Saturday, June 23, 2018
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Sharyland ISD extends full day Pre-K districtwide

Sharyland-LogoCiting an expected growth in the kindergarten population, the Sharyland School Board of Trustees unanimously approved extending pre-kindergarten classes to all of their campuses during their Monday board meeting.


This extension comes after the district successfully completed a pilot program where half of the elementary schools in the district extended their Pre-K classes from a half-day to a full day, Pamela Montalvo - the district’s assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction said.


“We had a pilot program in Martinez, O. Garza, Jessie L. Jensen and Bentsen Elementary Schools last year and the results showed an increase in enrollment,” Montalvo said. “Overall, this year we’re seeing the half-day programs in our districts saw a student enrollment growth of 14 students while the full day classes grew by 59 students. This gives us an expected net growth of 45 students for our kindergarten program for the incoming school year.”

Read more: Sharyland ISD extends full day Pre-K districtwide

Candidate Announcement Deadline

People-VotingThe Progress Times deadline to accept candidate announcements for the upcoming March 6 election is Friday. Feb. 23 at noon.  Announcements received after this date must be run as paid advertising. 


Candidates may submit their announcements by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.';document.getElementById('cloak00fe0c25fcda2bfe5e9009b971bdcbd4').innerHTML += ''+addy_text00fe0c25fcda2bfe5e9009b971bdcbd4+''; or deliver them to the Progress Times office at 1217 N. Conway Ave., Mission. Attach a jpeg portrait photo of the candidate. The jpeg must be at least 2MB in size, or 5 x 7 inches at 300 ppi. Political announcements must not exceed 600 words for individual candidates. Slate announcements must not exceed 850 words.  All announcements are subject to editing for length and uniform style.


Campaign announcements may be published at the discretion of the publisher and should reference only the candidate’s qualifications, platform and campaign issues. No attacks on political opponents are permitted.  Announcements will be published as space is available. 

Read more: Candidate Announcement Deadline

Former Sharyland teacher accused of sexually assaulting 14-year-old student

Vanessa-McManness-HCSO-Booking-PhotoOfficers on Monday arrested a former Sharyland teacher accused of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old student.


The case started in January, when a McAllen Police Department investigator met with the boy — assigned the pseudonym “Michael” to preserve his anonymity — and his mother.


They said Michael’s teacher, 31-year-old Vanessa Sarai McManness of McAllen, became friends with him on Snapchat, according to the criminal complaint. They also provided a photo of Michael and McManness together.

Read more: Former Sharyland teacher accused of sexually assaulting 14-year-old student

Sharyland Advanced Academy graduating first senior cohort

20160415 SISD SA3 logoThis coming June, the Sharyland Advanced Academy will mark a major milestone as it graduates its first ever senior cohort class.

The academy, which opened in 2013, will be graduating all 93 of its seniors, according to the schools’ principal Ivan Karr.

Karr said that out of the 93 students, 87 of them are expected to graduate with an associate’s degree. That is a major achievement for the seniors, according to Karr.

Read more: Sharyland Advanced Academy graduating first senior cohort

Leo Peña Park to be renovated

20180126 STLaPlacitaWhen renovations are complete, Leo Peña “La Placita” Park in downtown Mission will be fully ADA accessible and the design will match the recent Streetscape Project done a couple of years ago to brighten up the downtown Mission area.

That’s according to Mission City Manager Martin Garza when asked about the renovations project, which was approved during Monday Mission City Council meeting. The project, which was awarded to Williamson Construction, will take approximately four months at a cost of $1.4 million.

“Through the years, the concrete seating has deteriorated and the facility does not meet ADA standards,” added Garza. “There is also need for improved lighting.”

Read more: Leo Peña Park to be renovated

Ancestor of Duchess of Mandarin Orange started first orange trees in RGV

alyssa navarroDuring last November’s Princess Anna Pageant, 16-year-old Alyssa Navarro and her mom came across an article of the Progress Times that would impact her family history.

The article, Navarro said, detailed how the citrus industry was inspired by the Laguna Seca Ranch, a citrus growing region north of Edinburg created in 1867 by Macedonio Vela, so he and his family could settle after he was exiled from Mexico. There, in the 4,000 acres of wild brush, his daughter, Carlota would plant the first orange seeds in the Rio Grande Valley after a traveling priest gifted them to her. By planting those seeds, Carlota sparked an agricultural revolution that opened the doors to the huge citrus market the Valley was known for.

For Navarro, the article raised questions, as she was aware her ancestors had lived in the Laguna Seca Ranch, which is still owned by the Vela family. Through research she was able to confirm she herself was a descendent of Carlota who was her great-great-great grandmother.

Read more: Ancestor of Duchess of Mandarin Orange started first orange trees in RGV