DRIPPING SPRINGS, Texas (KXAN) — Dripping Springs ISD plans to purchase millions of dollars worth of portables to use as classrooms for the next few school years. This comes as the district deals with capacity issues as its student body continues to grow.
According to the district, enrollment grew from roughly 4,500 to 8,500 students in the last decade. The district also expects enrollment to essentially double again, to 16,000, in the next decade.
Dripping Springs ISD is looking at spending $1,533,742 for six portables for FY 2023-24. That would provide a total of 12 classrooms.
Previous bond failing
In November, voters decided not to pass three bonds for Dripping Springs ISD. As a result, the district said it would look at several other ways to address growth and overcrowding, including more portable buildings.
Since then, the district has called for a bond this May.
The 2023 bond package includes things like:
- Build Elementary School #6
- Expand Sycamore Springs Middle School
- Build New Facility for Special Education 18 Program
- Security Updates for all Campuses
- Classroom Portables
Portables plan for upcoming school years
During a board of trustees meeting Feb. 27, the board discussed its portables plan for the coming school years if the bond fails again.
Currently, Dripping Springs Elementary School already has two portables, and Sycamore Springs Middle School has three.
Parent’s response to portables
DSISD parent Terri Purdy said she knows some parents may not have a problem with more portables.
“It seems like it’s cheaper, it’s more affordable,” Purdy said.
But for her, it’s a concern.
“I feel like it’s not the best learning environment,” Purdy said. “I feel like it’s not really the best investment when you know, the district is growing. And we should be building permanent classrooms.”
She said one of her major issues is safety.
“I know that at the middle school, there’s a fence and there’s a gate, but it’s a chain link fence. And those portable classrooms only have, you know, one way in one way out. It’s outside. It’s exposed,” Purdy said.