NORTH FOREST – After Houston ISD took possession of NFISD buildings and schools on July 1st, at the orders of the Texas Education Agency, they decided to sell the administration building to the Houston Community College for their new campus.
HCC-Northeast plans to expand their North Forest campus, responding to a commitment they made to the community, and to properly use bond money that was raised several years ago.
In a recent tour of the new facilities that the Northeast/North Forest News took, Administrator Sheron Bruno and campus manager Mike Frazier explained that HCC is no longer using the Forest Brook Middle School building for their classes. Approximately 700 students have signed up for classes in the new facility, they said, and more are anticipated as they become familiar with the opportunity, and HCC adds more classes to the current offerings.
Classes started at the new building on Monday, August 26th, and at this time students can still come into the program as “second start” students.
The new HCC-NE building is at the corner or Homestead Road and Little YorkRoad, in the old NFISD administration building. Mike Frazier, a graduate of NFISD’s Smiley high school, remembered when the building was used as an intermediate school, known as Northwood Middle School, and built about 1962. After the hurricane Katrina, it was abandoned until remodeled later as the administration building.
The tour of the building revealed completely new classrooms, hallways, offices, small conference rooms, media center or library, laboratory room for chemistry and biology subjects, and a student lounge. It also includes a large suite that is a “business incubator” where business practices are taught, and students can reserve space to start their own businesses with the help of the college.
When HCC gains access to the eastern wing, which had been used until July 1st for NFISD administrative offices and board room, they will remodel it for a large lecture hall and more classrooms. This wing will have classes that emphasize workforce subjects, preparing students for jobs in the community.
The current classroom wing is teaching academic subjects, process technology, and workforce classes. The second wing will also have construction subjects, cosmetology, and EMT training. These are all specialty classes, that require space and equipment that until now have not been available.
Long-range plans for the campus were revealed to the Northeast/North Forest News by HCC-NE president Margaret Ford Fisher, who said the vision for the future is to develop the whole block from East Little York to Langley as a super campus, with a “Flagship” third wing built to accommodate manufacturing programs, welding, and automotive classes to further prepare students for skills and jobs that are needed in the community.