PERRYSBURG — With additional portable classrooms coming and $45 million in immediate needs, Perrysburg Schools is looking at where and how to build to adjust to growth in enrollment.
Immediate and secondary building needs were presented to the school board at the regular working group meeting on Tuesday as $60 million. Future building options, renovation or rebuilding, were presented by architect Dave Serra, owner of architectural firm the Collaborative.
“Space serves as a function of our academic goals,” Superintendent Tom Hosler said. “So what’s the problem? More students due to more development in the city and the townships. So we must plan for the immediate future.”
Hosler said that a study done in 2018 showed potential enrollment growth by the end of 2022 to be 6,788, which the district is not now expected to reach.
Currently, there are 5,600 students enrolled, which is 571 more than the 2015-16 school year.
The current class of kindergarteners is 367, which is already greater than the first grade class. As with previous years, the class grew by enrollment for the next year. That class started as kindergarteners at 283, and this year’s enrollment is 359.
“We can anticipate that the snowball trends will continue,” Assistant Superintendent Brook Price said. She compared that growth to the enrollment at Fort Meigs Elementary, which is 559.
City planning numbers were presented earlier this year and the estimated additional housing units that can be accommodated are at 3,114. The projection is that it might be reached in 2040.
“There’s this very delicate balance that boards have to walk between managing that growth to the point where we need to make that commitment,” Hosler said. “These are good problems to have. We are a community on the move.”
Renovation compared to the re-build percentages for all schools were presented to the board. They are:
Fort Meigs Elementary 43%
Frank Elementary 41%
Toth Elementary 47%
Woodland Elementary 56%
Perrysburg Junior High School 52%
Hull Prairie 0%
Perrysburg High School 4%
State recommendations are that when the percentage reaches 65% it is cheaper to renovate.
For the elementary schools, Woodland seemed to have the greatest potential for additions. It has the most space to build, at 22 acres, more than twice that of any other school.
Perrysburg High School was designed 20 years ago with growth in mind. The current utilities, hallways and land were prepared to add on. It is currently designed to accommodate 1,600, but has 1,718 right now. With additions, it would have the potential for 2018.
There are currently six portable classroom trailers that are partially up and running.
“As the enrollment continues to grow, there’s probably the need for additional trailers out there, potentially two per year for the next five or six years,” Serra said.
Right now all the trailers on site are not completely in use, because of a supply-chain issue that has electronics holding things up. Teachers are using temporary and portable locations in the high school to teach those classes, until they can move into the portable classrooms.
Board member Eric Benington, who is also the chief financial officer for construction contractor Rudolph/Libbe, asked Serra about the immediate deferred maintenance needs and how fast that growth in cost is happening, noting that in 2018 those needs were estimated to be $35 million.
Serra reiterated that the number has increased $10 million, to the $45 million, and estimates are a 5% increase in costs per year.
The next board meeting is scheduled for Oct. 18, when funding options will be discussed.