SOUTH RANGE School sees increase as a problem

Committees will be developed to study the district's space problems.
NORTH LIMA -- Superintendent James Hall reported on the state of the South Range School District, and the bottom line is that enrollment is steadily increasing and the district is heading toward an overcrowding problem.
A professional analysis of the district's enrollment projections was recently completed. "Conservative estimates have our enrollment increasing by 213 students over the next 10 years, which is a 16-percent increase," Hall told the board of education at its meeting Monday.
Potential expansion: According to the study, the enrollment could increase by as much as 475 students, which is a 35-percent increase.
Hall said he had the building principals report on classroom usage during the school day. The only time there are available classrooms is over the lunch periods. "If we hired a teacher, he or she would have to travel from room to room," he said.
He cited an example of just how short space is in the buildings. "The female teachers have given up their lounge space so that there is a quiet area to tutor students," Hall said.
An architectural firm toured the buildings and told Hall that according to the Ohio Schools Facilities Commission, the district has several deficiencies, such as building and classroom size, parking, traffic, heating and air conditioning problems, along with the composition of some of the roofs.
Studies: Hall plans to set up two committees to study the problem.
He also reported on several other aspects of the district operations, including the finances. "Providing nothing horrible happens, the earliest we would ask for an operating levy would be 2004, but I'm hoping we can hold off until 2006," he said.

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