January 6, 1996 in Idaho

Overcrowding Will Be Discussed At Meeting

By The Spokesman-Review

Overcrowding is the big issue facing the Post Falls School Board at its Monday meeting.

As in Coeur d’Alene, the elementary and middle schools in Post Falls are rapidly running out of room, forcing parents and administrators to consider drastic solutions.

Superintendent Richard Harris would not release the administration’s recommendation prior to Monday’s meeting, but he did indicate that the long-term solution may be a bond issue to build a high school.

If a new high school is built, the long-range plan calls for turning the existing high school into a middle school. A middle school would take the sixth-graders out of the elementary schools.

But even if the high school bond issue were to pass, it would be two or three years before it’s open, doing little to solve the immediate space crunch.

The short-term solutions under consideration include year-round school at Prairie View Elementary, double-shifting at the junior high, buying more portable classrooms, and leasing space from churches or other buildings for classrooms.

The latter idea was raised in a series of public meetings to discuss short-term solutions. Harris estimated that more than 200 people attended the three public meetings.

One short-term measure, creating a kindergarten center at the old Frederick Post school building, was taken this year. But with the 3 percent annual growth rate, school officials expect to use up all of the extra classroom space within the next year.

Other items on the School Board agenda include a proposal to close the high school campus, a proposal to start a varsity soccer program, and a policy to govern use of the new computer network.

The meeting starts at 7 p.m. in the Post Falls High School cafeteria.

, DataTimes

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