North Forest ISD loses final appeal; will close Monday

June 29, 2013 3:20:50 AM PDT
There is no salvation for the North Forest school district. Late Friday, it lost its last appeal to stay open after the state ordered it to close as a result of years of financial and educational failure.

Those who attend North Forest say this is their school district, and even though it hasn't been performing where it should be, they've been fighting to keep it open. But now it's too late.

Tenth-grader Clifton Lindsey is a junior at North Forest High School. Starting Monday, his school district will no longer exist.

"Probably more better things in our academics and things like that," Lindsey said.

The Texas Education Agency shut down North Forest ISD, saying the district has been failing both academically and financially for years.

The district has been fighting back with community protests and lawsuits for more than 20 months. But late Friday afternoon, the Texas Supreme Court denied a last-ditch request to appeal the decision.

"That was the last legal avenue that we had to block the annexation. So on Monday morning, North Forest will no longer exist," NFISD attorney Chris Tritico said.

The district's buildings, buses and 6,600 students will now be turned over to the Houston Independent School District. All 1,000 North Forest employees will have to find new jobs.

"At 2:30, the commissioner ordered every employee to be off the campus by 4. No warning, no notice," Tritico said.

Now these North Forest students are left wondering what schools they'll attend in the fall.

"The only thing I'm worried about is like, will they make it much better than what it is right now at North Forest?" Lindsey said.

HISD officials didn't return our calls Friday evening, but had been planning for the merger for months.

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