School administrators say growth trend requires more classroom seats in Madison

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

MADISON, Ala. – Madison City Schools Superintendent Robby Parker held a news conference Tuesday morning addressing the district’s rapid growth and its plans for the future.

But he also put out a call to action about a proposed tax increase.

Last year Madison City Schools grew by almost 600 students. Administrators are expecting nearly the same growth this year, and they’re expecting that trend to continue. The city and the school system have a plan for that growth.

They’re asking citizens to go to the polls on Sept. 10, 2019, and vote for a 12-mill tax increase.

“That will allow us to continue to offer world-class education to all the kids as we have for the last 20-plus years, we just need seats for them to sit in,” Parker said.

He also notes that the school system is already at 95 percent capacity for students. “So 600 more students would put us real close to 100 percent at every school.”

If the tax votes passes, that money will strictly go toward new facilities and school buildings and adding more classroom seats.

Some schools have accommodated more students in less space by using a floating teacher system, but there are facilities that will need to expand eventually no matter what.

“What you can’t do is you can’t change the cafeteria, halls can only allow for so many people to walk through them at one time,” Parker said.

Parker said he’s confident the citizens of Madison will want to support the city’s growing world-class education.

The earliest Madison could build a new elementary school would be 2021 and a new middle school by 2022. The system has also recommended 500 more classroom seats be added to both Bob Jones and James Clemens high schools.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.