The Lion’s Den at Jack Yates High School roared with excitement as the graduating Class of 2017 scribbled their signatures on the final steel beam to be erected in the construction of their new school.
Once all seniors had signed, they joined with school staff to watch as the beam was hoisted into the air and placed in its new home — the auditorium. The beam will be installed and left exposed, showcasing the signatures from the class of 2017.
“The kids were concerned that they weren’t going to have any history with the new school since they’ll be graduating in May,” said Yates Principal Ken Davis, who worked with the construction staff to surprise the students with the informal ceremony. “We told them that we were going to sign the beam — a little bit of history about you will go into the new building.”
Northside High School welcomed parents, students, teachers, and neighbors to its third community meeting on Wednesday to discuss the plan and timeline for construction and renovation work underway on its campus.
During the meeting, Northside Principal Julissa Alcantar-Martinez unveiled a new traffic plan developed to keep students and staff safe throughout construction. The plan calls for the rear parking lot to be closed, with both parking and the main school entrance relocated to the west side of the campus.
“We’ve been meeting for the last four years, every week, every month, talking about the construction and what was coming,” Alcantar-Martinez said. “We’re happy to say we’re getting started.”
HISD Construction Services administrative staff excitedly boarded a big yellow school bus last Friday, eager to tour several district construction sites and see the fruits of their labor.
“It really is a team effort to build these schools,” said Derrick Sanders, HISD’s officer of Construction Services. “Our administrative staff is as important to what we’re doing as the architect or project manager, so I wanted them to get a firsthand look at what they are helping to build.”
The group of about 20 staffers got to walk through the newly constructed Milby High School and DeBakey High School for Health Professions, both of which will open this summer. The field trip also included a drive-by of High School for Law and Justice, Yates High School, and Energy Institute High School, which are all well into construction. Continue reading →
Northside High School will hold a community meeting to review construction plans, timelines, and other updates related to the rebuilding of their school under the 2012 Bond Program.
The meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 12, 2017. It will be held in the auditorium at Northside High School, 1101 Quitman St.
Work on the $46.7 million project began with the creation of a new parking lot along Tackaberry Street — the first in a three-phase plan to create a modernized school for 1,500 to 1,700 students. Work on the school building is set to begin in the coming weeks, and plans call for two new additions, as well as major renovations to the existing building.
During the meeting, community members will have the opportunity to meet the contractor, review the construction schedule, look at design plans, and ask questions of various campus, district, and project officials.
Construction crews have completed two-thirds of the renovation work slated for Kashmere High School, and the final third is expected to be complete by the end of the summer.
Integral parts are coming together quickly. Both the auditorium entrance and drywall are finished, the roofing is in progress, the new HVAC system is being installed, and the pouring of the driveway is almost complete.
“Our students and staff continue to work and learn as construction moves forward,” Kashmere Principal Nancy Blackwell said excitedly. “The changes are amazing.”
Eighty Lamar High School graduates armed with shovels lined the school’s front lawn on Thursday, eager to break ground on a new campus as they celebrated the 80th anniversary of their beloved alma mater.
Graduates spanning eight decades each had the opportunity to dig into the dirt, formally marking the start of construction on the $108 million project.
“This is an exciting day for us,” said Lamar Principal James McSwain. “It’s a day that the school community has been looking forward to for many years.”
Standing before a packed auditorium, Scarborough High School Principal Diego Linares thanked the school community for passing the district’s 2012 Bond Program — a move that he said began the renewal of the 50-year-old campus.
The school is making great progress, Linares said, noting that students are meeting state standards and the campus boasts of having the most Futures Academy graduates in HISD. The renovation work underway will simply serve to strengthen and complement the campus.
“We are the school that builds upon the strengths of its students, rather than focus on their deficits. We are a school that views failure as a temporary rather than permanent state,” Linares said. “Now, we can say we’re the school that’s on the verge of providing the most functional building to meet the student’s needs.”
The excitement was palpable as the Sam Houston Math, Science and Technology Center Mariachi Band began to perform on Friday, formally kicking off the celebration designed to mark the start of construction on their new school.
Blustery winds didn’t stop dozens of students, teachers, parents, and alumni from gathering in the school parking lot to witness the ceremonial groundbreaking for the new Sam Houston — part of the 2012 Bond Program — and catch a peek of the construction that already is underway.
“I believe strongly that our students deserve a state-of-the-art school,” Sam Houston Principal Alan Summers said. “Not only because they deserve to go to a school that looks good, but also because they deserve to be in a building that has facilities to help prepare them for life after high school.
Since opening its doors last August as the first public French immersion program in Texas and one of just a few in the country, Mark White Elementary School has been warmly received.
The opening of the unique school, where students spend part of the day learning in French and part learning in English, is particularly welcome news to the French community and those who speak the language — sometimes referred to as Francophones.
Recently, the new school was featured in an article in France-Amerique, America’s largest French-language magazine and the only one to be published throughout the country. The article, which is written in both French and English, discusses the benefits of the school’s dual-language program and its impact on the Francophone community.