Burleson ISD Names Principal of REALM

Dr. Jim Calvin Will Lead REALM as it Transforms Into a Choice Secondary School

BURLESON, Texas – (January 30, 2019) – Burleson Independent School District (BISD) announces Dr. Jim Calvin as Principal of the Rigorous Educational Arcade Learning Model (REALM), a secondary campus that applies game design to blended learning.

REALM offers student-paced learning, which requires critical thinking and problem-solving skills students must master to “level up.” With a focus on design and development, electives prepare students for video game development and the skills necessary to enter the workforce or continue onto post-secondary education.  In the Fall of 2019, REALM will add freshman to its campus, with a graduating class added each year thereafter. It will remain in its current facility, currently Kerr Middle School.

Dr. Calvin looks forward to leading the team that expands REALM to high school.

“When I listened to the vision for REALM years ago, I was fascinated by the powerful learning opportunities provided to students through such a unique approach,” said Dr. Calvin. “It is a tremendous honor to join REALM, and I look forward to working with Ms. Essex and the students, staff and families to ensure we will continue to level up for years to come!”  

Calvin has 22 years of experience as an administrator and joined BISD in 2015. In 2016, he transformed Stribling Elementary—a once traditional campus—into the Academy of STEAM at Stribling Elementary, a school of choice integrating science, technology, engineering and math content with art elements that focus on visual and graphic design. He earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Texas Wesleyan University, his masters and doctoral degrees from Texas Christian University.  

“Jim understands the evolution of education and opportunities for students in the district,” said Superintendent Dr. Bret Jimerson. “He is a strong contributor to our district leadership team and will ensure students at our choice high school are successful.”

REALM will host a “Meet and Greet” for Dr. Calvin on Thursday, January 31, from 4 to 4:30 p.m. Parents, students, staff, and community members are invited to join in welcoming Dr. Calvin to the campus.

Click here to learn more about REALM expanding to high school. Information on how to apply to REALM is available at http://www.burlesonisd.net/choiceschools/.

REALM administrators, teachers and students will also attend BISD Showcase, an event to  share information with parents and students on the education opportunities available to BISD students. The BISD Showcase is Thursday, Feb. 7, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Centennial High School, located at 201 S. Hurst Rd. Visit bit.ly/BISDshowcase for event details.


Burleson Independent School District serves 12,400 students and is recognized as a premier school district in the Dallas/Fort Worth-area. The mission of Burleson Independent School District is to engage and support every learner with a rigorous curriculum so that they graduate college and career ready.


Mikala Hill

Burleson ISD Communications