In celebration of the World Series champion Houston Astros, Harmony Public Schools will be closing all schools and administrative offices in Houston, Cypress, Katy, and Sugar Land on Monday, November 7, 2022. Classes will resume on their normal schedule Tuesday, November 8.

Have a wonderful and safe day of celebration, Houston families.

Go Astros!

Dear Harmony Families & Team Members,

Welcome back!

With a new year comes new opportunities and a time for new beginnings. We believe this school year is going to be filled with more opportunities than ever for achievement, exploration, and inspiration for our students and team members across Texas.

This year, Harmony is proud to welcome its largest class ever – roughly 42,000 students – to our 60 campuses. Harmony also experienced its largest batch of new student applicants – more than 50,000 – for this school year. Neither of these accomplishments could have been possible without the support of our Harmony families and staff members sharing the good word about their school with friends, neighbors, and families. For that, we owe you our thanks.

Whether your family is new to Harmony or you’ve been with us for years, Harmony will offer each of our scholars the same high-quality, STEM-focused education filled with opportunities to connect and engage with their schools, teachers, and classmates.

Though it has been only a few days since the first of our schools opened for the 2022-23 school year, already we have some exciting news to share. This week, the Texas Education Agency released its first State Accountability Ratings since the start of the pandemic. We are excited to report that five HPS districts and 23 HPS campuses earned a perfect “A” rating on this key report. Two districts and 32 campuses also received “B” ratings. Collectively, Harmony was the highest scoring major Texas charter school network in terms of the percentage of campuses which scored a “B” or better.

These results come on the heels of some extraordinary spring STAAR test results, which found that statewide not only had most of our students made up any achievement loss caused by the COVID pandemic, but in the majority of our schools, our students actually scored higher than they did pre-pandemic. Despite these successes, the work to help our students fully rebound from the pandemic will continue throughout 2022-23, as we continue to emphasize additional learning acceleration and ongoing emotional well-being support for our students.

Our TEA Ratings and STAAR scores are just a couple of the reasons why we’re so excited to begin another school year, but there are plenty more. In addition to our normal annual programs and initiatives, Harmony will be focusing on several key areas this school year:

 

  • School culture and climates of character will continue to be a primary focus for all of our campuses. The positive results of this ongoing initiative already are plain to see. Systemwide, we have seen a dramatic drop in behavioral incidents at our campuses, as an increase in counselor staffing is helping to better support students before possible issues arise. HPS also is proud to share that in 2021-22, three of our campuses were named National Schools of Character, making a total of seven HPS national winners in the past three years. Thirteen campuses have also been named State Schools of Character. We expect several other campuses to earn these honors this year.

 

  • We will continue to focus on school safety measures and scientific-based health protocols to keep our students and staff safe and focused on achievement. Over the summer, each of our schools conducted additional campus safety training, including security audits of their points of entry. This is in addition to the long-standing security measures already in place, which include yearly safety audits, which exceed the TEA requirement of once every three years. We will continue to work to increase the safety of our school communities, as keeping our students and team members safe is our highest priority.

 

  • For our former students, we will continue to offer a number of assistance programs to ensure their long-term success after HPS. First, the HPS Alumni Career Center will provide ongoing support and services to assist them with career development, job placement, and long-term success. Next, Harmony is extending its postsecondary support services with the new Alumni College Coaching program. The program aims to provide on-college campus coaching, and monthly success workshops to increase Harmony graduates’ enrollment, retention, and more importantly their college completion. It will be piloted at three universities this fall: the University of Houston, University of Houston-Downtown, and North American University. Finally, our College & Career counselors are wrapping up a successful season of “summer melt” intervention to make sure last year’s graduating seniors become this year’s entering college freshmen. Across our system, HPS made personal contact with 94% of our Class of 2022 to make sure they are still enrolled in college, have their financial aid in order, and know when and where to be on Day 1 of college.

 

  • To help prepare our students for the workforce, we will continue to expand our Career & Technical Education (CTE) and Industry-Based Certification (IBC) programs. Harmony currently offers more than 650 career pathways courses in 10 different fields, including Biomedical Science, Engineering, Programming & Software Development, Accounting & Financial Services, and Business Management, among others. In 2021-22, HPS invested more than $19 million in federal funds into these programs, allowing more than 15,000 students to get a jumpstart on the future careers of their dreams.

 

  • Through our Harmony Partners in Education program, we will continue to seek businesses, volunteers, and other community members who can bring resources and opportunities to our schools and students. During 2021-22, Partners in Education matched more than 1,000 partners with school projects across our system.

 

  • For students interested in a career in public service, HPS will continue to expand its rapidly-growing Service Leadership Society, which already is among the largest of any school system in the state. Harmony’s SLS program is dedicated to encouraging civic engagement among our students and exposing them to leadership opportunities within their communities while at the same time, allowing them to interact with elected officials and their staff.

 

  • To continue supporting the continued influx of interest in Harmony, we are continuing to add new campuses and expand others. This school year, HPS debuts two new campuses – Harmony School of Excellence-Katy and Harmony School of Science-San Antonio – as well as four additional major campus expansions. We’re also breaking ground on three others – in El Paso, Fort Worth, and Leander – this school year.

 

As you can see, we all have a lot to look forward to this year.

On behalf of our team members, faculty and staff, I would like to welcome you and your family to the 2022- 2023 school year. We look forward to getting to know your family better this school year and sharing all that Harmony has to offer.

Sincerely,

Fatih Ay
CEO | Harmony Public Schools

Due to high demand, many uniform sizes quickly were sold out shortly after we launched our new online uniform store Thursday.

Stock shortage is not expected to be an ongoing issue. Fortunately, our uniform supplier has informed that they have added new inventory and are continuing to work to provide additional color and size choices as quickly as possible.

Shop now to get your uniforms purchases in time for the first day of school and take advantage of these offers:

EARLY SHOPPER SAVINGS
Shop July 21-Aug. 4 to get short sleeve polos for only $13.50 (reg. $15) or long sleeve for only $16.50 (reg. $18).

FREE HOME SHIPPING
Buy two or more items to qualify for free shipping directly to your home using promo code HPSPOLO at checkout.

Two Ways to Shop Your School’s Uniform Store

On Our Site
Click ‘Uniforms’ under the PARENTS tab of your child’s campus website.

Find Your School Website

On FrenchToast
Search for your campus name and city on the ‘Shop By School’ page.

Go to ‘Shop By School’

Frequently Asked Questions

The size and color I want are still out of stock – what can I do?
Our partners at French Toast are working hard to get more colors and sizes in stock as soon as possible. To get an automatic update when your uniform preference is ready to purchase, just enter your email in the ‘Notify Me’ box under the product ‘Out of Stock’ message.

Can my child still wear uniforms that were purchased previously?
Of course! If your child’s uniform is still in good condition, they are welcome to continue wearing uniforms from previous years, even if the campus has updated to a new uniform color scheme.

The free shipping code isn’t working – what’s up?
The free shipping code – HPSPOLO – is for orders of two items are more, so just make sure you have enough items to qualify for free shipping in your cart. If you’re still experiencing issues, please contact Customer Service at https://www.frenchtoast.com/contact-us.

Which uniform color do I need for my child?
When ordering new uniforms and polos, the following are the approved color schemes for each grade level:

The uniform color options don’t look like the ones I see above
– is something wrong?
There might be a minor color variation between the preview image on the French Toast website and the images above, but not by much. If the uniform you’re selecting doesn’t look right, just make sure you have the correct dress code selected from the drop down near the top of your screen.

Why can’t I just order uniforms directly at my campus anymore?
Unfortunately, year-round direct sales of school uniforms can be a complicated and time-consuming process for an individual campus. We’d rather put our team’s talents to use by serving our students. By partnering with an industry-leading school uniform supply company like French Toast, Harmony is able to keep uniform costs down for families while freeing up school staff (and storage space!) to focus on the other needs of our schools.

No returns or exchanges.
Uniforms will no longer be available for purchase at campuses.

 

[HOUSTON] – Three Houston campuses from Harmony Public Schools were named official “National Schools of Character” Tuesday for their outstanding efforts in promoting cultures of character in their schools and communities.

Three campuses from Harmony Public Schools were named official “National Schools of Character” Tuesday for their outstanding efforts in promoting cultures of character in their schools and communities.

The awards were announced by Character.org, a national advocate and leader for character development in schools. 

Each year, Character.org certifies schools and districts at the state and national level that demonstrate a dedicated focus on character development, which the organization says has a positive effect on academic achievement, student behavior and school climate. 

