Dallas ISD votes to consolidate two elementary schools into two others

The Dallas ISD school board voted in favor of consolidating two elementary schools with two others.

The plan will bring kids from Sam Houston Elementary and Onesimo Hernandez Elementary to new schools.

Parents were allowed Thursday night to express their concerns about the move and what it means for their kids moving forward.

The thought is by converting the two low-attended schools to specialized campuses, DISD could increase enrollment by offering new programs. But parents are worried about what the change would do to their kids who like the schools they're at.

Parents each got three minutes to present their concerns about the proposal to the DISD board.

As it stands, administrators are recommending closing Onesimo Hernandez and Sam Houston Elementary schools at the end of this year, where the combined enrollment is just over 500.

The Hernandez campus would become a Montessori school. The Houston campus would turn into a personalized-learning campus. In order to do that, students at both schools would be absorbed into two nearby schools.

Cindy Andrade is a Sam Houston mom who says the school is a hidden gem that gives her daughter the attention she needs to thrive.

“That’s one of the reasons a lot of parents bring them here. It’s not a lot of kids to one class. Basically, it’s more one-on-one, and my kids have been doing great,” Andrade said. “So it’s really sad if they do because they’ve been here since Pre-K so they love coming.

The new programs will launch next year in a limited capacity. Applications will go out soon. No word on what the consolidation would mean for teachers and staff and the two affected schools.

Administrators believe by making the switch, the shrinking district could potentially attract up to 1,400 students.