Alief ISD was recognized at the Texas School Public Relations Association (TSPRA) Star Awards for outstanding education communications. In the division for school districts with more than 30,000 students, Alief ISD received four Gold Stars, four Silver Stars and four Bronze Stars for projects including The Alief Communicator district newsletter, the Alief Proud campaign, Points of Pride and the staff birthday cards.

Alief ISD high school band, orchestra and choir students earned 525 medals at the University Interscholastic League (UIL) Solo & Ensemble Festival. A grand total of 278 students advanced to the state competitions.

Twenty-five Alief ISD high school art students advanced to state competitions for the Visual Arts Scholastic Event (VASE).

Five Alief ISD students from Alief Middle School and Albright Middle School advanced to the Exxon Mobil Texas State Science Fair after placing at the Science and Engineering Fair of Houston. Alief Early College High School student Clinton Thai received first place in the poster contest’s senior division. Ten other students either won awards or received summer internship opportunities.

Alief Early College High School was highlighted in the Houston Chronicle as one of 10 schools with small or nonexistent achievement gaps that also serve mostly low-income students.

The Alief FFA had a great start to the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo. Kiowa Davis (Elsik) participated in the calf scramble and was the first student to catch a calf that night and to pull it across the line. He received a belt buckle and will receive money to purchase his heifer for next year. FFA also won second place as tour guides. They toured the younger children around the rodeo and educated them on the animals.

The annual Alief ISD Family U Conference had a successful turnout with a total of 470 Alief ISD adults, children and staff participants. More than 200 families engaged in about 20 sessions in English and Spanish.

Three students from the Hastings Ninth Grade Center ARC PROJECT STEM Club advanced to the Texas Alliance for Minorities in Math and Science State STEM Competition scheduled for April 30. The students are April Brito, Elisa Melara and Munachimso Metu.

Alief Early College High School student Drew Bernard received the Horatio Alger Scholarship from the Children’s Defense Fund. He will be recognized in a ceremony in Washington, D.C. in April.

The Hastings High School Color Guard recently earned second place at the Pearland Texas Color Guard Circuit competition.

The Elsik High School Encore Show Choir sang for the African Pan American iXchange Women’s Leadership Conference. After singing for the opening gala, students got to meet and greet Ndileka Mandela, who is Nelson Mandela’s granddaughter. She asked to speak to the students about her grandfather overcoming adversity.

O’Donnell Middle School students were featured in the Houston Chronicle for their participation in a presentation by NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. O’Donnell was also selected to participate in the Rockets Science program, a collaboration between the Houston Rockets, NASA Space Center and Houston Community College. The students will build rockets and launch them in April.

Hastings High School student Krisseyda Noemi Espinal is a delegate to the Congress of Future Medical Leaders this summer. The congress is a program for students who want to become physicians or to go into medical research fields. She was nominated based on her academic achievement, leadership potential and determination to serve humanity in the field of medicine.

Scholar Athletes for March:

  • Alejandra Salas represents the Taylor High School tennis program, which she has been a member of since her freshman year. In addition to participating in athletics, she is a member of the marching band, is in Student Council and works a part-time job. Salas previously attended Liestman Elementary School, Youngblood Intermediate School and Killough Middle School. She has already been accepted to Arkansas State University and Oklahoma State University.
  • Anthony John represents the Taylor High School track and field program, which he has been active in for four years. Outside of athletics, he is the president of the National Honor Society as well as the Gents Club. He is also a Superintendent’s Academically Talented Scholar and is active in Student Council, the Taylor African-American Student Association and wind ensemble band. John also works a part-time job. He previously attended Youens Elementary School, Boone Elementary School, Horn Elementary School, Petrosky Elementary School, Miller Intermediate School and Albright Middle School. He has received offers from Brown University and Houston Baptist University to continue his running career.

Five Holub Middle School students were given special recognition as the only youth performing with 27 adult handbell choirs. Handbell ringers Kaitlyn Imhoff, Treveon Pollard, Andy Romero, Carolina Solis and Xavier Sutton performed in the FebFest, a massed ringing and festival concert at the Stafford Centre. The event was sponsored by the Greater Houston Handbell Association.

Elsik High School student Blessing Yemi-Ese received a $1,000 scholarship from the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center. The center awarded the scholarship to the school with the largest blood drive held after Winter Break.

Hastings High School students Cindy Tran and Ann Morris received Best of Show and first place respectively from the Association of Texas Photography Instructors Winter Conference. Tran received her award in digital editing, while Morris received her recognition in the picture package contest.

Alief ISD graduate Amos Olatayo recently received a contract to play professional basketball in Madrid, Spain. Olatayo graduated from Elsik High School in 2010. He previously attended Best Elementary School, Alexander Elementary School, Mata Intermediate School and Holub Middle School.