Log onto the Challenge website:
    2. Register—it just takes a minute and earns our community 1,000 points!
    3. Start uploading your healthy activities! There are numerous ways to earn points; everything from tracking your physical activity daily, to snapping Healthy Selfies, to planning healthy activities at your school or workplace, to hosting communitywide health events! It’s easy to start uploading and here are some ideas to get you started:
      • 200 points » Take a Healthy Selfie. Snap a picture of yourself getting physically active, or eating healthy. You can upload as many of these as you want!
      • 200 points » Organize a Healthy Workplace Activity. How about a healthy office potluck, a kickball game, dropping for 10 pushups every hour with officemates, going on a group walk, or creating makeshift standing desks?
      • 250-10,000 points » Sign a Pledge. There are pledges on the Challenge website for mayors, city councils, employers, school districts, and faith-based leaders.

    Please help get the whole community registered and involved by sharing using the hashtag #CommunityChallenge! This page has additional Challenge information, resources, and promotional materials. Let’s show the rest of Texas what we can do!

    Next Week’s Preview:


    Please note that we have school this entire week, through Friday. Please help us with our attendance goals by not beginning our Spring Break early, and returning first thing Monday morning.


    Most sincerely,

    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    “Keep improving, always, in all ways.”

    Comments (-1)
  • The Big Event and So Much More at PCMS!!!

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 3/3/2017 3:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas,

    Happy Friday! This was a busy week at PCMS between our many campus activities, after school events including our monthly PTO meeting and Principal’s Meeting (CAAC), as well as today’s event; The Big Event! This week was a prime example of how great our staff, students, and parents are at PCMS.

    The PfISD Big Event:

    This year’s PfISD Big Event was the third annual for our district. Year one took place at Hendrickson high school and included 1,100 students. Year two was slated to include all three high schools, and all six middle schools. However, rain had other plans and canceled our event. This year, over 3,600 students, from nine different campuses along with over 180 supervising adults, traveled to over 70 job sites to perform community service. This event was the largest single day community service project in the history of the city of Pflugerville, and it was all completed by kids! How cool is that. I am so proud of our students and staff for their great work across the community. We had a few groups eat lunch a bit later than we had hoped, but overall it was a phenomenal event. Students completed tasks such as; painting, picking up trash, spreading mulch, cleaning playscapes, reading to elementary students, volunteering at nursing homes, and sprucing up gardens, just to name a few! I can’t wait to see this event grow even larger year after year. It is the perfect opportunity to showcase how great our kiddos are at PCMS, and across the district. It just goes to show, if you give our kiddos an opportunity, they will impress you every time!

    Cutting Edge Learning Opportunity:

    Have you ever heard of Escape Rooms? They are a highly addictive recreational experience that challenges participants by forcing them to complete tasks, answer riddles, put together clues, and utilize the items around them to “escape” from a room. They are quickly becoming more popular, and more businesses are popping up in the Austin area. The reason I am telling you all of this is because our Social Studies teacher Mrs. King and our Instructional Coach Mrs. Huval put together an escape room experience to challenge some of our kiddos at PCMS. The event was held during EPIC and was a huge hit! Participating students were given clues, questions, and problems to solve in order to get to the next clue. The activity ended by opening a series of locks and revealing what was inside of the final locked box. What was inside you ask? We are yet to know! The students did great in solving the problems but unfortunately ran out of time! They will have to come back during another Epic to complete the task! Here is an image of some of the kiddos working through the clues.


    Gold Medal Performances:

    Help me congratulate some of our outstanding students who participated in the Special Olympics basketball competition for the Pflugerville Falcons this past weekend.  We had two Park Crest students who participated, and placed:

    • Connor Weise was a member of the 5 on 5 team that earned a silver medal. 
    • Marissa Crittenden was a member of our team skills team that brought home the gold medal. 

    We are super proud of these kiddos! #PCMSGoldMedal

    So Much Happening in the PCMS Library:

    Canes Gift Cards: As we continue to encourage students to enjoy learning, especially through reading, we are offering students the ability to earn a free Canes gift card after successfully reading 7 books. Here is a sample of what the gift card looks like.


    Read it Forward: Next week PCMS kicks off a school wide reading event called Read it Forward, which is an opportunity for multiple students to read the same book that is on spotlight at our campus. This year’s book is the National Book Finalist; Ghost, by Jason Reynolds. I got a head start on this event by reading the book a few weekends back. I can honestly say I could NOT put the book down! It is a great read, especially for middle school age students. I challenge ALL of our kiddos to take part in this year’s event and dive into the journey of a middle school aged student through good and bad as he struggles to overcome obstacles and find a purpose. Through perseverance and hard work, the main character is able to keep improving and eventually… Well, your child is simply going to have to read it for themselves to find out the rest. I encourage your student to visit the library next week to check out this book, or get on the waiting list. We will have 50 copies, but they should go fast! Here is a picture of the book in case you want to purchase a copy of your own through Amazon or a local bookstore:


    Ice Cream to Support PCMS: Want to grab some ice cream with the family, and support Park Crest Middle School? Come on out to the local Baskin-Robbins (located in the Walmart shopping center) on Thursday, March 9th from 5-9pm. Park Crest PTO will receive 20% of all sales that evening!

    PCMS Grant Article:

    Park Crest was the recipient of a handful of grants from the Pflugerville Education Foundation last year. One in particular, which was for the purchase of our amazing 3D printer, was featured in a district article. Read about our amazing staff member Mrs. Matysek and the grant she wrote to help support our kiddos using this link: PCMS GRANT ARTICLE

    Pennies for Patients:

    The annual Leukemia & Lymphoma society fund raiser has come to an end. We are proud to announce that PCMS raised an astonishing $418.86 in a matter of just a few weeks. Thank you to all the parents and students who donated their pennies and other loose change to the cause.

