Horn Academy

Horn Academy, named after educator Paul W. Horn, is an elementary school in HISD with a magnet program and Vanguard Neighborhood Program. Horn is a total school magnet for art, communications, computers, life sports, and science. The magnet program, which “emphasizes the academic and social development of the ‘whole child,’” began in 1982. Horn has received exemplary ratings from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and HISD.

Horn Academy

4530 Holly St. Bellaire, TX 77401                                  Ms. Sarah L. Harrington, Principal

713-295-5264                                                   Ms. Cathy McCleskey, Magnet Coordinator


Religious Affiliation

As a public school, Horn has no religious affiliation.  According to Houston Independent School District’s policy, every school has a moment of silence each day during which students can pray silently to themselves if they so choose.  Also, absences because of religious holidays do not count toward the student’s total number of absences.  However, the student is still responsible for the make up work.

Location and Facilities

Horn Academy is located in the affluent, independent municipality of Bellaire in southwest Houston. It is nestled in a residential neighborhood of single-family homes just north of Beechnut and east of the 610 West Loop. The school is located on a large lot that it shares with Horn Field. The school was completely rebuilt from 2010 to 2011. The playgrounds and fences were also upgraded through funds the PTO raised.


All students seeking to enter Horn Academy must apply through the standard HISD elementary magnet application. Applicants must submit 1) proof of HISD residency 2) proof of age (kindergarteners only) 3) previous year’s final report card or Pre-K Progress Report if applicable 4) first grading period of current report card, along with an 5) an application.

To apply for the Neighborhood Vanguard Program, students must submit a separate Vanguard Neighborhood GT application and be tested for Gifted and Talented status. At Horn, students are identified in the spring of Kindergarten.

Academic Tracks and Curriculum

In addition to a traditional elementary school curriculum, Horn’s magnet program emphasizes five components: art, communications, computer technology, life sports, and earth science. Students attend the following ancillary classes on a 6 day rotation: music, art, creative writing/communications, life sports, computer lab, and science (K-3)/library (4-5, Pre-K). Students in grades K-3 still attend library. They come as a class once a week for a 30-minute period.

The Neighborhood Vanguard Program serves the needs of Horn’s gifted and talented students. Students within the program engage in “complex activities with emphasis on abstract reasoning, higher order thinking skills, and in-depth investigations.”

Special Needs

Standard HISD policies.

Foreign Languages

Students can take Spanish, French, or Chinese classes after school.


Students attend art class as a part of their ancillary rotation. They take lessons drawing, painting, pottery, design, and art history. As a magnet component, the art program is closely linked to the academic curriculum. In addition to art, students attend music classes weekly.


Horn’s computer literacy program, a component of the magnet program, teaches students computer terminology, word processing, spreadsheets, and keyboarding skills on Apple computers. A computer lab teacher works to help integrate core subjects with technology.

Students wishing to use email and the Internet must have signed approval from their parents.

Extracurricular Activities

There are a number of clubs students can join such as the No Place for Hate Club, the Horn Helping Hands, the Safety Patrol, or the choir. Students can compete in HISD’s “Name That Book” competition, Odyssey of the Mind, or the UIL academic competition. Horn hosts an after-school program called The Champions Program where students can engage in different activities surrounding homework completion, the fine arts, sports, science, and healthy eating.


No information provided.

Parent Involvement

Parents can join the dues-paying PTO, tutor, maintain the lawns, help make the yearbook, or even volunteer their time at the Horn Spaghetti Supper with “Pasta Pals.” Father’s can join the Horn Dad’s Club, a group that hosts activities and supports the PTO. The Shared Decision Making Committee (SDMC), made up of parents, faculty, and community members, hold monthly meetings to discuss issues and plan the budget.

Horn Academy Fast Facts

School Type Public, Coeducational
Religious Affiliation None
Uniforms Dress Code Only
Date Founded 1949
Endowment N/A
Grades Served KG-5
Enrollment 610
     Grade 5 87
     Grade 4 91
     Grade 3 96
     Grade 2

Grade 1





Student to Teacher Ratio 17:1
Faculty with Advanced Degrees (#/%) 14/32%
Minorities in Student Body 43%
Academic Tracks Offered Magnet, GT
Advanced Placement Courses Offered N/A
Languages Offered None
Calendar (Semester / Trimester / Other) Semester
Interscholastic Sports Programs N/A
Public School Stats (Public Schools)  
Gifted and Talented Students 40%
Free and Reduced Lunch 12%
AYP (2007-2012) Met AYP
TEA Accountability (2007-2011) Exemplary


Excerpted from General Academic’s publication, “Houston Private & Select Public Schools: Survey, Analysis, and Research, 3rd Edition.”


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