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Elementary and Primary Education
Harris County Department of Education
News Release
Thursday, September 28, 2017

93 HCDE Academic and Behavior School West students gain backpacks,
supplies from HISD Hurricane Relief

Student Tyrique Mayfield was one of 93 students at Harris County Department of Education’s Academic and Behavior School West who received a backpack Sept. 27 at a school assembly, courtesy of Houston Independent School District. Mayfield shared a customary handshake and smiled as he was handed the grey-and-black pack full of school supplies.

HISD Office of Special Education Services Program Specialist LaVora Wright attended the assembly and greeted the HISD students who are enrolled at AB West through contracted services. Harris County school districts contract with HCDE to provide specialized services along with a low, student-to-teacher ratio to education students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

The 15 HISD students enrolled at AB West received extra supplies in their backpacks, but all students were given backpacks due to the tremendous outpouring of community contributions donated through Hurricane Relief Day hosted by HISD.

AB West parent Janet McCall from Fort Bend is a foster mom to three children. She also is responsible for her disabled husband. The McCall family lost their home and all their possessions during Hurricane Harvey. She received donations of clothing for AB West student La’Quesha through the assembly.

“There are days when you are really down and need to see the compassionate side of people,” McCall said. “We appreciate the kindness and this heartfelt way people show compassion.”

Through the assembly, four AB West teachers displaced by Harvey were also given donations from AB West staff and community.

“We are a family here at AB West, and helping those who are displaced and lost so much was the right thing to do,” AB West principal Victor Keys said.

Photo: Student Tyrique Mayfield accepts a backpack from HCDE principal Victor Keys and HISD program specialist LaVora Wright.

About Harris County Department of Education: HCDE provides special education, therapy services, early education, adult education and after-school programming. Services are funded by government grants, fees and a local property tax rate of $.005195. For every dollar in local property tax collected, HCDE provides $4.40 in services to the 25 Harris County school districts. HCDE also operates four campuses for students with profound special education needs and adjudicated youth who require a low student-teacher ratio and highly structured environment. One-hundred percent of students served on HCDE campuses are at-risk. The organization is governed by an elected board of seven trustees and has 1,060 employees and 33 facilities, including 15  Head Start centers. More info at

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