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MCISD to select ECHS site after study

20120511_MissionCISD_two_color_BIGMISSION — A site for the Mission school district’s Early College High School remains unknown as the district waits on feasibility and master plan studies.

On Wednesday, the board asked architect Eddie Vela to conduct a master plan study around the 4 Mile Line and Stewart roads. Engineer Javier Hinojosa will conduct a feasibility study in the area. The board is looking at four different possible construction sites in the area to build its newest school.


Created in February, the Mission Collegiate High School is accepting applications from interested eighth-graders to attend the school this fall. The district anticipates graduating its first class in 2016.

The campus is geared specifically to students who will be first generation college students, economically disadvantaged students, at-risk students and English language learners. This program allows these students to earn up to 60 college credits for free through a partnership with South Texas College while earning their high school diploma.

Other options for construction have fallen through. Plans to use land near the agricultural farm behind the district’s Child Nutrition Program building have proven impossible as the area is only five acres, which Vela said is typically the size of a parking lot for a school.

Property around 4 Mile Line and Stewart roads is vast with different sites offering 30 and 14 acres of land to build a school.

In their studies, Vela said officials would be looking at the availability of infrastructure services that could determine how much the district may have to spend.

Board trustees said they were uneasy about still not having a site recommended to choose from to begin construction. Member Patricia O’Caña-Olivarez said the staff and administrators of the school need space to begin preparing for the new school year.

District officials said the studies were crucial in helping the board make a decision on the proper construction spot.

While the district board isn’t set to meet again until next month, officials said they would call for a special meeting to discuss the pros and cons of each site with architects and engineers offering their recommendations for a future ECHS site. To not stall the project, board trustees said they would call for a special meeting to begin construction efforts.

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