Seventh Grader names El Paso ISD’s New Girls School

March 22, 2017
El Paso Herald-Post

The El Paso ISD Board of Trustees on Tuesday approved the name of the new girls school — a name suggested by a seventh-grade student in the District.

The Young Women’s STEAM Research & Preparatory Academy will open its doors in the fall with 200 students in sixth and seventh grade. One grade will be added each year until the school serves students in grades sixth through 12th.

On Tuesday evening, Trustees voted unanimously to take the recommendation from Wiggs Middle School seventh-grader Mariana Silva and give the girls school its long, but meaningful name.

“Young Women’s STEAM Research & Preparatory Academy really tells people what is going to happen in this school,” Silva said. “I am so excited that they picked my name suggestion because I feel strongly that it is going to be a special campus.”

Silva’s name submission was picked by a committee of stakeholders who reviewed close to 90 name suggestions from the public. The two other top name suggestions were the Anita Aguilar Ontiveros Young Women’s Academy of Science, Arts and Service named after a retired El Paso scientist and EPISD alumna; and the Teresa J. G. Chavez Young Women’s Academy of Science, Arts and Service after a longtime pharmacist and also an EPISD alumna.

The all-girls school will have a special Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) focus. It also will become the first single-gender school to join the New Tech Network of schools that practices project-based learning to complete assignments.

The Academy will open in the fall and for some years will share a campus with Armendariz Middle School in Central El Paso. The Academy will eventually use all of the Armendariz campus. Armendariz students will be rezoned into a new middle school.

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