New HISD campus leaders gather for intensive training, networking 

IMG_3920Campus principals face unique challenges, as they balance running a school while making sure the needs of their teachers and students are being met.

That’s why HISD has all new principals attending the annual New Leaders Institute (NLI), a 10-day intensive training event that gives them many of the tools and resources they’ll need to hit the ground running when the 2016-2017 school year begins. The NLI started July 6 and wraps up on Thursday, July 21.  Continue reading

Volunteers help students fight the ‘Summer Slide’

Music and reading merged Tuesday at Benbrook Elementary School in northwest Houston as volunteers from Target, the Houston Symphony and PricewaterhouseCoopers helped students take part in the 2016 Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation Summer Reading Challenge Camps.

The camps, with the support of the Houston Area Urban League, aim to prevent the ‘Summer Slide,’ when students lose some of the academic gains made the previous school year. Activities include music lessons and exercises that combine math, science, reading and critical thinking.

Camps were also held at Kashmere Gardens and Atherton, and next week students at Highland Heights will participate.

Special Education conference focuses on creating positive culture for students  

During her keynote speech Tuesday at HISD’s Special Education Conference, Kelly Brown told the story of a woman named Araminta Ross. As a child, she had been beaten, causing life-long pain and dizziness, and she had no formal education.

Brown, an assistant professor at Prairie View A&M University, went on to explain that Ross didn’t let her circumstances define or limit her. She eventually changed her name to Harriet Tubman and went on to be an extraordinary figure in American history.  Continue reading

Terese Pollard named new principal of Milne Elementary

Terese Pollard has been selected as the new principal of Milne Elementary School. Ms. Pollard is currently serving as the dean of instruction at Frank Black Middle School. She began her educational career in HISD as a teacher in 2005. In 2008, Ms. Pollard made the transition to campus leadership as assistant principal of Durkee Elementary School and subsequently served in administrative roles at Hamilton Middle School, Patrick Henry Middle School, and East Early College High School. Ms. Pollard, who is a graduate of HISD schools, holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Houston and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Lamar University.

College Readiness wraps up 2015–2016 with resounding success

The HISD College Readiness Dept. works closely with HISD high schools to create and maintain a college-bound culture. The district saw a major increase in college applications and FAFSA completions this past school year, with a 23-percentage-point increase in college applications over last year and a 10-percentage-point increase in financial-aid applications.

Twenty-eight new College Success Advisers (CSAs) and 15 new College Success Managers (CSM) were definitely a factor in the increases. Last summer, thanks to a Houston Endowment grant of $3 million, the college advisers and managers were hired and trained to assist district seniors with applying for college and scholarships.

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HISD chefs cook up new school menu items

While school is out for the summer, HISD nutrition services chefs are busy in the test kitchen creating and sampling new menu items for the coming school year. And what our chefs have learned from the previous year is that our students want bold flavors, fresh ingredients, and culturally diverse food.

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Become a paid home instructor for our HIPPY program 

The 2016-2017 school year is around the corner, and HISD’s Family and Community Engagement department is hiring parent tutors for their Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) program.

HIPPY parent tutors work on a part-time basis requiring a commitment of 30 hours a week. The position pays $10 an hour, plus benefits and provides training and ongoing support. Working with HISD as a HIPPY home instructors can provide you with other benefits such as:  Continue reading

Bond program features district-wide technology upgrades


You’ve probably heard about HISD’s $1.89 billion bond program to rebuild or renovate 40 schools across the district. But did you know that $100 million of that funding has been earmarked to upgrade technology infrastructure at all HISD schools?

Once complete, the enhanced digital framework will provide expanded internet access throughout each campus, allowing for the delivery of more robust online instructional resources to classrooms and mobile devices.

“Each school has tablets and laptops available for use in the classroom, meaning that as many as 30 devices are in use in close proximity,” said Lenny Schad, HISD’s Chief Technology Information Officer. “Expanding the district’s Wi-Fi capability at all campuses will allow us to provide sufficient access for a large number of devices and also will support our mobile learning initiative in a cost-effective way.” Continue reading

Longtime HISD baseball coach retires after 35 years

Bellaire High School Baseball Head Coach Rocky Manuel announced this week that he will retire after 35 years coaching baseball at HISD.

Rockys RetirementNicks Announcemnt

Principal Michael McDonough, Coach Nick Ozuna, Coach Rocky Manuel

Manuel led the Bellaire baseball team for 25 years. The team went to the state championship tournament three times, while winning the state championship in 1994 and 1999. In 1999, USA Today named Manuel as National Coach of the Year and the Bellaire team was recognized as national champions. Under Manuel’s leadership, over 200 Bellaire baseball players graduated and moved on to play Division I baseball at colleges and universities throughout the country. Seven of those former players continued on to play professionally at the major league level.

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HISD Transportation seeking top-notch drivers, attendants to join its team

HISD Transportation Department is rolling out its latest recruitment campaign, seeking out the best school bus drivers and attendants to join its nationally recognized team for the upcoming school year.

The department has been hard at work this summer searching for candidates to join its staff of 1,200 employees responsible for safely ferrying about 34,000 students to and from school each day.

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