The past year in Northside ISD serves as testament to the opportunities, choices, and successes found in public education.
In 2018, Northside ISD opened one new elementary school, more than 6,700 students received diplomas in 13 commencement ceremonies, and voters approved an $848.91 million bond issue to address improvements at existing schools while continuing to keep pace with growth.
The Class of 2018 earned more than $137 million in college scholarships and 54,250 hours of college credit. The District’s graduation rate also reached an all-time high. For the Class of 2017, the most recent data available, the graduation rate was 95.4 percent.
Dr. Brian T. Woods was named the 2018 Texas Superintendent of the Year by the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) in September. He was recognized not only for his leadership of Northside ISD, but for leadership and advocacy on behalf of all Texas public school children. In December, Woods was named one of four finalists for National Superintendent of the Year.
NISD continues to expand opportunities for students
Despite Northside’s size, there are numerous opportunities provided for students to succeed in academics, athletics, fine arts, and many other extracurricular pursuits. It takes everyone – students, teachers, staff, parents, business partners, community members, and the Board of Trustees – to maintain the high standards and expectations that make NISD the wonderful district that it is.
The official enrollment for the 2018-2019 school year is 105,856 students. One new school opened in August – Dr. Linda Mora Elementary School.
The District’s newest magnet school, Marshall Law and Medical Services, will open in August 2019 on the Marshall HS campus. In 2018, Trustees officially named the school and Margaret Bray was hired as the first principal.
Trustees also voted to rename Business Careers High School to reflect updated strands of study including entrepreneurship, computer programming, and Cyber-Security. Starting with the incoming class of 2019, the school will be known as the Northside School of Innovation, Technology, and Entrepreneurship (N-SITE).
Other highlights of 2018:
- For the second straight year, the O’Connor High School volleyball team advanced to the UIL state tournament.
- 2018 marked the opening of the Northside Threads clothes closet to provide clothing support to students and families. The community, including many NISD employees, has donated gently used clothing, new socks, and new underwear to support this initiative through the Northside Family Engagement Center.
- Northside was named one of “America’s Best Employers” by Forbes Magazine in May.
- Seven Northside ISD PTAs were named 2018-20 National PTA Schools of Excellence. Folks Middle School and Cole, Ellison, Helotes, Hoffmann, Los Reyes, and McAndrew elementary schools were among 278 schools from across the country to receive the special designation.
- Oak Hills Terrace ES celebrated its 50th anniversary and Evers and McDermott elementary schools and the Reddix Center celebrated their 25th anniversaries in 2018. Locke Hill ES hosted a special ceremony honoring the 150th anniversary of the pioneer school established in 1868.
- The Career and Engaged Learning Expo (formerly known as Tech Expo) expanded to two nights at the Northside Sports Gym in May with participation from 105 schools. For the first time, Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs were included. In the 2017-18 school year, CTE students earned more than 3,700 industry certifications.
- In April, 7,000 juniors took the SAT for free during the school day at their home campus. It was the fourth time the Board-funded initiative was offered to students.
- Northside was the only school district in Texas and one of five districts in the nation to host a Grammy Career Day. More than 250 students from all high schools were invited to participate in the day-long experience which included workshops with industry experts and a special concert.
- For the second time, Northside was named one of the Best Communities for Music Education by the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation.
- For the second straight year, a 5th grader at Lewis Elementary School was selected as the Grand Prize Winner in the Texas Cavaliers River Pride Art Contest. Jacyln Houy was one of five NISD finalists in the contest.
- Northside continued to support the Go Public campaign which raises awareness of the wonderful things happening in Bexar County public schools. The District also partners with the grassroots organization RootEd, which promotes neighborhood public schools.
- The District’s use of social media continued to grow reaching more than 65,000 followers on Twitter, more than 38,000 “likes” on Facebook, 540,000 views on YouTube, and 7,900 Friends of Northside e-mail subscribers. NISD also joined Instagram in 2018 amassing more than 3,000 followers the inaugural year.