Hightower High School
||This article needs to be updated. (June 2015)|
|Hightower High School|
|3333 Hurricane Lane
Missouri City, Texas
|School district||Fort Bend ISD|
|Principal||Thomas Wallis (Interim)|
|Enrollment||2,297 (Fall 2015)|
|Schedule type||7 period|
|Color(s)||Hunter green, Silver, and Black|
|Accreditation||Texas Education Agency and Southern Association of Colleges and Schools|
|2011 TEA Rating||Academically Acceptable|
|Magnet program(s)||Academies for medical sciences, digital media|
|Website||Hightower High School|
Hightower is administered by Fort Bend Independent School District and its mascot is Poseidon, but they are known as the Hightower Hurricanes.
Hightower serves parts of Missouri City. The school also serves a portion of the city of Arcola, the unincorporated area of Fresno, the neighborhood of Lake Shore Harbour, which is located in the extraterritorial jurisdiction of Missouri City. It also serves a small section of western Pearland. In addition, Hightower previously served the rest of Arcola, sections of master-planned community of Sienna Plantation, and the unincorporated area of Juliff.
Hightower opened on August 13, 1998 and was dedicated on October 11 of the same year. The $35 million school campus, when opened, had fewer than 600 students and 50 teachers. The school only served Freshmen and Sophomore classes during its first year.
Debbie Dunlap was the first principal. She said that her style of managing the school was "to be supportive. I just let the teachers do their jobs." Todd Spivak of the Houston Press said that Dunlap "was hailed for assembling a staff that some say included the best high school teachers in the Houston area" and that the school "quickly gained a reputation for academic excellence and became a destination school for veteran teachers." Dunlap left her position in 2003 so she could work for a teacher certification company.
Patricia Paquin became the next principal. Many of the teachers that were at the school during Dunlap's term as principal left during Paquin's term. During each year of Paquin's term, until 2006, between 35 and 55 teachers left. Todd Spivak of the Houston Press said that many teachers believed that Paquin micromanaged too closely.
In the 2005-2006 school year, Paquin gave over 1,800 suspensions. Spivak said "This would appear to indicate the work of a strict disciplinarian. But many teachers and parents say student behavior at Hightower is getting only worse, with fights breaking out on a regular basis."
Pavlos Karnezis, a 12th grade honors student who was sent to jail and later expelled from school for bringing a knife to class in November 2005. Paquin could have chosen lighter stipulations for Karnezis' expulsion. Despite the fact that teachers had vouched for his character, Paquin had chosen the most severe punishment possible, sentencing him to a boot camp. Karnezis' parents, Thomas and Kathy, fought and had the entire expulsion decision overturned in 2006, allowing Karnezis to return to class.
Viretta West was principal from 2008 to 2016. Frederick Richardson was an interim principal for the Fall semester of 2016, and Thomas Wallis was the interim principal for the Spring semester of 2017. The current principal is John Montelongo.
By 2006 Hightower had over 2,600 students and 140 teachers.
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Hightower High School, in 2006, was one of the district's only two high schools with block scheduling. Todd Spivak of the Houston Press said during that year that the school "is considered the most innovative of the district's seven public high schools". As of the 2015-16 school year, the school went to a normal 7- period schedule.
Hightower has specialized academies that offer specialized education for gifted and ambitious students.
The Medical Science Academy allows motivated students meet academic challenges and have opportunities to explore world class medical facilities. Courses such as Medical Terminology, Medical Ethics, and much more help to form the basis of knowledge for a medical career. Also, a Medical Science Internship is offered in which students may develop a hands-on experience of the environment in a hospital through volunteer activity.
The Digital Media Academy allows students to focus on using the computer as a creative tool. Classes are designed to teach technical proficiency in a broad range of software while encouraging innovative design.Graduates from the Graphics & Digital Media strand have the skills to create still graphics, animations, and interactive media using industry standard software. Many specialized courses are available for the many different areas of graphical production.
The Digital Media Academy] also offers students with the opportunity to create masterpiece media productions. Students will be able to experience hands-on activities that resemble realistic media. Courses allow students to use real world equipment and professional programs to create their works. Also, students are able to assume the roles of professionals and direct their own news-broadcasting channel known as HTV. The academy is now joined together in one academy with the Telecommunications Media Academy as the Digital Media Academy.
In 2006 Todd Spivak of the Houston Press said that Hightower's athletic facilities were "state-of-the-art" and "rival those of some colleges." Hightower is adjacent to the District owned Hall Stadium and Hopson Field House, resulting in a decrease of transportation for football games.
As of February 1, 2016, Hightower is one of the 8 6A schools in the District. In UIL terms, they are in district 6A-20, alongside Austin, Bush, Clements, Dulles, Kempner, Ridgepoint, and Travis High Schools, all of which are Fort Bend.
