Houston ISD, Houston Rockets and U.S. Military Join Forces to Upgrade Blackshear Elementary Book Rooms
In the spirit of Veterans Day, volunteers from the Houston Rockets teamed up with U.S. military personnel to embark on a day of service at Blackshear Elementary. The collaborative effort, part of the NBA’s Hoops for Troops program, aimed to enhance the learning environment for students and teachers.
Najah Callander, Executive Director of Family and Community Engagement with HISD, expressed gratitude for the partnership, saying, “We are thankful for our partnership with the Houston Rockets as well as servicemembers and veteran volunteers who helped to transform spaces at Blackshear Elementary.”
The volunteers, including Rockets forward Jae’Sean Tate, focused on reorganizing multiple book rooms filled with outdated materials. With the collective effort of three dozen volunteers, old books were cleared out, recycled, and replaced with new books and materials. Tate emphasized the significance of the project, stating, “We’re doing some real good work today. Kids are everything, and to be alongside some of our military members is a humbling and blessed experience for me.”
Four rooms were repurposed during the project: one for textbooks, one for math resources, one for reading resources, and one for Dyad classes. The transformation is expected to have a meaningful impact on students, providing them with improved access to supplemental resources and books.
Assistant Principal Christina Mitchell highlighted the importance of the project, stating, “The kids love to read, they love books, so being able to go into the room and pick out whatever book it is that they want to use, I think that will be very impactful.” Once the new materials are in place, students will be able to utilize the spaces and take the resources and books home.
The commitment to community improvement doesn’t stop there. Next week, Hoops for Troops volunteers will return to Blackshear to engage in landscaping and paint the outdoor basketball court.
For more information on HISD’s community partners, visit the Community Partnerships Department website.