Bowie High School celebrated the official naming of its new principal in grand Bear fashion with the famous Mariachi Orgullo, the cheerleaders, dance team and marching band.
Frank Ordaz, interim principal for the past 10 months, appeared through the smoke inside Bowie’s inflatable tunnel to a line of cheerleaders before greeting about 400 cheering students in the gym.
“I’m proud to be at Bowie,” Ordaz told the students during the early-morning pep rally. “I’ve seen the success and have seen the struggles here at Bowie and I want you to know I am committed. We are all committed to being here with you. We’re here because of you and we’re here to be with you.”
Ordaz has been part of the Bowie community for many years. He became an assistant principal at Bowie in 2013 and prior to that served as an assistant principal at Guillen Middle School, a feeder school to Bowie. He considers the promotion “one of the greatest opportunities” of his life.
“I have the responsibility to make sure students who graduate from Bowie have the same opportunities that I did and that they are able to attend a university, join the military or go to a technical school,” he said. “I want our students to walk with their head held high. They are ready to take on the world and to succeed.”
“He knows our traditions and he knows us and we know him,” she said. “He’s going to be really good as principal because he was already good as an interim and assistant principal.”
Ordaz told the students his first call after being named was to his parents.
“Like many students here, I’m the son of two immigrant parents who came to the United States and that pushed education on their children to make sure they are able to achieve the dream. Being here at Bowie is very close to my heart. I’ve been through what some of our students have been through. I’ve seen it.”
Ordaz, who has spent his entire 17-year educational career in EPISD, taught special education teacher at Hornedo Middle School and later became a home hospital teacher for students at the El Paso Psychiatric Center. He also has served as an assistant principal at Canyon Hills Middle School. He graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso with a bachelor’s degree in political science and a minor in rhetoric. His received a master’s degree in educational administration also from UTEP.
He looks to the future of Bowie with excitement and pride.
“The best is yet to come for Bowie,” he said. “We will be providing great programs that will ensure students learn at a high level and achieve at the highest level possible.”
Dr. Carla Gonzales, assistant superintendent of high schools, congratulated Ordaz and told the crowd he was an ideal fit for the campus.
“You deserve to have the very best and someone who understand what it is to be a Bowie Bear and the traditions that are here,” Gonzales told students. “Bowie High School is going nowhere and either is Mr. Ordaz. We’re here to stay and show the city what we can do. His heart is here and his belief in what you can do as students and staff is true and real. The next few years are going to be phenomenal in the history making for the bears.”
The welcome ceremony was held Friday, December 8th.