    Extra-Curricular Review:

    Track: Our first track meet took place last night at Hendrickson High Schools. Boys and girls worked hard and I am so proud of the many achievements and experience this event provided.

    Next Week’s Preview:


    Track: Boys and Girls Track photos are on Monday night, and we have our second meet of the year at HHS on Wednesday. Please come out to HHS and support our phenomenal kiddos!


    Comments (-1)
  • Continuous Learning for Everyone at PCMS

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 2/24/2017 2:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas,

    Happy Friday! Make sure you read through all the headlines in this week’s Principal’s Blog so you don’t miss any of the great things that happened this week, and all the things happening next week!

    PCMS Experience:

    We kicked off the week with a day of learning for the adults at PCMS. We had presentations ranging from technology to AVID strategies. It is always useful as an educator to switch seats and take time to learn ourselves.

    Later in the week, I had the opportunity to see a ton of classrooms this week, and was pleased with the learning in every single one! Here is a glimpse of some of the things I saw. Mrs. Perez’s 6th grade students were working on their organization and managing their missing work in Succeed & Achieve. Mr. Martinez’s students were cross multiplying to solve proportions in real world word problems. Mrs. Eaton’s students were using technology to learn about the weather. In Mrs. Reynold’s math class students were interpreting various types of graphs and solving word problems based on the information found in those graphs. In both 7th grade science classes they were working on dissecting frogs. Boy was it stinky! I could go on and on.

    Gold Medal Moments:

    On Monday, February 20th, to kick off our staff development we shared just a few of the many Gold Medal moments we have had together this year at PCMS. Please click this link so you can share in these moments as well: GOLD MEDAL MOMENTS 2016-17

    PCMS Crest:

    I am very proud to present to you an image that the staff has developed to represent and communicate our common understandings of what makes Park Crest Middle School such a great campus! The image below was created through many iterations of conversations about “what we do at Park Crest”. You can expect to hear much more about this crest in the near future. For now, to get a better idea of how this all came about, please take a moment to click this link: PCMS CREST INFORMATION 

     PCMS Crest

    The PfISD Big Event is NEXT WEEK:

    We are so excited to announce that The Big Event is taking place next week on Friday, March 3rd, 2017 across the district. This is a perfect opportunity to showcase our kiddos volunteering and giving back to the community. From my experience with the event, it is an invaluable opportunity for students. All PCMS students, attending or not, must attend school this day. Please use this link for more information about this year’s event: THE BIG EVENT

    What to Bring/wear:

    • Clothing you can work in and get dirty
    • Appropriate shoes
    • Gloves
    • A hat
    • Sunscreen
    • A water bottle

    What not to Bring/wear:

    • Backpacks/purses
    • Expensive clothing/shoes/jewelry
    • Items prohibited at school
    • Items that could be lost or damaged

    Student Art Contest Hoodies Available for Sale:

    Check out these awesome PCMS hoodies! PTO is selling them for $25. Order forms can be found and turned back in to the front office. You can also print out a form using this link: HOODIE ORDER FORM

    Drop off & Pick up Safety:

    I would like to take a moment to provide a friendly reminder to please drive with caution as you approach and enter the school zone. We have many kiddos who walk and ride their bike to and from school well before the day starts, and well after it ends. Please be mindful of our intersections, cross walks, and high traffic areas. Thank you in advance for doing what you can to keep our kiddos safe every day.

    Next Week’s Preview:


    PTO Meeting:

    Come to the library Tuesday night at 6:30 to hear about all the great things the PTO has done, and has planned for PCMS! This is a great way to connect with other Gold Medal parents with the same interest in the success of their kiddos, and our campus. Hope to see you there!

    Principal’s Meeting (Campus Academic Advisory Committee):

    Want to learn more about the classroom instruction at PCMS? Want to learn more about the strategic plan at PCMS? How about the financial and professional development priorities? Want a chance to hear straight from the principal regarding the current data and progress of our students? Then come to the PCMS library Wednesday Night from 6:00-7:00pm! A parent who attended last month’s meeting put together this great word cloud to help describe what this meeting is all about, and what we discuss:


    Track Season:

    Come support our track athletes this Thursday. The track meet will be hosted at Hendrickson High School.


    Most sincerely,

    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    “Keep improving, always, in all ways.”

    Comments (-1)
  • Student 3 Day Week at PCMS!

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 2/17/2017 3:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas,

    Happy Friday! This week I want to start by sharing a story. I ran into a beloved community member this week who stays in touch with what is going on at Park Crest through this blog. They asked me, “Mr. Kleypas, is Park Crest really as great as you make it out to be?” I smiled and confidently replied, “YES!”. Then they made reference to our Gold Medal theme as they asked “All I see is Gold Medal this, Gold Medal that. Do you all get 1st place in everything you do over there?” to which I responded something along the lines of, “No, not everything. But we make sure to acknowledge and appreciate when we do, and strive to keep improving, always, in all ways when we don’t.” The conversation was so simple, yet so representative of our reputation here at PCMS. Thanks to your support, your outstanding kiddos, and the dedication of this staff, we have established a reputation in this community of being the best of the best; Gold Medal, in everything we do. It is this Gold Medal standard, combined with our keep improving mindset that is going to propel our students to learn more, achieve more, and be more confident in their abilities.

