James and Sharon Tays (Ties) arrived in Katy when there was only one high school, one junior high and two elementary schools.
James Tays graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Education in 1972, and then began his teaching career as a Coordinated Vocational Academic Education teacher at Katy Junior High. He mentored young men and developed their academic interests for future employment from 1972 until 1975. While teaching, he received his Masters of Education in Educational Administration from Texas A&M with a Principal Certification. In 1976, James became the assistant principal of West Memorial Junior High, under the leadership of Garland McMeans. In 1979, James took over as principal when McMeans opened Taylor High School. James served more than 20 years in his role at West Memorial Junior High, and was a role model and mentor to other principals until his retirement from public education in 2002.
Sharon Tays graduated from Southwest Texas State University in 1971 with a Bachelor of Science in Education and a specialization in English. She taught 1st grade in Hearne, Texas from 1971 to 1972, when she moved to Katy ISD and served as a substitute. Sharon substituted in elementary, junior high and high school campuses from 1972 until 1973, when she was hired at Katy Elementary to teach second grade. She taught at Katy Elementary from 1973 to 1978, teaching second grade for four years and then teaching a pull out learning disabled program for two years. Sharon received a Masters of Education in Educational Psychology from Texas A&M with kindergarten, early childhood handicapped and learning disabled certifications in 1977 while teaching. When Hutsell Elementary School opened in 1978, Sharon transferred and continued to teach second grade and serve as a team leader for many years from 1978 to 1996 . While at Hutsell, she was honored as a Campus Teacher of the Year. In 1996, Sharon moved to Katy Junior High where she taught sixth grade reading and writing and served as a team leader until her retirement in 2001.
As mentors, the Tays were encouraging and supportive to both teachers and students. As individuals and as a couple, they significantly and positively impacted the lives of thousands of Katy ISD students and colleagues. With nearly 60 years of combined service, the Tays represent a lifelong commitment to the education of Katy ISD students. They truly understand what it means to "Be the Legacy."