West Orange – Cove CISD empowers, transforms lives

Published 8:51 am Thursday, April 4, 2019

By Lorraine Shannon


The West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District continues to empower and transform lives through excellence every day.

In November, the community approved a $25.75 million bond to improve instructional opportunities and facilities. The district is developing specifications for security improvements, new classroom and laboratory furniture, parking upgrades, and other bond projects. This includes developing plans for a multi-purpose Events Center and a new facility for the transportation department.

Last month, football turf installation began at Leroy D. Breedlove Field at Dan R. Hooks Stadium. Turf will also be installed at the baseball and softball fields.

Although many administrative leaders are working through bond details, campuses remain intensely focused upon instruction.

WOCCISD’s Early College High School (ECHS) at West Orange-Stark High School started a second year. An ECHS is an innovative school that allows students an opportunity to earn a diploma and 60 college credit hours. The WOS program operates in partnership with Lamar State College-Orange (LSCO). 

The Early College High School at West Orange-Stark is the only Early College High School in Orange County. WOCCISD’s ECHS earned TEA designation in the spring of 2017. At that time, it was one of only 198 ECHS campuses in Texas. The WOS ECHS students (see photo, above) will graduate in 2021 and 2022 with an associate degree from Lamar State College-Orange and a WOS High School diploma.

Annually, 25 eighth grade students are identified to enroll in ECHS as freshmen. These students are able to participate in standard high school activities and, at the same time, access all LSCO services and facilities. WOCCISD covers all costs, provides additional academic support, and supplies transportation.

This year, a College, Career, and Military Readiness counselor was added to WOS High School. Students benefit through opportunities to explore careers, attend job fairs, converse with post-secondary recruiters, receive college application assistance, and more.

Plus, WOS High School launched two MEGA Test Days in which the PSAT and SAT were given during the school day. These tests are paid for by WOCCISD.

Additionally new at the High School, is an Education Training program. It introduces students to the teaching profession. Ultimately, the district hopes that this program will assist in creating the next generation of educators. Other education opportunities for offered for staff.

Photos courtesy of West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District.
West Orange-Stark Middle School student Torri Culpepper competed in the Texas Alliance for Minorities in Engineering (TAME) State Competition in the spring of 2018. She qualified for the event by placing in both math and science the regional TAME competition held at Lamar University.

In WOCCISD’s Grow Your Own Teacher program, scholarships are offered to current non-certified staff members working to become teachers. The District reimburses tuition with an agreement that the recipient will teach for three years upon earning certification. Last year four scholarships were awarded. More will be awarded this spring.

As WOCCISD further strives to develop, sustain, and build the education profession, an Aspiring Administrators Leadership Academy continues, also in its second year. With this 10-month program, participants study the responsibilities of a school principal.

Foremost and finally, to recruit and maintain the best possible staff, the WOCCISD Board of Trustees approved, for the 2018-2019 school year, a $2,000 minimum salary increase for all full-time teachers. Stipends of $7,000 are offered for secondary math and Spanish teachers. A $3,000 stipend is offered for secondary science teachers. In 2019-2020, a $7,000 stipend will be offered for bilingual teachers.

As always, WOCCISD students continue to excel in outstanding academic and extra-curricular programs that include fine arts, robotics, UIL, career, and technology education, student organizations, and athletics.

West Orange-Cove CISD delivers an exceptional educational experience.