    PCMS Gold Medal Staff Members:

    Every year we have the privilege and honor of recognizing the amazing accomplishments of two members of our staff.

    The first, is an individual who stands out as a Humanitarian; someone who is a servant leader and enhances the wellbeing of students, staff, and the community with everything they do. I am proud to announce the 2016-17 Park Crest Middle School Humanitarian of the year, Assistant Principal Clint Shuman! To read a little more about Mr. Shuman, please click this link: HUMANITARIAN OF THE YEAR

    The second individual recognized is our Teacher of the Year. You can imagine what a difficult task this is due to the All-star lineup at PCMS. An individual who receives the Teacher of the Year award should be positive, supportive, student-centered, engaging, dynamic, knowledgeable, and innovative, among other things. Thus, it was without question that we recognize our 2016-17 Park Crest Middle School Teacher of the Year, Science Teacher Leti Munoz! To read a little more about Ms. Munoz, please click this link: TEACHER OF THE YEAR

    In honor of one of my favorite PCMS traditions; decorated ceiling tiles, we awarded both staff members with a custom ceiling tile to be utilized in their classroom/office to commemorate their achievement:

    TOY & HOY

    Gold Medal Kickstart Performance:

    If you follow my blog each week, you have heard me rave about our Kickstart program. Well, it seems they have done it again! Our 6th grade, and our 7th/8th grade demo teams competed in the regional competition and came home with some major achievements! Our 6th grade team, which competed in the beginner division finished 2nd in Central Texas. Our 7th/8th grade team, competed in the advanced division and was the Central Texas Regional Champions! They will now compete for best in the state of Texas later in the school year! So proud of these amazing kiddos. #PCMSGoldMedal


    UIL Gold Medal:

    I unintentionally left off two Gold Medal student performances on last week’s UIL Academics shout out! Good news, is now they get a special feature! Kudos to JT and Kayla, and all of our UIL Academics competitors at the district meet.


    Future Weiss Students Only (Cheerleading):

    Are you interested in trying out for cheerleader, yell leader or mascot at Weiss High School for the 2017 school year? You will need to attend the mandatory try-out meeting on Wednesday, March 1st at Cele Middle School. There are information sheets in the front office available with additional information. Or you can click this link: WEISS CHEERLEADING

    Next Week’s Preview:


    Student Holiday:

    Friendly reminder that Monday is a student holiday. Meanwhile, the staff at PCMS will be eagerly learning and finding ways to keep improving, always, in all ways.”

    Board seeks your input for next Superintendent of Schools:


    The Pflugerville ISD Board of Trustees has begun the search for the next Superintendent of Schools. 

    The position has been posted and will stay open for applications until March 16. Trustees will review all applications and make selections for candidates to interview during the last part of March. By early April, the Board will begin the interview process, with a final selection of a lone finalist later in April. There is a state-mandated, 21-day waiting period after naming a lone finalist before the Board can officially execute a contract. The Board hopes that the new Superintendent will enter the district on a full-time basis sometime in early summer.

    It is very important to the Board that staff and community have the opportunity to provide feedback on what qualities and characteristics that it would like to see in the next Superintendent. With that in mind, there will be an open community forum on Wednesday February 22, from 4:30-7:30 p.m. in the PfISD Rock Gym (immediately next door to Timmerman Elementary at 700 West Pecan St. in Pflugerville), where the community can provide input into the selection process. Staff will be on hand to take comments that will be provided to the Board of Trustees to assist them in the search process.

    The forum will have a come-and-go format to provide flexibility for community members who wish to participate. In addition, for those who cannot attend the forum or wish to provide online input, there is an online survey opportunity to provide input to the process as well. Visit the PfISD website ( beginning Friday, February 17, and click the link that says “Superintendent Search.” All input will be shared with the Board.


    Most Sincerley,


    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    “Keep improving, always, in all ways.”

    Comments (-1)
  • #PCMSGoldMedal from PCMS!

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 2/10/2017 3:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas,

    Happy Friday! This was an amazing week at PCMS. On behalf of the faculty and staff, thank you so much to everyone who brought in chili for Monday’s chili luncheon. That made our day!

    Tutorial Reminders:

    Afterschool, myself or a fellow administrator travels the building with our rolling cart full of snacks to deliver to every kiddo staying for tutorials. As I walk the building I can’t help but notice that the classrooms are not as full as I would hope they would be. Students who have questions in class, struggle with an assignment, or simply want more individual support from their teacher, should really be utilizing the time our teachers devote to staying past the school day. Since we tweaked our EPIC 2.0 procedures to reflect more intervention in preparation for STAAR tests, there is an even greater need to attend afterschool tutorials. Here are a few ways you can support your kiddo to identity which tutorial they can be attending, and when:

    1. Check FOCUS for students grades, assignments, and missing work: FOCUS PARENT PORTAL
    2. Check our website for the grade level specific tutorial calendar:

    PCMS Experience:

    I got to see some artists show of their skills while displaying their learning in Mrs. Vita’s class. You would have been amazed to see the creativity as they drew pictures to illustrate the story they were reading. All of the 7th grade students were highly engaged and could tell me exactly what their illustrations were about. It was evidence of learning at its finest!

    Later, in Mrs. Reynold’s 7th grade math class, I got to join a group and watch them learn as we completed math problems that were scattered around the room in a scavenger hunt format. It was great to see the kids up and active, yet behaved and engaged. I was also impressed with how well my group could teach me how to find the volume and surface area as I pretended that I wasn’t a former high school math teacher and had no idea what I was doing.

