Posted by Dr. Mark Henry on 11/16/2022 11:55:00 AM

Dear CFISD Community,

This is a time of year when I am reminded of the many blessings I have, both in my personal life and in my role as superintendent of the best school district in the state of Texas. CFISD has so many great characteristics that I appreciate—a few examples which I have listed below.

I am thankful for student involvement. Did you know that 21,097 high school students participated in CFISD athletics during the 2021-2022 school year? Another 37,155 students participated in middle and high school fine arts. These students work hard and compete together for combined success. Research has shown that students who participate in extracurricular and cocurricular activities such as these demonstrate higher levels of academic achievement, character development and community involvement.

I am thankful for our teachers and parents who helped us have a more normal return to a school year for the first time in several years. We have seen greater success as we have been able to focus more on instruction and respect, to the benefit of our students.

I am thankful for a community that supports academic rigor. A total of 40,000 students in grades 7-12 are involved in career and technical education curriculum. They earned more than 93,000 certifications in 30-plus career-related programs of study in 2021-2022. Our College Academy partnership with Lone Star College—CyFair produced 199 graduates in 2022, with more to come this year: all 12 of our high schools will have students earning both a high school diploma and associate’s degree from LSC-CyFair.

I am thankful for civic engagement. Each election season, I see hundreds of our staff, students and community members posting on social media that they voted—and I know there are many more that I don’t see. Thank you all for taking the time to participate in an essential part of our society as a free nation.

I am thankful for a community that supports cultural enrichment and growth. In 2019, voters approved a bond that included a Visual & Performing Arts Center. The facility, scheduled to open next spring on property adjacent to Cy-Fair High School, will rival many professional venues around Houston. This will be an impressive stage for students to showcase their artistic talents and host world-renowned performances in the middle of our community.

We have a lot to be thankful for in 2022-2023. I am sure you can think of some blessings to add to the list as we approach the holiday season. I hope you have a safe and restful Thanksgiving break, and I look forward to seeing everyone back on Nov. 28.