Two schools in the Houston Independent School District’s 2012 Bond Program received national recognition this month in Learning by Design magazine’s 2017 Awards of Excellence.
Mandarin Immersion Magnet School, which opened in August 2016, and Sterling Aviation High School, which opened in January 2017, were among just 17 schools and university facilities from across the country to receive the top designations from the magazine.
Constructed as part of HISD’s 2012 Bond Program, Condit Elementary School has been selected as one of five finalists vying for the highest honor offered by the 2017-18 Exhibit of School Architecture Competition.
Three additional bond campuses — Atherton Elementary School, Mandarin Immersion Magnet School, and Sterling Aviation High School — received Stars of Distinction.
The annual school architecture competition showcases new and renovated Texas schools and recognizes excellence in their planning and design. It is sponsored by the Texas Association of School Administrators and the Texas Association of School Boards.
The Mandarin Immersion Magnet School (MIMS) on Monday held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark the official opening of the school’s new Galleria-area building.
The $32.2 million school, part of HISD’s 2012 bond program, is one of six new campuses that opened across the district for the start of the 2016-2017 school year.
More than 100 supporters of the school, including State Rep. Gene Wu and Houston City Council Member Mike Laster, turned out for the event, which featured student performances, special presentations, a reception, and a tour of the new 119,000-square-foot facility.
Mandarin Immersion Magnet School will host a grand opening on Oct. 24 to celebrate the completion of its new building, which was built as part of the 2012 Bond Program.
The new school — the first of its kind in Texas when it was first launched in 2012 — formally opened its doors to students in August. Located just west of the Galleria on West Alabama Street, the $32.2-million, 120,000-square-foot facility is designed to accommodate up to 950 students.
The school was designed around a sun and moon concept. In accordance with the concept, bright colored learning spaces and academic areas are located in the sun wing, which represents energy. Common areas and community spaces — such as the cafeteria and gym — are in the moon wing, which represents reflection. The building also features a soaring, three-story atrium housing the central library and learning commons areas.
The grand opening will be held at the new school on Monday, Oct. 24 at 10 a.m.
Mandarin is among 40 schools — including 29 high schools — being renovated or rebuilt as part of HISD’s voter-approved 2012 Bond Program. By the end of 2016, construction will be underway on nearly three dozen campuses — more than at any other time in the district’s history. Once all work is complete, HISD will boast of one of the most modern portfolios of urban high schools in the nation.
The new Galleria-area campus for the Mandarin Immersion Magnet School (MIMS) is nearing completion, and construction crews are working hard to ensure that the building is all set to welcome students for the first day of school on Monday.
Part of the district’s current bond program, the $32.2 million school, located in the 5400 block of W. Alabama adjacent to the School at St. George Place, is one of HISD’s most popular magnet programs, with more than eight applications for every available spot. It draws students from all parts of the district and is one of HISD’s most diverse schools, but it long ago outgrew its initial location on the former Gordon Elementary campus in Bellaire.