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Superintendents report at luncheon

LUNCHEON SPEAKERS: Margie Buentella, King Davis, John Moore, Sherrhonda Johnson, Greg Ollis.

The North Channel Chamber hosted the annual State of the Schools report from the superintendents of Sheldon, Galena Park, and Channelview ISD’s at their monthly luncheon last Friday. A large audience, with many educators in attendance from the three districts, enjoyed hearing of the district accomplishments amid a competitive spirit.

Presentations were similar for the three districts, filled with statistics, emphasis on special programs, and dealing with population growth through bond issues. Each superintendent showed a video of students, schools, and general character of the district. These well prepared videos gave an intimate and cheerful look into the life of students and staff.

GALENA PARK ISD

Individual presentations included Galena Park’s Sherrhonda Johnson, executive director for school and community relations, speaking in place of superintendent Angi Williams. Ms. Johnson said the district had grown to 22,000 students, and provided free breakfast and lunch every day. She noted that four of the campuses had received an “A” rating from the TEA this year, and the District a “B.”

GP ISD highlights included Early College High School, with dual credits. There were 13,147 dual credit hours, and 33 Associate Degrees earned. PreKindergarten is available for all 3 and 4 year olds.

Security at each campus includes two trained canines. There are 21 contract deputies, and 2100 security cameras in the schools.

Seniors can gain free entrance to events with a Senior Gold Card. The bus fleet was judge one of the 100 best in the country by a national magazine.

Ms. Johnson spoke about GP ISD being one of the largest employers in East Harris County, with 12 district facilities, 23 schools, and 3,193 employees. In 2019 there were 1,600 graduating seniors. Scholarships for these college-bound students totaled $8.6 million dollars.

CHANNELVIEW ISD

Superintendent Greg Ollis presented the update for the Channelview ISD.

Ollis said that the district had grown to 10,000 students on 12 campuses. A $195 million Bond Issue this year was allowing the district to build replacement school and renovate other campuses.

Ollis said that for security there was an officer on each campus. The district has extensive educational resources, but maintains that “small town” feel.

Innovate programs include AVID prep, innovation grants from the Education Foundation, and a unique Robotics lab.

The district received a “B” rating from the TEA. Ollis says the theme this year is “The Future is in your hands.”

SHELDON ISD

Superintendent King Davis said this year’s theme is “Level Up.” The district had a $285 bond issue, and is building new schools. It is building a new high school and elementary, and a 10,000 seat stadium. It has 10,000 students on 12 campuses. Growth is 8% per year.

The district lowered its tax rate by 2¢, and gave teachers a $5000 raise.

A COMPASS program allows students to choose their course of interest: STEM, Performing and Visual Arts, or Technology. In high school, students can get an associate degree.