 

Only 50 campuses in the entire U.S. earned the honor. The Harmony campuses selected are:

  • Harmony School of Advancement-Houston
  • Harmony School of Endeavor-Houston
  • Harmony School of Excellence-Houston

 

Each also previously was named a State School of Character in January.

 

“We are tremendously proud of the effort these campuses  are making each day to instill a culture of character in our schools,” Harmony CEO Fatih Ay said. “The work they’re doing will have a lasting impact in the lives of our students, as well as the communities in which they will someday help lead.”

 

All three campuses are a part of Harmony’s Houston North District, which encompasses 10 schools in North Houston, Cypress, North Katy and Bryan-College Station.

 

“I am honored that three of our North District campuses have been recognized as National Schools of Character through Character.org,” Emin Cavusoglu, area superintendent of HPS Houston North, said. ” This is a great accomplishment for our district. These campuses have worked diligently to set core values in place that promote a sense of community and pride in their school. They have truly come together to build relationships, promote family involvement and establish a culture with firm values.”

 

Four other Harmony campuses have previously earned the honor, including two others from Houston. The award remains remains with a campus for five years after designation. Harmony’s previous winners are:

  • Harmony Science Academy-Cedar Park
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Fort Worth
  • Harmony School of Innovation – Houston
  • Harmony School of Science-Houston

 

Each of these schools has put into place a comprehensive, multi-year approach to character education that inspires their students to understand, care about and consistently practice a set of core values that will enable them to flourish in school, in relationships, in the workplace, and as citizens. The schools then underwent a rigorous evaluation process to achieve their certification, documenting how they have implemented character education best practices and structures at each school.

 

Harmony Public Schools is a Texas-born, Texas-wide public charter school system with campuses serving PreK-12 students in 23 cities across the state, including Greater Houston, DFW, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, Waco, Lubbock, Odessa, Bryan, Beaumont, and the Rio Grande Valley. Harmony’s curriculum places a heavy focus on STEM skills, Character Education, project-based learning, and college readiness. 

Harmony is now accepting applications for both students and team members for the 2022-23 school year.

 

About Harmony Public Schools

Harmony Public Schools are 58 high performing PreK-12 college preparatory charter schools throughout Texas. Harmony blends the highest standards and expectations, with a rigorous math- and science-centered curriculum and dedicated and engaged teachers and families to cultivate excellence and prepare students to succeed in college, careers and life. At Harmony Public Schools, we believe every child can succeed, and we are committed to helping them realize their full potential. To learn more about Harmony Public Schools and our 58 campuses across Texas, please visit: www.harmonytx.org, and follow us on Twitter at @HarmonyEdu and ‘Like’ us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/HarmonyTexas.

 

Children need nutritious meals to learn, grow and thrive.

The Summer Meal Programs ensures kids have no-cost, health meals this summer and return to school read to learn.

Help us spread the word about this valuable program!

Text FOOD to 304-304 or visit SummerFood.org to find a site.

Los niños necesitan comidas nutritivas para aprender, crecer y prosperar.

Los programas de comidas de verano aseguran que los niños tengan comidas saludables sin costo este verano y regresen a la escuela leyendo para aprender.

¡Ayúdenos a correr la voz acerca de este valioso programa!

Envíe FOOD al 304-304 o visite SummerFood.org para encontrar un sitio.

Each school year, thousands of families submit their application to become a part of Harmony Public Schools.

Here’s how we select applicants for enrollment each year to make sure each applicant has an equal opportunity to become our next high-achieving Harmony scholar.

STEP 1

Each January, we ask current families to let us know if they’ll be coming back to Harmony next year. This is called “Re-Enrollment.”

STEP 2

Based on the number of students returning next year and the number of classes in each grade level, we determine how many open spots we will have for new students.

STEP 3

Meanwhile, new families are submitting their applications during our annual Open Enrollment season, which runs from November 1 through February 10 each year.

STEP 4

After February 10, if the number of new applicants is greater than the number of available spots we have, Harmony holds a “blind lottery” to make sure all applicants have a fair opportunity to be seated.

STEP 5

Families of students selected for enrollment are notified. Those not selected are put on a “waitlist” and contacted as soon as a spot opens up.

… and that’s it!

Here are some answers to our applicants’ most frequently asked questions.

#1 – IS THERE ALWAYS A LOTTERY?

Not always, but often.

Whether a lottery is needed is determined by the number of spots available at each grade level and the number of eligible applicants interested in them.

#2 – I WAS SELECTED FOR ENROLLMENT –
WHAT DO I NEED TO DO NEXT?

Most importantly, we need you to officially accept the spot (a link will be provided on the acceptance letter). Then, between now and next fall, you’ll need to officially register your child and provide a few documents verifying their identity and home address.

After that, we’ll see you on the first day of school!

(Note: If you were accepted by more than one campus, please register at your preferred campus and decline the invitation of any others. This will allow us to offer those spots to another prospective Harmony family.)

#3 – I WAS PLACED ON A WAITLIST –
IS THERE ANY CHANCE I WILL GET TO ATTEND?

Absolutely – so don’t give up hope! Students initially placed on a waitlist are given the opportunity to enroll all the time at Harmony, often for one of the following reasons:

  • A student who was initially selected in the lottery didn’t completion registration by the deadline.
  • A student who was initially selected in the lottery moved away.
  • A student was selected by two schools in the lottery, but of course could only register at one.
  • We added an an extra class at the grade level for which you applied.
  • One of our nearby campuses had an opening,
    and reached out to see if you were interested in attending there.

More Questions?

Reach out to us on Let’s Talk to let us know how we can help!

After giving across-the-board pay raises to full-time teachers and campus staff earlier this school year, Harmony Public Schools will now be giving pay raises to all levels of substitute teachers.
The daily rate increase goes into effect February 14. The increase was approved unanimously by the Harmony Public Schools Board of Directors on January 29. Under the rate increase, substitute teachers will earn an extra $20-30 per day on top of the already-competitive Harmony rate.
For a teacher only working a few days per week, the increase will mean a few hundred dollars each month on top of the compensation they already earn. For certified teachers and long-term substitutes, the rate increase could mean up to $600 per month in increased pay (see chart above for rates for each position).
“Each day, substitute teachers are making a major impact on our schools by keeping our students on-track and learning when their regular teachers are unable to attend school,” Harmony CEO Fatih Ay said. “These professionals are important members of our school community, and we want to show our thanks.”
Harmony currently has substitute teaching opportunities at all of its campuses statewide.
Earlier this school year, Harmony also announced $4,000-$7,500 in additional annual compensation for teachers and other school staff.
The increase was the third occasion in the past two school years in which Harmony announced a major improvement to employee compensation and benefits.
In January 2021, Harmony announced a sweeping upgrade of its employer-paid benefits that provided free vision and dental plans to all full-time employees, introduced matching retirement plan contributions for 403(b) and (457(b) participants, and increased life insurance payouts from $20,000 to $100,000.
In Summer 2019, Harmony also announced statewide base pay increases for employees ranging from $3,500-$5,000, as well as additional stipends for teachers working in hard-to-staff subjects.
Harmony Public Schools is a Texas-born, Texas-wide public charter school system with campuses serving PreK-Grade 12 students in 23 cities across the state, including Greater Houston, DFW, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, Waco, Lubbock, Odessa, Bryan, Beaumont, and the Rio Grande Valley. Harmony’s curriculum places a heavy focus on STEM skills, Character Education, project-based learning, and college readiness.
Harmony Public Schools is currently accepting applications for the 2022-2023 school year for both students and team members.
About Harmony Public Schools
Harmony Public Schools are 58 high performing PreK-12 college preparatory charter schools throughout Texas. Harmony blends the highest standards and expectations, with a rigorous math- and science-centered curriculum and dedicated and engaged teachers and families to cultivate excellence and prepare students to succeed in college, careers and life. At Harmony Public Schools, we believe every child can succeed, and we are committed to helping them realize their full potential. To learn more about Harmony Public Schools and our 58 campuses across Texas, please visit: www.harmonytx.org, and follow us on Twitter at @HarmonyEdu and ‘Like’ us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/HarmonyTexas.
In accordance with the Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted/Talented students, Harmony Public Schools will begin taking referrals for all interested students in grades K-12 for Gifted and Talented (G/T) screening.
Anyone interested in the educational welfare of these students may nominate them for assessment. Students in grades 1 & up who were tested in Fall 2021 are not eligible to test in Spring 2022. Referral forms are available at the front office and on the school’s website (see below).
The referral forms must be returned or emailed to the front office by January 31, 2022. The Spring GT testing window is set by the campus in February or March. Campuses may elect to use NWEA MAP scores as a prescreening criterion for GT Testing.
For more information about the screening and identification process, parents may contact the school’s GT Coach/teacher.
De acuerdo con el Plan Estatal de Texas para la Educación de Estudiantes Dotados / Talentosos, Harmony Public Schools comenzará a tomar referencias para todos los estudiantes interesados en los grados K-12 para la evaluación de estudiantes dotados y talentosos.
Cualquier persona interesada en el bienestar educativo de estos estudiantes puede nominarlos para dicha evaluación. Los estudiantes en los grados 2 y superiores que fueron evaluados en el otoño de 2020 no son elegibles para la prueba en la primavera de 2021. Los formularios de referencia están disponibles en la oficina y en el sitio web de la escuela.
Los formularios de referencia deben devolverse a la oficina de la escuela antes del lunes 31 de enero del 2022.
Para obtener más información sobre el proceso de selección e identificación, los padres pueden comunicarse con el entrenador / maestro de GT de la escuela.
Omari Hashim Cato, 5th grade E.L.A teacher for Harmony School of Endeavor, ramps up education BMX (Bicycle Motocross) style.

