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Austin ISD Projects 31 Elementary Schools Will Be Over Capacity By 2015-16

Image by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

A massive influx of young children to the Austin Independent School District will cause more than third of AISD elementary schools to be bursting at the seams by 2015-16 school year, according to a demographic projection and enrollment analysis to be presented to school board members tonight.

The enrollment analysis says 31 of the district's 81 elementary schools will be overcrowded by 2015-16. AISD doesn't label schools as overcrowded until they are above 115 capacity.

Four middle schools and two high schools will be overcapacity by then, according to projections, a total of 37 schools. That means 30 percent of the district's 124 schools would be overcrowded.

At the same time, eleven elementary schools are projected to below capacity by 2015-16, along with three middle schools. Any schools with less than 75 percent enrollment are considered to be under capacity.

This news comes as the Austin ISD prepares to hold two conversations with parents this week on the possibility of closing and consolidating schools to save money. Wednesday's meeting is scheduled for the Delco Center from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.  A meeting on Thursday is scheduled for the same time at the Tony Burger Center.

At the meetings, the Austin ISD's Facility Master Plan Task Force will present recommendations for how to make the best use of school district facilities for the next ten years.  The recommendations could include new school construction, school boundary changes, and building closures. The Task Force has been holding smaller, localized meetings with parents and community members for about nine months. 

Already, some parents are getting ready to push back against the possibility of their neighborhood school being closed because it's underused.  For example, more than 700 people have "Liked" a Facebook page called Keep Barton Hills Elementary School Open.

Here are the capacity projections for the 2015-16 school year contained in the aforementioned report.

Schools projected to be above 115 percent capacity in 2015-16

Elementary Schools

Cook (247%)
Wooldridge (240%)
Barrington (197%)
McBee(187% )
Wooten (157%)
Walnut Creek ( 153%)
Graham (142%)
Pillow (141% )
Hart (138%)
Patton (124%)
Oak Hill (119%)
Overton (158%)
Andrews (157%)
Harris (146%)
Pickle (130%)
Blanton (126%)
Brown (117%)
Linder (190% )
Blazier (166% )
Perez (166%)
Rodriguez (149%)
Langford ( 137%)
Houston (126%)
Widen (116%)
Odom (133%)
Pleasant Hill (130%)

Middle Schools

Martin (147%)
Bedichek (142%)
Burnet (131%)
Murchison ( 130%)

High Schools

Akins (138%)
Lanier (138%)

Schools projected to be below 75 percent capacity in 2015-16

Elementary schools

Becker (49% )
Dawson (56%)
Blackshear (46%)
Allan (54%)
Zavala (61%)
Campbell ( 72%)
Norman (72%)
Ortega (72%)
Boone (62%)

Middle schools

Garcia (74%)
Lamar (64%)

No high schools are projected to be under capacity by 2015-16, according to the report.

Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. He covers the big projects that are reshaping how we get around Austin, like the I-35 overhaul, the airport's rapid growth and the multibillion-dollar transit expansion Project Connect. He also focuses on the daily changes that affect how we walk, bike and drive around the city. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on X @KUTnathan.
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