Empowerment High School T-STEM


T-STEM focusing on improving instruction and academic performance in science and mathematics-related subjects and increasing the number of students who study and enter STEM careers:

  • Provide dual credit at no cost to students
  • Offer rigorous instruction and accelerated courses
  • Provide academic and social support services to help students succeed
  • Increase college readiness
  • Reduce barriers to college access
  • Align to regional workforce needs for ICIA, P-TECH, and T-STEM models

Benchmark 1: School Design

Our Mission

Provide students a rigorous, interdisciplinary learning environment focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics, to foster the joy of discovery, and to promote a collaborative culture of ethical and innovative problem-solving.


    1. Reeves – PLTW Engineering & PLTW Engineering UT-Tyler Dual Credit Facilitator
    2. Grumulaitis – PLTW Computer Science & Physics
    3. Collins – Biology
    4. Cotton –Biology & Environmental Science
    5. Boutte –Algebra 2 & Geometry
    6. Tano – Math (Algebra 1 & Pre-Cal)
    7. Sullivan – HCC Dual Credit Facilitator
    8. Whall – Gateway Teacher
    9. Walker – Gateway Teacher

  Advisory Board

    1. Linda Stearns – Texas PLTW Certification Officer, UT-Tyler, Higher Educational Leader
    2. LaTravia Hubbard – Program Analyst, Law Firm Operations ELM Solutions, Community Leader
    3. Karen Franklin – World Youth Foundation, Community Leader
    4. Shalin Shah – Chief Financial Officer, Flat Rock Development, LLC, School Board Member
    5. Shevonne Elliott – Instructional Programs and Support Director, Southwest Schools
    6. Bianca Clark – Empowerment HS Principal, Southwest Schools
    7. Kanika Vessel – Math/Science Curriculum Specialist, Southwest Schools
    8. April Armwood – Chief Officer of Innovation and Academics, Southwest Schools
    9. Thalia Chaney – Educate Texas Coach
    10. Craig Gutierrez – College and Career Readiness Director, Southwest Schools
    11. Tonya Sanders-Woods – Phoenix Principal, Southwest Schools
    12. Tonya Jeffrey – Center for Educational Programs Director, University of Houston-Clear Lake
    13. Ruben Gomez – Mangum Elementary Principal, Southwest Schools
    14. Troy Stanton – President, Nuvos IP
    15. Mark Beshears, Oil, Gas, & Chemical Industry Expert

Benchmark 2: Target Population

Application Process

As an open-enrollment charter school, the only requirement for admittance into Southwest Schools is a student’s residency. Admission and enrollment of students shall be open to persons who reside within the geographic boundaries stated in the approved original charter application or amended thereafter. Southwest Schools has been approved by original charter and amendment to admit students from 8 countries and 154 ISDs.

Application forms will be printed and distributed through the Accountability/Operations Department prior to November 1. Current students recommit by returning a completed application form and community students who come in are given an application form. As application forms come in, names of students are placed on grade level rosters in chronological order of receipt. Each grade level is given an enrollment cap of 24 students per class. Once enrollment caps are met, students are placed on a “Wait List”.

The total number of students enrolled at Southwest Schools shall not exceed the number of students approved in the charter or subsequent amendments and will be based on classroom capacity. If space is available an eligible student will be admitted and enrolled on any day of the week and will be counted as and considered a charter student immediately.

Southwest Schools requires all applicants for admission to submit a completed application in order to be considered for admission. This includes the current student population at each campus who seek re-enrollment. Southwest Schools will have open registration annually from November 1 – January 1. At the end of the “Open Registration” period letter are sent to parents to indicate the student(s) have been accepted for enrollment at the school.

Enrollment packets are then distributed to students who have received an acceptance letter. Students are formally enrolled once the completed enrollment packet has been received and verified. After January 1 if a campus has any vacant seats on the Master Grade Level Roster, any inquiry to the school can fill out an application and enrollment packet and be accepted to the school for the upcoming year.


Marketing activities for Open Enrollment are coordinated through the Community Relations and Fund Development Department, in partnership with campus leadership. Campus teams participate in neighboring school activities, when able, to promote our STEM curriculum and partner with STEM organizations. Marketing materials are produced using STEM as a focal point for recruitment efforts.

  • Manufacturing Day: Fall semester
  • STEM Day: Once per semester
  • SMART Gurlz Event: Once per semester
  • PBL Exhibitions: Fall and spring semesters
  • Career Day: March
  • STEM Bridge camp for Rising 4th/5thgraders: 1stweek of June
  • STEM Bridge camp for Rising 8thgraders: 2ndweek of June
  • STEM Bridge camp for Rising 9thgraders: 3rdweek of June
  • NASA STEM Girls Events: 4 times per year

 Benchmark 3: Strategic Alliances

Benchmark 4: Curriculum, Instruction, & Assessment

Benchmark 5: Work-Based Learning

  • Targeted Occupations

Benchmark 6: Student Support

  • Bridge Program
  • Tutoring/Intervention/Remediation Program Schedules
  • Student PGP

BENCHMARK#1 School Design

#2 Target Population

#3 Strategic Alliances

#4 Curriculum, Instruction, & Assessment

#5 Work-Based Learning

#6 Student Support


What Is T-STEM

2018-2019 Schedule

Graduation Plan

Project Timeline

College & Career Readiness

TSA Prep

Houston Community College

Austin Community College

College Board TSI

Khan Academy

test datea

Click To View Full Details

Date | Grades

Dec. 3 – 7 | 2-11

Jan. 7-Feb. 15 | K-12

Jan. 28 – Feb. 1 | 2-11

April 1- May 3 | K-12


SWS Targeted Occupations ad


September 20, 2018

November 15, 2018