Omari Hashim Cato, 5th grade E.L.A teacher for Harmony School of Endeavor, ramps up education BMX (Bicycle Motocross) style.

Omari Hashim Cato, 5th grade E.L.A teacher for Harmony School of Endeavor, ramps up education BMX (Bicycle Motocross) style. Cato has been riding bicycles his entire life, and began riding competitively 10 years ago under the discipline Flatland BMX; a form of BMX that requires no ramps nor obstacles, “just you and the bike.” 

As his passion for bicycles grew, so did his skillset and interest in sharing his experiences with his students. He took an interest in becoming a talented bicycle mechanic, and began racing in Track and Road cycling categories. Over time his accolades grew, becoming a Shimano certified technician, competing in the Pro class in Flatland BMX while reaching Category 3 level of competition within the racing world. 

APPLY TO HARMONY: Be a part of our 2022-23 class

After participating in numerous competitions across the globe, Cato is now arguably one of the most skilled Flatland BMX riders in the nation as one of the top BMX Flatland riders in the world. 

While on this journey something constantly nagged Cato until he realized the lack of education and access to bicycles in the nation and my community. Many children enjoy riding bicycles yet few know how to maintain nor know the endless possibilities that they have to offer. In 2016, he set out to solve this problem through a program he created called, Zin cycles. 

RELATED: What is a charter school? The difference between ISD schools and Texas public charter schools

The service serves as a mini bike shop at a local community center where he’s taught various students how to ride, fix and maintain bicycles. “While I love the teaching profession, my biggest passion is for bicycles and their ability to transform lives.”

Since the inception of his program, Cato has expanded his talents to beginning a BMX Bike Club at Harmony School of Enrichment and Endeavor. He even shows students how to race their beloved bicycles while serving his community. With this program and his love of helping kids and the community, it directly led him into the classroom and his community both inside and out of Harmony.

Re-Enrollment for current Harmony families who plan to return next school year is January 4-28, 2022.

Re-Enrollment for the 2022-2023 school year for Harmony families begins soon.

During this time of year each January, we ask families to complete a simple, online Re-Enrollment process, letting us know they’ll be joining us for another great year of learning and fun next school year, which starts in August 2022.

This simple step allows us to make sure each current student’s spot at Harmony is reserved for the following school year, and assess how many new student seats we have available for other applicants.

Re-Enrollment at Harmony Public Schools runs January 4-28, 2022. Look for more details in your email inbox, via Skyward, or on our Facebook page soon.

In the meantime, check out these 6 things families need to know about Re-Enrollment at Harmony Public Schools.

#1 – When is Re-Enrollment season?

For the 2022-2023 school year, re-enrollment will be January 4-28, 2022.

#2 – How do I apply for Re-Enrollment?

The preferred method for re-enrollment is through the student’s online Skyward account. (A link to Skyward can be found at the top of your campus homepage or you can simply click here.). Parents without internet and/or Skyward access may also request a paper re-enrollment option from their child’s campus.

#3 – What is the difference between Re-Enrollment and Open Enrollment?

Re-enrollment is intended for current Harmony students planning to stay at their current campus the following school year, or who will naturally feed upward to a new campus (e. from elementary to nearby middle school). Open Enrollment is for new students, or current students who wish to change Harmony campuses for personal reasons (ex. transferring to a campus closer to home).

#4 – If a student plans to stay at the same school next year, are they automatically guaranteed re-enrollment if they complete the re-enrollment process before the deadline?

Yes, so long as their family completes the re-enrollment process.

#5 – What happens if a parent does not submit their re-enrollment information before the deadline?

If a parent misses the deadline to complete the re-enrollment process, then the student will lose his/her reserved space for next school year and must apply during Open Enrollment, held November 1-February 10 each school year. To apply, visit www.HarmonyTX.org/Apply.

#6 – What does a Harmony parent need to do if they would like to stay with Harmony, but transfer to a different campus for the next school year?

If a parent would like to change Harmony campuses for the following school year, they must submit an application for the desired school at www.HarmonyTX.org/Apply.

 

If your student is struggling in a subject, or just has a question about tonight’s homework assignment, Harmony Public Schools has a solution.

Harmony is proud to now offer free tutoring 24/7 with TutorMe.

Through TutorMe, students in Grades 3-12 have free, 24/7 online access to verified experts in more than 300 fields.

Check out the video below to learn more, or look for the TutorMe option inside Clever in your family’s MyHarmony Portal account.

One of the questions we hear most from prospective parents interested in applying to Harmony Public Schools is “I’ve been looking at schools near me, but I don’t understand – what is the difference between a charter school and an ISD public school?” 

Public charter schools have grown exponentially in the past 25 years – both in Texas, and around the country – but we understand why many parents who grew up in a traditional independent school district setting themselves may still have questions.

That’s OK. We’ve got the answers to all of your biggest questions about charter schools.

So, what exactly is a charter school?

A charter school is a public school, and in many ways very similar to a traditional ISD school as you might think of one.

  • Charter schools do not charge tuition or application fees.
  • Charter schools accept every student who applies, as long as the school or grade level has not reached its enrollment capacity.
  • Charter school students take the same core classes and state tests (ex. STAAR) as ISD students. 
  • Charter schools are held to strict standards of financial and overall accountability by the Texas Education Agency.
  • Charter schools offer a full range of special services, including special education, English as a Second Language (ESL), Dyslexia, and 504. 

However, what makes charter schools different is what we believe makes them special. In a word, that difference is “choice.”

Way back in 1995, the Texas State Legislature decided that even though there were a lot of great schools in Texas, a one-size-fits-all approach to education might not work for all families. Each child is unique: some with special gifts, others with special challenges, and all with special dreams for their futures.

To help better serve every Texas student, the Texas public charter school system was created to allow independent, education-based nonprofit organizations called Charter Management Organizations (CMOs) to open and operate free public schools for Texas students with the promise that they would provide a new school choice in education for local Texas families.

For some charter schools, that new choice might be a curriculum that focuses on dual-language learning. For others, it might be helping students who have dropped out of the traditional school setting reclaim their path to graduation.

At Harmony Public Schools, we specialize in hands-on, project-based learning with a heavy emphasis on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), as well as advanced college preparedness and character education.


DID YOU KNOW?

Of the roughly 100 schools in Texas certified as official Texas STEM Academies be the Texas Education Agency, 23 are Harmony Public Schools high schools – more than any other school system in Texas!

Thirteen Harmony high schools have also been named among the Best STEM High Schools in the U.S. by Newsweek.


 

Who can attend a charter school?

As long as a student lives within its geographic boundaries of the school, any child can attend a Texas public charter school. However, unlike traditional ISD schools where students usually must attend whichever nearby campus they are “zoned” to, public charter school geographic boundaries are generally very large – often covering multiple communities or counties. These large geographic boundaries are another way Texas public charter schools offer Texas families a choice in their student’s education, and are unique from traditional ISDs. For example, rather than sending their child to an ISD campus near their home address, a parent may prefer for their child to attend a school near a grandparent’s home, or the parent’s place of work. Or they may prefer to send their child to a campus that specializes in a specific curriculum, like STEM, or with a higher TEA accountability rating than their neighborhood ISD school. All of these are options with Texas public charter schools.

Do public charter schools charge tuition?

Texas public charter schools are free to attend. Applying to a Texas public charter school is also free.

How do charter schools choose who gets to attend?

