Category Archives: Health/Wellness

HISD social workers recognized in March for national Social Work Month 

The National Association of Social Workers has proclaimed March to be Social Work Month, with the theme of “Social Workers: Leaders. Advocates. Champions.”

The Houston Independent School District includes 37 social workers on campuses across the district. These social workers provide crisis support, helping children overcome issues such as death and grief, and helping communities connect to resources to recover from natural disasters – most recently from Hurricane Harvey and flooding. Continue reading

Personal stories exemplify how HISD is rebuilding, reimagining education

‘We could be anywhere, and we would still be Robinson’

If anyone could find a silver lining amid the devastation wrought by Hurricane Harvey, it’s Robinson Elementary School Principal Paige Fernandez-Hohos. After being flooded with more than a foot of water, Robinson was relocated and students split between two adjacent campuses. Though not ideal, the situation made Fernandez-Hohos determined to give students a sense of normalcy. Vacant rooms and hallways sprung to life with decorations. Auditorium and gym spaces were transformed into cozy classrooms to accommodate more students. Fernandez-Hohos trekked back and forth between the two campuses. If she started the day welcoming students at one school, she ended it saying goodbye to students at the other. It was important, she said, that every class see her every day. Robinson students returned to their home campus in January, but Fernandez-Hohos said the storm taught her a valuable lesson about the spirit of her school: “When everything else is stripped away, all you’re left with is the bond between teachers and students. We could be anywhere, and we would still be Robinson.”

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HISD teaming up with City to combat Zika

Schools provided with informational fliers to bring awareness to virus

As tens of thousands of HISD families and staff members get ready for summer break, HISD and the City of Houston Health Department are teaming up to bring awareness to the Zika virus, particularly to those who may be traveling outside the United States in the next few months.

Zika is spread mostly by the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito, which can bite during the day or night. Most people who get the virus do not get sick. However, Zika can be passed from a pregnant woman to her fetus, and the infection during pregnancy can cause serious birth defects.

HISD schools have been provided with informational flyers from the Houston Health Department to distribute to families and staff before the last day of school and during summer school. The flyers bring awareness to the virus and to the ways it can be prevented. Continue reading

Class helps HISD youngsters learn about healthier trick-or-treating 

With Halloween as the official start of the holiday candy season, HISD Nutrition Services Dietitians Julia Jarrell, Alberto Garcia, and Nan Cramer are teaching healthy Halloween classes to elementary school students to help them become responsible trick-or-treaters.

The dietitians teach strategies and techniques to students to prevent overeating candy. Children can consume more than 700 grams of sugar on Halloween night if they go unsupervised, and high amounts of sugar can cause stomachaches, headaches, and cavities.

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HISD and MD Anderson partner for youth tobacco prevention program   

Dr. George Wilding, Vice Provost, Clinical & Interdisciplinary Research MD Anderson; from left,  Angela Borzon, HISD Director of Instructional Technology; Felicia Ceaser-White, HISD Manager of Health and Physical Education; Maureen Cagley, Vice President, Academic Operations MD Anderson (and HISD graduate and HISD parent); Dr. Grenita Lathan, HISD Chief Academic Officer; Dr. Dmitrovsky, Provost and Executive Vice President MD Anderson; Annie Wolfe, HISD Officer of Secondary Curriculum and Development; Dr. Alex Prokhorov, Professor, Behavioral Science; pose for a photograph after announcing a partnership during a Houston ISD Board of Trustee meeting, October 13, 2016.

All middle and high students will be provided with smoking prevention curriculum developed by cancer center

HISD and the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center have reached a first-of-its-kind agreement to provide access to an evidence-based, youth-oriented tobacco prevention and cessation program for all 110,000 HISD middle and high school students.

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HISD schools win NFL Play 60 grants from Houston Texans, Texas Children’s Hospital

Four HISD schools earned a big victory from the Houston Texans and the Texas Children’s Hospital by winning an NFL PLAY 60 grant that will fund new equipment for P.E., sports, and after-school programs to help get kids moving.

Mitchell Elementary School, Attucks Middle School, and Westbury High School each won a $10,000 grant while Blackshear Elementary School received a $5,000 grant. Representatives from the schools were recognized during the halftime presentation of the Houston Texans game Oct. 2 at NRG Stadium.

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Special Olympics Field Days rescheduled for November; volunteers needed 

Houston ISD students participate in a district wide field day at Barnett Stadium, May 1, 2015.

Houston ISD students participate in a district wide field day at Barnett Stadium, May 1, 2015.

The fourth annual Special Olympics Field Days, which was postponed in April because of inclement weather, are now scheduled for November, and HISD needs volunteers for the upcoming event.

Field Days give students with intellectual and developmental disabilities a chance to showcase their athletic skills by taking part in fun athletic contests. The friendly competition includes basketball, tennis, soccer, and track and field for all ages, as well as flag football for high-schoolers.

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Summit connects schools with wrap-around services in Houston community 

Principals network with more than 120 city, county, and nonprofit service providers to help serve their students and families

HISD principals were able to connect with more than 120 different city, county, and nonprofit service providers available to their students and families as part of the district’s first ever Wrap-Around Services Summit.

The summit, held at the Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center on Sept. 7, was designed as a networking opportunity for campuses to identify resources available to their school communities in the areas of behavior and medical related services, parent education, vocational/workforce training, and other social services.

“Some schools may not even know what exists out there,” said District V Trustee Mike Lunceford. “There is an assortment of organizations who have the ability to help our children, and we need to reach out and make sure that all of our schools benefit from these services.”  Continue reading

Families Encouraged to Complete Application for HISD’s Free and Reduced Price Meals Program

Application available online and at all HISD campuses for 2016-17 academic year

The Houston Independent School District announced its policy today for providing free and reduced-price meals for children served under the attached current income eligibility guidelines. Each school/site or the central office has a copy of the policy, which may be reviewed by anyone on request.

Starting on Aug. 22, 2016, the Houston Independent School District will begin distributing letters to the households of the children in the district about eligibility benefits and any actions households need to take to apply for these benefits. Applications also are available at the HISD Nutrition Services Support Facility and all HISD schools.

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Free immunizations to be provided to Houston-area students

Texas Children’s Hospital, along with Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee and HISD Trustee Rhonda Skillern-Jones, will host Houston’s First School Immunization Sunday from 1-4 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 14 at Forest Brook Middle School (7525 Tidwell Road).

Free immunizations will be provided to Houston-area students.

August is National Immunization Awareness Month, which recognizes the success of vaccines and the challenges presented by vaccine-preventable diseases.