BELLFORT EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER
Opened in 1967 at 5426 Cavalcade as an elementary school, this facility was converted to an early childhood center in 2006. It was named to commemorate the Battle of Concord (April 19, 1775), one of two that marked the beginning of the Revolutionary War. The center moved to 4901 Lockwood in 2007.
CROCKETT EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER—CLOSED 2011
Previously known as Richard Brock Elementary School, this facility was converted to an early childhood education center in 2006 and renamed for the Tennessee-born Davy Crockett, who died at the Alamo in the struggle for Texas’ independence.
ARMANDINA FARIAS EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER
515 East Rittenhouse
This school was named after Sharon Goldstein Halpin, an exceptionally dedicated HISD teacher who taught at David Burnet and William Travis Elementary Schools even after she was diagnosed with cancer. The school was dedicated to her in 1997.
MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER
3930 West Fuqua
One of the very first facilities built by HISD to serve prekindergarten students exclusively, this school opened in the autumn of 2004. Its name honors the slain civil-rights leader who advocated nonviolent social protest in the pursuit of racial equality. King was named Time Magazine’s Man of the Year in 1963 and awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 for his efforts. He was assassinated in April 1968.
LANGSTON EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM—CLOSED MAY 2004
John Mercer Langston rose to prominence as Virginia’s first African-American U.S. Representative and was acclaimed for his distinguished work as a diplomat, professor, and administrator at Howard University and inspector general of the Freedmen’s Bureau. In 1955, HISD renamed the former Breckenridge Elementary School (built in 1905) in his memory. In 1991 the school was closed. It reopened three years later as an early childhood center.
LAS AMÉRICAS EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT CENTER—CLOSED MAY 2007
This school was actually a combination of three different schools under one roof. Las Américas served two different student populations, and was named for the apartment complex surrounding the building. It served prekindergarten and kindergarten students on the first floor and grades 6–8 on the second. Kaleidoscope, a charter school that occupied the building’s top floor, also served grades 6–8. Las Américas was originally a relief facility for Leroy Cunningham Elementary School, but it moved to the Glenmont location in 2000. It closed in 2007.
NINFA LAURENZO EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER
205 North Delmar
One of the first two facilities built by HISD to serve prekindergarten students exclusively, this school opened in the autumn of 2004. It is named for the late Ninfa Rodríguez Laurenzo, a much-loved Houston restaurateur and community leader who recognized the importance of education in child development early on. Ninfa Laurenzo opened her first Mexican-food restaurant in 1969 in a converted warehouse on Houston’s east side. Over the next 10 years, she parlayed that restaurant’s success into a multi-million-dollar empire. The school named after her is located at 205 North Delmar, in the same neighborhood as her original restaurant. She died in June 2001.
GABRIELA MISTRAL EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER
WHEATLEY CHILD DEVELOPMENT CENTER—CLOSED 2007
Located on the campus of Phillis Wheatley High School, this facility was opened in August 2001 to serve the children of students attending Wheatley High School and preschool-age students from the surrounding neighborhood.