3 HISD schools spared from closure, 2 others in limbo

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by Drew Karedes / KHOU 11 News & KHOU.com staff

khou.com

Posted on March 5, 2014 at 5:10 PM

Updated Wednesday, Mar 5 at 11:20 PM

HOUSTON -- Three of five schools originally proposed for closure by HISD have been removed from consideration by board president Juliet Stipeche.

The news brought relief to parents, kids and teachers at Nathaniel Q. Henderson Elementary, Port Houston Elementary and Fleming Middle School.

Those schools have been vocal for weeks in their fight to stay open.

Parents were filled with excitement on Wednesday afternoon after receiving a voicemail from the district.

“I could get out and dance at that very minute. I was so excited,” said Tynikka Bowier, whose 12-year-old daughter is enrolled at Fleming. “Finally, all the fighting and everything. I just felt that maybe they heard.”

The district says the board president’s decision is proof that the “process is working.”

However, the three schools removed from the list are not out of the woods yet.

“Today, we’re looking at it as permanent. There is a board policy, where three board members could get together and pull anything back up on the agenda,” said HISD spokeswoman Sheleah Reed. “So in this case if three board members got together and said, no we really want one of those schools to stay in, it could happen.”

The two schools that were not spared, Jones High School and Dodson Elementary School, remain in limbo.

“[I’m] upset, sad. I graduated from here and I have a grandson and other kids that are going here,” said Theresa Wilson, whose grandson is enrolled at Jones High.

The school board will vote on proposals for Jones and Dodson at a March 13th Board meeting.

HISD says it originally proposed that the five schools be closed because of low enrollment.

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