At its February 26 meeting, the Irving ISD Board of Trustees voted unanimously to name the Irving ISD Professional Learning and Wellness Center after current Superintendent of Schools Magda Hernandez. 

“Naming the facility after Superintendent Magda Hernandez is not just an acknowledgment of her individual accomplishments; it also honors and celebrates the transformative impact she has had on Irving ISD,” says Board President Randy Randle. “It symbolizes our collective appreciation for her dedication, leadership and vision, and serves as an inspiration for generations to come. It is Superintendent Hernandez’s vision and courage of thinking outside the box that is making the Professional Learning and Wellness Center become a reality.”

Since being named Superintendent of Schools for Irving ISD in December of 2018, Hernandez has emphasized the importance of the wellbeing of all employees. In the fall of 2020, she spearheaded a campaign assuring staff that “self-care isn’t selfish – it’s necessary.”

In line with this priority, Superintendent Hernandez cast a vision to create a one-of-a-kind facility that would enhance the overall well-being of staff, parents and students, providing a space for work, learning and healing. The Professional Learning and Wellness Center achieves this vision and offers wellness opportunities not only to employees, but also to Irving ISD families.

“What an incredible honor. I am truly honored and humbled,” says Superintendent Hernandez. “This achievement is not just mine. It belongs to the entire team and community. Having a building named after me is a reminder of the impact we can have on this world. I hope this legacy inspires others to strive for excellence. Our kids deserve it and our staff deserves it. I see this as a responsibility to continue to serve and support our amazing community. I look forward to contributing to the growth and wellbeing of everyone associated with this building – our incredible district, our incredible community, our city. Thank you for believing in me, seeing the future like I do and continuing to support this amazing journey.”

Sharing a site with Singley Academy, the 2 ½ story building features a flexible layout that emphasizes the nature preserve area north of the facility and a unique biophilic design focused on the wellness of the end user. 

The facility, funded by Tax Increment Fund (TIF) monies that could only be used on capital projects such as building in north Irving, is scheduled to open in the summer of 2024. It will house HIPPY (Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters), PEACE (Parent Education & Community Involvement), Adult Education and Literacy (AEL), Employee Wellness and Professional Learning spaces. Each of those programs has experienced tremendous growth under the leadership of Superintendent Hernandez.

During her tenure, HIPPY has doubled in size and is the only program in the nation to develop and implement the partner initiative HIEPE (Home Instruction Extension for Parents as Educators). The PEACE program has shifted focus from primarily volunteers to providing support, resources and instruction for families, truly pulling together the entire Irving ISD community. AEL has grown to an enrollment of almost 1,000, offering an array of classes (at no cost to the student) including GED, English and job skills that lead students to better jobs and opportunities. In fact, Irving ISD has been able to hire six graduates from the teaching assistant program offered through AEL. Each of these programs is known across the state and has representation at the state and or national level on councils and committees because it is recognized that Irving ISD is at the forefront of innovation and excellence in parent engagement and adult learning.

The completion of the center will help improve program services as well as further Superintendent Hernandez’s vision of wellbeing and support to employees and the Irving ISD community.