In 2017, Northside ISD hit an all-time high in enrollment, added more than 650 new teachers, opened two new schools, and more than 6,700 students received diplomas in 12 commencement ceremonies. The Class of 2017 earned more than $127 million in college scholarships and 46,018 hours of college credit. The District’s graduation rate also reached an all-time high. For the Class of 2016, the most recent data available, the graduation rate was 94.9 percent.
Despite Northside’s size and continued growth, there are numerous opportunities provided for students to succeed in academics, athletics, fine arts, and many other extracurricular pursuits. It takes everyone – students, teachers, staff, parents, business partners, community members, and the Board of Trustees – to maintain the high standards and expectations that make NISD the wonderful district that it is.
The past year in Northside ISD serves as testament to the opportunities, choices, and successes found in public education.
The District also looked to the future and the exploration of a 2018 bond election with the establishment of a Citizens’ Bond Committee.
NISD continues to grow
The official enrollment for the 2017-2018 school year is 106,066 students. To accommodate the growth, two new schools opened in August – John M. Harlan High School and Nathan Kallison Elementary School.
The Board of Trustees also named the elementary school that will open in 2018 – Dr. Linda Mora Elementary School.
- Georgette Carrasco, a fifth grade special education teacher at Franklin Elementary School, was named a finalist in the 2017 HEB Excellence in Education Awards.
- Lori Gallegos, principal of Kuentz Elementary School, was one of eight principals selected as Texas National Distinguished Principal Finalists by the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association (TEPSA).
- Justin King, a special education teacher at Zachry MS, was named Teacher of the Year by the Texas Council of Administrators of Special Education.
- Brandon Masters, a teacher at Jones MS, was named Texas Educator of the Year by the Texas Caucus of Black School Board Members.
- Scott McKenzie, principal of Rayburn Middle School, was named Region 20 Middle School Principal of the Year by the Texas Association of Secondary School Principals (TASSP).
Other highlights of 2017:
- Jay High School and Ross Middle School celebrated 50th anniversaries in 2017 and Business Career High School and Stinson Middle School celebrated their 25th anniversaries. In addition, the courtyard at Jay High School was named after longtime and retired teacher Calvin Buchholtz. The auditorium at Marshall High School was named after longtime teacher Marion Sweatmon.
- The CyberPatriot team from Business Careers High School won 1st place in the CISCO Networking Challenge at the National CyberPatriot competition.
- The Navy JROTC precision air rifle team at Marshall HS was crowned Navy National Champions in the spring. The five-member team also finished second at the All-Service National Championships.
- For the first time in each school’s history, the Brennan High School softball team and O’Connor High School volleyball team advanced to UIL state tournaments.
- Warren High School graduates Albert Duran and Clarissa Milner and Assistant Principal Venissia Villarreal helped develop and testified for the “Student to Soldier” bill which allows school districts to excuse a student for up to four days if they are pursuing enlistment in the military. Their actions will now impact students and districts across the state.
- A new partnership created an innovative model for the teaching and learning of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) at Jones Middle School. Called STEMFormation, the three year partnership is a collaboration between NISD, USAA, Discovery Education, and the Texas Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (Texas ASCD).
- Construction Careers Academy was awarded a $100,000 Impact San Antonio grant. Out of 109 applicants, CCA was selected as 1 of 4 winners. The funds will be used to enhance school programs.
- In April, 7,000 juniors took the SAT for free during the school day at their home campus. It was the third time the Board-funded initiative was offered to students.
- Five Northside ISD PTAs were named 2017-19 National PTA Schools of Excellence. Neff Middle School and Beard, Murnin, Leon Springs, and Scarborough elementary schools were among 143 schools from across the country to receive the special designation.
- The Expo of Engaged Learning (formerly known as Tech Expo) moved to the Northside Sports Gym in May with 1,100 attendees and participation from 108 schools.
- Seth Juarez, a 5th grader at Lewis Elementary School was selected as the Grand Prize Winner in the Texas Cavaliers River Pride Art Contest.
- Northside continued to support the Go Public campaign which raises awareness of the wonderful things happening in Bexar County public schools. The District took part in a Back-to-School Culinary Cook-Off at the Culinary Institute of America, welcomed Heroes for Health at all elementary schools, and Zachry Middle School was featured on KSAT-12 as the District’s Cool Schools winner.
- The District’s use of social media continued to grow reaching more than 55,000 followers on Twitter, more than 33,000 “likes” on Facebook, 423,000 views on YouTube, and 7,800 Friends of Northside e-mail subscribers. In August the District launched a new mobile app available for Apple and Android devices.