Meet the New 3Rs Founders
Betty Jenkins and Blaine Helwig have collaborated and focused over the last decade plus on elementary school Title 1 reform leadership and curriculum practices. Their work in two urban Title 1 elementary schools resulted in not only local and state academic recognition, but both schools were also named National Blue Ribbon Schools in 2012 and 2015, respectively. Each elementary school was also selected by the United States Department of Education as one of only 4 schools in the United States to be named 'profile schools" for academic excellence.
Blaine Helwig is a locally, state and nationally recognized campus administrator and was the J. Walter Graham Elementary Principal in Austin ISD for 9 years until his retirement in October of 2016. In that time period, Graham Elementary (an urban Title 1 school) experienced dramatic and sustained academic success with challenging inner-city student demographics. The language arts, mathematics and science stop-gap resources implemented at Graham also produced heightened student success at other Title 1 campuses with similar high percentages of English Language Learners, minority and low socioeconomic student populations.
After completing a Bachelor of Science degree in Architectural Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 1985, he began his professional career as a lead structural engineer designing state and federal highway bridges in Texas and also worked as a senior project engineer for the Department of Defense. In 1992, Mr.
Helwig was conferred a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting. During this period of business study at the University of Texas, he pursued additional and focused coursework in both economics and finance.
After working as a finance director for a geographically large library system for a couple years, he was alternatively certified by the University of Texas in elementary education. He taught fourth and fifth grade in self-contained classrooms in the Round Rock Independent School District for six years. It was during these professional years when extensive language arts, science, social studies and mathematics curriculum were developed. The initial design work on the numeracy and literacy stop gap resources were completed, implemented and beta-tested in intermediate classrooms.
In 2004, he was awarded a Master’s degree in Educational Administration from Texas State University and labored as an assistant principal at Charlotte Cox Elementary for two years in the Leander Independent School District. He began work in the Austin Independent School District in 2006 as an Elementary Program Supervisor under the direction of the Associate Superintendent’s Office. A year later, he started his principal assignment at J. Walter Graham Elementary and maintained that capacity until his retirement in the fall of 2016.
In 2012, Mr. Helwig was recognized by the United States Department of Education as one of seven recipients in the country with the prestigious Terrel H. Bell award for school transformation, for producing outstanding student achievement for all students regardless of race, language proficiency and socioeconomic status. He was also the 2012 recipient of the Central Texas HEB Principal Excellence in Education Award and a five-time nominee and a two-time finalist for Austin ISD Principal of the Year. Currently, Blaine Helwig is a curriculum writer and a Title 1 education consultant in rural and urban school transformation. He is a cofounder of Celestial Numeracy, a daily numeracy program that presently serves over 80,000 elementary and middle school students each day as well as a cofounder of The New 3Rs Education Consulting.