They don’t. Charter school students are never “cherry picked” from an applicant pool. Any student who applies to attend a charter school will be accepted, so long as they meet three basic criteria:

  1. They live within the schools geographic boundaries;
  2. They are applying to a grade taught by that specific school;
  3. Available seats are open in the grade-level to which the family is applying. At Harmony, if more students apply than there are available openings, the campus will hold a “blind” lottery to ensure fair an equal opportunity for enrollment to all new applicants.

RELATED: Learn more about Harmony Public School’s application, enrollment and lottery processes

When and how can a student apply to a charter school?

A student can apply to a charter school at any time during the school year and be accepted if space is available. However, most Texas public charter schools also offer an open enrollment period each year specifically for prospective new students. During this time, families can learn more about their charter school options and enter their name for the enrollment lottery, which is held in the event there are more applicants than available seats. For Harmony Public Schools, open enrollment runs each November 1 through February 10. 

MORE INFO: Learn more about how to apply to Harmony Public Schools.

How is a charter school funded?

As opposed to a traditional ISD school, which receives its funding primarily from the taxes local homeowners pay each year combined with additional funding from the state, charter schools receive their primary funding from the state and federal governments. Additionally, charters often receive both public and private grants to fund many of their innovative academic programs. For example, in recent years Harmony Public Schools has received grants of varying amounts from the U.S. Department of Education, the Texas Education Agency, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, and the Elon Musk Foundation, among others.

Are Texas public charter schools for-profit?

No. By law, Texas public charter schools must be nonprofit entities. All funds received are used in the service of our students and school teams.

Do charter schools require uniforms?

That’s a decision that’s up to each charter school. At Harmony Public Schools, we do have a uniform policy. (Our students do get regular “free dress” days, though.)

Do charter schools offer the same types of programs and extracurricular activities as ISD schools?

Charter schools offer almost all of the same programs and extracurricular activities as ISD schools, though just like at an ISD school, the exact selection of extracurricular opportunities varies from campus-to-campus. Traditionally, charter schools specialize in offering a wide variety of academic-focused extracurriculars. For example, at Harmony Public Schools, some of our most popular extracurricular activities are our groundbreaking eSports clubs, LEGO robotics, rocketry, computer coding, and biomedicine. Our schools also compete in a wide variety of sports, including basketball, volleyball, soccer, and football. 

What level accountability do charter schools have to maintain?

Just like traditional ISDs, Texas charter schools must remain in good academic and financial accountability with the Texas Education Agency. That includes annual inclusion in the TEA’s Financial Integrity System of Texas (FIRST) and Overall Accountability ratings. Charter schools that do not meet these standards face closure by the TEA. Finally, to help families easily understand how their charter school is performing, the TEA has created a Charter School Performance Framework (CSPF), which grades charter districts on overall academic performance and closing achievement gaps.

What other differences are there between charter schools and traditional ISD schools?

There are a few other differences between Texas public charter schools and ISDs, but most don’t impact the day-to-day campus life of our students. For example, charter school boards consist of appointed volunteers with a unique interest in education, rather than private individuals who have chosen to run for election. However, charter school board meetings are still open to the public to attend and participate.

What about …?

We couldn’t possibly share all the things that make charter schools a unique and important part of the Texas educational environment in just one article. So if you have more questions, we’d love the opportunity to tell you more. Just tell us what you want to know in our Let’s Talk family communication platform, and we’ll reach out with an answer soon!


This year every child at Harmony Public Schools is eligible to receive free lunch and breakfast each day from our child nutrition team.
However, Harmony would like to remind parents of the need to still submit one of our critical Harmony forms instead of the application normally associated with qualifying for Free & Reduced Price Meal Programs.
Each year, Harmony Public Schools is required to collect and report the socioeconomic status of each student to the Texas Education Agency for purposes of the annual state accountability ratings and for federal reporting. The data collected is used by educational agencies to determine funding which may be used for a variety of programs and educational opportunities.
Today, we are asking parents to please complete the online form “Household Income Information” in Skyward. Upon login to Skyward, this form is accessible from the main screen. If you have any questions, please contact the Child Nutrition Assistant at your child’s school.

 

Last week, Gov. Greg Abbott officially signed into law a new education funding bill that will allow public schools like ours to offer full virtual learning to up to 10 percent of our student body enrolled in Grades K-12.

 

Under the law, to be eligible to participate and remain in virtual learning, students must meet all of the following criteria:

 

  • Students must have passed the most recent STAAR exams (if applicable to grade level). If student did not take STAAR, NWEA grade-level proficiency is required, AND;
  • Students must have earned a “C” grade of higher in “foundation curriculum” courses taken virtually or remotely in the previous school year (ex. Math, reading), AND;
  • Students must have no more than 10% unexcused absences during the previous school year, and maintain less than 10 unexcused absences in a six-month period.

 

Recently, we asked families to log into Skyward to let us know if they prefer for their child to attend virtual learning or continue in-person learning on campus. The deadline to make your selection is Wednesday September 15, 2021. For those who select “Virtual Learning,” we will cross-checking their student records to determine their eligibility status. Those selected will be notified by their home campus soon and given further directions on how to begin online learning.

 

For those not selected for virtual learning or who wish to remain in-person learning from campus, Harmony will continue to offer its “remote conferencing” option on an as-needed basis. Under this program, students can learn from home for up to 20 instructional days if they have a pre-existing medical condition, or are forced to quarantine due to positive COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure. Additional days may be granted upon TEA approval with required documentation.

 

Harmony thanks you for your ongoing support and patience as the situation regarding virtual learning unfolded these past few weeks. Whether your student is attending virtual or in-person, we look forward to a great school year with you and your family.

– – –

 

La semana pasada, el gobernador Greg Abbott promulgó oficialmente una nueva ley de financiación de la educación que permitirá a las escuelas públicas como la nuestra ofrecer aprendizaje virtual completo para hasta el 10 por ciento de nuestros estudiantes.

 

En consecuencia, Harmony Public Schools se complace en anunciar que comenzará a ofrecer una opción de aprendizaje virtual a partir del lunes 4 de octubre para los estudiantes elegibles, según lo permitan los límites de inscripción.

 

Según la ley, para ser elegible para participar y permanecer en el aprendizaje virtual, los estudiantes deben cumplir con todos los siguientes criterios:

 

 

  • Los estudiantes deben haber aprobado los exámenes STAAR más recientes (si corresponde al nivel de grado). Si el estudiante no hizo STAAR, se requiere competencia de nivel de grado de NWEA, Y;

 

  • Los estudiantes deben haber obtenido una calificación “C” o superior en los cursos del “plan de estudios básico” hechos de forma virtual o remota en el año escolar anterior (por ejemplo, matemáticas, lectura), Y;

 

  • Los estudiantes no deben tener más del 10% de ausencias injustificadas durante el año escolar anterior y mantener menos de 10 ausencias injustificadas en un período de seis meses.

 

Recientemente, les pedimos a las familias que inicien sesión en Skyward para informarnos si prefieren que su hijo asista al aprendizaje virtual o que continúe con el aprendizaje presencial en el campus. La fecha límite para hacer su selección es el miércoles 15 de septiembre de 2021. Para aquellos que seleccionen “Aprendizaje virtual”, verificaremos sus registros de estudiantes para determinar su estado de elegibilidad. Los seleccionados serán notificados por su campus de origen pronto y se les dará más instrucciones sobre cómo comenzar el aprendizaje en línea. 

 

Para aquellos que no hayan sido seleccionados para el aprendizaje virtual o que deseen seguir aprendiendo de manera presencial desde el campus, Harmony continuará ofreciendo su opción de “conferencias remotas” según sea necesario. Bajo este programa, los estudiantes pueden aprender desde casa durante hasta 20 días de instrucción si tienen una afección médica preexistente o si se ven obligados a ponerse en cuarentena debido a un diagnóstico positivo o exposición a la COVID-19. Se pueden otorgar días adicionales con la aprobación de la TEA con la documentación requerida.

 

Gracias por su continuo apoyo y paciencia mientras se desarrolló el aprendizaje virtual estas últimas semanas. Ya sea que su estudiante asista virtual o presencialmente, esperamos tener un gran año escolar con usted y su familia.

 

Dear Harmony Families,

Today, we would like to share some important news regarding a potential virtual learning option at your child’s school.

This weekend, a new bill to fund virtual learning in Texas public schools like Harmony cleared a major hurdle in the Texas Legislature. In its current form, schools such as Harmony Public Schools would be allowed to provide virtual learning for up to 10 percent of its student body throughout the remainder of the school year.

While the bill has not received final approval and specific details may change before being signed into law by Gov. Greg Abbott, it now appears very likely that schools like ours will be able to offer virtual learning in some form to students in the near future and we are looking forward to offering comprehensive virtual learning to our student population during 2021-2022 school year.

