By Charlotte Aguilar
Houston ISD will open applications for its 2020-21 magnet programs at 112 campuses and other transfer options on Friday (Sept. 27) and launch a series of school choice fairs Saturday.
Applications will be available at HISDChoice.com, with hard copies at school offices. The first fair will be held from 9 a.m.-noon at Sterling Aviation Early College High School, 11625 Martindale Road.
Applications are due Dec. 6, with qualified applicants entered into lotteries (or offered auditions at arts schools). Final decisions are sent out in the spring. There are rolling deadlines following the first phase, but spaces in the most sought-after campuses will be filled in this round.
Magnet programs are offered at all grade levels in fine arts, International Baccalaureate, Vanguard gifted-and-talented, language immersion, Montessori, STEM and STEAM, with secondary options in college and career readiness, career and technology education, and single-gender college preparatory schools.
Families also have the opportunity to transfer to schools which offer programs not available at their home campuses.
Parents interested in a Vanguard gifted-and-talented magnet program can find specific information at HoustonISD.org/Magnet or by calling 713-556-6947. Information about testing qualifications and dates is available at HoustonISD.org/Vanguard or by calling Advanced Academics at 713-556-6954.
In addition to highly-ranked neighborhood campuses, school choice is what keeps many Bellaire and West University families in HISD — the chance for qualified students to attend schools such as Pin Oak Middle School and specialty campuses such as Carnegie Vanguard, DeBakey HS for the Health Professions, the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA) and more.
Weekly tours at every magnet campus will be offered on Thursdays beginning Oct. 3-Dec. 5, except for the weeks of Halloween and Thanksgiving. Elementary and K-8 schools will welcome parents beginning at 9 a.m. Middle and high schools will begin their tours at 1 p.m. All schools will offer 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. tours on Nov. 21 and Dec. 5.
School Choice Fairs
Besides the Saturday session at Sterling HS, informational sessions will be held 9 a.m.-noon at the following sites:
Oct. 12: Washington High School, 119 E. 39th St., 77018
Nov. 2: Sharpstown High School, 7504 Bissonnet St., 77074
Nov. 16: Milby High School, 1601 Broadway St., 77012
Feb. 15: Northside High School, 1101 Quitman St., 77009