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Sebastian Herrera

Reporter for the Houston Chronicle, mostlly covering west Houston/Katy-area news

Location icon Houston, Texas

I was born in Bogotá, Colombia and grew up in Dallas. I became interested in journalism as a teenager due to a deep interest in writing and the desire to tell stories. This portfolio includes selected clips from my work at the Houston Chronicle.


Featured work at the Chronicle

Houston Chronicle
In Houston's Katy suburb, a Venezuelan population thrives

In recent years, they've faced the challenges of the downturn in the oil business, and they've kept a close eye on home, as Venezuela suffers through a catastrophic economic crisis. The family picked the suburb after hearing positive reviews on the school district.

Houston Chronicle
Texas senators to hear bill to require licensing for specialists who treat autism

Behavior analysts also practice in public schools, though in Texas, they have Texas Education Agency mandates to follow. Applied behavior analysis (ABA) stakeholders and supporters in the state now are attempting to regulate the practice with two bills in the Legislature that would require behavior analysts to be licensed.

Coverage of the Katy school district (seventh-largest ISD in TX)

Houston Chronicle
Cost of new Katy ISD stadium tops $70 million

After Katy ISD voters rejected a bond package in 2013 amid an uproar over a costly proposed football stadium, district officials returned to the drawing board.

Houston Chronicle
In Katy school district, highway divides academic performance results

About 60 percent of children are economically disadvantaged at McDonald, which is north of Interstate 10 in Katy ISD, home to some of the suburb's poorest students. The most significant difference between the schools are their number of economically disadvantaged students, those who are registered to receive free or reduced lunch based on parental income.

Houston Chronicle
Katy stadium takes shape, draws interest

A short distance from Jack Rhodes Memorial Stadium in Katy, unfinished concrete stadium bleachers rise from a work site filled with bulldozers, a crane and mixing trucks. The activity on a recent afternoon reflects growing interest in the section of Katy where the school district is building a 12,000-seat stadium funded by a $748 million bond package approved by voters in 2014.

Houston Chronicle
Katy ISD contracts were in limbo because of one person

The board indefinitely postponed that group of contact extensions, which included those of district administrators, all 60 principals and many assistant principals, because of alleged problems regarding a principal on that list.

Houston Chronicle
Houston area school districts join forces for Texas legislative session

Area school districts unite for education reform Fort Bend ISD school board president Kristin Tassin feels it every day in her suburban district that covers 170 square miles southwest of Houston: the pressures of high-stakes testing, the flaws of the state's school finance system and the unfunded mandates that reroute millions of dollars away from students.

Houston Chronicle
Katy ISD decision opens talk on district transparency

Amid criticism of Katy ISD's decision last month to stop posting online video of its monthly work-study sessions, the district's board plans to review the matter at its Feb. 15 meeting, a district spokesperson said.

Houston Chronicle
Katy ISD trustees: Freedom of speech restricted by school board

The long-standing procedure suggests that elected officials should filter information to the public and act as a unified voice despite different opinions on district matters. "Katy ISD is a government, and if a government tries to restrict the ability of a trustee to speak to the media, it is simultaneously restricting the freedom of the press," said Scott, whose background is in public policy and journalism.

Houston Chronicle
Top-ranking Katy ISD attracts staff from various locations in region

a good salary and work environment and KISD's stellar reputation keep him in the job, Nauman said. A sample listing of addresses from the 9,039-member staff at Katy ISD shows them traveling to work from places such as La Grange, which is 72 miles away, and Humble, 47 miles away.

Other coverage

Houston Chronicle
Water park's opening brings high hopes for Katy tourism

Inside, they'll find nine water rides, a 25,000-square-foot wave pool, a lazy river and a Texas-style barbecue restaurant. Katy has been known more for its powerhouse high school football team and popular mall than for any particular tourist attractions.

Houston Chronicle
Katy's history reflected in life of one man

Johnny Nelson, 76, often drives along Katy's Avenue D in his 2014 Chevrolet pickup truck on the way home. Sometimes, as he travels along the concrete road, Nelson remembers how different it looked when he arrived to the city in 1954.

Houston Chronicle
In Katy, debate over growth management dominates mayoral election

After flood waters devastated Katy one year ago, residents inside the west Houston suburb began asking the same question: could officials have done more to prepare the city's infrastructure against flooding? Like other parts of the region that experienced catastrophic rainfall last April, Katy was hit by what experts claim was a rare event where flood prevention was impossible.

Houston Chronicle
Future of Texas politics in the hands of Hispanic electorate

The demographic is destined to become a political power as its population continues to expand rapidly, making Democrats optimistic that they can build on successes seen this election in counties like Harris - where Hispanics make up an estimated 41 percent of the population.

Houston Chronicle
At this Katy facility, Houston juvenile delinquents go to live

Barbed wire twists around the tan-colored building, and a single gate allows vehicles into the 19-acre facility off Katy Hockley Road. A group of young men in gray sweat pants and plain white T-shirts heaved balls at two basketball nets inside an aging gymnasium with a concrete floor.

Houston Chronicle
Amid unrest toward Muslims, 'Day of solidarity' created in show of unity

The people stood at each of the mosque's three entrances gripping posters coated with heart shapes and letters spelling phrases of support: We are one. At a time when calls have arisen to ban all Muslims from entering the country and while hate crimes targeting the religion have jumped, Muslims throughout the nation have expressed new fears, which have been elevated since the presidential election of Donald Trump.

Houston Chronicle
Flood damage varies in greater Katy area

Other city streets that flooded included stretches on Kingsland Boulevard and George Bush Drive, where the city's Veterans of Foreign Wars post received a foot of water that caused $30,000 in damages, Hebert said.

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