Audience Erupts in "Fire Terry Grier" Chant as HISD School Board Closes Dodson, Saves Jones (Sort Of)
Amid chants of "Fire Terry Grier," Houston ISD school board members and their superintendent retreated into a back room Thursday night while HISD police officers formed a protective barrier in the front of the room after audience members began shouting in protest about two proposed school closings.
Photo by Margaret Downing Houston ISD's police force got to go into full alert at last night's meeting
After reconvening their monthly board meeting, trustees voted 5-4 (voting against were Wanda Adams, Paula Harris, Rhonda Skillern-Jones and Anna Eastman) to shut down Dodson Elementary and 6-3 (voting against were Harris, Skillern-Jones and Eastman) and to make over Jesse Jones High School into a magnet school where students from throughout HISD would take vocational courses and be able to get associate degrees.
The role of peacemaker fell to new trustee and former city councilwoman Jones. In her initial remarks, she told the room that they did not have the votes they wanted on the board to keep Jones open as a comprehensive high school. If they didn't accept the compromise plan to turn Jones into a magnet, the alternative -- and the initial proposal from Grier's administration -- would have been to shut down the comprehensive school at the end of this school year and use it as a swing facility in which to house students whose home schools were being renovated.More »