The Harris County Department of Education will operate the school, which will be open to students from all 25 districts in the county.
The board for the Harris County, Texas, Department of Education has approved plans to create a recovery high school, the first public substance-use prevention high school in the county.
The department says the school will be available to all 25 school districts in Harris County—including Houston, Cypress-Fairbanks and Katy—on a contractual basis. The Texas Education Agency reported that in 2014-2015, about 11,000 Harris County students had drug offense issues.
Officials plan for the school to serve 30 students when it opens in September 2017. To house the program, the department will renovate a 20,000-square-foot school facility in north Houston. The HCDE Board of Trustees approved $950,000 in start-up funding for the project.
“It’s a good thing we are doing this because it’s a chance to help students in a revolutionary way,” says Board Vice President Eric Dick. “I had a troubled youth and am glad to be a solution to the problem.”
The goal of the recovery high school is to provide support and assistance to students after they complete a rehabilitation program. Students continue to receive counseling and support as they attend their school.
The program will feature a low student-to-teacher ratio and life skills and recovery coaching.
“We recognize those who struggle each day in the fight against addiction—the students, parents, teachers and community,” says Harris County School Superintendent James Colbert, Jr. “This school represents a big step in recovery for students in Harris County.”