    Our 7th grade science students have had a blast learning about the digestive system this week. In fact, all of our students got to color shirts depicting our entire digestive system which they will wear with pride on Friday. Evert student I pop-quizzed could identify all of the organs and parts on the shirt. #PCMSGoldMedal.

     science shirts

    Gold Medal Performance in UIL:

    Last weekend our students competed at the District UIL Academic meet. The brilliant minds at PCMS came home with numerous individual wins and won 1st place in the overall meet! I am so proud of our participating kiddos and their achievement. Here is a list of the top finishes of our PCMS students:

    UIL Meet

    Librarian of the Year Finalist:

    This will come as no surprise; your children have The Best Librarian, here at PCMS. Mrs. LaMarre was recently recognized for all of her greatness by being named a finalist for the TCEA State of Texas Librarian of the Year! #PCMSGoldMedal



    Counselor Appreciation Week:

    Can you imagine a campus without our amazing counselor team? I CAN’T! Please take a moment to email your child’s counselor to thank them for all the work they do to meet the diverse needs of our student bodies. A simply thank you goes a long way!

    6th grade: Darlena Walker –

    7th grade: Chris Shanahan –

    8th grade: Kristina Wells –


    A Word from PTO:

    PTO has another event coming up that could use your support. This time around, instead of chili, they are seeking sweets! Please use the link below to sign up for a Valentine’s sweet treat to make in appreciation of our teachers at PCMS. On February 14th.

    Extra-Curricular Review:

    Boys basketball had their season finale Monday night against Pflugerville Middle School. 8th grade B team and our 7th grade A team finished with wins! Congratulations to all the boys this year on a great season of basketball. Special thanks to our coaches; Lauve, Prine, Elliot, and Wilson for their dedication and long hours to developing our teams.

    Next Week’s Preview:


     Monday, February 20th:

    Not next week, but the folloiwng Monday is a staff development for PfISD. Students do not have school. Meanwhile, our staff will be working hard to keep improving, always, in all ways through structured professional development on campus.


    Most sincerely,


    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    “Keep improving, always, in all ways.”

    Comments (-1)
  • Great Start to Februrary at PCMS!

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 2/3/2017 3:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas,

    Happy Friday!

    PCMS Experience:

    Wow, there was some great stuff happening at PCMS this week! I visited our 6th grade science classes and saw students in Mrs. McGuire’s class calculating all kinds of measurements in a highly engaging race car lab! Students were crunching numbers, using academic vocabulary, and collaborating as if they were high school age. I was blown away.

    Just down the hall, in Ms. Munoz’s 7th grade science lab I got to participate in learning about the digestive system and how the enzymes in our saliva work to break down foods. The class seemed to get a little too much amusement out of watching me chew, but not ingesting, two saltine crackers in my mouth for two minutes. You can try this experiment at home and feel the cracker turn into a not-so-pleasant moosh.

    Over in the A hall Ms. Rivera’s 6th grade Tech Apps class was researching and designing parks. They were taking into consideration a budget, cost of amenities; restrooms, parking lot, pool, etc. It was interesting to see students discuss where they would place each amenity in relation to the other, and why. I definitely saw some parks my young daughter would insist I take her to!

    Meanwhile, 7th grade math has started finding the volume of 3D shapes! Mrs. McNamer’s class was utilizing both pictorial representations along with 3D models to practice finding the volume of rectangular prisms by first calculating the area of the base and then multiplying that by the height… Pretty impressive stuff for a middle school student, or anyone really!

    In Ms. Flores’s English class students were highly engaged as they transported into the story they were reading by taking on characters and reading aloud in the tone and emphasis of their character. Ms. Flores’s contagious enthusiasm had a huge impact on the amazing climate in the class.

    PCMS Takes Home GOLD:

    I could not be more proud of our 6th grade representative Zachary Lucas for his performance in the district Geography Bee! Check out the picture below of Zachary and our amazing PfISD School Board President Vernagene Mott, as well as a picture of the 1st place trophy and hardware Zach brought home.


    Science Night Top Finishes:

    As I mentioned in a previous blog, this year’s science night was amazing. It was another example of how talented our students are here at PCMS. I am pleased to announce we had 160 student projects presented! The 7th grade group was judged for their inventions. I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge our top finishers from the 7th grade inventions.

    1st place

    Here is a glimpse at a few of the top projects!


    PCMS Represented Well:

    We would like to congratulate our future Pumas, and the rest of the elementary school kiddos who performed at the Inaugural Elementary Fine Arts Showcase on Tuesday Night. Although the featured performers were of course our elementary students, we are proud to share that our very own, Gold Medal staff member; Sgt. Groft, was leading the group on the piano! Just another example of how amazing and talented our staff are.


    PTO Chili Cook-off:

    Parents, there are still some things needed for the PTO chili cook off for the faculty and staff. Please use this link to see what is needed, and sign up where you can:

    Health & Wellness:

    Since the return from winter break we have seen a rise in student’s absences due to being sick. Please help to encourage your children to wash their hands frequently, do not rub your eyes or mouth, eat healthy, and get plenty of sleep. Our bodies, especially our kiddos’, are more susceptible to illness when we don’t take care of ourselves and when we are fatigued. We need everyone’s help to meet our attendance goal this nine weeks. We definitely have work to do. Don’t forget to bring in doctors notes for any medical absences.

    Track Information:

    * you must have an approved UIL Physical on file in order to try out *

    GIRLS who want to try out for the PCMS Track Team need to visit the athletic hallway to sign up for the event(s) they are interested in trying out for. Tryouts will be each day next week, February 6th -10th after school.

