Category Archives: Business Operations

Transportation Services receives influx of new requests for bus service

Transportation Services is temporarily halting the acceptance of route and stop change requests as the department works to process an abundance of new requests for bus service submitted after the start of the new school year. 

This measure allows the department to focus on ensuring all new requests for service are processed and accompanying students are assigned to routes. Once that work is complete, the department will resume review of route and stop change requests.  

Alternate Stop Request Forms — required when requesting a bus stop or route change — will not be accepted during this time. Additionally, the Alternate Stop Request Form option in the Let’s Talk! online communication platform is being temporarily disabled. 

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Scarborough ES marks construction progress with celebration

Girls in colorful, ruffled dresses with yellow ribbons in their hair waved their arms back and forth as boys in wide-brimmed black hats and red ties tapped their feet and wooden swords on the pavement. 

Moving to the steady beat of mariachi music echoing through the air, the Ballet Folklorico energized the crowd gathered before them to celebrate the construction progress made on the new Scarborough Elementary School.  

“We are Scarborough. Whatever it takes, together we can. No excuses,” said fifth-grader Jasmine Savala, who was adorned with a bright pink construction hat and matching vest. 

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Braeburn ES celebrates construction progress on new building

Braeburn Elementary School students clad in bright green T-shirts braved the summer sun Saturday as they converged on a construction site that was once home to their old school. 

The students sat with parents and friends, some under umbrellas and sipping ice-cold water, and gazed in amazement at the site before them — two stories of steel beams that soon will be transformed into their new school.  

“We are so happy that this building will be our final Braeburn campus and the best one yet,” said fourth-grader Oscar Perez, whose words were then translated by fourth-grader Stanley Jimenez for the largely Spanish-speaking crowd. “When we saw the blueprint for our new school, we almost couldn’t believe that we would get to learn in such a beautiful building.” 

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Veteran crossing guard creates community connections while keeping students safe

Crossing Guard Charlethia Vaughn is nearly a permanent fixture at the corner of Walnut Bend Lane and Briar Forest Drive during the school year.  

Every morning and afternoon, she is there to help Walnut Bend Elementary School students and their parents cross the busy street — even when the Texas heat is nearly unbearable, when the skies are pouring rain, or when it’s so cold, her fingers get numb. 

“I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else,” she said. “This community has really embraced me.”  

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Transportation Services update scheduled for Thursday

Transportation Services is announcing its first round of bus route updates on Thursday. The changes will impact 445 routes with families being notified via SchoolMessenger. 

These adjustments result from the department’s continued focus to increase route efficiency, as well as its efforts to process new requests for bus service and route and stop changes. Changes to routes are not uncommon at the start of the school year and mostly involve minor adjustments to stop times.  

This year, Transportation Services will be making route update announcements on Thursdays, as needed, with changes to take effect the following Monday. The announcements distributed Thursday will take effect immediately after Labor Day on Tuesday, Sept. 3. 

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Northside HS students start new school year in renovated facility

Northside High School students steadily filed into the commons on Monday and lined up behind a bank of white tables, eager to pick up schedules, find friends, and get a first glimpse of the new campus. 

Standing just behind the tables was Assistant Principal Victor Okoli, armed with a floor plan and ready to help students navigate the new facility. 

Principal Cecilia Gonzales stood just a few feet away, watching over the process, welcoming students back to school, and guiding them through new, brightly colored hallways.  

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Lamar HS students enjoy first day of school in new building

Gathered outside Lamar High School’s new main entrance, cheerleaders, Rangerettes, and the color guard shook their pompoms to the beat of the music played by the band, welcoming students back to school. 

Inside, the hum of conversation filled the grand hall as hundreds of students peered around the two-story room, admiring the tall glass walls and massive, blue staircase, as they waited for the first bell to ring. 

“The kids walked in wide-eyed saying, ‘It’s beautiful,’” Lamar Principal Rita Graves said, recalling how eager students had been to see the school during last week’s Texan Prep Days. “They’re just really excited to be learning in such a cool place.” 

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Interim Superintendent gets sneak peek of new Lamar and Northside

Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan walked into the new academic building at Lamar High School on Thursday and stopped for a moment to take it all in. 

Standing in the grand hall, Lathan’s eyes widened as she scanned the two-story, glass-paned entry way and massive, bright blue staircase leading to upper floors. 

“This is wonderful,” Lathan said, smiling as she greeted Lamar Principal Rita Graves. 

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Construction progressing at new Mitchell ES

Construction on the new Mitchell Elementary School is progressing as the concrete foundation and hollow core planks are now complete.

Crews have begun the erection of the structural steel and site paving is nearly complete.

The campus is one of four elementary schools — Braeburn, Mitchell, Scarborough, and Kolter — being rebuilt as a result of damages sustained in 2017 during Hurricane Harvey.

“Although Harvey tested our resiliency, it also created an opportunity for our community to be blessed with a new school for our very deserving students,” Mitchell Principal Elizabeth Castillo said. “We are so eager as we watch the progress of our building.  With the foundation being poured, we know that our Mitchell 3.0 will be a beacon of hope as we work to revitalize our community after Harvey.”

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Steel structure placed in Kolter ES

Construction continues at Kolter Elementary School with structural steel of the new building nearly complete.

Crews will now begin the installation of both the first- and second-floor slabs. Exterior wall framing will begin next month.

“Watching the beams and framing come to life has made all the difference,” Kolter Principal Julie Dickinson said. “It’s so exciting to see a second floor and to begin to visualize learning spaces and common areas. I can’t believe we’re less than a year away from moving into our new school home.”

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