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C.E. King High School

Houston area district unveils new high school

Jan. 7, 2020
Construction of C.E. King High in the Sheldon (Texas) district had been delayed in 2017 by flooding from Hurricane Harvey.

The Sheldon (Texas) Independent School District has held a ceremony to mark the debut of a new C.E. King High School facility, two years after construction of the school was disrupted by Hurricane Harvey.

KPRC-TV reports that the new 580,000-square-foot facility in unincorporated Harris County will house up to 3,500 students. It was designed like a college campus, with promenades and quads where students, faculty and community members will be able to interact.

In 2017, Hurricane Harvey hit the campus with 40 inches of rain, which destroyed much of the existing high school and even brought fish into the school’s auditorium. The school was so badly damaged that students were forced to take classes at neighboring elementary schools for nearly five months. The storm damage also set back construction of the new high school and delayed its opening from September 2019 to January 2020.

The new campus features a traditional, comprehensive high school education program, as well as six career and technical academies aimed at helping students become college and career ready. The academies cover specialties such as business and industry, human services, public service, agriculture, manufacturing and construction, science, technology, fine arts and math and an early college academy for traditional academics.

The goal for the early college academy is for students to graduate with not only a high school diploma but also an associate’s degree or an industry certificate that can help students continue on to community college, trade schools and traditional four-year colleges.

Huckabee, the project architect, says the school is arranged along a central spine that connects the academies to the media center, student union, fine arts, performing arts center and athletics. Connectivity between spaces and access to the outdoors were key design themes.

Courtyards, pathways and outdoor gathering spaces bring to mind a college campus and promote spontaneity in learning and social activities. The high school shares its site with a new 10,000-seat stadium, indoor practice facility, natatorium, arena and athletic fields.

Funding for the high school comes from a $285 million bond issue approved by voters in 2016.

The program manager for the district's bond program is Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam.

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