    BOYS who want to try out for the PCMS Track Team need to contact Coach Prine before Friday February 10, 2017. Coach Prine will give you more information in detail:

    • After school tryouts will begin on Monday February 13th.
    • Tryouts will be Monday-Thursday the week of February 13th. No Friday practice.
    • Tryouts will end at 4:45 p.m. & athletes need to make arrangements to be off campus by 5:15 p.m.
    • Athletes competing in the first track meet will be announced by Friday February 24th.
    • Parent Meeting for PCMS Boys Track will be Tuesday, February 28th at 5:30 p.m. in
    • the gym. Parents/Guardians please make arrangements to attend.

    The Big Event T-Shirts:

    T-shirts are for sale to ALL students, participating or not, for only $3.00. Students may purchase their shirt before school in the main hall from now until Friday, February 9th. This year’s t-shirts will keep our traditional design, but sport maroon letters.

    big e

    Order Your PCMS Yearbook:

    It is that time of year where we begin to collect yearbook orders.



    8th Grade Parents:

    Many of you have received the postcard in the mail for your scheduled date and time for the High School course selection meetings. Please continue to check the mail if you have not received yours yet. If you need to reschedule your date, please call ASAP. *NOTE: all meetings for PCMS students & parents will be held here at PCMS in our library during your provided date and time.

    Leukemia Fundraiser Returning to PCMS:

    Next week we will begin our annual Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Fundraiser. We will be collecting change (coins) throughout all lunches from February 6th – 24th. The grade level who raises the most money for the fundraiser will receive a recess reward! Most importantly, contributing to this fundraiser teaches our kiddos that donating even a small amount of change, when multiplied by the amount of students we have, can have a huge impact. It brings us back to our first semester EPIC lesson; The Butterfly Effect.

    Here is the Societies website for more information about the organization we are supporting: LEUKEMIA FUNDRAISER

    Pet Vaccination Clinic:

    On Monday, February 6th, 2017 Highland Park Elementary School will host a Pet Vaccination Clinic from 5-7pm. The proceeds will go to help local 5th grade students with graduation and end of year celebrations. Here are the prices for each vaccination:

    • Rabies (cat & dog): $5.00
    • Dog Vaccines (DHLP/Parvo/Corona): $15.00
    • Bordetella (Kennel Cough): $10.00
    • Cat Vaccines (PRCC/Feluk): $15.00
    • Complete yearly vaccine: $20.00

    Extra-Curricular Review:

    Boys basketball took on Westview Monday night. All four teams played great against the Wildcats. The 8th grade A team lost in a very hard fought game, while the 8th grade B team and both 7th grade teams came up victorious.

    Girls’ basketball played their final game of the season versus Pflugerville Middle School at PHS. It was a packed house at PHS for the finale and PCMS came home with two victories. The 7th grade B team and the 8th grade A team were victorious.

    Next Week’s Preview:

    The next few weeks we have a calm after school calendar as we transition sports and the bulk of the course information nights has been completed. Don’t let the white spaces fool you, we will be busy focusing on the learning during the school day here at PCMS!


    Most sincerely,


    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    “Keep improving, always, in all ways.”

    Comments (-1)
  • So Much to Share from PCMS!

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 1/27/2017 3:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas,

    Happy Friday! This was another great week at PCMS, full of things to celebrate.

    PCMS Experience:

    To start off, we had another amazing Pep Rally organized by our fantastic cheer sponsors Mrs. McNamer and Mrs. Grona. This pep rally was to honor our spring sports of girls and boys basketball. In true pep rally fashion, this was the best one yet!

    On Tuesday, we welcomed our future Pumas in style during our annual 5th grade visit. Special thanks to Ms. Scarbo, our current 8th grade assistant principal, who organized an amazing event! I also want to thank our band, choir, cheerleaders, Theatre Arts, Kickstart students and teachers who showed the 5th graders how amazing our elective programs are. Perhaps the real star of the show however, was the amazing leadership of our AVID students led by their teacher Coach Vecchio. It was amazing to see our AVID students lead groups of bright eyed 5th graders through our halls on our guided tours, and hold Q&A sessions with their small group. The skills, attitudes, and leadership of our Park Crest students never cease to amaze me. Seeing our kids showcased at such a high level was definitely one of those proud moments as a principal I will remember for a long time to come.

    During my usual visits through classrooms this week I got to experience a lab in science that nearly took my breath away. In Mrs. Larson’s science class students experimented with different scenarios such as doing burpees, wall sits, push-ups and the infamous hand in an ice bath, to see how these activities affected their breathing and heart rate. Students learned how to use stethoscopes and the importance of being gentle with the Chestpiece once you put them in your ears.

    Want to see students having fun while they learn? Check out these pictures of students learning while “playing” in our 6th grade social studies classes led by the outstanding Mr. Schwarz and Mrs. King.


    (students learning through games in Mrs. King’s class)


    (students learning through Kahoot! in Mr. Schwarz’s class)

    I also got to visit some electives classrooms and saw our Professional Communications students learn about the importance of clear, concise communication, as well as the role of the speaker and the listener. I really enjoyed Ms. Layman’s thought provoking lesson delivery which included this famous quote:

    Why is Park Crest a Gold Medal Campus?

