The Houston Symphony is launching its annual series of free summer community family concerts throughout the Houston area, and HISD’s Booker T. Washington High School is on the list of venues.
Symphony musicians will play a program of family-friendly music celebrating composers of diverse backgrounds, ranging from Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony to Ravel’s Suite from Mother Goose, conducted by Robert Franz.
Books Between Kids founders Amy Barnes & Sandra Ahlhorn with students from Kashmere Gardens ES
More than 12,000 HISD students will be starting off their summer vacation right—with an armload of books to take home, enjoy, and keep—thanks to two book-loving ladies and the non-profit they created last year to support literacy.
“Building home libraries, one summer at a time,” is the slogan of Books Between Kids, which Sandra Ahlhorn and Amy Barnes cofounded in 2012, and that is precisely what the longtime friends (and parents of HISD students) intend to do.
“What really provoked me was an op-ed piece I read in the newspaper that children were living in homes with no books,” explained Barnes. “And ‘no’ means ‘none.’ We both grew up in book-loving homes, so that just didn’t seem possible. Then Sandra heard a talk given by (HISD Superintendent) Terry Grier about the summer slide, and we both thought, ‘You know, we can do something about this.’”
Families invited to kick-off parties on June 11 and 12
The Houston Independent School District’s free summer meal program kicks off on June 11 at more than 200 schools. Children ages 1 to 18 will be able to enjoy a healthy breakfast and lunch at no cost through mid-July. The start of the program will be celebrated with kick-off parties at Bonham and Kashmere Gardens elementary schools.
The ‘Summer Food, Summer Fun’ kick-off parties on June 11 and 12 will include giveaways, music, games and a special visit from Ace the nutrition mascot.
Children do not have to be enrolled in summer school nor show proof of income in order to receive a free meal at the participating HISD schools. Adults may also participate by purchasing breakfast for $2 and lunch for $3.25.