A MESSAGE FROM
Terry B. Grier, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools, 2015
A MESSAGE FROM
President, Board of Education, 2015
What is a Global Graduate?
Click on a face to get more information on the qualities of a Global Graduate.
Principal, Challenge Early College High School
Responsible Decision Maker
Communications Applications, Madison High School
Principal, Chávez High School
College Access Coordinator, Lee High School
Maryury Santos Cruz
Jason Fuentes, Sterling High School
Adaptable & Productive
Environmental Communications, Furr High School
The one-size-fits-all classroom approach no longer prepares students for success. Colleges and employers want innovative, creative thinkers who can solve problems and apply their knowledge to new challenges. At HISD, we are creating these thinkers with an atmosphere that supports students' emotional and physical needs, including exercise to reduce stress and healthy meals to keep them focused. We are putting technology in their hands that gives them anytime, anywhere access to personalized education. And we are "powering up" all 282 of our schools for today’s 21st century learners with laptops and a digital hub where teachers can more effectively facilitate instruction, manage curriculum, collaborate with their peers, and engage today’s digitally wired students.
"I focus on my students, not the subject matter, and I teach them how the world works. I keep things moving in my classroom so that students stay engaged. We work in groups, and we read a lot, because you can’t be a good writer until you are a good reader. I give them choices, and that makes learning fun.”
SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL
The whole student is supported through mindfulness practices to promote health and reduce stress. Yoga-style classes are in place at a number of schools, with plans to expand to nearly all campuses by 2019. Because hungry children can't learn, a free breakfast is provided for every student, helping to increase focus and improve attendance. And opportunities are provided to help students develop positive character traits and values.
'POWERING UP' PERSONALIZED LEARNING
HISD is transforming teaching and learning through PowerUp, which uses laptops to enhance educational collaboration. With PowerUp, the district also launched the HUB, a K-12 online platform that is the center of curriculum, instruction and communication for all HISD staff, students, and parents. It enables the district to personalize learning for each child’s unique needs, abilities, and preferences.
We are innovating instruction – especially for the digital age – to create Global Graduates. Project-based learning at many schools gives students the opportunity to learn by doing, collaborating with their peers to investigate, solve problems, and present ideas. At Energy Institute High School, for example, students will have worked in 150 groups on 150 projects and given 150 group presentations upon graduation. We’re introducing our young students to the world of writing computer code, because that skill will become increasingly valuable in a digital world.
EMPHASIS ON EFFECTIVE TEACHERS
HISD also is placing an emphasis on recruiting and placing highly effective teachers in the classroom and retaining those teachers. The district places a high value on providing teachers with the resources they need to be successful in the classroom. Nine professional development days for teachers in the summer and ongoing support throughout the year are offered.
- Bellaire HS teacher wins H-E-B lifetime achievement award
- Wheatley HS biology teacher named finalist for Presidential Award
- STEM teacher wins Elizabeth Brand Memorial Award
- Carnegie Vanguard chemistry teacher wins prestigious award
- CVHS teacher wins Texas A&M education award thanks to former student
BY THE NUMBERS
65,000LAPTOPS IN THE HANDS OF EVERY HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT
119,000BREAKFASTS SERVED TO STUDENTS DAILY
50,000STUDENTS ARE TAKING PART IN YOGA CLASSES AT 74 SCHOOLS
90%NEARLY 90% OF EFFECTIVE TEACHERS ARE OPTING TO STAY AT HISD
Literacy is the foundation of a lifelong learner. HISD is placing a huge emphasis on ensuring every child is reading on grade level by the end of third grade, and on providing targeted support to struggling students in higher grades to get them on track. This is a movement that requires the support of not only schools, but also parents and the community. Because fluency in two languages is imperative in an ever-shrinking world, HISD is providing the opportunity for students to master two languages at the elementary level through more than 50 dual language and language immersion programs.
"We really believe that the combination of focused, personalized strategies in our schools and the commitment of volunteers through Read Houston Read will help us turn the corner on the literacy crisis in our city."
LITERACY AT THE CORE
HISD’s mission is to have every child reading and writing with fluency by the third grade, and then to build on that success through middle school and high school. Guided-reading instruction and 5,000 classroom libraries are in place at the elementary level to support independent and at-home reading, and all HISD elementary school classrooms are stocked with “just-right books” that correspond to a student’s reading ability. Through the district’s Read Houston Read program, a corps of volunteers is working one-on-one with first- and second-grade students to foster a lifelong love of reading.
