Campus meetings put families in-the-know about upcoming changes in high school

Reagan, Washington HB 5 sessions show what’s in store for next year’s ninth-graders

High school is changing in a big way for next year’s ninth-grade students, and dozens of HISD families got a jump on finding out how at two community meetings Monday night at Reagan and Washington high schools.

The changes are coming as a result of state legislation known as House Bill 5 – and HISD has rebranded the process for its students and their families as “Plan Your Path.”

“Plan Your Path” is all about guiding students to “dream big,” explained Alejandro Morua, HISD’s general manager of Family and Community Engagement, by combining career awareness and selection with a rigorous academic curriculum from pre-K through graduation.

“I wish this had been invented years ago,” said Adrian Hernandez, who was there with wife Isabella and daughter Sophia, an eighth-grader at Hamilton MS who plans to attend Waltrip HS. “When you start early thinking about college and jobs, it helps you get to the next level.”

Families were introduced to new concepts that will customize each student’s high school experience including:

  • Personal graduation plans that begin with a rigorous 26-credit Distinguished Level of Achievement (including Algebra II) mandated by HISD;
  • Endorsements – required course pathways with a career focus that reflect a student’s interests and goals beyond high school;
  • Performance acknowledgments – how students can “supersize” their diplomas with achievements, such as mastery of a second language.
  • Automatic admission to Texas state colleges and universities.

Isabella Hernandez was pleased to be part of her daughter’s goal-setting and planning. “This meeting was a great opportunity for both parents and children to learn the steps we’ll take together,” she said. “We know we want her to go to college, and this helps us understand how to get her there.”

[photoshelter-gallery g_id=’G0000xI4rU1yFPj4′ g_name=’20140310-HB5′ width=’600′ f_fullscreen=’t’ bgtrans=’t’ pho_credit=’iptc’ twoup=’f’ f_bbar=’t’ f_bbarbig=’f’ fsvis=’f’ f_show_caption=’t’ crop=’f’ f_enable_embed_btn=’t’ f_htmllinks=’t’ f_l=’t’ f_send_to_friend_btn=’f’ f_show_slidenum=’t’ f_topbar=’f’ f_show_watermark=’t’ img_title=’casc’ linkdest=’c’ trans=’xfade’ target=’_self’ tbs=’5000′ f_link=’t’ f_smooth=’f’ f_mtrx=’t’ f_ap=’t’ f_up=’f’ height=’400′ btype=’old’ bcolor=’#CCCCCC’ ]

Reagan, Scarborough and Sam Houston high schools had counselors on hand to talk about their specific programs and to answer questions.

HISD has planned one meeting in each of the nine trustee’s districts, with the final one at the district headquarters. Here’s the schedule:

Tuesday, March 25

Thursday, March 27

Monday, April 7

Tuesday, April 8

  • Worthing High School, 9215 Scott St., 77051
  • Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center, 4400 W. 18th St., 77092

HISD has created a “Plan Your Path” website online at, to provide updated information on new requirements, STAAR testing, and a place to ask questions and read FAQs.