On Monday night the Williamson County Commission re-affirmed a Williamson County Schools projection that the district will require commitments of more than $400 million to building new, or expanding existing, schools over the next five years.
As part of state law, the county must square any changes made in its budget over the year. The WCS five-year plan, part of an accounting provided by each county department, was part of this, however with little change. But it does provide a look into the expensive needs of the district in the near future.
The high price tag in this Williamson County Schools five-year capital projects plan speaks to just how much enrollment is expected to increase. Estimates by the district show that 20,000 new students could enter rolls in the next decade. Currently, enrollment is about 40,000 students.
The plan includes funding to purchase 645 acres of land and build 10 new schools. It also includes funding for renovations and expansions of seven existing schools.
The total funding for the combined land purchase and new school construction is $323.6 million, with $35.6 million for land and $288.6 million for construction.
The new schools include:
- An elementary school in central east Williamson County for $30 million to be complete by fall 2019.
- A central middle school for $38 million to be complete by fall 2020.
- A south elementary school for $30 million to be complete fall 2020.
- A central elementary school for $30 million to be complete by fall 2020.
- A south elementary and middle school for $53 million by fall 2021.
- A north middle school for $38 million to be complete by fall 2022
- A northeast elementary school for $30 million to be complete by fall 2022
- A Brentwood Middle School replacement building for $20.5 million to be complete by fall 2023.
- A central east elementary school for $15 million to be complete by fall 2023
- A 14-classroom elementary school on an already-owned property for $3.5 million by fall 2020.
Major renovations funding totals $81.2 million.
- A new auditorium at Grassland Middle and Summit Middle for $6.8 million by spring 2019.
- A 22-classroom addition and cafeteria at Independence High for $6.8 million by fall 2019.
- General maintenance at Fairview Middle totaling $3.2 million by fall 2020.
- A new Scales Elementary HVAC system for $3.5 million by fall 2020.
- For the remaining two phases of interior renovation and addition at Page High and Middle of $56.1 million by fall 2021.
- A 22-classroom addition and cafeteria expansion at Summit High of $6.8 million by fall 2021.
- The five-year plan also includes a total of $16.7 million for maintenance of roofs and school grounds and asphalt surfaces.
In total, the district says it needs $427.4 million dollars over the next five years for these projects.