Five HISD Campuses Will Provide Multiple Social Services To 4,000 Students

Using grants funds from the Department of Education, the schools will help with housing, food and counseling, as well as medical and dental health.

The Thomas Middle School is one of the five HISD campuses that will be become a community school.

Five campuses of the Houston Independent School District will provide about 4,000 local students and their families services related to housing, food, clothing and counseling, as well as medical and dental health. HISD calls the concept community schools.

The Board of Education approved Thursday the use of grant funds from the Department of Education to turn the five campuses to community schools. The five campuses include the Albert L. Thomas Middle School and four elementary schools: Benavidez, Lockhart, Marshall and Robinson.

HISD says the schools serve 3,898 students in communities with high poverty rates and a demonstrated need for wraparound services.

“Any issue that might keep a student from thriving academically will be addressed at these five schools,” said Rolando Trevino, HISD’s Assistant Superintendent of Wraparound Services. Wraparound services address critical issues that impact students’ ability to learn, such as mental and physical health, food insecurity, lack of stable housing, and incarceration of a parent.

The Houston Federation of Teachers (HFT), Communities in Schools, the City of Houston’s Office of Education, the Houston Food Bank, Houston Community Schools Partnership and Texas Children’s Hospital are partnering with HISD in the initiative.

HFT President Zeph Capo said that “community schools have a strong track record of leveling the playing field and closing the achievement gap for disadvantaged children” and added that when obstacles preventing kids from learning, such as anxiety, stress and hunger are addressed students thrive.