New Richland elementary schools become school district's top priority

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,” Superintendent Rick Schulte said.

“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,” Schulte continued. 

One of the new schools will be built near the intersection of Belmont Boulevard and Bluewood Street in West Richland.

The second school will be built in south Richland at a site that is yet to be determined.

The 10 existing elementary schools have 246 classrooms and the   projected elementary enrollment growth along with a class size goal of 20 students per teacher means 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, and  enrollment is projected to increase another 2,000 students by 2021.

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