McKinney ISD will introduce the Herman E. Lawson Early Childhood Center to the McKinney community this fall. Located near the intersection of Wolford Street and Dowell Street in west McKinney, the center will be home to Early Head Start, Head Start, Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities (PPCD), and Pre-Kindergarten programs in McKinney ISD.
Lawson is equipped with an experienced and committed teaching staff, most of which have had many years of previous teaching experience in McKinney ISD classrooms. The school is loaded with special features including a 90,000 square foot unique age-specific design, three outdoor playgrounds, and a creative group activity area.
The childhood center is named in honor of Mr. Herman Lawson, who grew up attending McKinney schools and later served as principal of Finch Elementary School and McKinney ISD Director of Student Services.
Mr. Lawson was born in McKinney, attended Altoga School grades 1-8, and attended Boyd High School grades 9-12, graduating from the “original” Boyd High School in McKinney.
During his teaching tenure in McKinney beginning in 1957, he taught Geometry, Trigonometry, Educational Analysis, and Driver’s Education at Boyd High School and McKinney High School. He served as a class sponsor for many classes, was Slide Ruler Sponsor, and took many students to UIL Math Competitions.
Mr. Lawson served as principal at Finch Elementary School for nine years, and finished his career as the McKinney ISD Director of Student Services. As Director of Student Services, he instituted the first computerized attendance program in McKinney ISD. In addition to his teaching duties, Mr. Lawson served the district as a bus driver, textbook custodian, visiting teacher, and was always willing to assist the district in any way he was needed. He was one of McKinney ISD’s true “go to guys”.
Former students have described him as one of the best math teachers the district has ever had, not only because of his skill in teaching mathematics, but because of his consistent and fair discipline in dealing with his students.
Mr. Lawson retired from McKinney ISD in 1989 after 32 years of dedication to students.
Dr. Jack Cockrill came to McKinney ISD in 1989, just as the District began an unprecedented period of growth. The McKinney ISD Board of Trustees chose him to lead the district during a period of rapid growth and to create a global vision that would move the district into the 21st century. Dr. Cockrill received a master’s degree from Southeastern Oklahoma State University and a Doctorate of Education from East Texas State University.
During the ten years he served as superintendent (1989-1999), Dr. Cockrill led a number of initiatives. Several of these accomplishments are listed below: