7030 Coffman Road
Dublin, Ohio 43017
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Master Plan provides roadmap to handle challenges of enrollment growth
As we near the end of the Master Plan process, we should take a moment to reflect and look forward as we face the challenges associated with student enrollment growth.
We have been growing every year since 1977, adding an average of approximately 300 new students per year during this almost 40-year time frame. In more recent years, the annual enrollment growth has hovered around 240 new students per year. Historically, our Planning Department has been amazingly accurate with its growth projections. We also use an outside company to assist with enrollment projections in an effort to ensure we are as accurate as possible. This past summer, we added more than 500 additional students. This level of growth was an unforeseen anomaly, presenting us with both challenges and opportunities.
At the beginning of this school year, a Master Plan committee formed and has met regularly for the past eight months. The committee was given the task of peering into the crystal ball in an effort to determine our facilities and land needs over the next decade. During the next 10 years, the District is expected to add approximately 1,150 additional elementary students, 1,000 middle school students, and 1,300 high school students.
This level of enrollment growth means we will need additional classroom space. The Master Plan committee developed four options for consideration by our Board of Education to deal with the sustained growth we are expected to experience over the next decade.
A preschool/elementary combination for elementary 13, the construction of elementary 14, construction of a fifth middle school, and construction of a fourth high school.
A preschool/elementary combination for elementary 13, the construction of elementary 14 (k-8 design configuration), construction of a fifth middle school (k-8 design configuration), and construction of a fourth high school.
A preschool/elementary combination for elementary 13, the construction of elementary 14, the construction of a fifth middle school, non-traditional high school space, and additions to Dublin Jerome and Dublin Scioto.
A preschool/elementary combination for elementary 13, the construction of elementary 14 (k-8 design configuration), construction of a fifth middle school (k-8 design configuration), non-traditional high school space, and additions to Dublin Jerome and Dublin Scioto.
It’s important to note, whichever of these options our Board of Education adopts, plans can change. There are many variables associated with trying to map out future facilities and land needs and we will remain flexible as an organization should things change.
The majority of these projects could be funded through a no new millage bond issue at some point in time. The District is fortunate enough to have the “mortgage payments” on some of its older buildings rolling off the books during the next few years. Therefore, we will have significant capacity to build additional facilities without raising taxes. The additional cost will come down the road when operating dollars are needed to fund the new schools.
The Master Plan committee members have spent the past few months collecting public input on these four options. The options have been discussed with PTO Presidents, Business Advisory Council, Key Communicators, Superintendent’s Teacher Advisory Council, Senior Citizens Council and more. In addition, three public meetings took place last month to provide our community with another opportunity to weigh in on the options. The committee will synthesize all of this public input and use it to help shape their recommendations to the Board later this month.
Fortunately, our Board of Education has been forward thinking in its planning. Last year, the Board approved the construction of 22 additional classrooms at six of our elementary schools. This step was taken with funds originally intended to build a new elementary school. By choosing to construct additions instead, we were able to minimize redistricting and delay the fixed costs that come with operating a school.
Another portion of the Board’s plan was the K-8 redistricting process we undertook last fall. It’s important to remember that when our District grows, there is no geographic or grade level uniformity to the enrollment growth. We owe it to our stakeholders to use our classroom space in the most cost efficient manner possible.
The District has also taken the steps of adding modular classrooms at Dublin Jerome and in an effort to maintain reasonable class sizes, the District has exceeded its 2015-16 staffing plan as 16 additional teachers have been hired in response to the growth. Please note, the District has not been paying for the modulars during the period where they have sat on our property but have not yet been installed. The bill on the lease only kicks in once the buildings are installed and are in use.
While we are entering a challenging time for our District, our Board of Education has prepared us to meet the challenges of growth. We will continually communicate with you regarding the master plan process and will be updating our web page dedicated to the topic at
Todd F. Hoadley, Ph.D.
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7030 Coffman Road
Dublin, Ohio 43017
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