Currently, in your child’s Skyward account is a form asking your family’s interest in virtual learning. We ask that you please complete this virtual learning application form as soon as you are able. While we may not be able to accommodate every request due to potential new legal restrictions on the number of students who can participate, by understanding your preference we will be able to more quickly assign students to virtual learning should it become an option.

We will continue to share important updates with you as new information becomes available.

Thank you.

 

 

Estimadas familias de Harmony,

Hoy, no nos gustaría compartie algunas noticias importantes sobre una posible opción de aprendizaje virtual en la escuela de sus hijos. Este fin de semana, un nuevo proyecto de ley para financiar el aprendizaje virtual en escuelas públicas de Texas como Harmony eliminó un obstáculo importante en la Legislatura de Texas. En su forma actual, las Escuelas Públicas de Harmony podrían proporcionar aprendizaje virtual para hasta el 10 por ciento de su cuerpo estudiantil durante el resto del año escolar.

Aunque el proyecto no ha recibido la aprobación final y unos detalles específicos pueden cambiar antes de set convertida en lay por en gobernador, Greg Abbott, ahora parece muy probable que las escuelas como la nuestra puedan ofrecer aprendizaje virtual de alguna forma a los estudiantes en un futuro cercano y esperamos ofrecer un aprendizaje virtual integral a nuestra población estudiantil durante la escuela 2021-2022 año.

Actualmente, en la cuenta de Skyward de si hijo o hija hay un formulario que pregunta el interés de su familia en el aprendizaje virtual. Le pedimos que complete este formulario de solicitud de aprendizaje virtual tan pronto como pueda. Si bien es posible que no podamos atender todas las solicitudes debido a posibles nuevas restricciones legales sobre la cantidad de estudiantes que pueden participar, al comprender su preferencia, podremos asignar estudiantes más rápidamente al aprendizaje virtual si se convierte en una opción.

Continuaremos compartiendo actualizaciones importantes con usted a medida que haya nueva información disponible.

Gracias.

On Saturday, the HPS executive board approved a recommendation allowing all regular employees 10 additional days of paid leave should they test positive for COVID-19 or be asked to quarantine due to  close contact with another COVID-19 positive individual.

 

The benefit is available retroactively to August 2 (first day of 2021-22 school year), and extends through December 31, 2021. 

 

Employees with additional questions or who need to request leave for any purpose should contact leave@harmonytx.org.

Dear Parents and Guardians:

Today, we would like to inform you of important education option for your family if you believe your student may have experienced significant academic losses during the 2020-2021 school year.

This summer, the 87th Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill (SB) 1697, which allows parents and guardians to elect for a student to repeat a grade or retake a high school course.

This gives parents or guardians the right to opt for their child to:

  • repeat pre-kindergarten or enroll in pre-kindergarten if the child was eligible to enroll in pre-kindergarten in the previous school year and has not yet enrolled in kindergarten;
  • repeat kindergarten; or enroll in kindergarten if the child would have enrolled in kindergarten in the previous school year and has not yet enrolled in first grade; and
  • for grades one through three, repeat the grade the student was enrolled in during the previous school year.

For the 2021-2022 school year only, parents or guardians have the right to opt for their child:

  • for grades four through eight, repeat the grade the student was enrolled in during the 2020-2021 school year; and
  • for courses taken for high school credit, repeat any course in which the student was enrolled during the 2020-2021 school year.

When determining whether these options may be right for your student, here are some things which may be helpful to consider:

  • For children in grades 1-8, repeating may be right for your child if he/she struggled learning while remaining virtual most of the year.
  • For students who took high school courses, repeating one or more courses may be right for your child if he/she struggled in a foundational course (e.g. Algebra I or computer science) and is worried about being successful in higher-level courses.
  • If a high school student received a passing grade for the course they are requesting to repeat, they will keep their original grade on their transcript.
  • For children interested in high school interscholastic competition, parents and guardians should review eligibility rulesbased on student age.

According to the new law, parents or guardians are required to notify the district in writing (letter or email to school principal) if they elect for their child to retake a grade level or course.

By law, if a district disagrees, the district must convene a retention committee and meet with the parent or guardian to discuss the proposed retention.

After the parent/ guardian has participated in the retention committee meeting, the parent or guardian will decide if the student will be retained.

For more information or to request retention for your student, please contact your campus administration.

Thank you.

  • Harmony Public Schools

 

Additional information is available at: https://tea.texas.gov/repeatgrade and https://tea.texas.gov/restartkinder

The following is a message from Harmony Public Schools CEO Fatih Ay.

 

Dear Harmony Families,

Like many of you, we at Harmony Public Schools are greatly concerned by the rise in COVID-19 cases attributed to the Delta variant.

At Harmony, we are working diligently to keep our schools safe and provide families the tools they need to keep their child protected from COVID-19.

Today, we would like to share with you several important updates regarding Harmony’s COVID-19 policy and procedures.

First, we would like to announce that we will be offering a TEA-approved “remote conferencing” option that will allow students a limited ability to attend classes from home if they are sick, have been exposed to COVID-19, or in a COVID-19 high-risk group.

Per TEA requirement, the total amount of time for remote instruction may not exceed more than 20 instructional days for the entire 2021-22 school year. In order to be eligible, students must meet one of the criteria below:

  • The student is unable to attend school because of a temporary medical condition that is documented by a physician licensed to practice in the United States. 
    • The student’s healthcare provider is required to complete and sign an HPS COVID-19 High Risk Exemption Medical Certification form. Parents need to submit the form to the school health aide to confirm eligibility.  Failure to provide the completed form will disqualify a student from participating. Here is the link to download exemption application form: https://www.HarmonyTX.org/medicalrequest
  • The student has a positive test result for a communicable condition  listed in state regulations at 25 Tex. Admin. Code §97.7. Parents need to provide test results to the school health aide listing the communicable condition. This includes a positive test result for COVID-19.
  • The student has been identified as having been in close contact with a COVID-19 positive individual as confirmed by the school, the student’s health care provider, or local health agency.  Parents need to provide written notification or send email to the school health aide.

Next, we would like to share an update regarding contact tracing and reporting of potential COVID-19 cases on campus. 

Although it is not required for schools to conduct contract tracing and inform parents if someone in their child’s class had tested positive for COVID-19, we believe families have the right to know what is happening at their child’s school. That’s why we will continue to implement the following measures.

We will:

  • Inform parents if a child or team member tests positive for COVID-19 in their classroom.
  • Conduct contact tracing to determine the potential spread of COVID-19 in our schools.
  • Provide transparency to the public about our schools by continuing to update our COVID-19 “case count” dashboard, which can be found at www.HarmonyTX.org/coviddashboard.
  • Continue to work with local pharmacies and community health organizations to host on-campus vaccination clinics for team members and eligible students age 12 and older. (Please follow your campus Facebook page and parents newsletter for more info about upcoming campus clinics near you.)

Finally, we understand that a full remote learning option is something some of our families are highly interested in.  Currently, state leaders in the Texas Legislature are convening in Austin to vote on whether they will allow districts to offer full virtual learning.

We don’t yet know what the decision of the Texas Legislature will be, or how long it may take to reach that decision.

 What we do know is that an option for virtual learning is an important issue to our Harmony families across the state. That’s why, despite the challenges schools across Texas have faced in offering virtual learning this fall, we are fully prepared to quickly move to a virtual option for those families interested, should state leaders approve this option.

We will continue to keep you updated as new developments occur.

Thank you for your support and collaboration throughout this process, and for being a part of our Harmony family.

Sincerely,

Fatih Ay | CEO, Harmony Public Schools

The following is a list of questions commonly asked by parents and students about the start of the 2021-22 school year at Harmony Public Schools.

For more information, visit https://www.HarmonyTX.org/playbook.

Harmony Public Schools
Frequently Asked Questions
Q:  Will Harmony Public Schools offer virtual learning this year?

A:  No. Harmony will return to  face to face instruction  at all campuses for the 21-22 school year as mandated by the Texas Education Agency. We are excited to have our students back in the classroom and will continue to support their social, emotional, and academic growth.

Q:  What will on-campus instruction look like for this year?

A:  Just as before the pandemic, students will attend in-person learning  according to the academic calendar. This calendar can be found on your campus website.  Teachers will provide in-person learning, which includes hands-on activities, small group projects and intervention, station rotations, teacher one-on-one support, etc.

Q:  What COVID-19 safety protocols will be in place for students and teachers?

