Category Archives: District III – José Leal

Bond Oversight Committee tours Milby HS, hears update on third quarter construction progress

The Houston Independent School District’s Bond Oversight Committee got an inside look at the new Milby High School while touring the campus as part of their regular quarterly meeting on Tuesday.

The eight-member group got to see 21st century learning in action as they made their way through the dining commons, library, gym, and various classroom spaces, including the welding, science, and culinary arts labs.

They also walked through the large central courtyard and got to see the historic main entrance, which now leads to a park-like green space. Continue reading

HISD recognizing Hispanic Heritage Month 

The Houston Independent School District is celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs Sept. 15- Oct. 15, to recognize the contributions made by people of Hispanic and Latin American descent and their heritage and culture.

HISD includes 22 schools that recognize the contributions of Hispanic civic and community leaders, who range from educators and civil servants to local restaurateurs, newscasters, Congressional Medal of Honor recipients, and even Nobel Prize-winners.

Hispanic Heritage Month begins on Sept. 15 because that is the anniversary of the independence of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. The month also encompasses the independence days for Mexico (Sept. 16) and Chile (Sept. 18), as well as Columbus Day (Sept. 12), also known as Dia de la Raza.

Hispanic Heritage Month started as a week in 1968 under President Lyndon B. Johnson, but President Ronald Reagan extended it to a month in 1988.

SCHOOLS: We would like to retweet photos of your Hispanic Heritage Month celebrations. Please include @HoustonISD in your Tweets, along with the hashtag #HispanicHeritageMonth. 

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

Milby HS students walk new hallways for the first time

Footsteps echoed throughout the hallways of the new Milby High School as students flowed into the building on Monday for the first day of the 2017-2018 school year.

Principal Roy de la Garza said he and his staff were excited to spend the first day in the school after so much time away. For the past three years, Milby High School students and staff have been temporarily located at the old Jones campus to allow for construction of their new school, which was part of the 2012 Bond.

“It’s so much nicer to be back in the neighborhood,” de la Garza said, admitting that he was overcome with emotion after walking the building on the first day and seeing his students in their new classrooms for the first time. “It’s so good to have them here.”

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

Milby HS celebrates the old and the new at grand opening ceremony

“It’s a great day to be a Milby Buffalo!” exclaimed HISD Superintendent Richard Carranza as hundreds of attendees cheered with pride and excitement at Milby High School’s highly anticipated grand opening celebration Thursday.

Current and former Milby Buffs filled the new school as the Milby Marching Thunder Band and Charlie’s Angels pumped up the crowd at HISD’s largest ribbon-cutting ceremony to date. Shiny gold and blue decorations adorned the large learning commons area, which showcases a combination of new construction alongside the historical front façade of the school.

Continue reading

Grand opening celebration for new Milby HS set for Thursday

Construction at Milby High School, June 21, 2017. (Dave Einsel/Houston ISD)

Milby High School will host a grand opening on Thursday at 5 p.m. to celebrate the completion of its new facility, which was rebuilt as part of the Houston Independent School District’s 2012 Bond Program.

The three-story, $79 million project is a combination of new construction and renovation that preserves the historical front facade while creating a modern learning environment for 2,000 students.

The historic, front-facing main building has been transformed into a bright, open student-union-style space with a dining commons, learning commons, and floor-to-ceiling windows looking out onto a large courtyard. Continue reading

HISD trustees appoint José Leal to fill District III seat until special election in November

The Houston ISD Board of Education voted to appoint José Leal to fill the seat left vacant after the death of longtime District III Trustee Manuel Rodríguez Jr last month. Board members chose Leal unanimously during a special meeting Monday afternoon.

Leal has more than 20 years of classroom experience. His career with HISD started in 1981, when he worked in operations and maintenance. He has worked as a bilingual teacher at Pugh Elementary School, a counselor and dean of students at Hamilton Middle School, and an assistant principal at Wheatley High School. He has also been a dean of students at Meyerland Middle School, assistant principal at North Forest High School, and a counselor at YES Prep Northbrook. He is currently a special education teacher at Houston Can Academies.

“Jose Leal was the only candidate who met the caretaker qualifications the board was looking for in this temporary appointment,” Board President Wanda Adams said. “The board would like to thank the other candidates who wanted to volunteer their time.”

Leal will be sworn in on Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2017, and will serve at the Board of Education’s next monthly meeting on Sept. 14, 2017. He will serve until a special election is called by the board at its monthly meeting on Aug. 10. That special election will be held Nov. 7.

Community gathers to honor late Trustee Rodríguez at board auditorium naming ceremony

The family of late District III Trustee Manuel Rodríguez Jr., along with elected officials, educators, and community members, gathered at Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center on Thursday to dedicate the board auditorium in his name.

Rodríguez, who passed away July 19, was a lifelong public servant and a trustee for 14 years. He was also a product of HISD schools, graduating from Austin High School in 1970 after attending Franklin Elementary and McReynolds Middle schools. His wife and four children also attended HISD schools.

“Today is a day of joy as we leave behind a legacy for the Rodríguez family,” said HISD Board of Education President Wanda Adams. Continue reading