Calallen High School's Health Science Department was recently awarded an Achieve Texas Challenge Grant from the Texas Education Agency. The grant supports the implementation of two new dual-credit courses, Phlebotomy and Introduction to Clinical Laboratory, in partnership with Del Mar College.

Calallen High School has a rigorous career-oriented program that supports the medical industry. Students have the opportunity to earn their pharmacology certification and gain hands-on hospital and laboratory experiences through clinical rotations at Christus Spohn Shoreline Hospital.

The Achieve Texas Challenge Grant has enabled CHS to purchase $25,000 of medical equipment for hands-on practice and real-world experiences in a healthcare setting. Additional grant funding allows teachers to continue their education through professional workshops.

"It is the mission of CISD to ensure that our high school graduates are fully prepared for any endeavor, whether it is the pursuit of post-secondary education, entrance into the workforce, or a position in the military," said superintendent Arturo Almendarez. "We will continue to maintain high academic standards in our school district. Our (Health Occupations Students of America) program is a wonderful example of the hard work and dedication of our staff."

According to the Coastal Bend Targeted Occupations list for 2007-08, supplied by WorkSource of the Coastal Bend, there is a high need for licensed vocational nurses, medical assistants, medical records technicians, paramedics, emergency medical technicians, pharmacy technicians, radiology techs, registered nurses and respiratory therapists.