On Monday November 5, students from several SouthsideISD campuses geared up in hard hats to participate in the groundbreaking ceremony for new Kym Rapier Community Health Clinic.
Southside ISD Superintendent of Schools Mr. Mark E. Eads began the ceremony saying “First of all, we have to give thanks to Kym Rapier. She’s the person making all of this possible,”.
Kim Rapier is a philanthropist who committed a little more than $1 million to help operate the clinic. The health care facility is named in her honor.
Doctors at the clinic will provide medical, dental, and mental health care services free of charge to more than six thousand Southside ISD students.While other school districts have provided free care at various campuses, Southside ISD is providing free care district-wide.
Superintendent Eads says “This will have a greater and positive impact on our district. It will produce healthier students and staff. We know this clinic will lead to improving academic performance and better attendance”.
More children in school also translates into an increase in money from the State of Texas whose school district funding formula is based on daily student attendance.
Karina Villa, a representative from Kym Rapier said the philanthropist sees the need to help the Southside ISD community. “Kym is aware of the disparities and wants to do what she can to provide the Southside community with greater access to health care”.
In addition to the money pledged for the medical clinic, Ms. Rapier has donated an additional $100,000 towards operating a food pantry. The purposed food pantry will be based at Pearce Elementary School and is scheduled to open in December.
Superintendent Eads smiled as he watched students from every grade level turn shovels full of dirt. “I know that if we’re able to provide medical, dental, and mental health care, it will dramatically improve the quality of life in our community,” Mr. Eads said.
Physicians will also be able to treat Southside ISD faculty and staff at the clinic. The Kym Rapier Community Health Clinic is scheduled to open in April 2019