Douglas School District will build a new high school anticipating student pop from Ellsworth B-21

The School District will build several new schools in the next decade in anticipation of...
The School District will build several new schools in the next decade in anticipation of student population increase.(Jeffrey Lindblom)
Published: Dec. 14, 2021 at 4:53 PM MST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - The B-21 Bomber coming to Ellsworth in the mid 2020s is projecting to bring thousands to the area.

The Department of Defense predicts 1500 to 2000 of them will be students joining the Douglas School District.

Right now, the district is at near capacity, with 2,850 students.

Kevin Case, Douglas School District Superintendent, says this has led them to start planning to build new school’s in the area.

First on the list is building a new high school, which Case says will take about two years.

However, he says over the next seven years they’ll be attempting to build three elementary schools as well.

Case adds that the their middle school is currently over capacity, and once the new high school is built, what is now Douglas high school will become a middle school.

He says time is of the essence.

”We really have to think about timelines right now,” Case says, “making sure we’re ready when the influx comes in. We can’t wait for the influx to get here and have 24 to 30 months to get something built.”

He says the construction documents for the high school will be completed in the next couple of months, and adds they started talking about the vision for the elementary school’s next week. He says that phase will wrap up in 6 months.

Case says, while normally things like this would be locally funded, they’ll need to seek federal help for the 300-million dollar project.

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