Houston School District Wants To Close Five Schools

Last year, the Houston Superintendent proposed closing two schools. One of them was saved from the chopping block. But now that same school — Jones High School — is facing closure again, along with four other campuses here in Houston.

For the second year in a row, Jones High School is facing the threat of closure. It’s in Sunnyside in Southeast Houston.

Mark Smith is with the Houston Independent School District.

Smith says not enough students in that neighborhood attend Jones High School.

“The fact of the matter is most of the students, the majority of students that currently live in the Jones attendance zone choose to go elsewhere and we have very few students actually there.”

In addition to Jones High School, HISD wants to close four other schools.

Those are Dodson, Henderson and Port Houston elementary schools as well as Fleming Middle School. They’re all on the east side of the city.

Smith says the proposed closures are based on changes in population and also changes in the housing market.

“As Houston continues to gentrify and redevelop over and over again I think we always see changes in where schools are needed, where schools aren’t needed, so we can make those adjustments as we go.”

Smith says the district is asking for community input at meetings starting next week, starting Feb 11th.

Next month, the HISD board of trustees is expected to vote on the proposed closures. Though Smith says the final proposal could change.

If the board decides to shut down these schools, students there would attend other nearby campuses.

Bio photo of Laura Isensee

Laura Isensee

Education Reporter

Laura Isensee covers education for KUHF, including K-12 and higher education.

Previously, she was a staff reporter at The Miami Herald and regularly contributed to WLRN, the local NPR affiliate and Miami Herald news partner...