Donors help fund school turnaround effort
Fundraising efforts by the Houston Independent School District have paid off, it was recently announced.
The district wrapped up the campaign by receiving a $1 million donation from Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo to the Apollo 20 school turnaround program. The rodeo donated a total of $2 million overall.
"The Apollo 20 Program is in line with the goals of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo," Jennifer Hazelton, the chief financial officer of the rodeo, stated in a release. "We are proud to be able to support the Houston Independent School District in their efforts of benefiting our local children."
The total for private funds raised for Apollo 20 is at $16.8 million. The Apollo 20 Program is in its third year of working to turn around low-performing schools.
The program extends learning time by staffing schools with principals and teachers who believe in the no-excuse philosophy and who have a track record of improving student achievement and hiring college-educated tutors to work with students for an hour each day during school.
The program also has schools analyze the performance of each student on a regular basis in order to address individual needs and it sets high expectations as school leaders and families signed contracts committing to the program.
"We launched Apollo 20 as a leap of faith that this city's leaders would step up and join us in this unprecedented effort to find real solutions to problems that have persisted in these schools for years," HISD Superintendent Terry Grier stated in a release. "On behalf of the thousands of children who now have a better chance of achieving their dreams because of our donors' generosity, I offer my deepest gratitude."
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