PARENTS AS A CHILD'S FIRST TEACHER
HISD’s Family and Community Engagement (FACE) team supports parents as students advance along their educational journeys, coaching those parents to be partners in their children's education. Through its HIPPY program, FACE offers coaching that helps parents build the literacy and numeracy skills of their preschool-age children in weekly home visits. Research shows participating children go on to outperform their kindergarten peers in reading and math. Through FACE, schools also are creating Academic Parent-Teacher Teams to enhance parent-teacher conferences.
FLUENCY IN TWO LANGUAGES
HISD leads the state in the number of dual language and language immersion programs, where students spend a portion of their day learning in English and the rest of the day learning in another language, such as Spanish and Mandarin Chinese. The district also launched the nation's first public Arabic Immersion Magnet School, which drew three applications for every seat and a student body as diverse as the city of Houston. It is preparing students to be native speakers in a language considered critical by the State Department and essential in the energy capital of the world.
BY THE NUMBERS
600READ HOUSTON READ VOLUNTEERS ARE HELPING CHILDREN DEVELOP READING SKILLS
58CAMPUSES ARE DESIGNATED AS DUAL LANGUAGE OR LANGUAGE IMMERSION SCHOOLS
730LAST YEAR, 730 FAMILIES IN 40 SCHOOL COMMUNITIES ACROSS HISD PARTICIPATED IN THE HIPPY PROGRAM
At HISD, we want all graduates to be ready for the world – and whatever career they choose to pursue. That’s why we help them learn through work, offering personalized instruction in more than 190 career pathways, as well as challenging, career-based courses to give them a head start. Work-based learning opportunities begin with mentoring and job shadowing and evolve into intensive internships and apprenticeships. Our Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs provide students with access to state-of-the-art equipment and hands-on training, and students can come out of high school ready to work. Our graduates are fully prepared, whether they enter a four-year university or dive directly into a high-demand job.
"Students will gain valuable knowledge and skills in numerous facets of the pharmacy business. They will be better prepared for the workforce and hopefully gain employment with Walgreens while they complete their educational goals."
INNOVATIVE CAREER PROGRAMS
HISD helps students identify and plan a path toward a career that interests them. Career and Technical Education programs allow students to pursue more than 190 different career pathways at 37 high schools. They include aviation technology, financial planning, robotics, hotel & restaurant management, petroleum engineering, nursing, veterinary sciences, and many more. The Futures Academy offers eight different programs tailored to meet the needs of Houston’s thriving industries, including computer engineering, health sciences, allied health and construction technology, and logistics and global supply.
REAL-WORLD EXPERIENCE AND TRAINING
Through the HISD Chamber of Commerce, the district has partnered with business leaders, corporations, and the medical community to provide internships in the workplace. Students in Jane Long Futures Academy’s pharmacy program, for example, get on-the-job training through field experiences at Walgreens. HISD also uses technology to give students hands-on experience. Maritime Academies students use crane, forklift, and navigation simulators that mirror real-life scenarios, and Austin High School is the first in the nation to have a ship bridge simulator that prepares students for maneuvering vessels.
GRADUATING WITH MORE TOOLS
Some HISD programs allow students to earn college credits alongside their high school diplomas. HISD's Futures Academy prepares students for high-demand, high-paying jobs while saving them two years of college tuition as they graduate from high school with both an associate's degree and their high school diploma. Students can earn industry certification as well as Level I Certificates through partnerships with area community colleges and immediately enter the workforce, as well as benefit from access to mentors in the field.
CONTINUING EDUCATION FOR TEACHERS
Externships for teachers enhance instruction inside the classroom. HISD collaborates with local businesses to bring educators to hospitals, construction sites, water education centers, and other companies to explore how they can align their academic practices with workplace experience. By engaging with industry-based practices, teachers are better able to craft curriculum that is meaningful and relevant.
BY THE NUMBERS
$12,000AMOUNT AN ASSOCIATE'S DEGREE AT HISD CAN SAVE STUDENTS
190DIFFERENT CAREER PATHWAYS AT 37 HIGH SCHOOLS
$25-$30AVERAGE HOURLY WAGE STUDENTS CAN EARN IN AN ENTRY-LEVEL POSITION AFTER EARNING WELDING CERTIFICATION
16CTE PROGRAMS OF STUDY OFFER INDUSTRY-RECOGNIZED CERTIFICATES AND/OR DUAL CREDIT OPPORTUNITIES FOR COLLEGE
3,475CTE GRADUATES IN 2014
HISD students set a personal course from elementary to high school that allows them to explore higher education and careers, including visits to colleges and workplaces in elementary school and internships at the secondary level. This approach boosts student achievement, high school completion, and the transition to post-secondary education. HISD also makes it easy to prepare for and take the SATs and earn college credit through AP exams and dual-credit courses. And thanks to the EMERGE program, students from traditionally underserved populations are gaining full scholarships and acceptance to Ivy League and other Tier One universities.
