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Committee Recommends Names for Hays CISD Schools and Facilities That Honor Local Educators

photos of the namesake candidatesThe school board-appointed 2023 Naming Committee, made up of community members, presented the first reading of its recommendation package at the Hays CISD Board of Trustees workshop meeting on Monday, November 13, 2023. The committee was empaneled in July to consider names for several new schools and district facilities. During an open nomination process from Friday, September 22, 2023, through Tuesday, October 10, 2023, district residents submitted more than 200 name nominations.


On October 12, 2023, the committee voted 12-0 to make the following recommendations:


The recommendations are as follows:


Elementary #16 – Jim Cullen Elementary School. Jim is a retired Hays CISD teacher, a past president of the Hays CISD Texas State Teachers Association chapter, an early and longtime member of the Hays Education Foundation, a past regional teacher of the year, the district photographer for more than a decade following his retirement, and the recipient of a life-time achievement award from the district.


Elementary #17 – Lamont Ramage Elementary School. Lamont, who passed away in April 2023, was a longtime justice of the peace, a former school board member and board president, and the former mayor of the City of Hays. He has a deep connection to the district not only serving in his position on the Board, but also as a longtime volunteer.


The Child Nutrition Building – The Helen Alcala Child Nutrition Center. Helen was a longtime district child nutrition employee at the historic Buda School campus. Following her retirement with the district, at the age of 57 in 1980, she opened a successful restaurant of her own on Buda’s Main Street – Helen’s Casa Alde. Following her death, her son managed the restaurant. Her son passed away last year, but the family still owns and operates the establishment.


Central Office – The Hays CISD Academic Support Center. The committee chose to recommend that the district keep, at this time, the central office building name it as it has been colloquially known – the Hays CISD Academic Support Center (Central Office).


All three recommended namesakes – Cullen, Ramage, and Alcala have made it to previous short-lists for having a Hays CISD facility or school named in their honor.


“It’s always rewarding to name school district facilities after people who spent their lives making local contributions to the school district,” said Tim Savoy Hays CISD chief communication officer. “These buildings will last into the next century. It’s a fitting tribute to honor the legacies and the impact that these incredible people had on untold numbers of students, colleagues, and neighbors through the years.”


The name recommendations received a first reading at the Board’s November workshop meeting. Policy requires the Board to wait until the following month for a formal vote on the names, which is scheduled for December 2023.


The Child Nutrition Center is currently open. Elementary #16 is scheduled to open in August 2024. Elementary #17 will open in August 2025. The Hays CISD Academic Support Center will open in late spring 2024.