A:  Face masks are optional for both students and Harmony team members, but are strongly recommended.  Physical distancing may be maintained to the extent possible.  Hand sanitizer will be provided, and students will be encouraged to practice frequent hand washing, use of hand sanitizer, and physical distancing.  Teachers will sanitize high-touch areas in the classroom when necessary.  Because the COVID-19 pandemic is evolving, we may update protocols as the situation dictates.

Q:  My child struggled with virtual learning, and I am concerned they are academically behind.  How will Harmony help my child regain academic progress?

A:  We understand that some students struggled last year.  Our educational teams are here to diagnose learning loss and provide an intervention plan to address it.  This will include regular Response to Intervention (RTI) system implementation, after school tutoring, small group instruction, Saturday school, and summer school options.

Q:  My child excelled with virtual learning last year.  Will they be academically challenged this year?

A:  Yes!  We will continue to provide rigorous instruction with differentiated options for students including emphasis on college and career readiness.

Q:  Will extracurricular activities resume this year?

A:  Yes!  We anticipate all extracurricular activities to resume for students, including academic clubs, athletics, fine arts, UIL, competitions, etc. Check the Clubs page of your campus website throughout the year for new clubs and extracurriculars.

Q:  After a year out of the classroom, how will students and staff be supported in transitioning back to a social setting?

A:  Harmony will provide mental health support to our students and staff during and after the back to school transition period.  Each campus will utilize a Behavioral Counselor and implement support systems to ensure all students and staff receive the help they need.

Q:  Where can I apply for free or reduced price meals?

A:  All students eat FREE this year at all schools! Your child will automatically receive their free meal(s) each day in your campus cafeteria. You may, however, still be asked to complete a Free & Reduced Meal eligibility form once the school year starts, as this plays a crucial role in determining the amount of federal and state funding your child’s school may receive.

Q:  What safety protocols will be in place during breakfast and lunch?

A:  Cafeteria teams will continue to clean and sanitize dining areas.  Physical distancing will be maintained to the extent possible.  Students will sanitize their hands before and after eating, and will not be allowed to share food or utensils.  Harmony will maintain adult supervision in the cafeteria to reinforce mealtime safety measures.

Q:  Will water fountains be available for students?

A:  Students will have access to touchless water fountains and are encouraged to bring their own reusable clear water bottles to use throughout the day.  Water bottles should be taken home daily to be cleaned.

Q:  What if my child displays symptoms of COVID-19 while at school?

A:  The teacher will immediately call the Health Aide, who will pick up the student from the classroom and place the student in isolation to minimize interaction.  The school Health Aide will communicate with the parent/guardian, and the student will be sent home.  The student may not return to school until clearance is given by the school Health Aide.  Additional guidance on the criteria that must be met prior to the student’s return to school is located in the Harmony Public Schools Back to School Playbook, 2021-2022.

Q:  Should I notify the school if my child tested positive for COVID-19 or was in close contact with someone who tested positive?

A:  Yes, families will self-report within 48 hours to the Health Aide if their child(ren) tested positive for COVID-19 or if they believe the child(ren) has been in close contact with an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19.

Q:  How will I be notified if my child is exposed to COVID-19 at school?

A:  If classroom exposure occurs, families will be notified via letter home, call, or school messaging services and the classroom will be sanitized.

Q:  May I visit my child’s school?

A:  Harmony always welcomes visitors to campuses and district offices, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic we will implement some limitations to minimize risk.  Visitors will check in through the front office security system, and we will continue utilization of temperature checks.  All visitors should complete a self-check before entering a school building, and visitors with COVID symptoms should NOT enter school buildings or offices.

 

 

The following is a message from Harmony Public Schools CEO Fatih Ay for HPS students, families and team members.

Hello … and happy summer vacation!

 

We hope you are having a fun and relaxing break. Here at Harmony, we’re already hard at work preparing for another exciting and engaging school year for our students and team members.  With the first day of classes just a few weeks away, we wanted to take this opportunity to provide our students, team members, and their families a little more information on what to expect in the coming school year.

 

Here are a few highlights, but expect more details along with our annual Back to School Playbook in the days ahead:

 

 

CAMPUS-BASED LEARNING FOR ALL: Last year, many of our families elected to learn remotely rather than sending their student to campus. Accordingly, Harmony came into the summer preparing to expand and further improve its virtual learning options for families in 2021-22. Unfortunately, state leaders in the Texas Legislature have declined to continue funding for full-time virtual learning in 2021-22 for all Texas public schools, eliminating the option for virtual learning for millions of public school students at thousands of campuses like ours across the state. We are closely monitoring all potential developments and will provide family updates as new developments may occur. In the meantime, we are eagerly looking forward to greeting all of our scholars back in person when the 2021-22 school year begins.

 

 

BACK-TO-SCHOOL TRANSITION HELP: Many of our students will be returning to campus for the first time in a long time this fall. For some of our youngest students, it will be their first time coming to campus ever. So we’ve developed a comprehensive transition plan that focuses on helping students regain possible academic losses from the past two years, Social Emotional Learning (SEL) support, increasing access to campus behavioral counselors, and a behavior intervention system that rewards good choices.

 

 

RETURN OF EXTRACURRICULARS & SPORTS: With proper safety precautions, Harmony students will be able to participate in a full range of in-person extracurricular activities this fall, including sports and other interschool competitions. We’ll also continue to offer many of the clubs and activities that students enjoyed last school year. Keep an eye on the Clubs page of your campus website for more information on activities offered at your Harmony campus.

 

 

MODIFIED CAMPUS SANITATION PROTOCOLS: Health experts have learned a lot about how COVID-19 spreads since the start of the pandemic. So with all of our learners returning to campus this fall, we have modified some of our safety procedures and eliminated others to comply with the most up-to-date guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Texas Education Agency. Chief among those changes is a reduced social distance requirement in some indoor settings, a change in mask recommendations for outdoor activities, and the opportunity for visitors and volunteers to come to campus again under certain circumstances (at principal’s discretion). Look for more complete details on these and other COVID-related guidelines in the coming days in our “Back to School Playbook.”

 

 

MASKS OPTIONAL: According to an order from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, public schools are no longer allowed to require their students or team members to wear masks. Instead, masks are optional for both students and team members. Currently, the CDC strongly recommends masks for unvaccinated individuals ages 2 and older. (Ages 12 & Up: Find a free and convenient vaccine clinic near you.) Harmony will continue to offer masks for those who request them.

 

As you can see, helping our students move forward from the past two years both academically and social-emotionally will be key goals of the 2021-22 school year. We appreciate your ongoing support in this critical effort and will provide you more details soon.

 

 

Thank you for being a member of our Harmony Public Schools family.

 

 

We can’t wait to see you this fall!

The Harmony Public Schools Executive Board unanimously approved a systemwide compensation increase for its 4,000+ teachers and team members across Texas.

Harmony teachers and other education professionals will receive between $4,000-$7,500 per year in additional compensation beginning the 2021-22 school year for a total annual system investment of roughly $15 million.
“The obstacles our schools have overcome the past two years have shown the profound impact that highly-qualified, highly-dedicated teachers can have on positive student outcomes,” Harmony CEO Fatih Ay said. “Opportunities like this are just one way we are showing our appreciation for all that our team members have contributed the past two years and for all the hard work still to come.”

The compensation increase comes in two parts:

A $2,000-$5,500 base pay increase for teachers and education professionals. The exact amount varies by community based on local market pay scales (see chart below).

A $2,000 across-the-board “Acceleration Stipend” for all teachers and professional employees.

All non-exempt (i.e. hourly) employees also will receive a raise of at least $1/hour, with some employees receiving $2/hour or more increases depending on position and location. With these increases, no full-time hourly worker in the Harmony system will earn less than $15/hour.

The increase was the third occasion in the past two school years in which Harmony announced a major improvement to employee compensation and benefits.

In January 2021, Harmony announced a sweeping upgrade of its employer-paid benefits that provided free vision and dental plans to all full-time employees, introduced matching retirement plan contributions for 403(b) and (457(b) participants, and increased life insurance payouts from $20,000 to $100,000.

In Summer 2019, Harmony also announced statewide base pay increases for employees ranging from $3,500-$5,000, as well as additional stipends for teachers working in hard-to-staff subjects.

Harmony also was selected by the Texas Education Agency in 2020 among its first round of Teacher Incentive Allotment recipients, which provided annual bonuses for a select group of high-performing educators.

“Our teachers are always looking for new ways to invest in their students, so it’s important to Harmony as a school system to always find new opportunities to invest in our teachers,” Ay said. “Whether its compensation or benefits increases like these, or professional development opportunities that help team members grow their personal skillset or advance their careers, we believe that an investment in our people is among the best investments we can make.”

