More than 300 students, staff and community members gathered at Austin High School on Tuesday to get an update on plans to rebuild the 80-year-old school and a first glimpse at what the new facility could look like.
Plans for the campus include modern, open spaces allowing for lots of daylight, better traffic flow in and around the campus, clusters of classrooms to allow for a neighborhood learning concept, and a new, defined entry off of Jefferson Street.
“This really is about our students. We’re providing them with a different type of learning environment,” HISD Design General Manager Dan Bankhead told the crowd, explaining that students no longer sit in rows doing worksheets. “What we find now is students work better when they learn from each other, when they’re collaborative.” Continue reading →
Austin High School is slated to receive a new $68.4 million facility preserving the architecturally significant building structure for 1,800 to 2,000 students.
The project held its first community meeting in August of 2015 to discuss the design progress to date. The preliminary plan maintains the front facade and historic auditorium while renovating the architecturally significant portion of the building along Dumble Street. The back section of the building along Lockwood will be replaced with a new addition. The concept includes a new entrance for visitors to enter from Jefferson Street, which will be constructed adjacent to new administrative offices. The plan also includes cutout drives for buses on Lockwood and parent cars on Dumble to avoid blocking traffic lanes during commute hours. Additional features of the new campus will include new gymnasiums and CTE labs and a new kitchen and dining commons area with both indoor and outdoor seating options. The two current courtyards will be kept and enhanced as additional flexible learning space.
A second community meeting will be held in early to mid-2016, with the goal to have the project out for bid by the end of the year.
Nine HISD high school bands will be strutting their stuff in the district’s eighth annual Marching Band Festival on Tuesday, Oct. 6.
The festival gives bands the opportunity to receive feedback on their music quality, sections, music effects, visual effects, and visual performance. The critiques will help the bands prepare for future performances and events.
HISD’s annual Grads Within Reach walk took place on Sept. 12, 2015, and volunteers convinced more than 80 students to come back to school and continue their education.
Almost 500 volunteers fanned out across the city, visiting the last-known residences of students who had not shown up for class this year and leaving information on how to re-enroll if no one came to the door.
Members of the Austin High School community came out this week for the first of three community meetings to hear about plans for the school’s new campus. As part of HISD’s current bond program, Austin will receive a new $68.4 million building that will accommodate 1,800 to 2,000 students.
Twenty-eight students in HISD’s English Language Learner and migrant programs spent two weeks of their summer participating in hands-on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) activities at the STEM Leadership and Design Fabrication Academy at Rice University.
The students, who attend Austin, Chávez, Davis, Furr, Kashmere, Liberty, Lee, Sam Houston, Sharpstown, and Waltrip high schools, got a taste of what careers in a STEM-related field could be like. Continue reading →
In this week’s I am HISD, which features district students, graduates, employees, and other team members, José Saenz explains why he just can’t stop coming back to his high school. Saenz attended Austin High School and participated in the school’s teaching program. He graduated in 2003, and is now a teacher there. Given the fact that he also met his wife there in the ninth grade, it is clear that for Saenz, all roads lead to Austin.
You graduated from Austin HS in 2003, and you have returned as a teacher. What did you do after graduating, and what brought you back?
I had made up my mind to become a teacher towards the end of my senior year. I began attending the University of Houston in the fall of 2003 and majored in history. I went through the education program at UH as well. Students were required to do a set number of observation hours and a semester of student teaching. I requested Austin as the location for both. Since graduating, I was very interested in coming back to Austin to teach and having the opportunity to student-teach there helped me make that decision. I felt that I could connect with the students coming from the same neighborhood and having many of the same life experiences. I began working at Austin in 2008 and even returned to UH while working in 2010 to obtain my master’s in curriculum and instruction in social studies education. Continue reading →
While navigating rough water is a tough job, actually learning the finer points of navigation is even tougher. Students at HISD’s Stephen F. Austin High School for Maritime Studies have a new tool that will make that learning process a little easier—and certainly more comprehensive. Students, faculty, staff, and members of HISD administration and Houston’s maritime industry christened the school’s very own navigation simulator on April 24. Continue reading →
The top six Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) cadets, who were named earlier this month, were honored on April 25 at the Annual HISD JROTC Final Review and Awards Ceremony.
All were promoted to the rank of Cadet Colonel (Army) or Cadet Captain (Navy), which are the highest ranks in the program. The top seniors were chosen from among all the graduating seniors in HISD’s 25 JROTC programs.