Tag Archives: business operations

Crews keep students, staff warm during coldest days of the year

On the rare occasion that Houston temperatures drop to freezing, it’s not just people who may struggle to get going in the morning. HISD schools and buses need extra time to warm up, too.

But for every cozy classroom or bus ride, there is a team that has braved the weather in the dark and early morning hours to make learning environments comfy and safe for students’ arrival.

They are the cold-start crews – the ones who are called in when temperatures drop to 32 degrees and below.

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Austin HS students start new year in new school

Austin High School seniors Daniel Miranda and Jesus Cantu greeted each other as they made their way through their school’s dining commons, stopping to soak in their new surroundings before the first bell rang.

“It looks futuristic,” Miranda said, first looking up at the contemporary lighting and then down below at the dining tabletops featuring the school’s mustang mascot.

“Futuristic?” Cantu asked with a laugh. “I think you mean modern.”

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HISD Customer Care team meets the demand as calls increase

Anticipating a surge of calls as students began returning to classrooms in September, Customer Care and Operations Senior Manager Delorian Moore began preparing her team of customer service representatives over the summer.

To prepare for the potential increase, she first guided the team through COVID-19 online safety trainings. Next, she advocated for a department goal of accountability and growth.

As students returned for in-person instruction in September, campus maintenance and custodial calls increased, putting the Business Operations Customer Care team at the center of the effort to keep students and staff safe.

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New Austin HS set to open after winter break

There are many features that Principal Orlando Reyna finds impressive about the newly constructed Austin High School, but the contemporary courtyard is by far one of his favorites.

“It just looks amazing,” Reyna said, smiling at the thought of it. “I anticipate it’s going to be a popular space for us to utilize and for students to congregate.”

After a semester-long delay due to pandemic-related manpower and delivery issues, Austin High School is finally set to open its doors to students on Wednesday, Jan. 6, following their return from winter break.

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Eight years later: A look back at designing schools for learning

These certainly aren’t your grandmothers’ schools.

At least that’s how Dan Bankhead, General Manager for Facilities Design, describes the newly redesigned schools built under the 2012 Bond Program.

A sharp contrast from the original buildings, classrooms are now bright, spacious, and flooded with natural light. Bold colors adorn the floors and walls. Shared spaces are reminiscent of trendy hotel lobbies and cafés.

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T.H. Rogers alum and plant operator focuses on encouraging others

When students at T.H. Rogers School are dismissed for the day, Thomas Winston’s shift is just getting started. 

As a plant operator, Winston works nights, but looks forward to the time when he gets to cross paths with the elementary and middle school students as they make their way home.

Sometimes he simply greets them with a warm hello, other times he likes to give advice and prepare them for the outside world.

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Bellaire Cardinals inch closer to new athletic fields, school

Bellaire High School took a significant step toward the next phase of construction last month when the city approved a specific use permit allowing for the build of the high school’s new baseball and softball fields at 6300 Avenue B.

Abatement and demolition of the former Gordon Elementary School will begin soon to make way for the new fields.

The athletic fields are part of the 2012 Bond Program, which called for a rebuild of Bellaire’s existing school, which has been in use since 1955. Design plans for the $141.5 million, multi-phased project included the relocation of the baseball and softball fields to a site about two miles away to maximize space on the existing 18-acre campus.

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HISD, No Kid Hungry to provide up to 5,000 holiday turkeys to families in need

For a lot of families, the holiday table doesn’t feel complete without a turkey as its centerpiece.

Nutrition Services will be able to provide that holiday hallmark — and a little extra holiday cheer — for up to 5,000 HISD families thanks to a partnership with and generous donation from No Kid Hungry, a nonprofit organization that aims to end child hunger.

Up to 5,000 turkeys will be distributed to Houston families just ahead of HISD’s winter break during Neighborhood Supersites scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 12 and Wednesday, Dec. 16. The turkeys are funded by an $80,000 donation from No Kid Hungry.

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Scarborough ES welcomes Huskies to new home

A group of enthusiastic teachers clad in blue Huskies t-shirts cheered as students arrived at the new Scarborough Elementary School for the first time on Monday.

After undergoing temperature checks, the students marveled at their new surroundings and the colorful bilingual welcome signs awaiting them.

Fourth-grader Elizabeth Garza wore a black mask imprinted with the smile of a Cheshire cat, but the sparkle in her eyes made it clear she was smiling just as wide underneath it.

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Mitchell ES celebrates a ‘powerful’ return

As Mitchell Elementary School students arrived for the first day of in-person instruction, there were plenty of bright eyes and broad smiles, evident even underneath their masks.

The students entered the new school and looked on in amazement at their new surroundings. Teachers stood nearby reminding them to walk while observing physical distancing.

With their backpacks filled, the students made their way to their classrooms, greeted teachers, and quickly found their seats, ready to begin the school day.

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