HISD's Wheatley High School receives passing grade for 1st time in 8 years

Pooja Lodhia Image
Thursday, August 18, 2022
HISD board to put controversial charter school option to a vote
While celebration was the mood at a Houston ISD school, which was on the verge of a state takeover, passing a state assessment, the district is about to decide on a controversial measure that would allow individual schools to allow charter partnerships.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- With just days away from the start of a new school year at the largest district in Texas, the Houston Independent School District celebrated its latest state rating on Wednesday.

Wheatley High School in Houston's Fifth Ward received a passing grade for the first time in eight years. Just three years ago, Wheatley nearly drove HISD to a state takeover.

"All aboard the A-train because Wheatley is moving on. Alright, moving on up," Sabrina Cuby-King, the school's new principal, laughed.

"Parents were looking elsewhere. And that took away the history and the heart," U.S. Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee said. "I'm emotional about it because Barbara Jordan went here. She held this office. Mickey Leland went there. He held this office."

SEE ALSO: State ratings are out: Where does your school or district fall?

This year, HISD has shown improvement, with nearly 94% of schools getting a passing grade from the state. That's up from 82 % in 2019, the last time grades were issued.

Still, on Thursday, HISD trustees will discuss a proposal allowing parents to vote on their schools partnering with charter schools or nonprofits.

"I think there's a lot of fear when we hear the word charter, this is not giving more money to any schools," HISD Board President Judith Cruz explained. "The state provides the funding. The students would be HISD students, the partners are still accountable to HISD. We have parents and families that are continuing to leave the district. So, what is it that they want? What are they seeking?"

"I've indicated to the board that this was not a proposal I'm in support of," Superintendent Millard House II said. "I'm looking forward to the transformation work that's in front of us and the opportunity to really drive our schools."

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