Sterling High School (Houston)
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|Sterling High School|
|11625 Martindale Road
Houston, Texas 77048
|Type||Public high school|
Ross Shaw Sterling High School, also known as Sterling Aviation High School, is a secondary school located in Houston, Texas. Sterling, which serves grades 9 through 12, is a part of the Houston Independent School District. The school was named after Ross S. Sterling. Sterling has Houston ISD's magnet program for Aviation Sciences.
Ross S. Sterling High School opened as a junior/senior high school (grades 7–12) in the fall of 1965.
This unique, three-building campus featured designed-in air-conditioning which was a new, yet essential, feature for HISD facilities. The Sterling campus had a mirror twin sister campus, James Madison Jr./Senior High School, that opened at the same time as Sterling.
The first principal of Sterling was A.P. (Pete) Dowling, an experienced educator and administrator with HISD.
During the 1967 school year, local radio station KILT staged an enormous promotion contest between area high schools. The contest was simple: Each school had to submit as many individual paper entries as possible with the name of the high school on each sheet. The winning school would be the one that submitted the most pounds of paper. The contest created a lot of non-value added time in many classrooms as reams of copy paper and thousands of boxes of computer punch cards were submitted. Ross Sterling was the winner. The primary prize for winning was a school dance sponsored by KILT featuring a regional band named Southwest F.O.B.
Sterling became a senior high school (grades 10–12) exclusively with the 1968–1969 school year. The Blue Raider football team made its first playoff appearance during the 1970 season when it emerged as district champion. The Raiders then defeated Robert E. Lee in bid-district play but were then victims to the Sam Houston High juggernaut in the area round of the playoffs.
Sterling's Naval Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (NJROTC) Detachment was first established on-campus in May 1970. Graduating NJROTC Cadets incur no military service obligation, however many have chosen to serve in every branch of the United States Armed Forces.
During the 1984-1985 school year, the percentages of Fs at 23 of 26 HISD high school campuses decreased in the spring semester because of the state-implemented No Pass No Play rule, which requires students in high school athletic programs to attain passing grades. At Sterling and Barbara Jordan High School for Careers, the percentages of Fs remained the same.
Linda Turner, the president of the Sterling High School PTO, stated that HISD promised to revamp Sterling after the 1998 and the 2007 bond elections passed, but that nothing improved. Her group accused the school of misleading the people by stating that Sterling and Jones High School would both receive new school campuses. After the 2012 bond, the district began indicating that Jones would be consolidated into Sterling.
As of 2010 about half of the HISD students zoned to Sterling did not attend that school.
In 2011 the Class of 1971 was to celebrate its 40th anniversary.
A 2011 report from Magnet Schools of America had recommended closing the Sterling aviation magnet, saying there was a lack of interest. In response, several graduates of the program told HISD that the program was beneficial.
In January 2012 E. Dale Mitchell, who previously served as the principal of Hutto Middle School in Hutto, Texas and worked in the Stafford Municipal School District, became the principal of Sterling.
As of 2013, the school had 900 students, and 1,100 HISD students living in the school's attendance zone opted not to attend Sterling. The school had its third principal in a five-year period. Mitchell stated that there were 61-66 students combined who transferred to Sterling to attend the aviation program or the Futures Academy. Margaret Downing of the Houston Press argued that the figure was not "an impressive number".
Downing wrote that "Whoever erected it, there's a rather sizable wall of distrust between HISD and the Sterling community."
As part of the 2014-2015 rezoning, residents of Southcrest, residents of South Park located east of Martin Luther King Boulevard, and some residents of the East End will be rezoned from Jones High School to Sterling.
As of 2015 HISD has plans to build a new campus for Sterling. A part of the 2012 bond, it was built adjacent to the original building. Construction was scheduled to begin in the fourth quarter of 2014 with opening scheduled for 2016. The opening meant that the school building was the first full new comprehensive high school to open in HISD since 2000, 16 years prior.
The current campus, which opened in 2016, has 237,000 square feet (22,000 m2) of space and had a cost of $72 million. The onsite hangar has 7,100 square feet (660 m2) of space. The three story building was scheduled to have a capacity of 1,600-1,800 students.
As of 2013, according to Mitchell, about 40% of Sterling graduates will go directly to the workforce and the remainder would go to the military and/or to universities and colleges. Mitchell stated that for "For a large number of people this is their college experience" citing that large number of Sterling students, dating to the 1960s, never went to colleges or universities after graduation. He stated that this is why alumni of Sterling have a strong passion for the school.
