Bond committee talks grade reconfiguration, new high schools

Bond committee talks grade reconfiguration, new high schools

Members vote in favor of building new MHS, LHS campuses at new sites

 

April 21, 2023 — The Midland ISD Bond Planning Committee met for the third time Thursday.

About 80 members came to Midland Freshman High School to learn more about and share their perspectives on the possibility of grade reconfiguration, new construction and the repurposing of current campuses.

Grade Reconfiguration

Midland ISD elementary campuses currently educate pre-kindergartners through sixth graders. Students then move to junior high school for seventh and eighth grade. MISD is rare among school districts in that its ninth graders are at a standalone freshman high school, located miles away from the senior high schools, which serve grades 10 through 12.

Committee members were presented with a more-typical configuration: Elementary campuses would house students in grades pre-kindergarten through five, sixth through eighth graders would be together in middle schools, all high schoolers to be on the same campus.

Many benefits of grade reconfiguration were proposed, including:

  • Greater consistency for students because they will attend fewer campuses in their academic career. 
  • Reduced transitions from school to school as students advance in grade.
  • Expanded course options, particularly through career and technical education.
  • Fostering a greater sense of belonging and investment in school culture.
  • Expansion of pre-kindergarten to serve 3-year-olds. Currently, MISD mostly only serves 4-year-olds, except in special cases. 
  • A reduction in transportation, particularly at the high school level. Currently, many ninth graders at the freshman campuses must be bused to the senior high schools for classes, particularly for career and technical education.

High Schools

Midland ISD is projected to grow by 15% over the next 10 years — more than 4,300 students. With such anticipated growth in the secondary-student population, committee members heard proposals to accommodate these new students:

Two new high schools on new sites: One option is to build brand new Midland High and Legacy High campuses on new sites. The anticipated cost for this scenario is between $820 million and $900 million. In a live survey, 94.9% of committee members favored this option.

One new high school on a new site; one new high school on its existing site: A second option is to build a new Midland High on a different site and rebuild Legacy at its current site. Building a new campus on its existing site could be more expensive because of the phasing of construction and the increased length of time increases cost. The anticipated cost for this scenario is between $860 million and $940 million, which 3.4% of committee members favored.

Two new high schools on their existing sites: A third option is to build new high schools at their existing sites. The anticipated cost for this scenario is between $890 million and $970 million, which 1.7% of committee members favored.

About the Committee

The Bond Planning Committee’s goal is to develop and recommend to the Midland ISD Board of Trustees a bond plan that addresses these facilities issues and prepares the district for future enrollment growth, evolving instructional programs and preventive maintenance.

The committee was formed after MISD’s Long-Range Planning Committee recommended to the board nearly unanimously Feb. 9 that one should be formed. Their conclusion was informed in part by a demographic study showing that MISD's aging facilities, particularly its high schools, cannot support the rapid and persistent growth the community is facing. The Long-Range Planning Committee began its work in August 2021 and presented initial recommendations to the Board of Trustees in November 2022.

Save the Date

Bond Planning Committee meetings are open to the public. Here are upcoming meetings.

All meetings begin at 6 p.m.

More Information 

MISD’s Bond Planning Committee website will be updated with more information as the process continues. You can find it at midlandisd.net/bond.

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Media Relations Contact:

Trevor Hawes

Communications Specialist

432-240-1044 | trevor.hawes@midlandisd.net