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School CIP Leaves New High School and Additions Unfunded

by Vernon Miles January 3, 2019 at 2:30 pm 5 Comments

The Fairfax County Public School’s Capital Improvement Plan (CIP), scheduled for review later this month, still leaves a planned nearby high school unfunded as local crowding increases.

The new high school is planned for somewhere along the Dulles Suburban Corridor to take students coming up through McNair, Coates and Hutchison elementary schools.

The high school’s location has not been selected yet, and school officials at prior meetings said they are relying on proffers from developers and negotiations with applicants to see if land for a new high school can be provided.

While South Lakes High School sits at 92 percent capacity, the surrounding Herndon, Madison and Oakton high schools all exceed 100 percent capacity. The CIP’s school capacity chart for the 2018-2019 school year shows Oakton High School at 131 percent capacity. The school year 2023-24 projections show South Lakes High School’s capacity increasing from 92 percent to 97 percent.

The CIP also notes that capacity enhancement additions will be needed at Madison High School to accommodate for the forecasted capacity needs, though those additions remain unfunded.

The high school planned for the western party of the county to relieve schools around Oakton and Herndon is not the only new school lacking funds. A new elementary school along the Metro’s Silver Line also remains unfunded.

As plans move along for greater levels of residential density in Reston, local residents expressed concerns at meetings last year that FCPS is waiting until new development starts to overcrowd the schools before taking action to address capacity. School officials stated that the new developments are not anticipated to bring in high numbers of new students.

A public hearing for the CIP will be held next Tuesday (Jan. 8) before a final decision, which is scheduled for Jan. 24.

Photo via FCPS

  • Arielle in NoVA

    Too little, too late, yet again >:(

  • Terry Maynard

    The FCPS system was saying the same thing six years ago about a prospective high school in western Fairfax County when community members of the Reston Task Force met with FCPS planning staff and Hunter Mill District rep Pat Hynes. Lots of plans, no money.

    I would add that the FCPS enrollment forecasting system has limited validity beyond 5 years–a point FCPS will not argued–and the proffers FCPS extricates from developers are pathetic minuscule vs. the cost of building and operating a school. So look for more students in classrooms, more trailers, and more poorly paid (& possibly less qualified) faculty and staff.

  • Mike M

    So, here is exhibit 4,519F in the case against the County developing faster than it can afford. This is planning failure. This is leadership failure. This is what it smells like. Our County “leaders” will turn over every rock to find new revenue. Meals tax, tolls, valuations, etc. If you wanted proffers, you should have made a reasonable contribution a must before approval of development. But you chose to go for it. Why is that? I assume it’s bribes to the planners and supes. How else does it make sense?

    • 30yearsinreston

      Schools and infrasrtucture were given away for free houses
      i’ve lost count of Hudgins failures
      She is totally incompetent

    • Chkitout1

      People are fed up, yet they keep voting for Democrats who run unopposed.
      ‘The definition of the word insanity could be doing the same thing and expecting a different result’

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