Having a sincere discussion with your child is a great way to make sure they know how to be safe. The following discussion guides are published by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. They contain age-appropriate ideas for starting a conversation about personal and online safety.
It is also highly recommended that parents keep and up to date child identification kit in the event that a child is abducted or is missing. The guides below are published by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and will help you prepare a kit for your children.
Safety at Home
1. Teach children their full name, address and home telephone number. Make sure they know your full name and how to reach you at work or on your cellphone.
2. Teach children how and when to call 911, and make sure they have a trusted adult to call if they’re scared or have an emergency.
3. Instruct children to keep doors locked and not to open doors to talk to anyone when they are home alone.
4. Choose babysitters with care. Ask children about their experiences and listen carefully to their responses.
Safety in Public
5. Walk or drive the route to and from school with children, pointing out landmarks and safe places to go if they need help.
6. Remind children not to play alone outside, to take a friend whenever they walk or bike to school and to stay with a group when going on outings.
7. Take children on a walking tour of the neighborhood. Tell them whose homes they may visit without you.
8. Teach children to ask permission before leaving home.
9. Remind children it is OK to say no to anything making them feel scared, uncomfortable or confused. Teach children to tell you if anything or anyone makes them feel this way.
10. Teach children to never approach a vehicle, occupied or not, unless they are accompanied by a parent or other trusted adult.
11. Caution children never to accept a ride from anyone unless you have told them it is OK to do so in each instance.
12. Teach children to check in with you if there is a change of plans.
13. Establish a central, easy-to-locate spot during family outings to meet should you get separated.
14. Teach children how to locate help in public places. Identify people they can ask for help such as uniformed law enforcement/security guards and
store clerks with name-tags.
15. Help children learn to recognize and avoid potential risks so they can address them
if they happen.
16. Teach children if anyone tries to grab them, they should make a scene and make every effort to get away by kicking, screaming and resisting.
17. Continually dialogue with children about online safety.
18. Keep the computer in a high-traffic area of your home. Monitor and establish rules concerning your child’s online activities and cellphone use.
19. Be aware of the type of access your child has to the Internet at school, libraries or friends’ homes.
20. Surf the Internet with your children and let them show you what they like to do online.
21. Know who is connecting with your children online and set limits for online communications including social networking, instant messaging, emailing, online gaming and using webcams.
22. Use privacy settings on social networking sites to limit contact with unknown users, and make sure their screen names do not reveal too much information.
23. Caution children not to post revealing information or inappropriate photos of themselves or their friends online.
24. Encourage children to tell you if anything they encounter online makes them feel sad, scared or confused.
25. Learn about the Internet. Visit www.NetSmartz.org for more information about Internet safety.
Johnson County Sheriffs Department is currently investigating an alleged attempted child abduction in our area. It is worthwhile to become acquainted with ways that you can keep children safe from kidnapping. The following tips and resources are highly recommended by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children:
All information on this page is courtesy of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
All parents and guardians of Venus High School, Venus Middle School, and Venus Elementary School students are HIGHLY encouraged to participate in our annual technology survey. The survey is completely anonymous and helps to provide vital feedback on how students and teachers use technology. This allows the district to make well-informed decisions on how technology can best be used in the instruction of our students. Links for the survey are below. If you have students on multiple campuses, you are welcome to take the survey for each campus your children attend.
Time is running out to pre-order your 2016 VHS yearbook! January 29th is the last day to guarantee your copy. Pick up an order form in the office, print one from the PDF below, or order online today. Contact Ms. Stevenson (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have any questions.
Venus ISD’s current Feature Employee is VMS 6th Grade Science teacher, Mrs. Katie Ostrander. She is in her 4th year of teaching and her 7th year in education and with the district. She previously served our students at the Primary School as a Kindergarten aide and the campus art teacher. Katie is a skilled educator who motivates her students to reach new heights of academic and personal achievement.
