Houston Endowment to release remaining $3 million in Apollo funds to HISD

Houston Endowment informed the Houston Independent School District this week that it will release a $3 million payment for the district’s Apollo school turnaround program in January.

The Foundation deferred the final payment on its three-year, $6 million grant to the HISD Foundation pending its review of the project’s third year report by Dr. Roland Fryer of Harvard University.

“We are grateful to Houston Endowment for their generous support of this transformational program,” said HISD Superintendent Terry Grier. “The progress we have made in closing the achievement gap in math at our Apollo schools would not have been possible without their leadership and commitment.”

Presented in November, Fryer’s report outlined the improved performance of students participating in the program at some of HISD’s lowest-performing campuses.

Fryer’s data showed significant gains in math among both elementary and secondary Apollo students, with rapid progress made toward cutting the achievement gap in that subject, with the highest gains from students in fourth-, sixth- and ninth-grades receiving daily math tutoring.

It also showed a “small but positive” impact on reading scores, and indicated that while students of all ethnicities benefit from Apollo, the greatest gains were visible among Hispanic and low-income students.