William Fort Elementary and Miss May Vernon Elementary have received the Capturing Kids’ Hearts National Showcase SchoolsTM award for the 2016-2017 school year from the Flippen Group. Only 53 schools in America are named to this prestigious list. Showcase schools like Fort and Vernon Elementary are among the top 8 percent who participate in Capturing Kids’ Hearts.


According to Capturing Kids’ Hearts Trainer John McGee, “Only about 5 schools in the DFW metroplex are named to the showcase and only a handful of school districts across the nation have more than one school on the list. If my daughter was school-aged, I wouldn’t think twice about sending her to one of these amazing schools.”


Capturing Kids’ Hearts is a staff development opportunity that equips teachers with the tools to create a classroom environment that is welcoming, exciting and emotionally safe. Examples include shaking hands with students daily and the creation of social contracts in each classroom.


In RCISD, teachers from Pre-K to 12 have experienced the training opportunities offered by Capturing Kids’ Hearts. RCISD first introduced the program in 2003 and hundreds of educators have been trained along the way.


“Every campus in RCISD is recognized for its commitment to building relationships with students. Through the Capturing Kids’ Hearts National Showcase, Fort and Vernon Elementary Schools are celebrated for going the extra mile. We are so proud of all of our teachers and coaches for committing to this campus culture,” said Assistant Superintendent Kenny Kaye Hudson.


Nominees for the showcase were considered for the designation based on the following criteria: 1) nomination based on observation, 2) level of implementation of Capturing Kids’ Hearts processes by all staff as measured by online surveys, and 3) data demonstrating that Capturing Kids’ Hearts has made a significant improvement in attendance, discipline, climate/culture, or academics.


A team from Capturing Kids’ Hearts Flippen Group visited each nominated campus to gather additional quantitative and qualitative data, and to interview students, teachers, administrators, and parents. They used a matrix of key measurements to gather information during the campus walk-through. Finally, an additional survey was conducted to collect feedback regarding the perceived climate and culture of the campus and its conduciveness to learning. Following this visit, the selection team reviewed all accumulated data and selected the campuses to receive the Capturing Kids’ Hearts National Showcase Schools awards.