A sea of red flooded the main entrance of Furr High School on Friday morning as the cheerleaders, Sparkle Dancers — dressed in red and white uniforms — and band pepped up the crowd in celebration of the school’s building dedication ceremony.
Music and chants echoed through the air, and lush trees and landscaping lined the length of the brightly colored 182,000-square-foot-building, offering an ornate backdrop to a long red ribbon stretched across the building’s main walkway.
“Close your eyes for a moment and imagine a high school that empowers students to tackle environmental injustice and becomes the central green hub of their community,” said Furr Interim Principal Rosa Hernandez to attendees. “Imagine spaces filled with student voices, trust, school spirit, and a flexible learning environment.” She pointed to the new building, saying “That’s what we have here.”
A lush, open green space with paved walkways leading to the entrance of the new Wisdom High School served as the perfect setting on Tuesday for the school’s momentous building dedication celebration.
As the most diverse school in HISD, the campus includes students from nearly 60 different countries. The event provided guests with a beautiful representation of that international makeup, with students lining the walkway adorned in their native attire and holding flags of their respective home countries.
“Margaret L. Wisdom High School represents my America; it represents your America,” HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan said. “Over 70 languages are spoken here at this school. This is America.” Continue reading →
Barbara Jordan High School for Careers students gathered this week in their old parking lot — now the future site of their new school — to ink their signatures on steel beams beneath the building’s learning staircase.
The students and faculty were invited to sign the beams as a way to commemorate construction progress and memorialize their signatures in the new structure, which is scheduled to be finished by the end of this year.
Madison High School Project Advisory Team members joined with school staff for a tour of the Marlins’ new facility, getting a sneak peek of the new gym, dining commons, auto shop, and auditorium.
Construction of the new school is more than halfway complete. The concrete walls have been erected and the installation of the roof, windows, and exterior brickwork is underway. Interior walls are being framed and utility site work is underway.
Permanent power to the building — an important project milestone — will be connected to the building in early May.
The new Barbara Jordan High School for Careers is beginning to take shape with the building’s footprint almost finished and exterior and interior wall framing underway.
Roof installation — a major project milestone — is nearly complete, and installation of mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems is underway. In addition, the building will be fully enclosed by the end of May.
Jordan’s $42.4 million construction project is a part of HISD’s voter-approved 2012 Bond Program, which calls for the renovation or rebuilding of 40 schools, including 29 high schools. The 120,000-square-foot career center will accommodate 600 to 800 students who will spend part of the day at their home school and part of the day at Jordan participating in specialized, hands-on career training.
Austin High School students and staff began the spring semester on Monday in a temporary campus in preparation for the start of construction on their new building.
The new Temporary Learning Center — dubbed by school officials as the “TLC” and made up of temporary buildings — was built to ensure student and staff safety during construction. It is located along South Lockwood Drive, directly behind the existing school building.
Located in Houston’s East End, the 80-year-old comprehensive high school is being rebuilt as part of the Houston Independent School District’s voter-approved 2012 Bond Program. Plans for the $79.6 million project call for a new facility that preserves the original building’s architecturally significant building structure and can accommodate up to 2,000 students. Continue reading →
Following are updates from the bond discussion at the Board of Education workshop this morning. For live updates, follow us on Twitter, @HoustonISD.
In all, the HISD bond proposal includes 28 high schools, 2 middle schools, 5 K-8 schools, and 3 elementary schools.
The bond proposal was guided by a third-party facilities assessment that identified the need to modernize Houston high school classrooms. (View the report here).
Four high schools would receive renovations under the bond plan: Kashmere, Scarborough, Sharpstown International, and Jones.
Architecturally significant exteriors of several high schools (Lamar, Davis, Austin, Milby) would be preserved in new construction.
If voters approved the bond in November, design work of new schools would begin in early 2013. Construction would likely begin in 2014. Many of the new high schools could open for the 2016-2017 school year.
High school construction costs were calculated on a $160-per-square-foot basis, which is below the regional average.
Click here to access the 2012 Facilities Capital Improvement Program Proposal, campus facility assessment data and other bond resources.