GREAT FALLS — Meadow Lark Elementary Schools in Great Falls has an overcrowding problem. The school recently accepted an incoming Kindergarten class of 94 students, yet the school can only accommodate 24 students per classroom in a building which is already filled to the brim.
“We have had to at times bussed students over to Valley View or other schools just to accommodate because we were at capacity,” says Meadowlark principal Teresa Sprague.
Late last summer, the school submitted a bid to construction companies to build four new individual classrooms but only received one response outside their intended budget.
After re-submitting bids, the school received three offers, and intend to propose the lowest bid as it does fall within budget.
Sprague anticipates construction on the classrooms will begin in one month and will take just about six months to complete. Two classrooms will be added onto each wing of the school, jutting out towards the playground and blacktop.
A letter to parents was recently sent out, updating them on the procedure. Excerpts of the document read, “This project will be funded through the America Rescue and Plan Act funds…” and “During construction, the site will be continuously monitored, as the safety of our students is paramount.”
“With the additional subdivisions and things that have been built out in the Fox Farm area, there are families building homes and bringing in children. And so we just have to accommodate for some of our growing population,” says Sprague. “Families are excited. I think when people move into this area, it does help them to be at ease to know that there is going to be space for their child.”
Sprague adds that while she hopes the construction will finish before the start of the Fall year, precautions will be taken should it coincide with the start of school.
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