Sterling is the home of HISD's high school aviation magnet program; students must take Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approved-based courses before being eligible to take up to 30 hours of flight time. Students may then take the FAA written examination. As of 2001 Lentz Enterprises and Raiders Tiger Flying Club provides flight instruction to Sterling students; it had done so since circa 1999, and the HISD board of education renewed the club's contract in 2001. In 2000 the magnet program had 200 students. As of 2011 the annual magnet program funding was $46,363.
Neighborhoods served by Sterling
Houston neighborhoods served by Sterling include Autumn Glen , South Park, Crestmont Park, Garden Villas, Wayside, Sterling Lakes , King Estates, Edgewood, El Tesoro , Panay Park , Houston Skyscraper Shadows, Gulf Meadows, Airport Gardens, a portion of South Acres, a portion of South Acres Estates, a portion of Minnetex Place, Mykawa, and a portion of Santa Rosa.
The Texas Education Agency specified that the parents and/or guardians of students zoned to a school with uniforms may apply for a waiver to opt out of the uniform policy so their children do not have to wear the uniform; parents must specify "bona fide" reasons, such as religious reasons or philosophical objections.
Elementary schools that feed into Sterling include:
Middle schools that feed into Sterling include:
- Albert Thomas Middle School (partial)
- Woodson K-8 School's middle school program (partial)
- Hartman Middle School (partial)
- Yolanda Adams - gospel singer, radio personality
- Sedrick Curry - football player
- Clyde Drexler - Retired Hall-of-Fame NBA basketball player for the Portland Trail Blazers and Houston Rockets (1995 NBA Champion with Rockets).
- Zina Garrison - retired tennis player
- John Hilliard - football player
- Hunt, Dianna. "Fewer failing grades since start of no-pass rule." Houston Chronicle. Saturday June 29, 1985. Section 1, Page 22. Retrieved on December 8, 2011.
- Downing, Margaret. "Sterling High School: Keeping It All Together." Houston Press. Wednesday May 8, 2013. p. 1. Retrieved on February 23, 2014.
- Downing, Margaret. "Sterling High School: Keeping It All Together." Houston Press. Wednesday May 8, 2013. p. 2. Retrieved on February 23, 2014.
- Mellon, Ericka. "HISD faces politically tough choices in closing schools." Houston Chronicle. December 20, 2010. Retrieved on February 22, 2014.
- Palmer, Christian. "Sterling High class of '71 to reunite" (Archive). Houston Chronicle. Monday June 27, 2011. Retrieved on November 21, 2015.
- Morris, Mike. "Hundreds drawn to magnet discussions" (Archive). Houston Chronicle. Wednesday January 26, 2011. Retrieved on December 6, 2015.
- Downing, Margaret. "Sterling High School: Keeping It All Together." Houston Press. Wednesday May 8, 2013. Retrieved on November 20, 2015.
- Haydon, David. "City hopes new club puts youths on a flight path" (Archive). Houston Chronicle. Wednesday October 24, 2012. Retrieved on December 6, 2015.
- Downing, Margaret. "Sterling High School: Keeping It All Together." Houston Press. Wednesday May 8, 2013. p. 3. Retrieved on February 23, 2014.
- "Map." East End Management District. Retrieved on March 8, 2010.
- "AGENDA Board of Education Meeting March 13, 2014." Houston Independent School District. Retrieved on March 15, 2014. "Proposed Attendance Boundaries" New 03/06/04 Attachment F-1 March 2014 p. 24/119.
- Mellon, Ericka. "HISD names Yates, Sterling, Westbury High principals" (Archive). Houston Chronicle. June 5, 2015. Retrieved on November 20, 2015.
- Martin, Joe. "HISD plans new aviation high school" (Archive). Houston Business Journal. January 9, 2015. Retrieved on November 21, 2015.
- "New Sterling High will emphasize aviation." Houston Defender. May 7, 2014. Retrieved on December 7, 2015.
- "New year, new school for Sterling Aviation HS students." Houston Independent School District. January 4, 2017.
- Rangel-King, Kristi. "Magnet school students drawn to aviation jobs" (Archive). Houston Chronicle. Thursday July 19, 2001. Retrieved on December 6, 2015.
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- "Distinguished HISD Alumni." Houston Independent School District.
- "Sedrick Curry". all-xfl.com. Retrieved October 16, 2014.