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“A new era for Mission High School”

Introducing a renovated learning environment in Mission High School, the district hopes to promote upper-level learning and education for its students.

The Mission Consolidated Independent School District held a ribbon cutting ceremony last Friday for Mission High School’s recent renovations project. After several years of construction costing a total of $33 million, students, teachers and faculty of the school will start off the 2018-2019 school year in refurbished premises.

20180824 MHSRibbonCuttingPrincipal Edilberto Flores led the ribbon cutting, and spoke about the last four years at Mission High School.

“The last four years have been challenging for the students and the staff of Mission High School,” Flores said. “Much of the campus operations were disrupted due to constant and consistent construction and renovations that took place.”

Flores added that the work done on the campus has “dramatically changed” the school and should serve the students well for decades to come.

“I would like to express our deepest gratitude to our voters who approved the bond issue [in 2008] that paid for much of the work that has taken place,” Flores said. “For much of the time this project was going on, our campus was also impacted by other projects: renovations at Tom Landry Hall of Fame Stadium, the tennis courts and the aquatic center.”

According to a press release about the renovations, the completed changes included “some demolition of the old cafeteria and original library building, renovating one classroom building into new administrative offices and front office, renovating one classroom building into a JROTC facility, renovating and expanding the old band hall into a fine arts complex, and construction of a new agricultural sciences building. The most visible piece of the project is a new, two-story instructional building that includes 33 classrooms and labs, and an enormous cafeteria that includes a cooking kitchen.”

The cafeteria will seat over 1,000, and hosts six serving lines, a snack bar and another serving line that will be used for made-to-order omelets during breakfast and grab-and-go sandwiches and salads at lunch. This is an improvement from the various locations where students ate in the last few years during construction, like the library and practice gym.

The fine arts complex was the only MHS renovation not complete at the time of the ribbon cutting due to construction delays.

Superintendent Carol Perez was also present at the ribbon cutting, and spoke about the “historic moment” for Mission Eagles.

“The community was able to see how day in and day out they [teachers and staff in MHS] were able to take care of our most precious possessions, which are our children,” Perez said. “They made sure that our kids had a safe environment in spite of everything that was going on.”

Perez said that it took half a year to tear down the old buildings in MHS, and about three years to build up new ones and renovate.

“In the same token, we are in the business of building children,” Perez said. “And it is so easy to bring someone down, but it takes a lot of time to build them back up.”

“In our learning organization, our focus is children first,” Perez added. “And it’s about building those relationships with kids, winning their hearts so we can win their minds. And we do the same with the staff.”

Petra Ramirez, president of the MCISD Board of Trustees, also spoke at the event on behalf of the board.

“Today’s ceremony aligns with our mission: to inspire a lifelong passion for learning,” Ramirez said. “This is made by our dedicated commitment to provide the highest quality teaching and learning environment for our faculty and students.”

Ramirez called the renovated facilities a bold reflection of their dedication to their communities and students.

“This is the passion, and you can see it, because look at what is in front of you,” Ramirez said. “When you go in there, you’re going to be amazed like I was. It’s beyond words.”

Ramirez also thanked the engineers and construction workers who were involved in the project, such as Javier Hinojosa Engineering, M&P Solutions, Econ Construction Inc. and PBK Architects.

“And we also want to thank God, because you know we never had an incident where anybody was hurt,” Ramirez said. “And that was so amazing.”

For Flores, the four years of long nights and late hours was worth it for the students, teachers, staff and administrators of Mission High School, and will usher in “a new era for Mission High School.”

“We are extremely thankful to the students, parents, staff, Mission CISD Board of Trustees, Central Office administration and the City of Mission officials for making a dream a reality,” Flores said. “We continue to change the world one step at a time.”

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