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Timeline of Key Changes

A decade of changes in Eastside schools

By Richard Whittaker, Fri., Feb. 7, 2014

For decades, East Austin schools felt like they were being ignored by AISD and the Texas Educa­tion Agency. Then they felt barraged by a constant stream of intervention. The last decade has seen tumult, closures, repurposing, staff turnover, changes in leadership, and a general lack of the one thing that a campus needs to turn around – stability. Only time will tell whether the latest round of reforms are a cohesive push for real change, or just yet more dabbling that will be undone within a semester.

The Beginnings

1916 John T. Allan Junior High opens.

1957 Allan Junior High moves to 4900 Gonzales St. after its previous campus was destroyed by fire.

1958 James E. Pearce Junior High opens.

1960 Albert S. Johnston High School opens to serve East Austin's primarily African-American and Hispanic population.

1980 Allan Junior High becomes Allan Elemen­tary, reflecting shifting age demographics and demands in the area.

2007 AISD opens Gus Garcia Middle School to serve far East Austin.

Recent Developments

2007 Education Commissioner Robert Scott announces Johnston High will be closed due to low performance.

2008 Scott allows Johnston to be repurposed and it reopens as Eastside Memorial High School at the Johnston Campus.

2009 AISD trustees split Eastside into two schools: Green Tech and Global Tech. After initially threatening to close Pearce, Scott approves a repurposing plan that allows it to stay open.

2011 In January, the district's Facility Master Plan Task Force puts Pearce as an option on a list of campuses that could be closed to save costs – a plan they immediately dump after public outcry. In Decem­ber, trustees split 6-3 to bring in IDEA Public Schools to open a public K-12 charter school, taking over Allan in 2012 and Eastside in 2013.

2011 AISD reunifies Eastside Green Tech and Global Tech.

2012 In September, Allan Elementary reopens as IDEA Allan. Three months later, AISD board cancels IDEA contract.

2013 After community outreach, AISD selects Johns Hopkins Talent Development Secondary as its external partner to reinforce achievements at Eastside. New commissioner Michael Williams approves the partnership and gives AISD three years to reach state standards. IDEA moves out of Allan, which the district semi-mothballs.

2014 Pearce and Garcia are scheduled to merge attendance zones for the new school year, when each campus will become a single-sex leadership academy.

2015 Earliest point at which Allan can reopen: The current consensus seems to be that it will become a middle school again, either STEM or dual language.

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