HSPVA junior named city’s second Youth Poet Laureate

Fareena Arefeen

Fareena Arefeen

Fareena Arefeen, a junior at the High School for Performing and Visual Arts, has been named Houston’s second Youth Poet Laureate, succeeding Andrew White, who graduated from HSPVA in June and is now attending New York University. The position was created by Writers in the Schools in partnership with the Houston Public Library, City of Houston, and Office of the Mayor.

Arefeen was one of 40 Houston-area students to apply. Candidates submitted five poems to a committee of what WITS Executive Director Robin Reagler called “page poets and stage poets.” The committee narrowed it down to five students, and the finalists were interviewed by a smaller group of published poets. The one-year term includes a book deal, a scholarship, and being mentored by Houston’s Poet Laureate, Robin Davidson.

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Wilson Montessori breaks ground on new addition

The groundbreaking ceremony for the new addition and renovations at Wilson Montessori School on Tuesday had all the usual celebratory elements from the obligatory shovels and hard hats to a distinguished list of speakers.

But Principal Beth Bonnette turned the morning into a teachable moment for the school’s more than 500 students when she challenged them to be part of history by contributing to a time capsule that will be placed within the walls of the new building.

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Runoff election date set for HISD District VII Trustee race

Winner will serve outgoing Trustee Harvin Moore’s unexpired term

The runoff election for the top two candidates to fill the unexpired term of outgoing HISD District VII Trustee Harvin Moore has been set for Dec. 10.

Candidates competing in the runoff are Anne Sung and John Luman. Continue reading

Groundbreaking ceremonies planned for Wilson Montessori, Energy Institute HS

Wilson Montessori and Energy Institute High School will hold groundbreaking ceremonies in November to celebrate the start of construction on their new buildings.

The Wilson Montessori event will be held Tuesday, Nov. 15, at 9 a.m. at their school campus, 2100 Yupon St. The Energy Institute event will be held Saturday, Nov. 19, at 10 a.m. at the site of their new location, 3501 Southmore Blvd. Continue reading

Fun, friendly competition during Special Olympics Field Day for high schools

High school students took the field on Thursday during the fourth annual Special Olympics Field Days at Butler Stadium, participating in sports such as football, basketball, track, and soccer. The events give students with intellectual and developmental disabilities a chance to showcase their athletic skills by taking part in fun athletic contests. Elementary school students will have their field day next week on Nov. 17, which will conclude the event this year.

HISD District VI Trustee Greg Meyers stepping down from board

Trustee Greg Meyers, who has represented HISD District VI since 2004, announced Thursday that he will resign from the school board at the end of this year.

Meyers served as board president in 2010 and is the current executive director of Citizen Schools-Texas. Today, he serves as a board member for the University of St. Thomas School of Education and as a delegate for the Texas Association of School Boards. He is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in the University of Houston’s K-12 Professional Leadership program.

“Every single day, every opportunity I try to commit myself to focus on kids first,” Meyers said. “While I may not be here physically, I will always be here to serve HISD.” Continue reading

Carranza joins mayor, other elected officials in pledge to work together for all children

HISD Superintendent Richard Carranza and other school leaders from across the Houston area joined Mayor Sylvester Turner and dozens of elected officials Wednesday in pledging to work together to ensure all children have access to a quality education.

“If we cannot help education and the kids in Houston and the surrounding area, we’re in trouble,” Turner told the crowd of about 125 people who turned out for the evening event. “There’s a lot of brain power in this room.”

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HIPPY Fall Festival provides family fun, educational resources

HISD’s Family and Community Engagement Department hosted its Fall Festival for the community on Oct. 29 with a special focus on early childhood, bringing together all parents enrolled in the Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngster (HIPPY) program.

More than 400 people attended the Fall Festival and enjoyed free games, arts and crafts, food, and educational resources. Parents also had access to numerous free resources offered by community partners and organizations to help guide families in various areas.

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Middle-schoolers compete during Special Olympics Field Day 

The fourth annual Special Olympics Field Days, which were postponed in April because of inclement weather, are underway this this week. Middle school students participated in their event on Wednesday. High school students will participate today (Nov. 10), and elementary students will have their event on Nov. 17. The events give students with intellectual and developmental disabilities a chance to showcase their athletic skills by taking part in fun athletic contests.