Cost estimates for 2 school additions coming

By AUTUMN HUGHES
Posted 4/23/19

Bradley County’s leaders should soon have cost estimates in hand as they consider proposed expansions at Black Fox and North Lee elementary schools.

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Cost estimates for 2 school additions coming

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Bradley County’s leaders should soon have cost estimates in hand as they consider proposed expansions at Black Fox and North Lee elementary schools.

The Bradley County Commission’s Education Committee discussed the overcrowding concerns during a meeting Monday afternoon. Chairman Thomas Crye said there is overcrowding at both schools, with an estimated cost of more than $1 million to add classrooms to correct the situation.

Crye invited commissioners to tour the schools to see the needs, referring to the tour he took as “eye opening.”

Commissioner Milan Blake asked, with these proposed expansions, if the schools will be as large as they can grow. Bradley County Director of Schools Dr. Linda Cash said yes, and that to add many more students the school system would have to expand the cafeterias and gymnasiums at both schools.

Blake said if the classroom expansion plans move forward, why not grow the schools as much as possible.

“If you need more, now is the time,” he said.

Cash said a four-room expansion at Black Fox and North Lee will allow both schools to accommodate the current number of students. She said a new, unanticipated cost is the need to add bathrooms to the expansion plans. Cash said she expects to have cost estimates for the proposed expansions by May 10.

Commissioner Louie Alford asked if the additional classrooms are built, what will happen to the schools’ capacity. Cash said the schools are at capacity now.

“We are looking at the population right now to see where we’re growing,” Cash said, adding 20 students per classroom are allowed at the elementary level, with 25 students allowed at the fourth- and fifth-grade levels.

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