Growth and expansion were the primary topics presented by Elmore County Schools superintendent Richard Dennis to the Elmore County Board of Education on Monday night.

The official number of students attending Elmore County Schools for the 2019-20 school year stands at 11,205 which is an increase of 183 students compared to the 2018-19 school year.

“11,205 is our official number as it stands for this school year,” Dennis said. “That is the number we will be funded on for next year. Some of that cost we will recoup this year from the state.”

With growth comes the need for additional space. At the board’s previous meeting, Dennis received board approval to gather costs and plans for a variety of projects.

An additional building is planned for the Elmore County Technical Center.

“We have spent a lot of time planning for this one,” Dennis said. “It is a major project for us and it is something we have to do.”

Enrollment at the school has steadily increased from a few hundred students to 800 students.

“Part of the plan here is to help us expand the programs we have now and offer new programs,” Dennis said.

According to the architect plans, the building will located along the back of the campus and house welding, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, cabinet making, aviation, public safety and medical programs.

The school is open to students in 10th through 12th grades who attend a high school located in the county and offers numerous programs such as welding, automotive technology, pre-engineering, IT, plumbing and electrical technology to list a few of the subjects offered at the school.  

Plans for an updated front entrance to Elmore County High School were also presented.

“Improvements to the school entrance to make it more secure,” Dennis said. “Also, the improvement will find and fix a leak effecting the floor. The current plan will feature a foyer area.”

Plans for a new middle school located in the Redland Road area of the county were also presented.

“The plans for the school is set up for 800 students,” Dennis said. “It will be prepared to expand for up to 1,200 students. We also went ahead and marked locations for athletic facilities so the infrastructure would already be in place and ready for development in the future.”

Stanhope Elmore is one step closer to receiving a new room for its school band.

“Our goal is — just in growth we’ve seen — if we create a band room we will have an opportunity to offer seventh- and eighth-grade students band,” Dennis said. “It would also free up two or three classrooms that will benefit us down the road as we see growth continuing in that area.”

Other capital items discussed included:

• Additions to Holtville High School’s baseball and softball complexes, new sidewalks and physically disabled parking and restroom facilities

• Addition to Airport Road Intermediate School for an expected attendance increase

• Possible land purchases

• Fleet renewal

• Energy maintenance upgrades