"I chose to become a teacher. Because beyond the content, there are other lessons that our students should learn – love of knowledge, curiosity, patience, resilience, grit, honesty. My duty as a teacher is to model these qualities, for they are the golden thread that links teachers down through the ages."
JUMP START ON COLLEGE CREDIT
An increasing number of students are earning college credit through Advanced Placement (AP) and dual-credit courses – at no cost to them. The number of AP exams passed by HISD students in 2015 topped 8,200 – up 92% since 2007. Through a partnership with HCC, high schools offer free dual-credit courses that fulfill high school graduation requirements and, at the same time, give students college credit. Both AP and dual-credit courses expose students to more rigorous instruction and better prepare them for a future on a college campus.
SAT TESTING AT SCHOOL
HISD makes it possible for all juniors to take the SAT test for free on their own campus, and all students have access to test prep courses at no charge. Building on efforts to encourage HISD high school students’ success on SAT testing, the district is now providing for free a proven online coaching course that would ordinarily cost a family up to $500 to buy. The number of students taking the SAT has doubled since 2007 – as has the number of college-ready scores.
OPENING DOOR TO ELITE INSTITUTIONS
Through EMERGE, HISD prepares high-achieving students from underserved communities to succeed at the nation’s top colleges and universities. It began in 2012-13 with 30 students from four high schools and has grown to 700 students from 42 high schools. To catch these bright minds before they enter high school, EMERGE delivers dynamic college-readiness workshops in all middle schools. Almost 100 members of the Class of 2015 were accepted into Top Tier or Ivy League schools under EMERGE, and more than 97% of EMERGE alumni are on track to graduate from college in four years.
SCHOLARSHIPS AND FINANCIAL AID
The Class of 2015 shattered records by receiving almost $265 million in scholarship and financial aid offers, surpassing the previous year's total by $10 million. HISD places an emphasis on communicating scholarship and grant opportunities to students. In addition to various campus events designed to introduce students to colleges, HISD hosts FAFSA Day, an annual districtwide event to help seniors and parents apply for financial aid. And the district sends students and parents reminders throughout the year on scholarships and deadlines through the online tool Naviance.
BY THE NUMBERS
227%INCREASE IN SCHOLARSHIP DOLLARS AWARDED SINCE 2007
9,017DUAL CREDIT COURSES PASSED IN 2014-15
$36 MILLIONIN FINANCIAL AID RECEIVED BY THE EMERGE CLASS OF 2015 FROM OVER 113 TOP-TIER COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES
$50,000AVERAGE FINANCIAL AID RECEIVED PER YEAR BY EMERGE STUDENTS THROUGH GRANTS AND SCHOLARSHIPS
62members of the Class of 2015 earned International Baccalaureate diplomas
North Houston Early College High School named 2015 National Blue Ribbon School from the U.S. Department of Education
32 high schools rated as most challenging in the U.S. by the Washington Post
64 seniors from 15 high schools named National Hispanic Recognition finalists by College Board
23 National Merit Scholars
17 HISD schools ranked among U.S. News & World Report’s 2015 Best High Schools
33 HISD schools included on 2015 Texas Honor Roll
HISD’s strength as a school district is reflected in the depth of its partnerships with community organizations and volunteers who work to support our schools and students.
The district is especially proud of its Volunteer in Public Schools or VIPS program, which connects motivated volunteers with specific schools, where they can read, chaperone field trips, or take part in other activities that make a difference in the individual lives of students. Just as important are HISD’s corporate and community partners whose donations enrich our campuses and classrooms with books, computers, new programs, and other activities and items essential for student success.
The impact goes beyond the quantifiable. By seeing others who serve, HISD students learn to give as well. Over the past year, students have taken up a whole array of worthy causes, from local hunger and cleanup projects, to organizing a bottled water drive for to help those affected by the crisis in Flint, Michigan.
"It’s truly a labor of love. I feel like we really make a difference with the kids. I know we make a difference with the kids."
SKILLS, SUPPLIES AND SUPPORT
Over the summer, Capital One and community volunteers distributed backpacks and school supplies to about 600 elementary and middle school students. The distribution was part of the Read Fulton Read initiative aimed at cultivating a love of reading among students in the Near Northside Fulton neighborhood. It is a spin-off of HISD’s citywide Read Houston Read literacy program. These supplies were funded by Capital One, which also funded the district’s Blue Star Award for Service Excellence. HISD is grateful for all our partners who’ve stepped up to help our students over the past year.
