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Eight Years in, MISD Senior Adult Tour Never Gets Old

Press Release|
Shane Mauldin|
Tuesday, March 6, 2018

McKinney, Texas – They arrived to cheers and fanfare—and drum lines—and waded into a sea of smiling kids who offered high fives and hugs.

February had arrived, and that meant that it was time for the McKinney ISD Senior Adult Tour. Over the course of eight years, it has become a much-anticipated day of fun and discovery for the 70 or so senior adults who take part and for the students who get the chance to showcase their schools.

Students in cultural costumes in a group pointing upward

Finch second grade students presented a multicultural dance for the 2018 Senior Tour.

McKinney ISD Superintendent Dr. Rick McDaniel and MISD Board member Maria McKinzie were on board along with Board President Amy Dankel this year as the festive caravan made its first stop at Finch Elementary, then headed over to McKinney North High School and wrapped up the day at Scott Johnson Middle School.

For retired McKinney ISD teacher Betty Rutledge, the tour always serves to reinforce what she already knows—that MISD kids are afforded tremendous educational opportunities, and they make great use of them.

“I will tell you what I told one of the girls over at McKinney North,” Rutledge said. “This really gives seniors hope for the future. It is so reassuring to see these wonderful accomplishments and the wonderful kids with these fantastic teachers in these superlative facilities.”

At Finch, the guests were treated to a multicultural dance presentation, received a history lesson on the school from “Fanny Finch” herself, and then followed student tour guides to various classrooms around the campus. They tried out robots in the library and dove into instructional technology in other classes.

Senior adult smiling at PALS student as they talk at a table in the classroom

The 2018 Senior Tour visits with students in the PALS class at North.

At North, they shared a catered lunch with members of the school’s Blue Blazer ambassadors and Student Council members and then visited career and technical education and elective classes in North’s expansion wing that was completed in 2016. Along the way, they checked out the aviation classroom and chatted with Coach Jessica Richards’ PALS students.

“I love North,” said Student Body President Annabel Martjuchin, who served as a guide for one of the tour groups. “So, I’m happy that they get to kind of see what it’s like nowadays in high school. I like for them to be able to see electives, specifically, just because that’s more of an outlet and what students really love to do—what they are passionate about.”

What school is like nowadays is that’s it’s different—yet the same—explained Dr. Mitch Curry at the tour’s final stop of the day, Scott Johnson Middle School. There, the tour visited choir, band and orchestra classes, observed an AVID class in action and danced alongside P.E. students in the gym.

Senior Adult gets a hug from student as they arrive.

Scott Johnson Middle School welcomes the 2018 Senior Tour!

“Kids learn in different ways,” Curry explained to the Senior Tour group as they relaxed in the library. “They learn at different rates. They learn at different times. It’s just different than it was before. Although…it’s the same. They still need a good teacher. They need a good community supporting them. They need great administrators, a great board to support them. All that’s the same.”

SJMS seventh-grade AVID student Ella Morrow had the opportunity to lead a group around campus and appreciated the interest they showed in her school.

“It means a lot to me because it shows that my school is important and that people really enjoy coming [here]. A lot of people know about the school and…it’s shared around the world,” she said. [Scott Johnson Middle School is an AVID National Demonstration School.] “It feels good to show it to older people…It’s a lot of fun.”

And, fun is a big part of what the day is all about.

For Rutledge, who invested more than 30 years in MISD as an educator, it’s also fulfilling to see others carrying on the same mission with passion and fervor—some of them, students she once taught.

“Oh, it just lifts us off the floor to see our former students and teachers who are our former students,” she said. “It just feels good.”

So, until next year…here are some images that capture the fun and “feel good” spirit of the day.

Finch Elementary School

Senior Adult smiling at students in hall

Finch Elementary welcomes the 2018 Senior Tour!

A teacher taking a picture of kids lining the hallway at Finch.

The students of Finch Elementary lined the halls in anticipation of the Senior Tour’s arrival.

Senior Adult smiling and waving at students in the hallway at Finch

It’s all smiles as the Senior Tour arrives at Finch Elementary.

Group photo in cafeteria at Finch

The 2018 Senior Tour

Choir of students in multicultural costumes.

Finch second grade students presented a multicultural song and dance for the 2018 Senior Tour.

Students dancing in cultural costumes.

Second grade students from Finch staged an elaborate presentation of multicultural dance and song.

Girl at the microphone with choir of students behind her

Senior Tour guests were greeted with a stage performance from the Finch second graders.

Female student and senior adult woman facing each other and clapping.

Finch students participate in a cultural dance with Senior Tour guests.

Woman in historical dress talking on a microphone

“Fanny Finch” offers a brief history of the school that bears her name.

Adult points at iPad screen as students look on.

Technology at work in the classroom.

Maria McKinzie looks on as students demonstrate learning tool software on a laptop

Board of Trustees member Maria McKinzie looks on as a student demonstrates a learning activity on an iPad.

Adults look on as students demonstrate robots on table top.

Robotics in the library. Some Finch students choose to spend their lunch period or recess time working with robotics in the library.

Adult holding iPad controlling robot on the floor as student looks on

Former MISD educator Betty Rutledge tries out one of the robots in the Finch library.

McKinney North High School

Senior Adults walking between rows of drill team and cheerleaders

McKinney North High School welcomes the 2018 Senior Tour!

Chamber orchestra performing

North orchestra members provided entertainment during lunch.

Student shaking hands with senior adults

McKinney North Blue Blazers and Student Council members served as hosts for their guests.

Student talking with senior adult

McKinney North Blue Blazers and Student Council members enjoy lunch and conversation with their guests.

Student leading tour guests down the hall

North Student Body President Annabel Martjuchin guides a Senior Tour group around campus.

Teacher talking with group of senior adults

The 2018 Senior Tour visits the digital animation class.

Senior adult sitting at table talking with student

The 2018 Senior Tour visits with students in the PALS class at North.

Scott Johnson Middle School

Senior Adult gives a student a high five as they enter the building

Scott Johnson Middle School welcomes the 2018 Senior Tour!

Another senior adult high fiving a student

Scott Johnson Middle School students welcome their Senior Tour guests with high fives and hugs.

McDaniel shaking hands with students

Supt. Dr. Rick McDaniel greets students on the Senior Tour.

Group walking down main hallway at SJMS

Asst. Principal Grace Harris leads a group on the Senior Tour.

Senior Adults do dance moves in line with students dancing behind them.

Dancing in P.E.!

Adults look on as student answers questions about theatre class

The tour visits the Theatre Dept.

Adults talking with students working on laptops at tables

Senior Tour guests talk with students at Scott Johnson Middle School.

Band conductor directing the band

The Tour visits the band at SJMS.

Teacher with hands raised directing choir

The Tour visits the choir room.

Dankel standing and talking with man at table

MISD Board of Trustees President Amy Dankel talks with one of the Senior Tour guests.

Man in chair reading a comic book

A little light reading as the 2018 Senior Tour comes to a close.


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If you need additional assistance with the content on this page, please contact MISD Communications Department team member Shane Mauldin by phone at 469-302-4007 or by email here .

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