Harmony Public Schools is a Texas-born, Texas-wide public charter school system with campuses serving PreK-Grade 12 students in 23 cities across the state, including Greater Houston, DFW, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, Waco, Lubbock, Odessa, Bryan, Beaumont, and the Rio Grande Valley. Harmony’s curriculum places a heavy focus on STEM skills, Character Education, project-based learning, and college readiness.

Harmony Public Schools is currently accepting applications for the 2021-2022 school year for both students and team members.

About Harmony Public Schools
Harmony Public Schools are 58 high performing PreK-12 college preparatory charter schools throughout Texas. Harmony blends the highest standards and expectations, with a rigorous math- and science-centered curriculum and dedicated and engaged teachers and families to cultivate excellence and prepare students to succeed in college, careers and life. At Harmony Public Schools, we believe every child can succeed, and we are committed to helping them realize their full potential. To learn more about Harmony Public Schools and our 58 campuses across Texas, please visit: www.harmonytx.org, and follow us on Twitter at @HarmonyEdu and ‘Like’ us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/HarmonyTexas.

This letter is for families with:

• Children who are certified for free or reduced-price meals through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP).
• Children who attend a Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) or Provision 2 (P2) school that offers free meals to all students.*
• Children born after Aug. 1, 2014, in families who received SNAP benefits for at least one month between October 2020 and June 2021.
*Contact your child’s school if you have questions about the school’s participation in these programs.

If you do not meet at least one of the requirements listed above, your child is not eligible for the P-EBT benefits described below.

Enrolled students (up to 21 years of age) in families that temporarily lost access to free or reduced-price school meals for the 2020–2021 school year due to the COVID-19 pandemic may be eligible to receive Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT). P-EBT benefits can be used to buy food from any retailer that accepts the Lone Star Card.

The application for P-EBT will open June 2, 2021. Go to yourtexasbenefits.com/Learn/PEBT to apply.

The application link is case-sensitive. The deadline to apply is Aug. 13, 2021.

Who Needs to Apply?
A parent/guardian must apply if eligible child is:

o Enrolled in K-12 and NOT part of a family who received SNAP benefits for at least one
month between August 2020 and June 2021.

o Born on or before Aug. 1, 2014, and is part of a family who received SNAP benefits for the first time during the 2020–2021 school year in May or June 2021.
• A parent/guardian does not have to apply if eligible child is:
o Born on or before Aug. 1, 2014, and is part of a family who received SNAP benefits for at least one month between August 2020 and April 2021.
o Born after Aug. 1, 2014, and is part of a family who received SNAP benefits for at least one month between October 2020 and June 2021.
For more information about eligibility, applying and getting your P-EBT benefits, visit hhs.texas.gov/pebt, or call the P-EBT Call Center at 833-442-1255, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.–6
p.m. Central time.

Esta carta es para las familias con:
• Niños que están aprobados para recibir comidas gratuitas o a precio reducido a través del Programa Nacional de Almuerzos Escolares (NSLP).
• Niños que asisten a una escuela beneficiaria de la Cláusula de Elegibilidad Comunitaria (CEP) o a una escuela de la Cláusula 2 (P2) que ofrece comidas gratuitas a todos los estudiantes.*
• Niños nacidos después del 1 de agosto de 2014 en familias que recibieron beneficios de SNAP durante al menos un mes entre octubre de 2020 y junio de 2021.
*Comuníquese con la escuela de su hijo si tiene preguntas sobre la participación de la escuela en estos programas.
Si usted no cumple con al menos uno de los requisitos mencionados anteriormente, su hijo no puede recibir los beneficios de P-EBT descritos a continuación.

Estimado padre o tutor,

Los estudiantes matriculados (hasta los 21 años de edad) de familias que perdieron temporalmente el acceso a las comidas escolares gratuitas o de precio reducido para el año escolar 2020-2021 debido a la pandemia de COVID-19 podrían reunir los requisitos para recibir la Transferencia Electrónica de Beneficios durante la Pandemia (P-EBT). Los beneficios de P-EBT pueden usarse para comprar alimentos en cualquier tienda que acepte la tarjeta Lone Star.

La presentación de solicitudes para P-EBT se abrirá el 2 de junio de 2021. Visite yourtexasbenefits.com/Learn/PEBT (en inglés) para presentar la solicitud. El enlace para la solicitud distingue entre mayúsculas y minúsculas. La fecha límite para presentar la solicitud es el 13 de agosto de 2021.

¿Quién debe presentar la solicitud?
Un padre o tutor deberá presentar la solicitud si el niño que reúne los requisitos:
o Está matriculado en K-12 y NO pertenece a una familia que recibió beneficios de SNAP durante al menos un mes entre agosto de 2020 y junio de 2021.
o Nació el 1 de agosto de 2014 o antes y pertenece a una familia que recibió beneficios de SNAP por primera vez durante el año escolar 2020-2021 en mayo o junio de 2021.
• Un padre o tutor no tiene que presentar la solicitud si el niño que reúne los requisitos:
o Nació el 1 de agosto de 2014 o antes y pertenece a una familia que recibió beneficios de SNAP durante al menos un mes entre agosto de 2020 y abril de 2021.
o Nació después del 1 de agosto de 2014 y pertenece a una familia que recibió beneficios de SNAP durante al menos un mes entre octubre de 2020 y junio de 2021.
Para más información sobre los requisitos, la presentación de la solicitud y cómo recibir sus beneficios de P-EBT, visite hhs.texas.gov/es/pebt, o llame al Centro de llamadas de P-EBT al 833-442-1255, de lunes a viernes, de 8 a.m. a 6 p.m. hora del centro.

 

 

Harmony Public Schools is excited to announce a new partnership with Texas’ favorite designer jewelry brand Kendra Scott.
As part of the brand’s “Shop for Good” community initiative, Kendra Scott will be donating 20 percent of all sales during a two-day event in May to Harmony’s COVID-19 Gap Fund, which supports teachers and student families struggling with financial uncertainty due to COVID-19.

To participate, simply purchase any item from select Kendra Scott stores from 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, May 4 or online at KendraScott.com anytime May 4 & 5, and have 20% of your purchase automatically donated to the HPS COVID-19 Gap Fund when you use promo code “GIVEBACK-1D9P” at checkout.

To learn more or RSVP in order to receive reminders, visit https://www.HarmonyTX.org/KendraScott.
Participating Texas store locations include (5-7 p.m. May 4 only):

AUSTIN
• The Domain: 11506 Century Oaks Terrace, Austin, TX
• Lamar: 3800 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX
• South Congress: 1701 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX

DFW
• ClearFork: 5217 Marathon Ave, Fort Worth, TX
• Preston Center: 8383 Preston Center, Dallas, TX
• Highland Village: 1500 Cottonwood Creek, Highland Village, TX
• Plano: 5800 Legacy Dr, Plano, TX

EL PASO
• La Villita: 6801 North Mesa Street, El Paso, TX

HOUSTON
• Bay Brook: 700 Baybrook Mall, Friendswood, TX
• City Centre: 806 Town & Country, Houston, TX
• Cypress: 9945 Barker Cypress, Cypress, TX
• Highland Village: 2701 A Drexel Dr Houston, TX
• Katy: 23501 Cinco Ranch, Katy, TX
• Sugar Land: 16535 Southwest Fwy, Sugar Land, TX

ODESSA
• Commons at North Park: 2900 Loop 250 Frontage Road, Midland, TX

SAN ANTONIO
• The Quarry: 310 E Basse Rd, San Antonio, TX
• La Cantera: 15900 La Cantera Pkwy, San Antonio, TX

SHOP ONLINE USING PROMO CODE GIVEBACK-1D9P (May 4 & 5):
https://www.KendraScott.com

About Kendra Scott
Kendra Scott is a leading jewelry brand named for its founder Kendra Scott, a single mom from Texas who created a fashion empire by making and selling jewelry from her home. The brand now has store locations in almost every state and three countries (though their headquarters are still right here in Texas). Their founder is also well known for her frequent appearances as an investor on TV’s “Shark Tank.”

About Harmony Public Schools
Harmony Public Schools are 58 high performing PreK-12 college preparatory charter schools throughout Texas. Harmony blends the highest standards and expectations, with a rigorous math- and science-centered curriculum and dedicated and engaged teachers and families to cultivate excellence and prepare students to succeed in college, careers and life. At Harmony Public Schools, we believe every child can succeed, and we are committed to helping them realize their full potential. To learn more about Harmony Public Schools and our 58 campuses across Texas, please visit: www.harmonytx.org, and follow us on Twitter at @HarmonyEdu and ‘Like’ us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/HarmonyTexas.

