OKCPS Superintendent Makes New Recommendations for Overcrowding

(Oklahoma City, OK) Oklahoma City Public School District Interim Superintendent Dave Lopez is providing new recommendations to address the overcrowding at schools in south Oklahoma City. The District held three community meetings to gather input on the District’s original plan to transport south Oklahoma City students to three north Oklahoma City schools.

“Our original plan was not well received by the community and we listened. We will not move forward with our original plan that included transporting students to schools with available space,” said Lopez.

The District’s leadership team spent time researching other long term and short term options to address the overpopulation at US Grant High School Capitol Hill High School. The recommendations presented to the OKCPS Board of Education include:

  • Purchase and install 20 portables at US Grant High School and 10 at Capitol Hill High School.  Bids have been received on costs of “traditional” portable classrooms; however the District will research the costs of purchasing “portable” classrooms that are FEMA rated to withstand tornadoes. 2007 bond issue funds can be used to purchase and install portable classrooms; it is not expected that the portable classrooms will be in ready for the start of school in August.
  • Issue a request to purchase (RFP) by May 30 for an architect to design permanent classroom additions for US Grant (24) and Capitol Hill (16). 2007 bond funds can be used for this purpose.
  • Issue an RFP by May 30 to demolish Columbus Elementary and to prep the site for a future elementary school.  Design of a new elementary school can be paid through the 2007 bond issue but construction would be paid by a future bond issue.
  • Determine sites by June 15 for construction of two new elementary schools and one new middle school in south Oklahoma City to be included in a future bond issue. 
  • Contract by May 30 with a professional realtor to lease or purchase commercial, church-owned and non-profit owned properties in South Oklahoma City that can be renovated for early childhood centers.
  • Continue discussions with City-County Health and City of OKC for joint development of community schools (elementary or Pre-K centers) at City-owned park lands in south Oklahoma City.
  • Continue discussions with Santa Fe South Schools to jointly develop facilities and/or properties owned by the charter school and for temporary use by OKCPS.

“The end result could include all or some of the proposed options. We want to do our due-diligence to address overcrowding in south Oklahoma City and respect the concerns our parents, students and many in the community have on this topic,” added Lopez.