    Park Crest isn’t a gold medal campus because of the fact that we have a beautiful campus. It isn’t a gold medal campus because of the great systems we have in place. It isn’t a gold medal campus because we have such a website and social media presence. It isn’t a gold medal campus because of the fact that we are integrating new technology into our lessons. No, it isn’t any of those things. Park Crest is a Gold medal – the best of the best – campus because of the people who work here. I could walk in and out of every classroom, through our hallways, into the cafeteria, gym, and elective hallways, out to our football field, and into our offices and see great people, who are dedicated day after day to making Park Crest a Gold Medal campus. In fact, this month Park Crest Middle School’s very own Melba, our cafeteria manager, was recognized as the district staff member of the month. That is twice this year that a staff member at PCMS has been awarded this prestigious award. How great is it to know that not only is your child taken care of in the classroom, but also in the cafeteria at the highest level? To view some picture of Melba and our amazing cafeteria staff, and to read more about the award, please click this link: DISTRICT STAFF MEMBER OF THE MONTH


    A Reminder from PTO:

    If you have not already done so, please take a second to sign up for the PTO Chili Luncheon using this link: PTO CHILI SIGNUP This luncheon is a special treat for our teachers and staff that we really appreciate! Thank you in advance to everyone who contributes.

    PCMS Art Contest Winner!

    I have been sharing the amazing art that has been submitted for our contest to be used on a PCMS t-shirt/hoodie. The time has come to announce our winner!

    The final design will be based off of 8th grader Colton’s fantastic illustration. The design will be used by PTO to create PCMS hoodies. Want one? Me too! Information is coming soon on pricing and how to put in your order. Thanks to all the talented PCMS artists who entered this year’s competition.



    Homework for YOU, Parents and Friends:

    Parents, I have some homework for you this weekend. If you have not already done so, please take a second to visit our PCMS Facebook page at: This week alone we have added over 20 new posts! Stay plugged in to the great things happening through our social media. For extra credit, give us a LIKE!

    Noah’s Wing 5K:

    Reminder: today is the last day to register for the Noah’s Wing 5k event and still be guaranteed a t-shirt. I signed up and can’t wait for the event. Have you and your kiddos signed up yet???

    How do I register? You can go to their website to register, or for more information using this link: NOAHS WING 5K

    This year’s event will be held on Sunday, February 19th, 2017 at 1:00pm on the trails surrounding Lake Pflugerville. This 5K will be a fun, family-friendly time for runners and walkers of any fitness level. They will have a photo-op tent, kid’s activity tent, medals for our top finishers, and all registered participants are eligible for event prize drawings.  

    Noah's Wings 5K benefits the Noah Rodriguez Memorial Scholarship Fund for Pflugerville ISD High School Graduates. 

    Extra-Curricular Review:

    Boys’ basketball took on Cele Monday night. Both 8th grade teams came away with big wins this week. However, the 7th grade Cele team gave us a tough fight.

    Girls’ basketball played Westview on Thursday night. All teams brought home victories, except our 8th grade A team fell to the wildcats in a close, hard fought game.

    Next Week’s Preview:


    Early Release:

    Reminder that Wednesday, February 1st is an early release day for students. Attendance will be taken and accounted for on this day, so please make sure your child is here to learn along with us. We as adults utilize the time in the afternoon to learn together and prepare fantastic lessons for use in upcoming lessons. Here is the early release bell schedule: EARLY RELEASE BELL SCHEDULE

    5th Grade Parent Night:

    Do you know a parent of a 5th grade student that is planning on attending PCMS next year? Help us spread the word that Tuesday, January 31st, at 6pm will be our 5th grade parent night. We highly encourage parents, and their students, come by and hear about our elective offerings and Pre AP classes. We will have staff on hand to answer questions and provide guidance to our incoming Pumas and their families.

    Thursday Girls’ Basketball Games:

    Please take note that on Thursday, February 2nd both girls basketball teams will play at PHS. 8th grade will compete in the large gym and 7th grade in the small gym. All games will be held at normal time.


    Most sincerely,

    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    "Keep improving, always, in all ways."

    Comments (-1)
  • Making Good Use of a 4 Day Week!

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 1/20/2017 3:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas,

    Our students and staff made full use of only having four days of school this week. It was a good thing too, because next week is even busier! Before I start to talk about next week, I want to take a moment to acknowledge some great things from this week.

    Science Fair: Thank you to all the parents who came out and supported our kiddos at the Science fair last night. The cafeteria was full for our come-and-go event. Special thanks to our 6th and 7th grade science teachers; Ms. Kienzle, Mrs. McGuire, Mrs. Larson, and Ms. Munoz, as well as our science instructional coach Mrs. Hooks for all of their hard work. It was evident by the products I saw that these teachers really pushed our kiddos to think outside of the box.

    AVID Shadow Day: AVID traveled to PHS for their annual shadow day. In talking to the kiddos when they returned it was evident that the day was a major success. There is something special about students getting to spend time asking questions and observing older students who they can relate to. Kudos to Coach Vecchio for her leadership of our amazing AVID program.

    Honor Roll: The 2nd 9-nine weeks’ student Honor Roll awards were delivered today during 6th period. I am so proud to announce that we had nearly 25% of our students acknowledged for either all A’s or all A’s and one B. That is something that not many middle school campuses can achieve. It is all due to our dedicated and support staff, the hard work and focus of our students, and our parents who make sure that learning is a priority. Here is a nice image to illustrate our growth, and our goals:

    honor roll

    The 2017-18 District Calendar:

    The district is looking for community input as we work the determine the 2017-18 school year calendar. Certain restrictions apply that limit the choices we have. To view the proposed calendar, read the restrictions that apply, and to provide your feedback, please click this link: 2017-18 PROPOSED CALENDAR. *Please pay special attention to the dates of the winter holiday.