 

Teachers and other staff members of Harmony Public Schools will receive a major upgrade to their employer-paid benefits package after the Harmony Public Schools Executive Board unanimously approved a sweeping new benefits expansion.

 

The package will go into effect later this spring with the start of Harmony’s annual benefits enrollment period, and includes new employer-paid benefits related to health care, retirement, and life insurance.

 

“The past year, the world has seen the true value of our teachers and team members in a way they never have before,” Harmony Public Schools CEO Fatih Ay said. “These professionals who take such good care of our students deserve to know that they are being taken care of, as well – both their immediate needs and their long-term needs. So we are excited to be able to offer them an additional set of benefits that saves them money on their health care costs each month, while also helping them prepare for their retirement down the road.”

 

The new benefits include:

 

MATCHING RETIREMENT CONTRIBUTIONS: Exempt employees can receive 100% matching contribution to employee 403(b) and/or 457(b) plan, up to $1,500 annually depending on tenure of service. This is in addition to employee’s TRS Retirement System Benefits.

 

  • Previously: No employer matching contribution. 

 

FREE VISION: Free vision care for employees.

 

  • Previously: Employee-paid supplemental benefit.

 

FREE DENTAL: Free dental care for employees. 

  • Previously: Employee-paid supplemental benefit.

INCREASED FREE LIFE INSURANCE POLICY: Free $100,000 life insurance policy for all Exempt employees.

 

  • Previously: Free $20,000 life insurance policy.

 

The package amounts to a roughly $2.4 million estimated increase in annual expenditure on employer-paid benefits for the Texas-based school system. However, Harmony Public Schools CEO Fatih Ay said the investment was worth it because of the positive impact on employee quality of life, work-life balance, and workplace satisfaction.

 

“The investments with the best returns are always the investment made in people,” Ay said. “We’ll continue to make these kinds of investments on behalf of our employees as often as we can.” 

 

The expansion was the fourth major announcement related to employee benefits made by Harmony in the past year. The school system also announced two employee bonuses last year, as well as a promise to continue independently offering the now-expired federal COVID-19 leave benefits for impacted employees.

 

For a full list of Harmony Public Schools employer-paid and supplemental benefits, please visit https://www.harmonytx.org/benefits.

 

Harmony Public Schools is a Texas-born, Texas-wide public charter school system with campuses serving PreK-Grade 12 students in 23 cities across the state, including Greater Houston, DFW, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, Waco, Lubbock, Odessa, Bryan, Beaumont, and the Rio Grande Valley. Harmony’s curriculum places a heavy focus on STEM skills, Character Education, project-based learning, and college readiness. 

 

Harmony Public Schools is currently accepting applications for the 2020-2021 school year for both students and team members.

 

 

About Harmony Public Schools

 

Harmony Public Schools are 58 high performing PreK-12 college preparatory charter schools throughout Texas. Harmony blends the highest standards and expectations, with a rigorous math- and science-centered curriculum and dedicated and engaged teachers and families to cultivate excellence and prepare students to succeed in college, careers and life. At Harmony Public Schools, we believe every child can succeed, and we are committed to helping them realize their full potential. To learn more about Harmony Public Schools and our 58 campuses across Texas, please visit: www.harmonytx.org, and follow us on Twitter at @HarmonyEdu and ‘Like’ us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/HarmonyTexas.

 

Harmony Science Academy-Cedar Park was one of six Harmony campuses named an official State School of Character.

Six campuses from Harmony Public Schools were named official Texas “State Schools of Character” Monday for their outstanding efforts in promoting cultures of character in their schools and communities.

 

The awards were announced Monday by Character.org, a national advocate and leader for character development in schools. 

 

Each year, Character.org certifies schools and districts at the state level that demonstrate a dedicated focus on character development, which the organization says has a positive effect on academic achievement, student behavior and school climate. 

 

Only 15 campuses total in Texas earned the honor. No other school system earned more than three. The six Harmony campuses selected are:

 

  • Harmony Science Academy-Cedar Park
  • Harmony Science Academy-Pflugerville
  • Harmony Science Academy-Garland
  • Harmony School of Endeavor-Houston
  • Harmony School of Science-Houston
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Katy

 

The designations bring Harmony’s total number of active State School of Character designations to eight. Harmony School of Innovation-Fort Worth and Harmony School of Innovation-Houston both received State and National Schools of Character honors in 2020. 

 

“We are tremendously proud of the effort these schools and their leaders put into creating cultures of character each day for their students and team members,” Harmony CEO Fatih Ay said. “Character always has been a critical part of our program at Harmony, because we strongly believe that traits like integrity, empathy, respect, and responsibility play important roles in our students’ ultimate success here at school, at home, and later in college and life beyond.”

 

Nineteen other Harmony campuses received “Honorable Mention” recognition, while another 20 were recognized as “Emerging” campuses. Both distinctions are generally considered precursors to future State School of Character designation. (Full list below.)

 

Each of these schools has put into place a comprehensive, multi-year approach to character education that inspires their students to understand, care about and consistently practice a set of core values that will enable them to flourish in school, in relationships, in the workplace, and as citizens. The schools then underwent a rigorous evaluation process to achieve their certification, documenting how they have implemented character education best practices and structures at each school.

 

“We congratulate these schools on achieving State School of Character designation in a year filled with so many challenges,” said Dr. Arthur Schwartz, Character.org’s President. “The educators and parents at these schools work together to ensure that every child understands, cares about, and consistently practice the core values that form the heart of each family and school.” 

 

Harmony Public Schools is a Texas-born, Texas-wide public charter school system with campuses serving PreK-12 students in 23 cities across the state, including Greater Houston, DFW, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, Waco, Lubbock, Odessa, Bryan, Beaumont, and the Rio Grande Valley. Harmony’s curriculum places a heavy focus on STEM skills, Character Education, project-based learning, and college readiness. 

 

Harmony is now accepting applications for both students and team members for the 2021-22 school year.

FULL LIST

 

2021 STATE SCHOOL OF CHARACTERS

  • Harmony Science Academy-Cedar Park
  • Harmony Science Academy-Pflugerville
  • Harmony Science Academy-Garland
  • Harmony School of Endeavor-Houston
  • Harmony School of Science-Houston
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Katy
  • *Harmony School of Innovation-Houston (2020 recipient; status active 5 years)
  • *Harmony School of Innovation- Fort Worth (2020 recipient; status active 5 years)

*National School of Character winner 2020

2021 HONORABLE MENTION

  • Harmony School of Science-Austin
  • Harmony School of Excellence-Dallas
  • Harmony School Of Innovation-Garland
  • Harmony Science Academy-Carrollton
  • Harmony Science Academy-Dallas Elementary
  • Harmony Science Academy-Dallas High School
  • Harmony Science Academy-Dallas Middle School
  • Harmony School of Achievement-Houston
  • Harmony School of Advancement-Houston
  • Harmony School of Discovery-Houston
  • Harmony School of Excellence-Houston
  • Harmony Science Academy-Bryan
  • Harmony School of Exploration-Houston
  • Harmony School of Fine Arts and Technology-Houston
  • Harmony School of Ingenuity-Houston
  • Harmony School of Excellence-Sugar Land
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Sugar Land
  • Harmony Science Academy-Beaumont
  • Harmony School of Excellence-Laredo

2021 EMERGING

  • Harmony School of Innovation-Carrollton
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Dallas
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Euless
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Grand Prairie
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Waco
  • Harmony Science Academy-Euless
  • Harmony Science Academy-Fort Worth
  • Harmony Science Academy-Grand Prairie
  • Harmony Science Academy-Plano
  • Harmony Science Academy-Waco
  • Harmony Science Academy-El Paso
  • Harmony School Of Enrichment-Houston
  • Harmony School of Technology Houston
  • Harmony Science Academy-Cypress
  • Harmony Science Academy-Houston
  • Harmony Science Academy-Katy
  • Harmony Science Academy-Sugar Land
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Brownsville
  • Harmony School of Innovation-Laredo
  • Harmony Science Academy-San Antonio

 

About Harmony Public Schools

 

Harmony Public Schools are 58 high performing PreK-12 college preparatory charter schools throughout Texas. Harmony blends the highest standards and expectations, with a rigorous math- and science-centered curriculum and dedicated and engaged teachers and families to cultivate excellence and prepare students to succeed in college, careers and life. At Harmony Public Schools, we believe every child can succeed, and we are committed to helping them realize their full potential. To learn more about Harmony Public Schools and our 58 campuses across Texas, please visit: www.harmonytx.org, and follow us on Twitter at @HarmonyEdu and ‘Like’ us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/HarmonyTexas.