The Mission CISD (Consolidated Independent School District) Public Relations Department has received several 2017 Texas School Public Relations Association (TSPRA) Star Awards for excellence in school communications. The awards were announced at the TSPRA Star Awards Celebration held during the organization’s annual conference in Frisco, Texas.


Each year, TSPRA recognizes school communicators for outstanding work in both print and electronic media. Entries are judged by Texas public relations, marketing, video production, and graphics professionals using a standard set of evaluation criteria based on current professional industry standards. This year, 1,331 entries were received which is the highest number of entries ever received since the Star Award program began.


A special set of billboards created as a part of a promotional campaign for the district’s Mission CISD Reads community literacy project with Alton, Mission, and Palmhurst, not only earned a Gold Star Award, but it was also selected as the Best of Category in the area of Advertisements-Other.


There are 45 main categories covering various media such as newsletters, programs, posters, reports, writing, image/identity packages, photography, graphics, video, electronic presentations, mobile apps, campaigns, events and web sites. For the first 45 categories, the entries are divided into three divisions based on the number of students the district, foundation or organizations serves - under 10,000 students; 10,000 to 30,000 students; and over 30,000 students. Independent judges evaluate and score each entry based on its own merit. Bronze, Silver and Gold Stars are awarded based on set criteria. Finally, the judges review their highest scoring Gold Star winners and select a Best of Category for each division in each of the 45 categories.


The Mission CISD Public Relations Department earned a total of one Best of Category honor, five Gold Star Awards, three Silver Star Awards, and one bronze Star Award for items submitted for consideration.


The Mission CISD Reads resulted in Best of Category and a Gold Star Award for the billboards; as well as a Gold Star Award in the area of Image/Identity Package credited to Craig Verley, director of public relations and marketing and Aaron Cantu, graphic and media arts specialist. Also earning a Gold Star Award for Verley and Cantu was a series of billboards created as a part of efforts to advertise achievements of the district through the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. These billboards highlighted honors for being among America’s Healthiest Schools. Gold Star Awards were earned by Cantu for his creation of an Image/Identity Package for the Mims Elementary School minitropolis named Mustangville; as well as a series of college acceptance posters featuring college acceptance letters received by members of graduating high school seniors.


Silver Star Awards were received by Cantu for the creation of the Mission CISD Reads logo that has been used in all aspects of this district/community literacy initiative and also for a special science fair logo used for this districtwide event.


In the area of Video Promotional/Marketing, a special thirty-second video advertisement created with student vocals and computer animations earned a Silver Star Award for both Verley and Cantu.


A Bronze Star Award was given for the 2017 Mission Collegiate High School Commencement Program.


There are 45 main categories covering various media such as newsletters, programs, posters, reports, writing, image/identity packages, photography, graphics, video, electronic presentations, mobile apps, campaigns, events and web sites. Larger, more comprehensive projects and special programs are entered in one of ten Crystal Commendation categories or the Platinum Award category. The Platinum Award honors a year-long project that exhibits


the highest standards of excellence in all facets according to research, analysis, communication and evaluation.


Of the 1,331 entries this year, the judges awarded one Platinum Award, three Platinum Certificates of Merit, ten Crystal Commendations, 34 Crystal Certificates of Merit, 116 Best of Categories, 609 Gold Stars, 436 Silver Stars and 199 Bronze Stars. Since TSPRA members enter only their best work, it is not uncommon for there to be very few entries that do not earn any type of award.


The Texas School Public Relations Association (TSPRA) is a nonprofit, professional organization dedicated to promoting public schools through effective communications. TSPRA, an award winning chapter of the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA), was chartered in 1962 and incorporated in 1977. With more than 900 members, TSPRA is comprised primarily of public information and communications professionals who serve public school districts and education organizations of Texas. The membership also includes superintendents, administrators, principals, web/technology/ electronic media and graphic professionals, education foundation executive directors and their boards, association executive directors, school consultants, vendors and others who support public education in the state. TSPRA provides professional development, resources and networking opportunities for members and others in the education community.