There were some severely disadvantaged students in our classes. There were students who would come into classes without the gift of English being their native language. There were a students who returned from suspensions and juvenile detention.
There were opportunities everywhere for these virtues; some teachers realized this more than others. If you failed to recognize those things around you, that's on you.
Cheating seemed to pass all-too-easily in classes; teachers could be encouraged to change a student's grade; extra credit could be earned in less-than-academic ways (canned food drives, anyone?).
That said, if you learned to resist those, you came out with more honesty and integrity than anyone.
This is not a great school. That said, it is a school and can enable its students as much as they enable themselves. I had some great teachers with high expectations, though the curriculum as a whole was geared towards educating the growing numbers of students within the school. Going on to a elite university, I was not prepared for the kind of discipline that environment required, but I can forgive North Mesquite as I realize that that was not its charge - it had more to do than to just take care of me.
I write this as an encouragement to students at North now and to students who will be going there: there are some great people to learn from. Put the work in, use everything you're given there, do the extra work outside of the classroom and you can prepare yourselves for whatever follows.
(In some ways, going to a sub-standard school can make more of you. Students: learn to make your own opportunities, learn which rules need to be followed and which you can sweet talk your way around, learn how to learn on your own - you won't always have a teacher at hand, best to start learning that skill now.)
My oldest daughter graduated 3rd in her class here but it was through many turmoil and mishaps. If I had a choice I would send them somewhere else. I was constantly harassed by the principal over unimportant things like her shoes and shoelaces not matching. My GT child who graduated with Honors and is now at SMU on a presidential scholarship was constantly put in ISS over clothing matters such as too many buttons on her Polo, wearing the wrong shade of Khaki, having an emblem larger than 1 inch on her shirt. The first time I was called was about the shoelaces not matching the shoes, during the lunch rush at work. When I became irritated at the stupidity of the call I hung up, only to have Mr Barber call me back 5 times in a row because he wanted to continue fighting about it. My youngest daughter is a Junior and has Mr Bracy for her GT Math. She is ADHD and just started medication this year. He refuses to help her or show up for tutoring. She has a 40 in his class and we are now having to pay for a credit recovery course in which she is carrying a 97 average. Mrs Jackson refused my daughter the right to make up a midterm even though we have a DR's note for the day missed.
I am a currently a senior at this school. It's improving thanks to all the grants and awards our school received except for the fact that the money gave the assistant principals iPads which I saw one throwing it around like it was useless and the pointless flat screen tv in the cafeteria. This school is over flowing with students which makes it impossible for a teacher to teach (over 1500 students I believe). Take honors instead you have smaller classes and more attention. The upside is the new college counselor which is very helpful! Also, the new Princeton review SAT prep class is amazing and taught by a great teacher. This school is very strict and will not hesitate to file truancy. It has potential. Most organizations are underfunded too such as the newspaper staff that will eventually disappear due to the lack of funding and participation. It's all about football, TAKS, STAAR, and making Mesquite look like the greatest district ever. Don't come here if you have school spirit. Our football team is a joke and we only have 2 pep rallies a year.
I graduated from NMHS in 1989 I loved it so much. I was in the most awsome band with the most awsome band director in the world Mr. John Kline. Although there were some things I didn't agree with when it comes to the strictness of the rules I wouldn't have traded it for anything in the world. As a mom of two teens now in a East Texas school I now see what happens when those rules don't exist. Yes, we had teen pregnancy but not that many. Out here we have so many starting in Junior high even. The school district here concentrates on two things and those two things are football and TAKS. The kids come and go as they please when they are at school and hug and kiss and everything else it is so sad. They even are sneaking off property to do things that don't need to be done if you know what I mean so if you want your kids to do all that then pull them out of a school with rules and see how that works out for you.
The administrative staff is very poor. They don't support parent involvement at all. The more you care about your kid the worst they treat your kid. Teachers can't teach due to the fact that disipline is the most important thing. This school really gets your kids ready for prison. The rules are strickly inforced and it's rediculous how little your kid will learn because of all the fights and disprutions in class. My child never had homework and was not properly prepared for college. If you only want a high school diploma its great place. I have had 6 kids go through this school and I wish we would have moved sooner. Moving to MISD was the worst thing I could have done/ they would have got a better education in a Dallas school.