School Committee Begins Process for High School Addition:Statement of Interest is First Step in Protecting Against Overcrowding

The Everett School Committee on Monday night voted to send a Statement of Interest letter regarding a need for additional space for the Everett High School, on to the city government for action.

The authorization of a statement of interest to the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) is just the first step in a process that can result in new educational space being built with state funding. However, it requires action by both the School Committee and city government to move forward.

According to Assistant Superintendent of Schools Dr. Thomas Stella, the language approved by the School Committee on Monday night essentially will ask the state to consider Everett for a high school building project based on current space needs in the building, as well as projected and trending school population estimates.

The current high school, which opened in 2007, was built to house 1,800 students and currently has an enrollment of 2,071. Superintendent Frederick Foresteire noted that the population of the city of Everett has grown by 25-percent since the Everett High School opened and the school district has added an average of approximately 200 new students per year over the last several years.

In fact, the current residential population and school enrollment trends are already on a pace to see as much as 600 students in each of the city’s eight elementary schools.

The Statement of Interest in new high school space is the second Statement of Interest to the MSBA in the past year. In 2014, the district and city agreed on a Statement of Interest aimed at handling the overcrowding situation that has developed at the Keverian School. The district expects to get an official notification of the status of that letter in the next 30 days or so, but the MSBA has already included the Keverian School on its website, indicating that Everett could have an approved elementary school project ready to move toward feasibility and design -eventually funding and construction – in the very near future.

Monday night’s vote could mean that a potential high school expansion or satellite project could be in the city’s future as well.

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