    Lady Puma information:


    Click here for more information: FLYER (ENGLISH) FLYER (SPANISH)

    Current 6th Grade Parents only:

    It is that time of year where we want to make sure all current 6th grade parents understand the state law that requires all incoming 7th grade students to be up to date on their immunizations before they are able to start the school year. Now is the time to begin to schedule appointments to get those shots taken care of before the offices fill up. Our school nurse put together a great letter explaining which shots students need, a few local locations that offer the shots, and how to turn them in ahead of time to ensure your child is ready for the next school year. Click here to view the letter: IMMUNIZATIONS LETTER

    Current 6th & 7th Grade Parents:

    Be on the lookout for this year’s course selection sheets to be coming home with your child. Students will be given their course selection sheets on Tuesday, January 24th. They will be expected to make selections and return them within one week by the following Tuesday, January 31st.

    Current 8th Grade Parents only:

    4-year high school planning will happen at PCMS with our middle school counselors through all 8th grade math classes on Monday, February 6th. Then, parent meetings/course planning with the high school counselors will take place on February 16th and 17th. Continue to check your mailbox in the near future for postcards with your appointment time.

    A Word from the High School:

    Now that we are in the second semester, I will most likely have this section each week. In order to keep our 8th grade parents in the loop of what is going on at both Hendrickson and Pflugerville high school I will try to find any relevant information and include it here for your convenience.

    This week’s info is from the HHS Cheerleaders:

    Hendrickson cheerleader tryouts are coming soon! A mandatory parent meeting will be held on Wednesday, February 1st at 6:30p.m. in the HHS library. Check out the cheer page on Hendrickson's website for more information by clicking this link: Also, here is an attachment with more information: HHS CHEERLEADING

    Extra-Curricular Review:

    Boys basketball competed Wednesday night against Dessau. The 7th and 8th grade B teams were victorious, while both A teams were not. However, the 7th grade A team game was a close one, but the diamondbacks came up with the two-point win.

    Girls basketball played Cele Thursday night. The 7th grade A team came up with a nice win last night. Unfortunately, both of the 8th grade teams, and the 7th grade B team fell to the Colts.

    Next Week’s Preview:


    Geography Bee: Last week PCMS students competed in the annual campus Geography Bee led by our amazing 8th grade social studies teacher, Mr. Kincaid. I am proud to announce that 6th grader Zach Lucas won the event. He will compete on behalf of Park Crest in the district showcase on January 28th.

    Campus Academic Advisory Committee: Come join us on Wednesday, January 25th at 6:00pm in the PCMS Library to discuss our priorities, progress, data, goals, and achievements.

    Pep Rally: On Monday, January 23rd we will be putting on a pep rally to support our spring events. There will be no epic, as we will use that extra 30 minutes of time in the day, at the end of the day, for the Pep Rally. Click here for our pep rally schedule:

    District Assessments: On Friday, January 27th we will begin the first of our second round of district assessments. Friday will be our 7th grade Pre AP and 8th grade math assessments. These students will be provided a testing room and operate as if it was a state testing day to practice the routines and procedures of the real thing. This is a great way to prepare students not only for the content of STAAR, but also the environment.


    Most sincerely,

    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    “Keep improving, always, in all ways.”

    Comments (-1)
  • It's a Great Day to be a Puma!

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 1/13/2017 2:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas,

    Since returning from the break, every staff member is focusing on improving on the high level of success we had in the first semester. During EPIC 2.0 teachers are utilizing the improved structure to provide more purposeful intervention. During classroom instruction, learning is happening everywhere!

    In science, I saw students presenting their science fair projects. In fact, I saw some “shark tank” worthy inventions in Mrs. Larson’s class. Come out on January 19th to see it for yourself. In 6th grade math, I saw students learning through a flipped classroom in Mr. Martinez’s class. The technology the district has provided us has really allowed us to take the learning into the 21st century. In 8th grade Pre-AP English I saw students comprehending poems. I even learned some new vocabulary while in there! I saw students in 7th grade math learning about radius, diameter, circumference, and area. Mrs. McNamer taught some of these pretty complex concepts using a common hula hoop as a visual.

    Last Friday Kickstart students put on an amazing performance for a jam packed PCMS gym. Their skill, discipline, respect, and confidence was incredibly impressive. In fact, my 7-year-old daughter was kicking and chopping all through the house the whole weekend. It was all she could talk about! Tuesday Theatre Arts students traveled to the Paramount theatre to watch “Call of the Wild”. Students came back excited to apply what they learned. In my opinion, this trip was exactly what education is all about; providing and exposing students to relevant opportunities and experiences they might otherwise not have.

    I could go on, and on…


    Need I explain more? About every other blog posting I talk about attendance. It’s simple, it affects your child’s ability to receive instruction, intervention, and the class work being performed. Also, what many don’t know is that our attendance for the entire campus plays a role in our campus accountability, which in turn translates into how others view our school. For those reasons, we make it a priority every day.

    We have been working hard this year to find a way to reward kiddos who share our priority and make it to school every day. Thanks to Mighty Fine burgers, we have found just that! For any student who had perfect attendance during the 2nd nine weeks we handed out an awesome certificate (see below) and even better, a free burger, fries, and drink coupon for Mighty Fine Burgers today during lunch to over 400 students. We will continue this for the 3rd nine weeks, however, to give everyone a fair chance we will only count absences from Tuesday, 1/17/16 through the end of the 3rd nine weeks. Thus, everyone is eligible! Remember, for an absence to count as excused it must have a doctor’s note. P.S. we recognize that for our middle school students to make it to school every day it takes the dedication and support from their parents as well, so for that, we thank you!


