In September 2004, the San Antonio Express News reported that the Southside Independent School District (SISD) was growing faster than any other school district in San Antonio. The opening of a new Toyota manufacturing plant, the possibility of a new Texas A&M University campus, and the difficulties of further development on the north side of the city have culminated in new opportunities for urban growth on the south side of the city. While population growth is anticipated, the school districts there must prepare well in advance for the new students. Who are they? Where do they live? Where do their parents work? How do their families feel about this new growth? The answers to questions such as these will help the school districts prepare for their new responsibilities. These are the questions that two classes at Trinity University set out to answer. Every spring semester, two classes in the Sociology and Anthropology Department at Trinity University come together to apply their different methodologies to one shared project in San Antonio. This year, that project involved a diachronic and synchronic examination of the Southside School District. Two classes Field Studies in Anthropology and GIS and Urban Studies conducted this analysis for the residents and administrators of the SISD. The Field Studies class surveyed four different communities in order to understand how individuals felt about the sudden growth of their area. In so doing, students learned interviewing and ethnographic techniques. The Urban Studies and GIS class performed quantitative analyses of the growth patterns of the area. They mapped where various city services are located and who had access to them. These students learned geographic information systems technology as they conducted this analysis of the school district. The following report documents their findings. It is divided into four parts: part I is an historical overview of the communities living in the Southside school district and a brief history of the district itself, with a demographic analysis of the current population; part II is a contemporary analysis of the communities and of the schools in the SISD. Part III provides an overview of the Services and Social Opportunities available in the area, including basic needs and city services, transportation, community services, library services, health services, crime and emergency services, commercial development, and zoning. Part IV, Current and Future Land Use in the SISD, discusses current land use and introduces the available information for future developments.
Donahue, J., & Drennon, C. (2005). Reconciling growth with history: Student engagement and research on the Southside of San Antonio. Sociology & Anthropology Faculty Research. 2. https://digitalcommons.trinity.edu/socanthro_faculty/2