Pflugerville will name newest elementary school after teacher who died from cancer


PFLUGERVILLE, Texas (KXAN) — A new elementary school currently under construction in the Pflugerville Independent School District will bear the name of a beloved teacher who lost her life to cancer.

The district announced that the Board of Trustees unanimously agreed to name its 22nd elementary school after Jessica Carpenter, who died in September after fighting cancer for four years.

For 20 years, Carpenter worked as a special education inclusion and English as a second language teacher, according to the district. She spent more than 16 of those years at Brookhollow Elementary in Pflugerville ISD.

“She was wholly and fully dedicated to this profession: in teaching children and driving for inclusion no matter what the needs of the students might be,” her husband, Aaron Carpenter, said in a written statement. “She lived to teach. That is all she wanted to do.” 

Crews are building the new elementary school next to Weiss High School, and they’re expected to complete it next fall. During a couple of weeks in September, the district sought nominations to name the new elementary school. The district stated more than 115 submissions suggested Carpenter’s name, which ended up being the most requested.

“In these weeks since her passing, I have received so many kind and detailed letters from parents, former students and her colleagues related to the impact Jessica had on the community,” her husband said. “In these letters, so many of these people remarked they had voted for Mrs. Carpenter’s name to be put in for inclusion for naming of this school.”

The district shared that Carpenter pursued teaching as a career after one of her own elementary teachers inspired her. She earned the honor of being named Brookhollow Teacher of the Year for 2011-2012.

Her husband shared in a statement Wednesday that she accepted invitations to graduation ceremonies of former students even when she battled cancer.

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