School Board contemplates new school location
Wednesday, 31 October 2012 by Matthew Girard
During a special Belton Independent School District Board of Trustees workshop, board members discussed the future of the district in regards to buildings and attendance boundaries Monday night at the BISD Administration building.
Although no action was taken during any of the topics, members discussed the realignment of elementary school programs with the addition of the two new elementary schools, the elementary attendance boundary process and the possible new location of BISD's 10th elementary school that is scheduled to open in 2014.
The realignment of programs will address space issues for each school and also make more efficient use of teachers. One possible situation would involve the creation of an Early Childhood Center at Tyler Elementary that would house the district's Pre-K classes.
The Board also began discussing the attendance boundary process. Deputy Superintendent of Finance and Operations Eric Haugeberg showed the board the current attendance boundaries and provided maps of the dispersal of children within each boundary.
Board of Trustees President Randy Pittenger reminded the members that the process can be hard, but asked for patience from all of those involved.
"We need everybody working together," Pittenger said. "Even if it doesn't affect you."
In anticipation of the upcoming of new schools, Pittenger said that the northern section of BISD's boundaries will be set prior to the south boundaries.
Haugeberg also presented two possible locations for the building of the 10th elementary school.
The two possible locations the board is considering is along Second Avenue close to Loop 121 or on Wheat Road.
Haugeberg reported that the Second Avenue location would require close to $3 million more than the budgeted amount through the most recent bond election for improvements that would be need to be made through the Texas Department of Transportation and the reconfiguration of the Tarver Elementary model for the building. The extra construction would also postpone the opening of the new school.
The Wheat Road location, on the other hand, would be able to support the district's prototype for the building and would be on track to open in 2014.
The Board is expected to make a final decision on the location of elementary school No. 10 at next week's Board Meeting.
The Board also heard a report from Temple City Manager David Blackburn about the infrastructure, development and growth in West Temple.