Del Rio Chamber of Commerce

Carol Mireles, executive director of Premier High School, center, is joined by Cleo Hinojosa, regional director of ResponsiveEd; Del Rio Mayor Bruno “Ralphy” Lozano, members of the Del Rio Chamber of Commerce Red Carpet Ambassadors and Premier High School staff as she cuts a ribbon symbolizing the school’s new membership in the Del Rio Chamber of Commerce.

Premier High School staff celebrated joining the Del Rio Chamber of Commerce with a ribbon cutting ceremony at the school on Friday.

Members of the Del Rio Chamber of Commerce Red Carpet Ambassadors, chamber staff, Premier High School officials, parents of Premier students and other supporters and well-wishers gathered outside the school, 1701 Kings Way, for the event.

Del Rio Mayor Bruno “Ralphy” Lozano also attended the ceremony.

“I’m happy that we’re able to offer different avenues and different approaches to education here in Del Rio, because not everyone fits the mold. Not everybody is a traditional student,” Lozano said, recounting how he graduated a semester early.

Premier High School Director Carol Mireles welcomed those attending the event and noted Premier High School is a free, charter school that offers an alternative to traditional public school.

Mireles worked for the local public school district for 32 years. She went from cheerleading and drill team sponsor to serving as the head track and cross-country coach, finishing her career with the school district as athletic director. She also taught history.

Mireles introduced some of the school’s staff members.

“Premier High School started in Del Rio in 1998. We were one of the first ones here in Del Rio, starting as Eagle Charter School and now we are Premier High School,” Mireles said.

“We are here to provide hope to many students, to those who maybe want a smaller learning environment, to those who can’t do the high school because it’s gotten too big for them, or they don’t do sports and they want to concentrate on the education portion. Some are struggling, some are not struggling. We have all different levels. We also have students who are from military families who were over at the high school and they said we are going to be moved again and we want our son or daughter to graduate now, this year,” Mireles said.

“It can be an accelerated program for those who want to accelerate and more individual instruction for students who might need more individualized instruction,” she added.

Mireles noted the Texas Education Agency now issues annual “accountability report cards” for schools.

“I’m very proud to say that because of my staff and their hard work and dedication, we got an ‘A,’ and that is hard, and now we’re going to work on doing it again,” Mireles said.

Also attending Friday’s ceremony was Cleo Hinojosa, regional director of ResponsiveEd, which operates Premier High School. Hinojosa spoke about the school’s history in Del Rio.

Hinojosa said ResponsiveEd has schools throughout Texas and is now branching out into Arkansas and other states.

“Yes, we are a dropout prevention program, basically, and that means credit recovery. Kids can come here that have made low scores and they can come here to recover credit,” she said.

Hinojosa noted the school also benefits gifted, accelerated learners.

“Both kinds of learners come our way. We are an alternative, an option to a traditional public school,” Hinojosa said.

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