Olle Middle School
Olle officially opened its doors for the 1973-74 school year but because of some construction delays, did not fully open until March 3, 1974. Its first principal was Mr. Schumacher who served from 1973-1980(full name/specific date of service needed).
Around 1977-78, the outdoor jogging track was added. A year or so later, it was enclosed with its own chain-link fence, but was open to all joggers who would use it 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
In 1978-79, a bowling alley opened across Boone Road facing Olle Middle School and bowling was added to the Physical Education curriculum.
Olle had an impressive range of teaching facilities for its opening, including choir/music rooms (located on the south side of the outdoor courtyard), devoted Foreign Language rooms that were each divided into French, German, and Spanish and an impressive shop area for wood and steel crafting (located on the inner North-west tip, where a fourth House/Academy was never built), and a very large Arts/Craft department (in roughly the same area, but closer to the exit where school buses drop-off/pick-up students).
During the 1970s and into much of the 1980s, there was no "intermediate schools" in Alief and Olle Middle School served grades 5-8.
The school building was built using the newest trends to improve schooling and energy efficiency for its time. Most of these methods fell to the wayside as newer ways to teach went into style. The school was built with three "Houses" at the time and could handle the area's schooling needs with relative ease. There was limited windows to distract children from daydreaming, but each hose were built fairly open; there were no walls between classrooms and teachers wrote on specially treated walls in dry-erase markers. Walls to classrooms/areas were eventually added in the 1990s, to focus students more on studies, although preventing student's an avenue from "constant focus" on subject matter is still debated in teaching circles.
At the time, the three houses were named, "Yellow House", "Orange House", and "Blue House". These tended to be divided more along the lines of academic achievement than actual grade level. One could spend their entire academic life in one House, although teachers and areas/homerooms would be changed yearly within each of the Houses. There was some movement between Houses, depending on if an individual student improved or not based on test/teacher evaluation. Again, the student population was relatively easy to manage in such a setting.
Olle Middle School also contained the latest in teaching equipment, books, supplies, and other sundries at the time. It made extensive use of computers, Apple IIe's, mostly donated by Apple computer. These were used for "Honor Roll" students for the most part. At the time, home computing was entering the mainstream and this was fairly cutting-edge.
Sometime in the late 1990s, the "Houses" became to be called "Academies" and were trimmed with the times to fit Olle's new Two-Grade system instead of the former Four-Grade one. "Blue House" became "Blue Academy". "Orange House" became "Red Academy" and "Yellow House" became "Gold Academy". (With only two grades, this writer is not sure what use are three distinctive houses unless "Gold" still contains those deemed "academically gifted"/Honor Roll.) Also, due to growing student population, outside buildings were added that are still being used to this date. A few years afterward, they have been surrounded by a chain-link fence and the inner enclosed courtyard that used to be closed by a "steel-linked" gate that would drop down like a garage door has been replaced by two standard steel doors.
Although it had been talked about as far as 1979, school uniforms were only implemented sometime in the mid-1990s. Before that, there was a "school dress code" that became slowly, but progressively stricter as the years passed.
School uniforms (Current)
Students are required to wear school uniforms.They can wear red, white,and navy blue polo shirts. And Khaki and Navy pants, skirts, jumpers or shorts. The Texas Education Agency specifies that the parents and/or guardians of students zoned to a school with uniforms may apply for a waiver to opt out of the uniform policy so their children do not have to wear the uniform; parents must specify "bona fide" reasons, such as religious reasons or philosophical objections.
Elementary schools that currently feed into Olle include Best, Horn, Landis, Douglas Smith, and portions of Boone and Audrey Judy Bush. Intermediate schools that feed into Olle include: Klentzman Intermediate School and a portion of Owens Intermediate School. Alief ISD does a lottery where 8th grade students are randomly put in the Alief High Schools (Elsik, Taylor or Hastings). Students that wish to attend Kerr High School, the absolute best, receive a letter in the mail for Kerr which gives orientation dates. You have to attend at least one of them for them to even consider you. There is also the new school, Alief Early College High School, which is not at all similar to Kerr, and is, on average, one of the worst schools around. It is based solely on avid and dual credit classes, opened August 28, 2009.
Olle goes on a 7 day period school day schedule. The school day starts at 8:50 and ends at 3:50. Olle has an affiliation with Elsik High School; students who take geometry go there every day, and Olle provides a bus back. Students who take geometry in the morning have Staff Aid(e) for first period.
- Blue Ribbon Schools Program, Schools Recognized 1982-1983 Through 1999-2002 (PDF)
- "Uniform Requirements 07-08." Alief Independent School District. Retrieved on November 13, 2008.
- "DOCKET NO. 008-R5-901." Texas Education Agency. Accessed October 13, 2008.
- "Registration." Audrey Judy Bush Elementary School. Retrieved on April 22, 2009.