Category Archives: Achievement/Recognition

HISD Chief Communications Officer Rebecca Suarez named to Houston Business Journal’s top 40 Under 40 list

The Houston Business Journal has named Houston Independent School District Chief Communications Officer Rebecca Suarez as a 40 Under 40 Class of 2019 honoree.

The list, which includes CEOs, founders, and young professionals in Houston who have become inspiring leaders in their respective industries and communities, were selected from over 500 nominations this year. Judges chose the honorees based on three key criteria: leadership, community involvement, and overcoming challenges.

“I grew up in the East End and learned at a young age the value of education, hard work, and gratitude,” Suarez said. “I am extremely humbled to be recognized by the Houston Business Journal and thankful to HISD for giving me the opportunity to share the powerful stories of our students, administrators, parents, and community in the largest school district in Texas.”

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HISD announces 2018-19 Teacher of the Year finalists, Beginning Teacher of the Year winners 

Winners will be recognized on May 17 at the Educators of the Year banquet 

To celebrate teaching excellence across the district, HISD is saddling up to highlight the district’s principals and teachers at the “western-themed” Educators of the Year banquet on Friday, May 17, at the Hilton Americas Hotel.

Twelve finalists have been named for the Elementary and Secondary Teachers of the Year. The two winners, who will go on to represent the district in Region 4, will be announced during the Educators of the Year banquet on Friday, May 17. The 12 finalists were selected from all 287 campuses based on performance data and other criteria. 

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HISD Scholars Banquet honors Class of 2019 valedictorians and salutatorians

The Houston Independent School District paid tribute to the top students from each high school’s graduating class during the annual Scholars Banquet on Tuesday evening. 

Every spring, HISD honors the top two scholars at each of its high schools with a formal celebration of the accomplishment of finishing first or second in their class academic rankings. During the banquet, the 94 valedictorians and salutatorians were presented with a medallion in recognition of their outstanding academic achievements. 

“This has been a challenging year for HISD, but you are proof that great things are happening throughout the district,” said Interim Superintendent Dr. Grenita Lathan. “Given what you have accomplished so far, there is no limit to what you can do in college and beyond.” 

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Sharpstown HS soccer coach fosters family bond, lessons beyond the pitch

Statebound Apollos have built strong relationships within team despite language barriers

They’ve been dubbed the “seven-nation family” — 11 starters, seven countries, four languages, and one dream: to become state champions.  

The Sharpstown Apollos varsity soccer team earned a regional title over the weekend with a win over Kingwood Park to advance to their first state tournament in school history.  

“This is something we have visualized and dreamed about,” Coach Greg Boles said. “This is huge – this is what we’ve worked for, and I am just so proud of these guys.” 

The championship-bound Apollos team features a diverse roster of players from seven different countries – USA, Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, Rwanda, Nigeria, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. And, despite some language barriers, the team has formed a strong bond during their time out on the pitch.  

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Kinder HSPVA wins 2019 Landmark Award

The new Kinder High School for the Performing and Visual Arts building was named the winner of the Houston Business Journal 2019 Landmark Award this past week.

The annual award program recognizes impressive real estate projects that make a significant impression on the Houston landscape and help sculpt the look, feel, and image of the city.

“We love the new space,” Kinder HSPVA Principal Scott Allen said. “The building design is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also incredibly functional, supporting our academic and arts programs.”

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HISD Interim Superintendent surprises students with $5,000 scholarships

Last week, six outstanding HISD seniors were surprised with 2019 HISD Superintendent and Board of Education Scholar Awards totaling $30,000.  

Each student received $5,000. This week and next week, four more students will receive the same amount. 

HISD Superintendent and Board of Education Scholar Awards, in the amount of $2,000, are presented annually to graduating seniors who have exemplified great character and resilience in the face of adversity. One senior from every HISD high school will receive scholarships. 

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Austin HS partners with Raise Your Hand Texas to transform student learning experiences

Three years ago, Austin High School Principal Steve Guerrero and his team attended what they thought would be a typical professional development training with Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation. While attending, they were inspired to apply for a $500,000 grant that would be of great benefit to the campus. 

In applying for the grant, the team was able to create a plan to rethink the typical high school student experience and re-conceptualize how the school used its resources to increase personalization for students.   

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HISD student writers to read their work at Discovery Green

More than 60 HISD students have been selected to read at the Writers in the Schools “Blooms: Young Writers Reading” event at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 4.

These students will be sharing their original poems, stories and essays on stage at Discovery Green. Congratulations to the following students for being selected:

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Revere MS athletic director named April Teacher of the Month

HISD Chief of Human Resources Julia Dimmitt and Area Superintendent James McSwain on Tuesday surprised Revere Middle School Athletic Director Celina Robinson as the Sterling McCall VIP Services Teacher of the Month for April. 

“As a first-year principal, it has truly been rewarding to work alongside Celina and have complete trust in her capabilities on campus,” Principal Monijit Katial said. “She has made my transition into the role nearly seamless as I have a point person on campus that I can trust and depend on.” 

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Port Houston ES students learn big life lessons in Dolphinville

At most schools, running in the halls is not permitted, but in Dolphinville – a student-run community within the walls of HISD’s Port Houston Elementary School – running is like speeding, and it can have costly consequences. 

“If a student is caught running by one of our Crimestoppers, then they are issued a speeding ticket,” said Port Houston Assistant Principal Shelby Smith. “And if you don’t pay off your ticket, you only get a portion of your paycheck.” 

Those “paychecks” help drive the Dolphinville community, which is part of IBC Bank’s Minitropolis Program, and is the first of its kind in Houston. The East Houston minitropolis mirrors a functioning, real-life city, complete with its own bank, grocery store and, of course, police department.  

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