- About TTAO
- TTAO Business
- Contest Manager Resources
- Adjudicator Resources
- Contest Resources
- TTAO Connect
- TTAO News
Summer Board Meeting Minutes can be found here.
In June of 2020, the Board of Directors officially adopted the Core Values Action Plan as a continuing plan for TTAO. Each year, the organization will select a specific Core Value and focus on incorporating new projects to begin emphasizing a narrow focus within that Core Value in the organization.
Core Values Action Committee is comprised of appointed members of TTAO with requisite experience and appropriate knowledge for the development of specific projects within the focus of the given year. In the academic year of 2020-2021, the Core Values Action Committee will address racial and cultural diversity issues and offer strategies for equity and inclusion.
More information and a list of committee members can be found here.
The Real Change Committee has been making progress on their campaign and plan to have more details available August 15th. In the meantime, you can watch their pre-launch video below.
TTAO’s Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
June 17, 2020
It has been stated that “time and tide wait for no man.” In these disquieting times of racial injustice and social unrest, we recognize the urgency of this moment. The Texas Theatre Adjudicators and Officials (TTAO) organization stands united with the Black Lives Matter Movement and supports the ideology that racism and injustice have no place in our society. Therefore, we commit to building a culture of inclusivity that aligns with our core values of education, diversity, integrity, transparency, and service. To that end, we will continue to invest our efforts in work that represents not only our core values but integrates the tenants of humanity and impartiality.
As good stewards of education, it is incumbent upon us to build a culture of inclusivity and push beyond the unfair practices of the day. White privilege is a dehumanizing force in our society, a cavernous divide between opportunity and the lack of it. Destructive at its core, it systematically devalues the beauty and diversity of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), and deletes any opportunity for growth.
We will no longer be silent to the voices of the oppressed. In the wake of the senseless and brutal murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and so many others, and during a time of civil unrest in our society, we stand firmly with the Black community in outrage. Integrity, in the face of these disasters, compels us to engage in honest dialogue in order to learn, grow, and develop actions that address systematic racism.
As live storytellers, we, as theatre artists, embrace the opportunity to humanize complex issues for marginalized people. As theatre educators, the members of TTAO have a responsibility to be receptive to the needs of our community and elevate conversations that champion racial equality. Let it be known that the Leadership of TTAO is committed to enacting the following during the academic year of 2020-2021:
These policies are only the beginning of an ongoing trajectory of our vital work. We will continue to offer transparency in our mission to build more diverse ethnic inclusivity by launching critical programs and soliciting input from our membership. We know that service to our community is vital.
Yasmina Reza suggests: “Theatre is a mirror, a sharp reflection of society.” Our driving force in TTAO continues to be that we are committed to building a community that reflects the best in each of us . . . equal, empowered, insightful, and prosperous.
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”Martin Luther King
Many assignments rolled over from last season, although a handful of assignments had to be changed for different reasons. All assignments can be found on the UIL website. https://www.uiltexas.org/theatre/judges
In light of the evolving factors related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, TheatreFest 2020 will be offered as a virtual event.
No worries, friends! We will still have outstanding training to grow and learn together and share hugs virtually!
Be on the lookout for TTAO workshops including diversity and inclusion training!
If you are an adjudicator, join us here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/681476041915336/
If you are a contest manager, join us at the new site here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/561273894440216/
It’s May 1, and you know what that means, right? Time to go to connect.ttao.org and renew your TTAO annual membership, or if you prefer, go for that Lifetime Membership you’ve been thinking about.
If you’ve forgotten your password, you can create a new one using the “Forgot password?” link, and then login at your earliest convenience: https://connect.ttao.org/#!/users/reset/8bedea2ac25ceec7d8dec668029c5c6cb79c07f3
Once you’re logged in, you’ll need to do these 4 things:
Here’s a video outlining the process:https://youtu.be/zGUxx4eJKnc
Once you’ve indicated your availability, please also take a moment to review your profile and make any updates or perhaps upload a new profile picture when appropriate. You can edit your profile at any time.
For Lifetime Members, please remember that you must complete the entire above process, beyond paying dues, as well to maintain your membership.
Important Notes Regarding Dues this Year:
For this year only, in acknowledgement of the extreme financial challenges many are facing due to COVID-19 complexities, TTAO has extended the deadline for payment/renewal to be considered by the UIL State Theatre Director to adjudicate State, Region, and Area contests. So, in order to be considered for these upper level contests in 2021, you must renew your membership/pay dues before August 1, 2020 (as opposed to the “normal deadline” of June 1.) As always, you must be Area/Region/State certified for consideration as well.
