PRINCIPAL: Verdie Batiste

Belaire High School is committed to student achievement through a sense of EXCELLENCE for all students. The school will design programs and learning experiences that promote academic achievement, personal and social growth of every student. Belaire High will assume a central role in the community by linking parents, alumni, local agencies, and businesses to the school. Belaire High students will graduate as lifelong learners who will make valuable contributions to society. Through the collaboration of school, home, and community, every Belaire High graduate will be well prepared for the demands of the 21st century.


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History of Magnets 

The 1960’s served as a wellspring of great change – politically and societally. Along with that change was the movement to desegregate school systems and offer equal opportunities and access to superior education to students of every socio-economic level.
But, as Dr. Donald Waldrip describes in his article on the history of magnet schools, the very first “super” high school came about in Dallas, Texas in 1971.
“Designed around the concept of career strands, skyline High School attracted students of all kinds – rich, poor, Hispanic, African American, Asian, White – from all over the city. It even offered adult classes in the evenings. In fact the school rarely closed its doors. Some students came for a full-day program; others came for part-time; still others came after school.”
Waldrip explains that around the same time in Houston, Texas, when describing the effect of its Performing and Visual Arts School, “said that it worked like a “magnet” in attracting students.”
By 1975, the term “magnet” had caught on so well that in just four short years, that the federal government, contemplating fiscal assistance, was using the term.
Waldrip, whose full article is linked here with many more specifics acknowledges that while magnet schools are still used to improve diversity and reduce segregation, they have rapidly become superior options within the public sector for all students, even in districts of primarily one race.
The history of magnet schools, their popularity and dispersion, is directly tied to the early protests of the 1960’s addressing educational inequity and amplifying the need for educational reform by way of public school “choice.”
Historical Highlights1954, Brown vs. Board of Education made explicit the goal of reducing school segregation while providing high-quality education programs to all students.1968, in Tacoma, Washington, the first school designed to reduce racial isolation by offering school choice opened.1974, research was released by Mario Fantini that showed all students do not learn the same way. A unifying theme or a different organizational structure for students of similar interests improved learning in all areas.1985, Federal Magnet Schools Assistance Program was authorized, providing grants to magnet schools.2016, magnet schools number 4340 in 46 states.

Today, these schools have emerged as educational beacons in communities, incorporating themed curricula, hands-on, experiential learning, a diverse tapestry of students and academic requirements that often exceed those of the school district or state.

Magnet Schools of America