Pasadena ISD's Walk for Success brings students back to school

Pasadena ISD's Walk for Success brings students back to school
Posted on 09/17/2015
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The Pasadena ISD community continues to “pay it forward” to help students achieve success.

Over 130 administrators, staff and community volunteers united on Saturday, Sept. 12, for the district’s fifth annual Walk for Success initiative. The program involves teams of volunteers who make phone calls and pay personal home visits to offer support to students who have not re-enrolled for the academic school year.

The program helps students who are only a few credits away from graduation receive their high school diploma by way of the Community School, Virtual School, TAKS prep courses or regular classroom attendance.

“Today, you are paying it forward and making a difference for students in Pasadena ISD,” Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Kirk Lewis said to the crowd before the walk began. “When you speak to students, you make a difference. Every year we bring dozens of kids back into our school system to finish what they started. It impacts our drop-out rate in a positive way, it impacts the graduation rate in a positive way, but most importantly, it makes a positive impact in their lives. Know that the work you do today will impact their lives for many years to come.”

Volunteers visited a total of 183 homes and of those 21 students began the enrollment process on the day of the walk; 13 students re-enrolled in schools during the walk; and 43 students made a commitment to return to school. Volunteers made contact with 224 students and parents during the home visits.

Pasadena High School principal Joe Saavedra, De Zavala Middle School principal Melissa Garza and Board of Trustee member Jack Bailey were among several volunteers who ended the trip with a success story.

The team offered words of encouragement to a drop-out student. After sitting down, the volunteers explained why they were in the neighborhood and the student made a commitment to return to school.

“We understand the challenges that some students face to stay in school,” Saavedra said. “The walk allows us to meet face-to-face with students of all backgrounds and discuss various viable options available to them. I think this shows how much we care about them and want them to succeed. It also helps students understand the value of an education and motivates them to take the next step.”

Quick facts about this year’s Walk for Success:

  • Total number of volunteers – 131
  • Total number of homes visited – 183
  • Total number of student/parent contacts made through home visits and phone calls – 224
  • Total number of students who committed to return to school – 43
  • Total number of student who started the re-enrollment process on the day of the walk – 21

Walk for Success 2015
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kirk Lewis inspires volunteers before the walk.

Walk for Success 2015
Associate Superintendent Troy McCarley gives attendees instructions before the walk begins.

Walk for Success 2015
Dr. Kirk Lewis Career and Technical High School staff

Walk for Success 2015
Community School

Walk for Success 2015
Board of Trustees

Walk for Success 2015
Board of Trustee member Nelda Sullivan talks to students and parents at phone bank headquarters.

Walk for Success 2015
Pasadena High School

Walk for Success 2015
PHS principal Joe Saavedra 

Walk for Success 2015

Walk for Success 2015

Walk for Success 2015
Sam Rayburn

Walk for Success 2015
Southmore Intermediate School

Walk for Success 2015
Sam Rayburn High School

Walk for Success 2015
Pasadena Memorial High School

Walk for Success 2015
Pasadena Memorial High School

Walk for Success 2015