About three dozen protesters—adults and children—waved signs and chanted outside Tomball ISD’s administration building Nov. 13 and 14, voicing disapproval of a proposed intermediate school that would serve families from the Creekside Park area.

The overview

TISD’s $54 million Intermediate School No. 5 was originally proposed as an elementary school under the district’s 2021 bond, but the project was changed into an intermediate school in April to accommodate growth in the Creekside Park area, as previously reported by Community Impact.
  • The recommended location for the school is at the Tomball Innovation Center, which is located at FM 2920 and Hufsmith-Kohrville Road.
  • On Oct. 10, district leaders presented the results of a feasibility study exploring the option of building the intermediate school at Creekside Park Junior High. The study found that constructing the school at CPJH would not be a viable option.
The Nov. 13 and 14 protests were held in tandem with an attendance strike in which TISD parents pledged to keep their children home on those days. An online petition in support of the strikes garnered 452 signatures as of press time Nov. 15.

What they’re saying

Several Creekside Park-area parents and protesters also shared their thoughts on the intermediate school at TISD’s Nov. 14 board of trustee meeting. Christi Davis—a parent of three Timber Creek Elementary School children—said it is “hard to believe” TISD’s commute estimates for the proposed intermediate school without a transportation study being conducted.

“If you don't want to build on the junior high site, then rent property or build onto the existing schools; use portables,” Davis said. “I personally would support practically anything that does not have a long commute for our children.”

At the meeting, TISD trustee Michael J. Pratt said he has considered alternate locations for the intermediate school, but he has not seen viable options besides the TIC.

“At no point did I hear or have heard that land has become available, and so my conclusion continues to be in support of [building] Intermediate No. 5 at the Tomball Innovation Center, but if I hear a moment of tenable land, and we've yet to move dirt out there, I'm open to it,” Pratt said.

After Pratt’s comments, TISD Superintendent Martha Salazar-Zamora said the administration is also open to alternative locations, and it continues to explore various options, including meeting with staff from The Woodlands Township.

“We continue to make phone calls and visit with individuals, and I continue to be hopeful that we can do what we can do for the students and the community,” Salazar-Zamora said.

Sorting out details

TISD leaders are in the process of evaluating the attendance boundaries for all 23 campuses in the district. The process began on Oct. 10, and leaders said they hope to propose the boundary changes to trustees in January.

The discussions around Intermediate School No. 5’s location are not the cause of the ongoing boundary redesign, TISD leaders stated in a Nov. 9 email.

“The decision to place Intermediate School No. 5 at the TIC is not the driving factor of the [district zone reset] process; our continued fast growth across the district and building new schools as part of Bond 2021 are the driving factors,” the email states. “The new intermediate campus will align the grade configurations in Creekside with the grade configurations of all other schools in the district, and it will provide relief to all three Creekside elementary schools and Creekside Park Junior High.”

A timeline for school construction was not provided at the meeting, and further action could be taken at a future meeting, officials said. The school is slated to open in the 2026-27 school year.

Also of note

On Nov. 14, trustees unanimously voted to approve the $229,178 purchase of six display marquees for Intermediate School No. 5 and for the West Complex after multiple parents urged trustees against doing so.

Salazar-Zamora said that the marquee purchases for the intermediate school are “not location specific” and will be kept in storage until a location is approved for the intermediate school.

No other action on Intermediate School No. 5 was taken at the Nov. 14 meeting.