    Gift Card

    A Word from PTO:

    We have THE best middle school PTO in the district. They are always looking for ways to support our hard working teachers, and for that I am very grateful! An upcoming event they are putting on to their annual chili luncheon. For this to be a success, they need enough chili to serve our staff of nearly 100. Whether you have an award winning recipe, know how to follow the instructions on the back of “false-alarm” chili, or simply would like to donate a gift card to PTO to go towards the supplies, your support would be greatly appreciated. To do so please utilize this link: CHILI LUNCHEON

    Extra-Curricular Review:

    Boys basketball took on Kelly Lane this week. The 8th grade teams were not victorious this week. However, both 7th grade teams brought home wins in two very close games! The A team won by only two points, while B team was even closer with a one-point game!

    Girls basketball took on the Dessau Diamondbacks. Their results mirrored that of the boys; both 8th grade teams lost, while both 7th grade teams won.

    Most importantly, all teams played hard this week and are showing tremendous growth from the start of the season!

    Next Week’s Preview:


    Monday – No School:

    Monday is Martin Luther King Jr.Day. Thus, both students and staff will be out of school. Classes will resume as usual on Tuesday, January 17th.

    Science Night:

    As I mentioned above, I have seen some amazing science projects! We are hosting the Science Night here at PCMS from 6:00 – 7:30pm on Thursday, January 19th. Stop by and preview how talented our 6th & 7th grade PCMS students are. 6th grade students will have a continuous loop of their Rube Goldberg projects running on the main screen at the front of the cafeteria. 7th grade students will have on display (level 2 in the cafeteria) their invention convention!! All students are welcomed and encouraged to come as well. Students can earn some extra credit for attending and completing the fun scavenger hunt!

    HS Course Fair (8th grade parents):

    I had the opportunity to visit both the PHS and HHS course fairs last week and was very pleased with both events. It was great to see all of the PCMS students checking out the many opportunities they will have in high school. If it seemed overwhelming, don’t stress, high school counselors will set up individual meetings to discuss any questions, comments, or concerns. Please be looking for more info to come. If you weren’t able to make it, or would like more information about the graduation plans, endorsements, or courses offered at high school please check out this link: HIGH SCHOOL COUNSELING


    Most sincerely,

    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    “Keep improving, always, in all ways.”

    Comments (-1)
  • 2nd Semester at PCMS

    Posted by Zachary Kleypas at 1/6/2017 4:00:00 PM

    Greetings Pumas!

    It is officially business as usual back at PCMS.

    Need a New Year’s Resolution?

    Come join the PCMS PTO! It is easy and fun. Join us on Tuesday, January 10th, at 6:30pm in the PCMS library. Whether you are ready to take on a major role, or simply want to come by and hear what we are up to, I encourage you to come this Tuesday.

    No plans tonight?

    Come join us for the rescheduled Kickstart Belt Ceremony tonight at the PCMS gym from 6:30-7:30pm. The kiddos are excited to get the opportunity they had been preparing for prior to the winter break.

    PCMS Student T-Shirt Art Contest Winner:

    We have concluded the PCMS Student Art T-shirt contest and the winner has been chosen by the students! It was an amazing competition and I am so impressed with all of the submissions.

    The three finalist selected by the community were:


    The winner, voted on by the students, will be revealed in an upcoming blog! You will have to tune in next time for the final results!

    Want to view all the amazing submissions again? Click this link: PCMS TSHIRT SUBMISSIONS

    Noah’s Wing 5K:

    Every year, PCMS and the community promotes and participates in a 5K race; Noah’s Wing 5K, that is held near to the heart of our campus. Noah was a student a few years ago at PCMS who passed away while at PCMS. After his passing, Noah’s parents organized this 5K in order to raise money for local scholarships in his honor.

    This year’s event will be held on Sunday, February 19th, 2017 at 1:00pm on the trails surrounding Lake Pflugerville. This 5K will be a fun family-friendly time for runners and walkers of any fitness level. They will have a photo-op tent, kid’s activity tent, medals for our top finishers, and all registered participants are eligible for event prize drawings.  

    Noah's Wings 5K benefits the Noah Rodriguez Memorial Scholarship Fund for Pflugerville ISD High School Graduates. 

    How do I register? Park Crest will host On-site registration from 1pm - 3pm at the front doors of Park Crest Middle School on Sunday, January 15th, 2017.

    You can also go to their website to register, or for more information using this link: NOAHS WING 5K

    Extra-Curricular Review:

    Wednesday night the boys’ basketball team took on Pflugerville Middle School. 7th grade A team won while the other teams fell to the Panthers. The 8th grade A team played hard but fell behind by only 2 points.

    Thursday night girls’ basketball battled the Kelly Lane Knights. The girls played really hard, and the 7th grade B team kept it to a 3 point game, but unfortunatley, all teams lost to the Knights.

    Next Week’s Preview:


    High School Course Fairs:

    Both Pflugerville and Hendrickson High Schools are having their Course Fair on January 11th from 6-8 pm on their campuses.  Everyone is welcome but 8th graders should plan on attending. Parents and students are encouraged to go and speak with high school counselors, teachers and students to learn about the many different classes available.

    Transitions to High School Information (8th grade parents):

    During the week of January 17th, all 8th grade students will complete the Career inventory/Cluster finder through with Mrs. Wells while in their math classes. Then, during the week of February 6th, they will complete 4-Year Planning. Finally, watch your mail for postcards with your appointment time-coming home soon for the required Parent meetings/Course planning with High School Counselors that occur on February 16th-17th.


    Most sincerely,


    Zack Kleypas
    Park Crest Middle School

    “Keep improving, always, in all ways.”

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