New Westbury HS construction project moving along

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The Westbury High School Huskies are seeing significant changes on their campus as construction on their two story addition is nearly halfway complete.

The $40 million dollar project, which is a part of HISD’s voter-approved 2012 Bond, calls for general renovations to the current building, as well as a new addition with 26 classrooms, flexible learning centers, two new gyms, and a dual purpose commons serving as both a dining area and space for students to gather.

“There is great progress being made as far as I can visibly see,” Westbury Principal Susan Monaghan said. “I think it’s going to be awesome for Westbury and the community.”

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Kimberly Thompson named new principal of Garden Villas Elementary

Kimberly Thompson has been selected as the principal of Garden Villas Elementary School. Thompson is a graduate of HISD, having attended Horn Elementary, Meyerland Middle, and the High School for Performing and Visual Arts. She has been an educator in HISD for 10 years, serving in various instructional and leadership roles. Thompson began her career at Cornelius Elementary, teaching fourth and fifth grades before moving to Neff Elementary to be a teacher specialist supporting reading teachers in implementing balanced literacy and later an assistant principal. Thompson earned a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from University of Houston and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Lamar University. She has been a participant in various leadership training opportunities within the district, including the Principal Academy for Collaborative Engagement, School Leadership Academy, and Principal Candidate Development Opportunity.

 

Sandy Gaw named new school support officer for Northwest Area

Sandy Gaw poses for a photograph, February 2, 2017. (Dave Einsel/Houston ISD)Sandy Gaw has been named school support officer for the Northwest Schools Office. A native Houstonian and graduate of HISD schools, she began her career with the district as a fourthgrade bilingual teacher at Herrera Elementary and taught ESL at Sam Houston MSTC High School. Gaw worked as assistant principal at Katherine Smith Elementary and dean of students at Tanglewood Middle before becoming principal at De Chaumes Elementary. Most recently, Gaw was assistant superintendent of Teacher Development, where she supported new and beginning teachers. She holds an undergraduate degree in psychology and Spanish from University of Houston and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Houston Baptist University.

Dr. Katie Bradarich named new principal of Lanier Middle School

Dr. Katie Bradarich has been appointed principal of Lanier Middle School. Dr. Bradarich has been an educator for 16 years, serving in various roles, including teacher, curriculum administrator, and assistant principal. She began her career in Chicago as a middleschool English language arts and reading teacher. She then moved to a St. Louis middle school, where she served as department chair, peer assessment leader, quality instructional leader, professional learning communities coach, reading specialist, and literacy coach. In 2011, while serving on the board of directors of the International Mind, Brain, and Education Society, she was recruited by the Monarch School and Institute in Houston to direct curriculum and instruction for individuals with neurological differences. In 2016, Dr. Bradarich joined HISD as assistant principal of Furr High School. She earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from UCLA, a master’s degree in teaching from National Louis University, and a Ph.D. in teaching and learning from University of Missouri, St. Louis. Dr. Bradarich completed her principal certification with Harris County Department of Education.

Rod Treviño named new principal of Scarborough High School

Rod Treviño has been appointed principal of Scarborough High School. Treviño has served as a public school educator for more than 19 years, beginning his career at Johnston High School in Austin ISD, where he taught English and served as chairman of the English Department and assistant principal. Most recently, he was principal of Dahlstrom Middle School in Hays Consolidated ISD. Treviño is a native Texan and received his undergraduate degree in English from University of Texas at Austin and his master’s degree in educational leadership from Texas State University. Most recently, he completed work as a member of the leadership cohort at Harvard University with a specialization in family and community engagement.

Worthing HS undergoing physical and academic transformation


With modern construction underway and a new administration in place, Worthing High School is on the verge of a transformation.

While construction crews work tirelessly to rebuild the 59-year-old school nestled in Houston’s historic Sunnyside neighborhood, new Principal Khalilah Campbell-Rhone is doing the same from the inside out.

“My desire was to come in and put Worthing back on the map,” Campbell-Rhone said, recalling how the school’s academic programs were once highly sought after and school pride was ubiquitous. “We can get back to that.”

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Nearly half of building projects to be completed by start of school year


HISD’s Bond Program continues to make steady progress with eight new or renovated schools set to open to students in August and another eight set for completion in the following two quarters.

“All but one of our projects have finalized construction documents, and by the end of this summer we’ll be at roughly 50 percent completion,” HISD Construction Services Officer Derrick Sanders said Tuesday during the quarterly meeting of the district’s Bond Oversight Committee. “We’re really excited about the progress.”

Bond Oversight Committee members heard from Sanders and other members of the district’s bond team as they discussed the status of building programs and reviewed second quarter progress during the group’s regular meeting.

The new schools set to open next month include Furr, Milby and Wisdom high schools, and Mickey Leland College Preparatory Academy for Young Men. Renovated schools set to open include Kashmere and Waltrip high schools, Sharpstown International School, and Codwell Elementary, which is not funded by the 2012 Bond. Continue reading

National School Lunch/School Breakfast Program applications available online now

Parents are urged to complete the forms now to avoid back-to-school rush

Although the start of school is weeks away, Houston Independent School District Nutrition Services is urging all parents and guardians to complete the student applications for free and reduced-price meals online as soon as possible to ensure their child’s school gets the proper state and federal funding.

The National School Lunch/School Breakfast Program applications and surveys are now available at https://mealapps.houstonisd.org. They can also be accessed by visiting the HISD Nutrition Services website and clicking on the “One Form Means So Much” button on the right side of the page.

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Tracy Clemons named HISD press secretary

Tracy ClemonsTracy Clemons has been appointed press secretary for the Houston Independent School District.

Clemons is a passionate storyteller with a journalism career that’s taken him across the country. He came to Houston as a reporter/multi-media journalist for ABC13, most recently focusing on the 10 p.m. news. He covered Michael Brown’s death in Ferguson, Mo., the Charleston Church massacre, and the police shooting of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, La. Locally, he’s covered his share of breaking news, but he’s most proud of his record of telling community-oriented stories that make viewers smarter and more engaged.

Clemons is originally from Virginia. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Maryland-College Park. Prior to ABC13, he worked in Charlottesville, Va., as a reporter, in Shreveport, La., as a reporter/anchor, and in St. Louis, Mo., as a reporter/multi-media journalist.

“Being a reporter was my dream since I was 10. I can say I lived that dream,” says Clemons. “Walking away is bittersweet, but the chance to tell HISD’s story every day is an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. It’s been a joy being part of one of the best news teams in America at ABC13, but I look forward to this new chapter.”

Clemons began in his new role Monday, July 24.

HISD mourns loss of Board of Education Trustee Manuel Rodríguez Jr.


The HISD family is mourning the passing of Board of Education District III Trustee Manuel Rodríguez Jr., a dedicated servant to the children of Houston for 14 years and himself a product of HISD schools.

Rodríguez, who passed away on Wednesday, was elected to the board in 2003 and held every office, including assistant secretary, second vice president, first vice president, and in 2016, president of the Board of Education.

“We are heartbroken by the passing of Trustee Rodríguez, who was a pillar in the HISD community,” said Superintendent Richard Carranza. “He was a true advocate for educating all children and a champion for change. He was a wise man, a mentor, and a friend to us all. We will forever be indebted to him by his service to public education. His legacy will live on.” Continue reading