The first day back at school after winter break isn’t usually a day to celebrate among high school teens wishing they had one more day to sleep in.
But the atmosphere at Sterling Aviation High School was different on Wednesday as students reported for the first time to their new campus — a grand building with spacious classrooms, broad windows, colorful furniture, and the latest technology.
“It’s better than the old building,” said Sterling senior Rae’janae Bennings, as she caught up with friends outside the central dining commons before the first bell. “It’s bigger, and it looks way better.”
When Sterling Aviation High School students return to class after winter break, they’ll report to a modern, new building with contemporary furniture, broad windows, and spacious classrooms and hallways adorned in bright, bold colors.
The grand building — specifically designed to enhance their aviation sciences program and support 21st century learning — has been long-awaited by the Sterling community, and it is well deserved.
“I think it’s going to mean that they’re not forgotten,” Fuentes said, describing the importance of the new building to his students and community. The feeling of being forgotten seemed reinforced as the school was labeled by the state as “Improvement Required” and lost academic programs. “Now, we have a new school, we’re no longer IR, we’re adding programs. They’re starting to see that they have value. They are valued.”
Hard hats and safety vests were required dress for Thursday’s quarterly meeting of Houston Independent School District’s Bond Oversight Committee, which featured a tour of the new Sterling Aviation High School construction site.
The tour began in the school’s airplane hangar, which serves as the centerpiece of the new school as well as its focus on aviation science. The hangar also will serve as a space for students to work on airplanes and their engines, and large viewing windows will allow students and staff to see the hangar from many points, including the main entrance.
“It’s a very impressive looking building. I’m overwhelmed by the size of it,” BOC member Sonny Flores said, as he and fellow committee members entered the three-story, 230,000-square-foot structure.
Editor’s Note: Black History Month runs from Monday, Feb. 1, through Monday, Feb. 29, this year, and HISD is celebrating with a series of weekly stories recognizing distinguished African Americans who graduated from district high schools. This third article focuses on alumni who went on to have successful careers in the fine arts. The first and second articles spotlighted professional athletes, and lawmakers/politicians (respectively). Others will feature educators and those with careers in radio, TV, and film.
HISD has a wealth of African-American alumni with talent in the performing and visual arts — and many of these distinguished graduates have chosen to share their gifts with later generations of students.
Sterling High School students and other stakeholders had the opportunity to sign a steel beam that will be used in the construction of their new school.
The new $72.3 million building project is being built behind the existing facility, which will be demolished once construction is complete. The new three-story building is making great progress and can easily be seen over the top of the current school.
After the beam-signing, which was held in front of the current school, workers transported it to the construction site, where they will soon install it in the new building. The school has a target completion date of first quarter 2017.
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.
Sterling High School students, staff and community members had the opportunity to sign a steel beam today that will be used in the construction of their new school. The new $72.3 million building project, which is part of HISD’s current bond program, is being built behind the existing facility, which will be demolished once construction is complete.
The new three-story building is making great progress and can now easily be seen over the top of the current school.
“Our community is ecstatic; the building’s going up fast,” said the Rev. A.L. Hickman, community representative on the school’s Project Advisory Team. “I know people who go out of their way to drive by here every day just to see the progress that’s been made.”
After the beam-signing, which was held in front of the current school, workers transported it to the construction site, where they will soon install it in the new building.
Students at Sterling High School are greeting the new school year with excitement, energy, and optimism. The school’s new principal, Justin Fuentes, is enthusiastic about his school’s programs and the opportunities it offers students.
Besides Sterling’s resident aviation program and an aviation engineering and designing program through the Michigan Institute of Aviation Technology, it also offers a Futures Academy in logistics and global supply chain management, as well as law enforcement forensics, automotive, and dual-credit courses towards a certificate in welding. Continue reading →
Sterling High School will offer a new course in its airframe engineering and design program in the 2015–2016 school year: welding.
The school is able to offer welding through a new partnership with Houston Community College. Students who successfully complete all of the necessary courses will earn a certificate as a welder’s helper. If they go on to study at Houston Community College, they will be able to take advanced welding courses there. Continue reading →
Rising sophomores get tips from former Futures Academy students and EMERGE fellows
The journey from high school to college to a career can be challenging, but HISD’s Futures Academy is helping students develop the skills they’ll need to get there.
The Summer Bridge Program is arming rising high school sophomores with critical knowledge in the areas of time management, team building, communication, and money management. Four sessions are scheduled for June and feature classes taught by Futures Academy and EMERGE alumni.
“One way we thought this message would resonate with students is by having former HISD Futures Academy and EMERGE students returning from their first year in college lead the sessions,” said Michael Love, assistant superintendent of the Futures Academy. “This allows the students to learn directly from peers who recently walked the same hallways as them.”