Return to Headlines

Socorro ISD creates first-of-their-kind open enrollment elementary schools of choice

Academy logos and photos

PreK-5th grade students from across El Paso County eligible to apply to attend the NEW 
Paso Del Norte Fine Arts and Escontrias STEAM academies 

Learn more about the new elementary academies in SISD

Apply to the Paso Del Norte Fine Arts Academy or the Escontrias STEAM Academy

The Socorro Independent School District will open two new schools of choice for the 2022-2023 school year, the Paso Del Norte Fine Arts Academy and Escontrias Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM) Academy. The campuses will offer limited open enrollment for students from across El Paso County interested in applying to attend. 

Paso Del Norte Elementary, 12300 Tierra Este Rd., will be converted into the new Fine Arts Academy in which students will receive specialized instruction in dance, music, visual and theatre arts. Escontrias Elementary, 10400 Alameda Ave., will become the new STEAM Academy offering hands-on experiences with state-of-the-art technologies in specialized labs to all students. Students in both academies also will excel in all core curriculum and traditional elementary school experiences. 

“We are excited to launch these two new academies and provide elementary students and families more choice for their educational journey in our public school system,” said Superintendent of Schools Nate Carman, Ed.D. “Socorro ISD has done a tremendous job establishing programs of choice at the secondary level, with its one-of-a-kind law and architectural academies, and business, STEM, technology, IB, CTE and early college programs. It’s time now for us to build and provide that same level of choice and opportunity for our youngest students in the district.” 

As students of the Paso Del Norte Fine Arts Academy, children will develop a strong understanding for the arts and will use this knowledge to apply it to the world around them while becoming productive and responsible citizens in the community. Facilities at the campus are being renovated for students to receive daily instruction and develop their talents in the arts, including specialized dance, music, theatre, and visual art rooms. 

Escontrias STEAM Academy students will attend science and engineering classes in newly renovated labs, work hands-on with technology such as drones, 3D printers, and robotics, and develop lifelong skills to include collaboration, communication and confidence. STEAM concepts will be integrated throughout the day to support the development of higher order thinking and problem solving through the creative process.  

Instruction in the arts and STEAM will be supported through school-sponsored afterschool activities and clubs at both campuses.  

“I have seen these models flourish in other communities and I can’t wait to see our Socorro ISD students taking full advantage of the opportunities these academies will provide,” Carman added. “As we move forward, I look forward to working collaboratively with our community to create even more choices for students to rise to their full potential. With choice and freedom to select a path that suits the interest of the individual child, our students will become more engaged and accomplished at a much younger age.” 

All students who live in the academy attendance zones are grandfathered in and have the first opportunity to enroll in the schools, followed by other Socorro ISD students who wish to apply. Limited space will then be made available to other students from throughout the El Paso region to apply for the new opportunity. Enrollment in the academies is free. Parents can visit to learn more and apply for their children to seize their opportunity in Socorro ISD. 

  Published May 11, 2022

Strategic Direction: College and Career Readiness