As Fort Bend ISD prepares to welcome approximately 75,000 students back to school next week, a group of District and local faith-based leaders joined together to show support for Willowridge High School and Marshall High School students and staff. Due to a mold remediation effort currently underway at Willowridge High School, approximately 1,460 Willowridge students and staff members will begin the school year at Marshall High School.

On Friday, August 18, 2017, a number of local faith-based leaders and elected officials joined FBISD Board members and staff to demonstrate their support of the combined campus, and their willingness to partner in student success. In the days following the discovery of extensive mold growth at Willowridge High School and the loss of staff materials and supplies, Fort Bend ISD and Willowridge High School saw an outpouring of concern and support from local faith-based leaders.

“Fort Bend ISD is blessed to have the support of a strong, positive collaborative community who are willing to step up and truly partner with us to help our students succeed,” said Fort Bend ISD Superintendent of Schools Dr. Charles Dupre.

“We see this kind of support throughout the year – but even more so when we experience challenges such as this one. They have organized supply drives, offered donations, and shared the most precious resource – their time.”

As the year begins, a number of local pastors have signed up to volunteer as lunch monitors. Additionally, this Sunday, some are planning to speak to their church communities about the importance of supporting their students in this time of transition.

“We have watched cities and states come together in unity to work through hurricanes and catastrophes, and this is a great time to show the world how we are a community,” said Pastor Rudolph White, Jr., President of the Fort Bend Pastor’s Association and pastor of the Christian Bible Church.  “There is rivalry on the football field, and that’s expected, but this is different. There’s no competition here, but a sense of unity and love.”

Faith-based representatives who confirmed attendance, or expressed support prior to the event include:

  • Pastor Rudolph White, Jr., Christian Bible Church and President of the Fort Bend Pastors Association;
  • Donald Burgs, Jr., Alief and Tabernacle Baptist Churches, Fort Bend Pastors Association Board Member
  • Pastors Michelle Hall, Andrew Hook, DeAndre Johnson and Renee Teal, Christ Church Sugar Land;
  • Pastor Paul Strong, Calvary Church;
  • Amina Ishaq and Imam Tauqer Shah, Maryam Islamic Center;
  • Father Oscar Castro, St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church;
  • Pastor John Johnson, The Link Church;
  • Pastor Ronald Phillips, New Beginnings Church;
  • Pastor Will P. Fortune, Rock of Salvation Church;
  • Afshi Charania Merchant and Sima Ajani Jamal, Aga Khan Council for the Southwestern United States;
  • Vickie Coates, East Fort Bend Human Needs Ministry, Inc.;
  • Pastor Hughes Jenkins, New Abundant Life Church;
  • Pastor Willie R. Davis, MacGregor Palm CBC;
  • Pastor Maceo Smedley, The Promise Church;
  • Pastor David Sincere, Jr., Sienna Ranch Baptist Church;
  • Pastor Larry Grant, Briarchase Baptist Church;
  • Pastor Douglas Wray, Impact Church Houston;
  • Pastor Bobby Morgan, Abiding Faith Baptist Church;
  • Pastor Carlos Jones II, Inspiration Church;
  • Pastor Marc H. Oats, Together We Stand Christian Church;
  • Reverend Morris V. Gurnell Jr. and Minister Clarence Wood, The Fort Bend Church.

Elected officials who confirmed attendance, or expressed support prior to the event include:

  • U.S. Congressman Al Green,
  • State Representative Ron Reynolds,
  • State Senator Borris Miles,
  • Houston City Council Member Larry Green,
  • Missouri City Council Member Anthony Maroulis.

Community leaders who confirmed attendance, or expressed support prior to the event include:

  • Carl Davis Evans, President of the Fort Bend Houston Super Neighborhood Council 41;
  • Vickie Coates, Executive Director, East Fort Bend Human Needs Ministry;
  • Constable Gary Majors, Fort Bend County Precinct 2;
  • Steve Brown, community member.

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