Trilingual charter school breaks ground on two campuses in Houston
A fast-growing charter school network has broken ground on two new campuses in the Houston area.
International Leadership of Texas began construction in early March on two campuses west and southeast of Houston. ILTexas’ new kindergarten through eighth grade campus will be located at 9898 Windmill Lakes Blvd. in southeast Houston, and its new high school will be located at 20055 Beechnut Road in Richmond. Both campuses are slated to open in August.
The International Leadership of Texas has broken ground on two charter schools in the… more
ILTexas’ Houston-area campuses were designed and built by the development arm of Athlos Academies, a charter school network based in Boise, Idaho. Each ILTexas school spans about 90,000 square feet on 10-12 acres, and serve between 1,200 and 1,400 students. The campuses feature technologies like Chromebook laptops, smartboards and projectors, as well as athletic facilities such as basketball court and a 40-yard turf.
ILTexas is a public charter school network that offers a college preparatory education focusing on language and leadership. ILTexas students must master English, Spanish and Chinese in order to graduate. Charter schools are tuition-free public schools that receive taxpayer dollars to offer a specialized education.
Eddie Conger founded the ILTexas network, which opened its first campus in 2013 in Garland, Texas. The former Marine Corps Infantry Officer and Dallas Independent School District high school principal said he chose to focus on teaching English, Spanish and Chinese because Texas’ top three trading partners are Canada, Mexico and China.
ILTexas focuses on teaching servant leadership through academics and athletics, Conger said. Each year, students must brainstorm a service project and pitch it to their classmates to plan and execute.
In 2016, a fourth grade student from ILTexas’ Keller, Texas campus came up with the idea to bring awareness to childhood cancer. The students and her classmates convinced Major League Baseball officials to allow players to wear a yellow ribbon supporting the cause during a September game.
“We want our students to learn they can make a difference and change our world,” Conger said.
The ILTexas system currently has 10,400 students across 10 campuses in the Dallas and Houston areas. The charter school system is expected to grow to 15 campuses serving more than 16,000 students. In August, ILTexas is expected to have three K-8 schools and one high school in the Houston area.
Demand is high for ILTexas, with waiting lists and lotteries held for admission. Generally, the charter network has two interested applicants for every seat they have open. This fall, ILTexas plans to break ground on three more K-8 campuses in the Houston area, likely in the southwest region between Missouri City and Pearland, Conger said.
“As long as students and parents want to come to our school, we’ll continue to open campuses and serve our kids,” Conger said.