Festive music by the Lawson Middle School band greeted guests Wednesday as they arrived to celebrate the grand opening of the school’s new $66 million building – one of 13 new or renovated HISD schools that opened in August.
The event paid tribute to the school’s namesake, Audrey H. Lawson, and was attended by parents, students, staff, alumni, and community members, along with members of the Lawson family.
“This building is absolutely beautiful. It represents our investment in this community and the future of our students in the Hiram Clarke neighborhood,” said Houston Independent School District Board of Education Trustee Wanda Adams, who served as emcee for the event. “The new Lawson Middle School will have a huge impact on this community for generations to come.” Continue reading →
Clad in super hero capes and masks, enthusiastic teachers and staff gathered in the foyer of the new Lawson Middle School to welcome students for the first day of the 2018-2019 school year.
Lawson Principal Kasey Bailey said the costumes were a reminder to students and parents of their power to move the campus forward and conquer obstacles that stand before them.
“It’s a new era of academic achievement” Bailey said. “Lawson’s academic status is now ‘Growth Distinction.’ We are no longer ‘Improvement Required.’ That alone has given us the additional boost of excitement preparing us for this new academic achievement.”
Music echoed throughout the Lawson Middle School gym as community members gathered with former students and staff to catch up with old friends, flip through old yearbooks, and dance the afternoon away.
Led by current students and staff, the stroll down memory lane was part of a “Walk to Remember” — an event held to let stakeholders bid their final farewells to the building before it is demolished later this summer.
“It’s important to preserve the memories,” Lawson Principal Kasey Bailey said. “There’s a lot of history with this school, but we’re very excited to move into the new building.”
Construction on the new Lawson Middle School is now in the final stages, with the project almost 90 percent complete and on track to open this summer.
The main and auxiliary gymnasiums, locker rooms, dining commons, kitchen, and administrative offices are nearly complete, and flooring is being installed throughout the building. In addition, driveways at the east and west sides of the campus are almost finished.
“The end is in sight,” Lawson Principal Kasey Bailey said, noting that furniture selections have been confirmed, and delivery will occur mid-May. “We are extremely excited and can’t wait to move in.”
Construction on the new Lawson Middle School is making steady progress, with work now more than 70 percent complete and on track to be finished in the second quarter of 2018.
Walls and ceiling have been installed, and, in the coming weeks, crews will begin painting the gymnasium, locker rooms, and a section of the academic pods. Installation of the theater stage and elevator also are underway, and driveways are being poured on both the east and west sides of the building.
“It’s exciting,” Lawson Principal Kasey Bailey said, noting that she and her staff would be doing a walk-through next week. “Last time they toured the building, it was just a shell. This time they’ll have a more vivid picture of what the spaces will look like since windows, walls, and doors are installed.”
Huge smiles could be seen throughout the Lawson Middle School courtyard as students headed outside to scribble their signatures on what will be the final beam to be erected as part of their new school.
The southwest Houston middle school is among 40 schools being renovated or rebuilt as part of the 2012 Bond program. The signed beam will be the last piece of steel installed, as the $59 million project is nearly one-third of the way complete.
“We are overjoyed at the feeling of knowing that the school is on the mark to be completed by the end of the school year,” said Lawson Principal Tynette Guinn. “The kids are excited to be a part of history.”
The Houston Independent School District on Friday paid tribute to the district’s top elementary and secondary teachers of the year during the fifth annual Educators of the Year banquet, which honors exceptional teachers and principals.
Hillary Smith, a fifth-grade reading teacher at DeAnda Elementary School, was named HISD Elementary Teacher of the Year, while Christina Carter-Woods, a seventh-grade reading teacher at Pershing Middle School, was named HISD Secondary Teacher of the Year.
Smith and Carter-Woods each received a $3,500 cash award and an engraved plaque. They also will advance to the state’s regional Teacher of the Year competition. Continue reading →
The Houston Independent School District Board of Education on Thursday is expected to consider a resolution that would begin the process of renaming three additional schools so they better represent the district’s values and diversity.
The resolution would affect Albert Sidney Johnston and Sidney Lanier middle schools, and Jefferson Davis High School. Continue reading →
The Houston Independent School District Board of Education on Thursday is expected to consider a resolution that would begin the process of renaming schools in order to represent the values and diversity of the school district, in accordance with the district’s non-discrimination policies.
The resolution was brought forward by Board President Rhonda Skillern-Jones. It would affect eight schools: Henry Grady, Richard Dowling, Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, Albert Sidney Johnston, and Sidney Lanier middle schools, and Jefferson Davis, John Reagan, and Lee high schools. Continue reading →