HISD votes to tear down Wheatley High School

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- The HISD school board has voted to demolish Wheatley High School.

The board voted unanimously to accept a mediation settlement at a special meeting Thursday morning. The district says it will rebuild the school using some of the original materials to try to recreate the facade of the old campus built in 1929. HISD has set aside $1 million to help salvage the original building and materials.

Members of a preservation coalition who fought to save the original building told us they didn't have the money to continue to fight the district.

Joetta Stevenson with the Historic Wheatley Preservation Coalition said, "Basically we are going to get a replica which to me sounds like we're exchanging brick and mortar for plastic wrap. That's what it sounds like.

"This is the compromise on the building. We will not save the building," HISD board member Rhonda Skillern-Jones explained. "We really don't have much of a choice. There was not an alternative that could marry keeping that building and incorporating 21st century education."

Algenita Scott Davis with the Historic Wheatley Preservation Coalition said, "I am hopeful HISD will work better with the community and realize you can do 21st century learning in 18th century buildings. You do not have to have a brand new $28.6 million building."

The new school will have a grand hallway to honor the school's historic past.
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