Growth fuels school projects
The Basehor-Linwood school district's construction and renovation projects are spreading $17.5 million worth of improvements through the district.
The project covers about $10 million for high school construction and renovation, about $2 million for middle school construction and renovation, and about $4 million to build the Glenwood Ridge Elementary School, said Don Swartz, director of operations for the school district.
The school district includes two elementary schools, a middle school in Linwood and a high school in Basehor. A third elementary school is under construction.
All of the high school students in the district attend classes in Basehor, Swartz said.
Elementary students who live north of U.S. Highway 24-40 will continue to attend classes at Basehor Elementary. Those who live between U.S. Highway 24-40 and Kansas Highway 32 will attend classes at Glenwood Ridge, set to open in January.
Elementary students who live south and west of highway 32 will attend classes at the elementary school in Linwood.
The new construction will give
Basehor Elementary some needed breathing room, Swartz said the elementary school currently has about 700 students. "That's too big for an elementary school," he said.
When Glenwood Ridge opens in January, about 250 of students from Basehor elementary will transfer to Glenwood Ridge, which is being built to hold 350 students.
About 220 students attend Linwood Elementary, Swartz said.
Since the 1989-1990 school year, all district seventh- and eighth-graders have attended classes at the Basehor-Linwood Middle School, Linwood. Currently, this school has 293 students.
Since that same time, all high school students have attended school in Basehor. There are 584 students there this year. After completion of construction, the high school will have a 1,000-student capacity.
Swartz said construction seems to be running ahead of schedule. "It was scheduled to be done in January of 2001," he said. "But the contractors are telling me now that it will be done by April of 2000."
Swartz said school enrollment has taken a big leap since he came to the district 14 years ago.
"When I came here, there were about 230 kids in the high school. We were nearly at the bottom of the 4A athletic class," Swartz said. "Now there are 580 students here, and we're the twelfth from the top out of about 64 high schools in the 4A class."