In 2016, 72% of the school's student body was African American and Hispanic.
In 2006, Hightower qualified 16 students for the National HOSA competition in Anaheim, of which all 16 placed top 4 or higher in their respective categories. In addition, 2 students qualified for the FBLA national competition in Nashville, Tennessee.
In 2007, Hightower High School qualified 31 students for the National HOSA Conference in Orlando, Florida, the most out of any school in the nation. They will compete in mid-June, 2007.
In 2008, Hightower High School qualified 38 students for the National HOSA Leadership Conference in Dallas, Texas. The team earned one gold, nine silver and eight bronze medals. Team members Jonathan Vo and Matthew Lei were also named to the mastery level of the Kaiser Permanente Medical Current Events Roster based on their placement in the top 10 in the United States.
In 2010, Hightower High School qualified 34 students for the National HOSA Leadership Conference in Orlando, Florida. The team earned 2 gold, 4 silver, and 2 bronze medals along with 15 other finalists that placed top 10 or higher.
Hightower High School originally had a Robotics team, which has placed in several local and statewide competitions.
On the final week of 2015 (Dec 27-Jan 1), the Hightower High School "Hurricane" Marching Band was invited to perform at the 2015 Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl on New Year's Eve, including a mass band, parade, and other competitions. They returned with (in Category 3) 3rd place Silver for field show, 1st place Gold for marching percussion, Honorable mention for parade, and Best Drum Major award.
- Palmer (partial)
The following middle schools (Not counting the kids from other schools who go for the academies) feed into Hightower:
- Lake Olympia (partial)
- D. J. Augustin - Former point guard for the University of Texas Longhorns and drafted to the Charlotte Bobcats. (Class of 2006)
- Doug Delony - FOX 26 / KRIV Houston television news personality.
- Cory Rodgers - Former football player for the NFL Green Bay Packers, and current player for the CFL BC Lions. (Class of 2002)
- Herbert Taylor - Current NFL Football player for the Kansas City Chiefs. (Class of 2002)
Note: A team of Isaiah Sweeny, Cleon Davis, Ugonna Amarikwa, Clyde Lee set the NFHS National High School record in the 4 × 200 meter relay in 2007. Graham Woody-Served in the United States Army and was a graduate of the class of 2004. Graham lost his life during a training exercise. His brother Eric is a 2006 graduate who was a member of the University of Texas baseball team and is currently practicing law in Florida.
- "High School Attendance Zones." Fort Bend Independent School District. Retrieved on April 15, 2017.
- "2010 CENSUS - CENSUS BLOCK MAP: Arcola city, TX." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on April 15, 2017.
- "City of Pearland School Districts." (Archive) City of Pearland. Retrieved on March 21, 2014.
- "CENSUS 2000 BLOCK MAP: ARCOLA City." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on April 15, 2017.
- "CENSUS 2000 BLOCK MAP: SIENNA PLANTATION CDP." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on April 15, 2017.
- "High School Attendance Zones" (2009-2010). Fort Bend Independent School District. February 6, 2010. Retrieved on February 19, 2017.
- "Hightower High School About Page Link". Fort Bend Independent School District. Retrieved 18 September 2012.
- Solomon, Jerome. "FOOTBALL 1997/HIGH SCHOOLS/FORT BEND BONANZA/Phillips, Dulles in hunt to add to town's memories." Houston Chronicle. Thursday August 28, 1997. Special 33. Retrieved on December 31, 2011.
- "Campus History." Fort Bend Independent School District. Retrieved on December 31, 2011.
- Spivak, Todd. "Cut Short." Houston Press. Thursday June 26, 2006. 3. Retrieved on December 31, 2011.
- Spivak, Todd. "Cut Short." Houston Press. Thursday June 26, 2006. 4. Retrieved on December 31, 2011.
- Spivak, Todd. "Cut Short." Houston Press. Thursday June 26, 2006. 1-3. Retrieved on December 31, 2011.
- Spivak, Todd. "Cut Short." Houston Press. Thursday June 26, 2006. 4-6. Retrieved on December 31, 2011.
- HOSA 2006 National Leadership Conference Winners
- Hightower Robotics website
- FBISD Elementary School Attendance Zones Archived 2011-04-30 at the Wayback Machine.
- FBISD High School Attendance Zones Archived 2011-04-30 at the Wayback Machine.
- FBISD Middle School Attendance Zones Archived 2011-04-30 at the Wayback Machine.
- DJ Augustin Biography - Texas Longhorns DJ Augustin Biography - DJ Augustin Bio
- MyFox Houston | Doug 'My Tech Guy' Delony
- BC Lions :: Official Site of the BC Lions
- Player Bio: Herbert Taylor :: Football
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved September 27, 2011. NFHS National High School rule book