Mayor Sylvester Turner at the opening of new basketball courts at Yellowstone Schools.
Mayor Sylvester Turner at the opening of new basketball courts at Yellowstone Schools. The schools will receive a $30 million update to its campus.

A unique private and charter school is reinforcing its commitment to the Third Ward area by unveiling its newly renovated and expanded campus. The Yellowstone schools held a ribbon cutting for its new basketball courts, which are part of a bigger expanded project.

A partnership with the city is allowing the school to expand the $30 million campus. The 52,000 square foot campus features classrooms, learning spaces, playgrounds, two gymnasiums, a library, art and music studios and an innovation hub.

Yellowstone Schools is a hybrid model: a private Christian school for grades PreK3-5th and a public charter school growing to 6th-12th grade. According to Yellowstone, the school serves almost 500 low-income children each year in the Third Ward.

“The Mayor and City Council helped make the vision possible for us to be able to expand our space, where we now sit on four acres with 120,000 square feet of new and renovated building,” said Executive Director Ryan Dolibois.

City Council voted on March 1 to sell one block of Hadley Street, and a portion of Brailsford Street to Yellowstone in order to expand its campus. Dolibois said it creates opportunities for its students.

“We’re building a premiere school here because Third Ward is a premiere neighborhood in Houston, and you deserve a premiere institution for your education,” he said. “This new space is a reminder that you need to dream bigger – don’t be limited by what you already experienced or what you only think is possible – instead trust the adults in this place when they say you can achieve and you deserve more.”

The campus is expected to be an important addition to the community by allowing the city to use the space for city-sponsored events, community meetings, recreational programs, educational opportunities, workshops, job fairs, and more.

Mayor Sylvester Turner said the campus is giving students the opportunity to thrive in their own community.

“Every kid is deserving of quality facilities where they can learn from and benefit from,” he said. “(C)hildren are messages that we send into a future, to a world we ourselves may never see, and what sort of message should we send – so what’s happening here on this campus on this ground will benefit all of you.”

The new campus is designed to accommodate 800 students and will open in August of this year.