Category Archives: District II – Rhonda Skillern Jones

North Forest HS construction approaches completion

With construction almost complete, the North Forest High School Bulldogs are on track to kick off the 2018 spring semester in their new building.

Both doors and kitchen equipment have arrived for installation, and marker boards are scheduled to be delivered in the coming weeks, project officials said. Carpet and ceiling tile installation also is underway.

The $59.5 million campus, which is being built on the east side of Mesa Road across from the existing school, will accommodate 1,300 to 1,500 students.

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Condit ES selected as finalist for Texas school architecture competition

Designs for three additional bond schools honored with ‘Stars of Distinction’

Constructed as part of HISD’s 2012 Bond Program, Condit Elementary School has been selected as one of five finalists vying for the highest honor offered by the 2017-18 Exhibit of School Architecture Competition.

Three additional bond campuses — Atherton Elementary School, Mandarin Immersion Magnet School, and Sterling Aviation High School — received Stars of Distinction.

The annual school architecture competition showcases new and renovated Texas schools and recognizes excellence in their planning and design. It is sponsored by the Texas Association of School Administrators and the Texas Association of School Boards.

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HISD Board of Education to vote on extended days for schools with delayed start

Sept. 14 2017 – In its first regular meeting since Hurricane Harvey, the Houston Independent School District Board of Education Trustees will consider a proposal to make up instructional time lost because of the storm.  The Texas Education Agency approved waivers that exempt students from making up the first nine days the storm took away.  However, students at the 12 schools that suffered the most significant damage will have to make up any lost time beyond those days.

Here’s how the proposed plan works:  Students at the four schools scheduled to start on September 18 would be in school for 25 additional minutes every day.  Students at the eight schools scheduled to start on September 25 would go for an extra 55 minutes.  That extended school day would be effective from their first day of school until the end of the first semester in December. Continue reading

Kashmere High School opens renovated campus

Kashmere High School students buzzed with anticipation Monday morning as teachers, staff, and community members welcomed them for their first day back to school at a newly renovated campus.

“It’s just beautiful,” Principal Nancy Blackwell proclaimed. “We went from dark and dingy to light and open.”

Blackwell said that the aesthetics that surround a child are important, so she is hopeful the new environment will positively impact students — both academically and emotionally.

Kashmere was renovated as part of HISD’s voter-approved 2012 Bond Program. In conjunction with an upgraded front entrance, the $17 million project included upgrading and enclosing the main central courtyard to create a large, indoor flexible space designed for year-round use. Continue reading

Hurricane Harvey delays don’t dampen excitement at new Leland College Prep Academy

After a two-week storm delay, Mickey Leland College Preparatory Academy for Young Men Principal Dameion Crook was so excited for the start of school on Monday, he couldn’t sleep the night before.

“I got here at 6 a.m.,” Crook said as he stood in front of his school directing cars in the driveway. “I beat the plant operator.”

For Crook and his students and staff, Monday marked not just the first day of school but the first day of school in their new building, constructed as part of the 2012 Bond Program. The $30.3 million project called for a new facility that could accommodate up to 1,000 middle school and high schools students. Continue reading

Hilliard Elementary among schools that suffered ‘extensive’ damage in Hurricane Harvey

Fifty-three campuses have “major” damage, 22 have “extensive” damage; assessment of campuses continues

The floors of Hilliard Elementary School, where Hurricane Harvey floodwaters at one point reached 4 feet high, were still slick and littered with wet debris on Saturday, with water pooling in the hallways, cafetorium and classrooms. Flooring schoolwide will need to be torn out, walls removed 4 feet from the floor, and surfaces dried with humidifiers and covered in anti-microbial disinfectant.

The extent of devastation at the northeast Houston campus places it in the “top 10” of schools damaged by the storm. Continue reading

HISD to open nine schools for 2017-2018 school year

Nine schools across the Houston Independent School District will formally open their doors to all students for the first time on Monday — the first day of the 2017-2018 school year.

New schools set to open this school year include Furr, Milby and Wisdom high schools, as well as Mickey Leland College Preparatory Academy for Young Men and DeBakey High School for Health Professions. DeBakey technically opened to summer school students in May, but Monday marks the start of its first fall semester in the new building.

Another four schools — Kashmere and Waltrip high schools, Sharpstown International School, and Codwell Elementary — underwent major renovations. Continue reading

Achieve 180 debuts with parade and community event in Sunnyside

Worthing feeder pattern schools join forces for ‘Southside Takeover’

HISD Superintendent Richard Carranza took to the streets of the Sunnyside community on Saturday, Aug. 19, for the first ever “Southside Takeover,” a back-to-school bash to kick-off the start of the 2017-2018 school year and the start of Achieve180.

“Achieve 180 is more than a plan or initiative,” said Carranza. “It’s a movement to better serve our historically underserved and academically challenged schools.”

The “Southside Takeover” featured Carranza at the helm of a parade with students, staff, and parents from Worthing High School, along with various other campuses in the south area, and a resource fair for families with free immunizations, school supplies, backpacks, uniforms, food, and entertainment. Continue reading

Achieve 180 kicks off with back-to-school events 

Back-to-school events aimed at strengthening partnerships with parents and community   

Schools included in HISD’s Achieve 180 initiative are kicking off the 2017-2018 school year for their parents, students, and communities surrounding their campuses with everything from dance parties and parades to free school supplies, immunizations, and dental care.

Thirty-two schools are included in Achieve 180, a new district initiative launching during the 2017-2018 school year to support, strengthen, and empower underserved and underperforming HISD schools. A key component of the research-based initiative is family and community empowerment.   Continue reading

Officers challenged to ‘make a difference’ at HISD Police awards luncheon

HISD Police Chief Robert Mock encouraged his officers to get to know and build relationships with students, as he addressed the group at the department’s 20th Annual Awards Luncheon on Friday.

“You have the ability get to know these students and intervene in their lives,” Mock said. “I challenge each one of you to choose to make a difference.”

HISD police officers, personnel, and family members gathered at Brady’s Landing restaurant for the event, which celebrates the achievements, contributions, and outstanding customer service provided by the department during the academic school year. Continue reading