December 14, 2017

Population boom fuels school expansion

By Jerry W. Kram
Edwin Loe Elementary School is close to bursting at the seams, figuratively anyway.
With an enrollment that has ballooned to more than 500 students in kindergarten through fifth grade, the current structure has finally reached its absolute capacity.
“We have no more rooms we can convert into classrooms,” Bluestone told the New Town School Board earlier this year.
The school board approved the idea of expanding the elementary school and authorized Bluestone to hire an architect to design the project. The board has been putting aside money in the district’s building fund for the last few years so no additional taxes or bonds will be needed for the $7.8 million project. The district has been able to fund many building projects over the last eight years because of revenue from oil development on school district land that was inundated by Lake Sakakawea.
The expansion would add 10 classrooms to the existing school, plus a multi-purpose room, three mini-classrooms, and a computer lab.
Bluestone said expansion opportunities at Edwin Loe are limited because the school is surrounded by residential development on three sides and the district’s football field and track on the other. The proposed solution will be to add a second story to the existing building.

The Weather Network