The 1940s

Texas law provides for public education

Before school buses, students in Texas had to find other types of transporation.

Laws enacted in 1854 in the state legislature provided for the foundation of local school districts and made public education a reality in the state of Texas. Education in Texas suffered during the Civil War and the Reconstruction which followed. Efforts were made to improve the status of public education during the latter part of the 19th century, and the growth and development of Texas' public schools increased with the coming of the 20th century.

The first school in Helotes, Texas. It was  built around 1880.

Local taxation for rural schools increased in the 20th century, and small rural schools began consolidating into districts. In 1915, Texas passed a compulsory attendance law, and in 1918, the legislature approved the use of free textbooks in public schools.

In the early 1900s, Bexar County was still primarily in rural area, and many of the districts in the northwest county consisted of just one school. This situation would persist, with little change, for the first half of the 20th century.

1949: The birth of Northside ISD

First graduation at Northside High School, 1951

In 1949, 12 rural schools joined together to form Northside Consolidated School District. Those schools were Leon Springs, Los Reyes, Helotes, Locke Hill, Leon Valley, San Antonio Heights, Lockhart, Mackey, Clifton, Evers, Hoffman, and Culebra. Enrollment in that first year was 823 students. H.M. Biggers was named superintendent of the new district, and construction began on Northside High School (Northside High School was renamed John Marshall High School in 1960). In 1955, the district became Northside Independent School District.

The year 1955 is also the year in which the school board approved the integration of Northside High School, allowing African American students to attend. One year later, in 1956, Northside began a program of building which has continued to this day, with Northside Junior High (renamed Sul Ross Middle School in 1960) and Northside Elementary (now Colby Glass Elementary).