Please remember that any TTAO member may renew/update/pay dues at any time throughout the coming year. However, no one will appear on the lists/TTAO Connect as available or be able to be “reserved” for a contest via contractual agreement, etc. until membership is fully renewed and dues paid following the above steps. So, if you would like to appear available whenever many schools begin searching for people toward the end of the summer to serve their contests, you are encouraged to complete this renewal process in full and pay your dues as soon as you can.
If you have any questions, please check out the TTAO CONNECT help area. Thanks for being part of TTAO.
UIL Amends Suspension of Activities Due to COVID-19
With the announcement that all Texas school are to remain closed to in-person learning for the remainder of the school year, and in an effort to help protect the health & safety of Texans, the University Interscholastic League is cancelling all remaining 2019-2020 Spring activities and State championships.
Message from TTAO on 4/18/20:
With UIL’s announcement yesterday of cancelling all remaining activities for this academic year, I know that, while many of us anticipated that it could happen, our hearts are all still heavy. For TTAO’s Adjudicators and Contest Managers, the OAP Contest means so very much to us.
Of course, our organization’s main priority is to assure that everyone remains safe and healthy through this COVID-19 pandemic. So, while we are all disappointed, TTAO fully supports UIL in this decision for the good of the whole.
As the Chair of TTAO, please let me take this time to personally thank you all for your patience and flexibility over the last several weeks in trying our very best to do whatever we can do for the theatre students and teachers in the state of Texas during this uncertain time. Truly, the members of our organization have exhibited a dedication to selflessly serve at every turn, and for that I am so grateful to you.
Wishing all the best to you and yours,
Carrie Klypchak, PhD
UIL Amends Suspension of Activities Due to COVID-19
RELEASE ➡️ bit.ly/39Enanp
INFO & UPDATES ➡️ uiltexas.org/covid-19-information
As of the time of this update, UIL has decided to try to continue with District contests that have not yet happened and conduct each tier of the contest process through the State Meet. However, UIL has now extended its suspension of all activities, and the earliest any contests may resume as of this writing is May 4.
*No rescheduling is being done at this point. As we all know this is a continually evolving situation due to COVID-19. UIL has not determined a timeline for these contests at this point.*
*WHAT ADJUDICATORS CAN DO RIGHT NOW:
1. UPDATE AVAILABILITY FOR THE MONTH OF MAY: Adjudicators should get into TTAO Connect and update their availability through the month of May. Paula Rodriguez has already communicated with Contest Managers, and your District or Bi-District CMs should contact you when/if a new contest date is determined, cancel any inapplicable contracts, and issue you new ones in TTAO Connect. So, again, as a judge, the only thing you really need to do in TTAO Connect right now is update your current availability through May, CMs should take care of the rest.
(Note: Please remember that when/if you get a new contest date from a CM, you should not mark that as unavailable in TTAO Connect, as it will not let the Contest Manager send you the newly updated contract for that day; once that contract is accepted, the system will automatically reserve the date for you.)
2. TRY TO CANCEL PERSONALLY PURCHASED TRAVEL: If you purchased a flight, etc. for a contest out of pocket for reimbursement that you know will no longer be applicable because of changed contest dates, Ms. Rodriguez has stated that you should try to cancel those flights, etc. and that many airlines are offering refunds.
3. IF YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TO WITHDRAW: If a judge already knows they need to withdraw from a District or Bi-District contest that could be scheduled in the future due to COVID-19 concerns and/or scheduling/site change, etc. concerns, they should go ahead and inform their CM for that contest. Right now, Ms. Rodriguez has stated that she is keeping all Area, Region and State judging assignments as is. Should an adjudicator need to withdraw from any of those, they should contact her directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is all an incredibly fluid situation at this point. It is important to reiterate that no rescheduling is occurring at this time. All decisions remain flexible as UIL continues to monitor and reassess this ever-changing situation. As well, Ms. Rodriguez has also said that if you have specific questions you may contact her as the UIL State Theatre Director. Thank you for your continued flexibility and understanding.
Our team has been working to find the most straightforward way to change dates, sites, judges, etc. etc. in TTAO Connect for Adjudicator Contractual Agreements when need be. As we all know, the present circumstances offer challenges that no one could really anticipate, and the Connect system didn’t anticipate it either! So, what has been determined is that the original Contractual Agreements/Events will need to be canceled/deleted in Connect BY THE CONTEST MANAGER if there are changes, and new events/Contractual Agreements will need to be created/distributed to Adjudicators (for any changes… dates, sites, etc. etc.)
*ADJUDICATORS: Please anticipate communication from your Contest Managers about any contest shifts/new Contractual Agreements coming your way. Also, *all* Adjudicators need to remain aware that you may be receiving new offers to judge during this period of time if the originally slated judges can no longer serve given shifts, health concerns, etc. See below regarding how Contest Managers are being asked to approach all of this, and please remain diligent about checking your emails regularly – including your “spammy” folders. This is very important, as you will again have that 72 hour window to either accept or reject a contract through Connect, but *please* do this as soon as possible! Your Contest Managers are working hard doing *all the things* right now!
