Two HISD high schools to host grand openings this week to celebrate new buildings

Two HISD high schools will host grand opening celebrations this week to mark the completion of construction projects on their campuses.

Worthing High School will host a grand opening, campus tour and custom mural dedication on Thursday to celebrate the completion of its new classroom wing, the construction of which is the first phase of plans to rebuild the comprehensive high school.

North Houston Early College High School will have a similar grand opening celebration and school tour on Friday to mark the completion of their new school building.

Both Worthing and North Houston Early are among 40 schools — including 29 high schools — across the district being renovated or rebuilt as part of HISD’s voter-approved 2012 Bond Program. Construction is currently underway at nearly two dozen campuses — more than at any other time in district history. Once all work is complete, HISD will boast of one of the most modern portfolios of urban high schools in the nation.

National, state, and local dignitaries are expected to attend both of the ceremonies.

Festivities at Worthing kick off at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 18 with a presentation and ceremonial ribbon-cutting, following by self-guided tours of the two-story wing, which features modern learning centers, science labs, and career and technology education spaces, as well as a collegiate-style lecture hall. Plenty of windows allow natural light to fill the brightly colored classrooms, open staircases, and long corridors featuring green and gold terrazzo tile floors.

Worthing students will attend classes in the new wing while construction crews work on the next phase of the $30 million, 90,000-square-foot project, which calls for a new facility that will house up to 1,300 students and incorporate the recently completed addition. The project is expected to be finished in 2018.

At North Houston Early College High School, the community will gather to celebrate at 10 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 19 for a formal presentation followed by self-guided tours of the new campus, which features modern science labs, flexible learning spaces, and a college resource center to provide students with scholarship and registration information, as well as access to counselors.

Located on land adjacent to the Houston Community College Northline campus, the $13.5 million, 57,000-square-foot facility is designed to accommodate up to 400 students, all of whom integrate college coursework into their traditional high school degree plan with the goal of graduating with a high school diploma and associate degree.