PEOPLE IN ACTION
One person can make a difference, especially when there is a vision that sparks others to take action or get involved. Take Michael Holthouse, for example, who co-founded Lemonade Day in 2007 in Houston, with the mission of empowering today’s youth to become tomorrow’s entrepreneurs by helping them launch their own business, a lemonade stand. Since then, Lemonade Day has gone national, and thousands of students in HISD and beyond have learned leadership skills needed for success. HISD appreciates all those who give of their time, whether it’s reading to a student, chaperoning a field trip, or assisting in the cafeteria. A policy change last year made it possible for even more people to step forward.
CORPORATE AND COMMUNITY CONNECTIONS
As one of HISD’s biggest partners, Chevron is committed to expanding access to STEM education through various initiatives, including Fuel Your Schools and New Digital Energy. The company is also the presenting sponsor for the district’s annual State of the Schools event. Over the past year, the district has continued to establish and strengthen partnerships with both new and longtime supporters for the benefit of our students in the areas of fine arts, science education, and character development, to name a few.
BY THE NUMBERS
33,516REGISTERED HISD VOLUNTEERS
(State of the Schools, Combined Charities, Holiday Greeting Card, Scholars Banquet, EMERGE Senior Awards Ceremony, Celebration of Excellence, Partnership Breakfast, VIPS Recognition and Awards Program)
HISD is building for the future, thanks to the $1.89 billion bond program approved by voters in 2012 to build or renovate 40 schools. The past year saw more active construction than at any other time in the district’s history, and at least eight new schools or additions are set to open in 2016. All of the work is being accomplished by a dedicated team of professionals working in collaboration with school-based Project Advisory Teams and community stakeholders. As a result of this work, HISD is on track to have the most modern portfolio of urban high school campuses in the country. As the district creates state-of-the art facilities to meet students’ needs, it is also building new business relationships with Houston’s diverse workforce. Contracts awarded to date for professional services represent a commitment from Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises of 51 percent. For construction, the M/WBE commitment ranges from 20 percent to 40 percent.
“The new school is going to make people want to come to school, stay after school, join after-school programs and work with the teachers. It’s going to be bigger and better.”
School construction is progressing at a record pace in neighborhoods across the district. By the end of 2015, 15 projects were in the construction phase, which is more building activity than at any other time in the history of HISD. With many of these projects well into vertical construction, visible progress can be seen almost daily. Nearly all the remaining projects will be put out for bid by the end of 2016.
ENGAGING THE COMMUNITY
HISD is building schools that reflect the unique needs of every campus and every community. Through Project Advisory Teams (PAT), design charrettes, and bond community meetings, each school in HISD’s bond program is planned and designed with ongoing input from stakeholders, who give feedback directly to project managers and architects. Volunteer PAT members – made up of parents, students, community representatives, teachers, and staff – define the priorities and guiding principles of each campus and help to determine the best use of resources within the voter-approved project scope. For these teams, nothing is more gratifying than moving the projects into construction and celebrating with groundbreakings or beam signings.
BUILDING NEW RELATIONSHIPS
HISD is committed to providing fair and equitable opportunities for minority- and women-owned business enterprises to work with us. Through the Office of Business Assistance, our award-winning Supplier Diversity program supports minority businesses by providing workshops, networking events, certification coaching, and more. This proactive approach has been successful in recruiting, developing, and maintaining minority business partners that have done excellent work for the district and are a reflection of the communities we serve.
BY THE NUMBERS
40NEW OR RENOVATED SCHOOLS in bond program
29NEW OR RENOVATED HIGH SCHOOLS
25BOND-RELATED COMMUNITY MEETINGS IN 2015
6.8 MILLIONSQUARE FEET PLANNED IN PROGRAM
More than 7,000 employees work to support students and staff within the departments of Construction & Facilities Services, Transportation, Police, and Nutrition Services. The goal is ensure students and teachers can pursue academic excellence by providing the essentials, including reliable bus service, a safe environment, and healthy meals, so that children can focus on their school work.
The district recognizes that for most students, the school day begins and ends with the school bus. Over the past year, the district stepped up recruitment efforts to ensure the best possible transportation team and to retain professional drivers with attendance incentives.
Once at school, students and their parents can feel safe knowing the district has the only accredited public school district police department in the nation, a distinction awarded by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies.