*CONTEST MANAGERS: Please approach new Contractual Agreements in the following way:
1. Make sure that you get the currently slated judges’ contact information from the existing contract in Connect before you cancel it so that you have their direct contact information handy.
2. Directly contact the originally slated judges and communicate to them the proposed changes. Please try to be as thorough as possible in your communication with them about any changes (date, site, travel accommodations/reimbursement approach, number of schools, pay, etc. etc.) and understand that some of those judges may or may not be able to continue to serve given those changes and/or their own circumstances (i.e. if they have health concerns regarding the coronavirus, etc.). Also, make sure that they know when you are going to cancel the existing Contractual Agreement and issue the new Contractual Agreement so they remain on the “look-out” for it coming to them via email once you have created it in TTAO Connect. This will be important, as they will still have the 72 hour window to accept or reject the new Contractual Agreement.
3. Create the new Event/Contractual Agreements in Connect with the appropriately changed dynamics of the contest and issue it to appropriate judges (be those the originally slated ones or new ones).
All of the above approach will need to be done in the future as well by Contest Managers if the specifics of a contest change again (hopefully, that won’t be the case, of course, but as we all know, we are in uncertain times right now).
***Again, if Contest Managers have questions about shifting a contest in any way, please contact Paula Rodriguez as the UIL State Theatre Director directly. As well, if a contest date, site, etc. is shifting, please make sure that she knows that. (Just fyi: Ms. Rodriguez has already recently communicated that at this time, there is no need to open/edit the Spring Meet entry system for District Competitions.)***
As always, thank you to you all for your patience, flexibility, and hard work! Obviously, this is not where any of us wanted to be, but here we are… and we will “make it work” for those kids.
Best to you and yours-
Carrie Klypchak, PhD
Paula Rodriguez again gave me permission to share the below with you all that she just posted on the One-Act Play Director’s Facebook page from UIL. I know that everyone will have many questions regarding contractual agreements, scheduling, etc.
Adjudicators: Please stay in close communication with your Contest Managers regarding any shifts. Also, please make sure that your availability is completely updated on TTAO Connect, as shifts will undoubtedly need to happen.
Contest Managers: If you have any questions regarding the re-scheduling of a contest, adjudicator assignments, etc., please contact Paula directly using her contact information that she provides in her below message.
Continuing thanks to you all for your flexibility, patience, and commitment to working together for the good of the students. And, again, please know that whatever I find out, I will continue to let you know as soon as possible (in the end, you may get tired of hearing from me… but I’ll definitely let you know when/if info. comes my way:)!
Carrie Klypchak, PhDChair, TTAO
UIL One Act Play Directors,
As we continue to monitor the rapidly changing status of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and how it is impacting students and their activities we have the following updates regarding the remaining UIL One act Play Contests for the 2019-2020 school year.
All UIL events scheduled March 16-29 are to be suspended. Rehearsals and practices during the time of suspension may be held with approval from the local school district. Beginning on March 30th events may resume with the considerations that follow. Any changes to these dates will be communicated as they become available.
Note: Sunday competitions are allowed.
We ask that schools and local District Executive Committees work collaboratively and reasonably with one another in rescheduling district and bi-district one-act play. Area one-act play will be scheduled based on host site availability and will be communicated via the UIL website.
Regional Academic, Speech and One-Act Play
Academic Regional Meets are still scheduled for April 17-18 and One-Act Play Regional dates remain April 15-18. Current sites are subject to change.
Scheduling your district competitions remain at your local administration’s discretion. We ask that schools and local District Executive Committees work collaboratively and reasonably with one another in rescheduling district competitions, as well as bi-district one-act play. Area one-act play will be scheduled based on host site availability.
Our office will work with contest managers and contest sites to reschedule as school districts allow. One Act Play directors, please have your contest managers update the State theatre director, Paula Rodriguez, email@example.com, with any changes in contest dates and locations. If you have immediate concerns, do not hesitate to call (512) 471-4517.We appreciate your cooperation and all that you do for UIL member schools.
We are so very excited to announce that TTAO has grown so much over the past several years as a dynamic independent non-profit organization that the Board has recently voted to create a new, rotating committee in our organization… the Area/Region/State Recommendation Committee!
This new committee will be made up of each year’s State judges, and they will make recommendations for new upper-level judge status designations, as well as provide recommendations to the UIL State Theatre Director for her consideration in her assignment of Area, Region, and State judges!
Below is a short video for all of our members that will explain the process in more depth. This new committee has been under discussion by Board members for several years, however, and we would like to take this opportunity now to extend our overwhelming gratitude to the State judges this year who have jumped on board and helped us make this happen!