In her time away from the classroom, Mrs. Ostrander loves spending time with her growing family. She has been married to her husband, Brody, for nearly 6 years and their daughter, Korrie, is 4 years old. The Ostrander family is expecting its newest addition this summer. She is also very close to her parents and siblings. She credits her parents, and their 30+ year marriage, with shaping her values and work ethic. Though neither of her parents graduated high school, but through hard work and determination, they own a very successful commercial construction business. Seeing her parents strive to do their best, impressed upon Mrs. Ostrander that anyone can be successful if they are willing to put in the work. She strives to instil these same values with all of her students. As a child, Mrs. Ostrander treasured spending one on one time with her father. They would go deer hunting where he would hunt and she would watch. This year she changed things up and hunted for the first time, getting her first deer to boot.
What brought you to Venus ISD?
Mrs. Ostrander graduated from Red Oak High School and continued her education at Navarro College and A&M Commerce. Though she initially studied nursing, her long-time desire to become a teacher won out. While studying at A&M Commerce, she was hired as a kindergarten aide at VPS. There she gained a firsthand appreciation for the arduous and often unheralded work done by our outstanding paraprofessionals. She was also able to hone her skills that would later serve her well in her classroom.
Upon completion of her degree and teaching certification process, she was hired by Mr. Buck to teach 6th grade science at Venus Middle School. While Mrs. Ostrander never envisioned herself teaching middle school, she quickly realized that it suited her perfectly. She loves working in Venus because it is a community in every sense of the word. She feels It is great that Venus is small enough where everyone knows each other and watches out for each other.
What are you passionate about?
Mrs. Ostrander is passionate that her students understand they are important. No matter what’s going on in their life or what has happened in their past, each of Mrs. Ostrander's students is important to her. It is of paramount importance for Katie that she gets to know each of her students on a personal level. As students progress through her 6th grade science course, they learn to become self-sufficient learners that are aware of what they know and what they don’t know.
Mrs. Ostrander walks the walk in setting the example of working hard and reaching your potential for her students. She is set to graduate from Lamar University this May with a master’s degree in counseling.
She also finds great pleasure in being able to help fellow teachers and make sure they have the resources they need to be successful. Mrs. Ostrander builds trust with her colleagues so they can work together and share ideas that benefit all of their students.
Who has had the biggest impact on your career?
Katie credits Mr. Buck as having an immense impact on her career. He gave Mrs. Ostrander the chance to reach her potential by setting clear expectations and giving her the tools to meet them. She also thoroughly enjoys working for Mrs. Buck, the current VMS principal, and says she brings an enormous wealth of experience to the campus.
Who would you like to brag on?
Mrs. Ostrander would like to brag on VMS’s paraprofessionals. She feels they have an impeccable work ethic. They often work with the students with the biggest needs. They consistently rise to the occasion to meet with their physical, emotional, and learning needs. Mrs. Ostrander stresses that we are blessed to have people that genuinely love our students.
We are fortunate to have Mrs. Ostrander making a difference with Venus ISD’s 6th graders and we hope to have her around for a good while longer. She is a big part of what makes Venus Middle School a great place to work and learn.
In Texas, each independent school district is governed by a board of trustees made up of publicly elected community members. Unlike many other elected officials, school board members serve as volunteers and are not compensated for their time. Throughout a term as a board member, this can mean hundreds of hours of reading and analyzing reports, policies, and laws in addition to time away from their families and jobs to participate in meetings and attend required training.
We are thankful for the personal investment that our board members have made into the lives of our students and employees. It is an enormous responsibility to be accountable to the public for the education of 2000 students, employment of over 300 people, and the management of a $17,000,000 budget, and we are supremely confident in the personal integrity and supreme work ethic of each trustee. They are truly the super heroes of Venus Independent School District!
Please take the time to thank Miescha Hill, Gerell Leonard, Gregory Hoffman, Charles Pirosko, Amber Dady, Debra Cruce, and Kristi Sutton for being the SUPER volunteers that they are!
We are looking for feedback on the proposed 2016-2017 academic calendar so we can make the best decision for our students. Please review the calendar below and complete the brief survey. Try to be detailed in your response so we can better understand your feedback. To look at the VISD 2015-16 Academic Calendar for comparison, click HERE.
VISD 2016-17 Proposed Calendar