Students can’t learn in a building that is not well-maintained. HISD boasts one of the largest real estate portfolios in the city of Houston and is responsible for more than 31.5 million square feet of facility space. In a typical month, Construction & Facilities Services responds to more than 6,000 work orders through its 24/7 Customer Care Center. Projects range from minor repairs to major renovations.
To fuel academic performance, more than 2,400 employees in Nutrition Services make it their goal to provide high-quality meals. Overall, more than 80 percent of all HISD students qualify for free and reduced lunch, and the meals eaten at school are essential for overall good nutrition and health.
The district ensures consistent quality by using a centralized cooking, storage and distribution facility, the largest of its kind in an urban school district. Teams of chefs and dietitians work together to create tasty menu options that fulfill mandated nutrition standards.
"We’re committed to providing safe and clean facilities in the most efficient and cost-effective manner. By continually pushing to improve we deliver services, we can maximize the resources that go back into the classroom to educate out students.”
MAKING SAFETY A PRIORITY
HISD’s police force includes about 200 officers, who respond to more than 81,380 calls per year across 300 square miles in the Houston area. In 2015, the police department began using small cameras clipped to their uniforms to provide an additional tool to boost student and school safety, becoming one of the largest districts in the nation to use them.
MODERNIZING THE BUS FLEET
To enhance safety, all new school buses purchased by the district will include three-point seatbelts, following 2015 guidance by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The district is working to promote safety in conjunction with the Houston Educational Support Professionals union by hosting town hall meetings to encourage parents and community members to talk to students about buckling up.
PROVIDING SERVICE EXCELLENCE
Construction & Facilities Services understands that its 2,000 employees are key to providing effective customer service and launched a new incentive program to reward those who make excellent attendance a priority during the school year. In addition, managers are getting leadership training on best practices through the Sales Excellence Institute at the University of Houston’s Bauer School of Business. The department is also finalizing work on a facilities assessment to better plan for needed building improvements in the future.
NO CHILD GOES HUNGRY
To ensure students in need don’t go hungry, 177 schools now offer free lunch to all students through the federal Community Eligibility Provision program. Breakfast is always free for every student. A key accomplishment over the past year was adding the new web app, Nutrislice, so parents and students can view daily school menus, and nutrition information, and provide feedback.
BY THE NUMBERS
1NEW CANINE (K-9) OFFICER ADDED TO POLICE FORCE
210BODY CAMERAS PURCHASED FOR ALL OFFICERS
31.5 MILLIONSQUARE FEET OF FACILITY SPACE MAINTAINED
49.4 MILLIONmeals served annually
280,000meals served daily
88schools serve dinner
2011 – 2015: Named one of “100 Best Fleets” in the nation by Government Fleet
2014: Received Exemplary Performance Award from The Council of the Great City Schools
Green Pioneer Award from Texas Gulf Coast Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council
City of Houston’s J.Howard Rambin III Founder’s Award
Recognized by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA)
2014: Texas Department of Agriculture Local Products Challenge, Cream of the Crop Award, National School Lunch Week
2015: Texas Department of Agriculture Local Products Challenge School Breakfast Week
2014 & 2015: City of Houston Proclamation School Lunch Hero Day May 2nd
2015: Share Our Strength, No Kid Hungry, Breakfast Champion Award, HISD’s Breakfast in The Classroom Program Recognition
2015: Texas Department of Agriculture, USDA Healthier US Schools Challenge, Platinum Pear Award
Honored as “Supplier Diversity Champion” by Greater Houston Business Procurement Forum
HISD Fiscal Responsibilities
HISD received the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association for the 40th consecutive year in 2015. The Office of the Controller received the award — considered the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting — for the exemplary quality of its comprehensive annual financial report (CAFR), and for “demonstrating a constructive ‘spirit of full disclosure’ to clearly communicate its financial story and motivate users and user groups to read the CAFR.”
REVENUES (GENERAL FUND)
EXPENDITURES (GENERAL FUND)
Click to expand chart and see details
Total expenditures for the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2015, were $1,700,997,875, with Instruction and School-Support Services accounting for 75.70% of the total.
|INSTRUCTION - RELATED SERVICES||36,150,496|
|STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES||53,211,582|
|PLANT MAINTENANCE AND OPERATIONS||171,577,843|
|SECURITY AND MONITORING SERVICES||22,113,411|
|DATA PROCESSING SERVICES||86,172,215|
|TAX REINVESTMENT ZONE PAYMENTS||49,360,389|
|TAX APPRAISAL AND COLLECTION||12,555,327|