Northeast Houston district gears up for new school construction program

By Paul Takahashi

New Caney Independent School District is one of the fastest-growing districts in the Houston area.

The school district northeast of Houston has about 15,000 students, but is expected to double in population in the coming decade. The district is growing by about one elementary school — or more than 1,000 students — a year.

“We’re experiencing phenomenal growth,” said Kenn Franklin, New Caney ISD’s superintendent.

To handle the student growth, New Caney ISD has begun preparing for a possible school bond vote next year. The district recently hired Houston-based LAN Inc. to conduct an assessment of 54 school facilities, including 18 aging campuses, and create a long-term capital campaign that could possible go before voters in May 2018.

Voters have passed a school bond about every three years since 2000. The last bond totaling $173.5 million was passed in 2015. That bond touched nearly every school campus, helping build two new elementary schools, a natatorium and added about 3,500 student seats to the growing district, Franklin said.

“We’re a little past halfway with our projects,” Franklin said. “We want to make sure we stay ahead of our growth.”

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