Additional elementary schools are priority projects in upcoming - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Additional elementary schools are priority projects in upcoming bond

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RICHLAND, WA - Building two new elementary schools are priority projects included in the Richland School District’s February 2017 bond issue. The District’s 11th and 12th elementary schools will provide the necessary classrooms as enrollment continues to grow and lower class sizes are implemented.

“We will soon need 47 additional elementary classrooms to handle enrollment growth and smaller class sizes,” says Superintendent Rick Schulte. “It’s no secret that the Tri-Cities population continues to grow. New housing developments are going up constantly and there are plans for more.”

One of the new schools will be built near the intersection of Belmont Boulevard and Bluewood Street in West Richland (pictured). The second school will be built in south Richland at a site to be determined.

Here are some RSD elementary classroom and enrollment facts:

  • The 10 existing elementary schools have 246 classrooms.
  • Projected elementary enrollment growth along with a class size goal of 20 students per teacher mean that RSD will need 37 more regular classrooms and 10 more special education classrooms by 2019.
  • Overall RSD enrollment has grown by 2,080 FTE students since 2012.
  • Enrollment is projected to increase another 2,000 students by 2021.

The District will receive state matching funds for the projects thereby lowering the cost to local taxpayers:

  • The two schools will cost a total of $48 million
  • State matching money will total $22 million (45% of the total)
  • Richland School District residents will pay $26 million