Plan for Williston's New High School - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Plan for Williston's New High School

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The plan for a new $56.5 million dollar high school in Williston is moving forward.

A bond vote for $34 million passed with 76 percent approval to add a building to the district to help deal with a near 40 percent increase in student population over the last five years.

Jennifer Kleen tells us about the planning phase for the growing district.

The end of the road is about to open up to a world of possibilities.

On the west edge of Williston, 30 acres of land have been planted for the last time before the donated property becomes home of the Coyotes: the new $56.5 million dollar Williston High School.

(Dr. Viola LaFontaine, Superintendent Williston Public Schools) "The fall of 2016 is when we'll be moving into the new school."

The building committee is working on estimates to see if it would be more cost effective to break ground this fall or wait until next spring, using the time to get the foundation set in stone.

(Dr. Viola LaFontaine, Superintendent Williston Public Schools) "I'm learning a lot about construction. You have to do soil boarings which means you dig down on the land to find out what's there before you can even think about a foundation. That takes 2-3 weeks."

The final crop harvest of the property should take place over the next couple of weeks.

Over the next couple of years, the district will continue to deal with growing pains in portable classrooms.

(Dr. Viola LaFontaine, Superintendent Williston Public Schools) "If we have 200 more students, we have to be okay with that number of students."

District enrollment is about 32-hundred students, a near 40 percent increase over the last five years.

About 100 students have been added over the summer and that increase is expected to continue until the first day of school.

(Dr. Viola LaFontaine, Superintendent Williston Public Schools) "We have three weeks left. Last year I had 20 enroll the week before school started so it's hard to say right now. But we're probably about 100 students up from what we were last year. And we're not getting as many kindergarten students as we have in the past."

As the Williston area continues to grow, expansion plans are taking root for a new crop of students.

In Williston, Jennifer Kleen, KX News.

The next set of detailed schematics from the architect are expected on August 19.

 

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