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Old 01-07-2010, 08:13 PM
 
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So since Lake Central has over 4,000 students and the three towns are growing rapidly still, what do you guys think the chances are that another high school is built? I would love a schererville high school that my kids could go to. I'd happily pay the extra taxes for a beautiful new school to be built. I just figured since Schererville is the largest of the 3 towns it would break off on its own, and Dyer and St John kids would still go to LC.

Something has to be done, doesn't it? Thoughts?
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Old 01-07-2010, 09:30 PM
 
5,419 posts, read 8,372,456 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmitseff View Post
So since Lake Central has over 4,000 students and the three towns are growing rapidly still, what do you guys think the chances are that another high school is built? I would love a schererville high school that my kids could go to. I'd happily pay the extra taxes for a beautiful new school to be built. I just figured since Schererville is the largest of the 3 towns it would break off on its own, and Dyer and St John kids would still go to LC.

Something has to be done, doesn't it? Thoughts?

Well, voters shot down a referendum over the summer that called for an expantion & some renovations for Lake Central ...

So I'd say the chances are pretty slim at this point.
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Old 01-08-2010, 06:26 AM
 
Location: Turn Left at Greenland
17,700 posts, read 35,611,083 times
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not in this economy!
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Old 01-13-2010, 01:24 AM
 
Location: Northwest Indiana
807 posts, read 2,512,292 times
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Not very likely at all that there will ever be a second high school in lake central school district. It would be far more expensive to operate two high schools. Everything would have to be duplicated for the second school. Plus the present high school still needs to be repaired and updated, not a cheap project. I really don't think the long term (50-75 years out) needs of the district call for a second high school. Its just too expensive to build and maintain, and operate both buildings and staffing.

The day will come when the district stops growing as fast as it does now. It always happens at some point, the communities it serves gets "built out", and then the population will drop a little and stabilize as the major development moves on. At this point most school districts have built too much and there is too much space. They may need lots of space now, but I bet that in 30 years there will be a vacant unneeded (likely a grade) school building in the district.

Just look at Gary (ok not a good example, think more like Highland, Munster and Griffith). It has lots of vacant schools. It was overcrowded back in the 1940's to 1960's even with huge school building projects. By the time they built everything and caught up, the population had moved on leaving behind extra buildings. Lake Central won't decline size-wise as much as Gary did, but overbuilding is still something they may do.

I think Lake Central needs to scale back on its expansion plans overall. Repair, update the existing high school, a smaller addition with additional temporary portable classrooms. I don't know why people can't deal with portable buildings, they aren't that bad.

When the population wave moves on, the portables go away, leaving the "stable" population with the right sized building. They need to look at only building "permanent" schools for the population that will exist when Schererville, St. John and Dyer are built out. Not the top sized population that will not last long enough to build "permanent" buildings.
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Old 01-13-2010, 05:06 AM
 
Location: Turn Left at Greenland
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munster has empty schools?
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:45 AM
 
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Originally Posted by richb View Post
Not very likely at all that there will ever be a second high school in lake central school district. It would be far more expensive to operate two high schools. Everything would have to be duplicated for the second school. Plus the present high school still needs to be repaired and updated, not a cheap project. I really don't think the long term (50-75 years out) needs of the district call for a second high school. Its just too expensive to build and maintain, and operate both buildings and staffing.

The day will come when the district stops growing as fast as it does now. It always happens at some point, the communities it serves gets "built out", and then the population will drop a little and stabilize as the major development moves on. At this point most school districts have built too much and there is too much space. They may need lots of space now, but I bet that in 30 years there will be a vacant unneeded (likely a grade) school building in the district.

Just look at Gary (ok not a good example, think more like Highland, Munster and Griffith). It has lots of vacant schools. It was overcrowded back in the 1940's to 1960's even with huge school building projects. By the time they built everything and caught up, the population had moved on leaving behind extra buildings. Lake Central won't decline size-wise as much as Gary did, but overbuilding is still something they may do.

I think Lake Central needs to scale back on its expansion plans overall. Repair, update the existing high school, a smaller addition with additional temporary portable classrooms. I don't know why people can't deal with portable buildings, they aren't that bad.

When the population wave moves on, the portables go away, leaving the "stable" population with the right sized building. They need to look at only building "permanent" schools for the population that will exist when Schererville, St. John and Dyer are built out. Not the top sized population that will not last long enough to build "permanent" buildings.
Just a little correction: Munster does not have any empty/vacant space. At one point, Munster had 4 elementary schools, but one of them (Lanier) was demolished as it was outdated, multi-level (safety reasons) and proved to expensive to continue to maintain (from what I was told). The school system recently (within 10 years) has expanded on all of the schools and has completely rebuilt two of the elementary schools (Eads and Elliot)and is continuing to expand and renovate structures to accommodate the current and a larger future population...thus, I do not think that Munster is exactly a great example; HOWEVER, I do see what you were trying to point out.

Anyway, I believe that the main problem through all of this is that the LC school corporation and surrounding community waited too long to start seriously proposing these referendums for construction/renovation/expansion projects. I do realize that not all school districts are the same at all, but I feel as though the best option would be to look at similar/comparable school systems across the Midwest that have successful solved a problem nearly identical to the one that Lake Central is facing today. This is just my personal opinion, so please do not take offense (if I have caused any at all)

**If there is anything that I have misstated or is not clear, please let me know! Thanks!
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Old 01-13-2010, 12:10 PM
 
5,419 posts, read 8,372,456 times
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I agree with richb.

There will come a point - and it's here actually - that Lake County will stop growing. Though no one has a crystal ball ... I think we're in for a least a decade no growth.

There's a monster elementary school that was built in Valparaiso - Flint Lake. It was before I moved out here (early 90s), but they way I understood it, it was built on that side of town in anticipation of population growth in that area.

Whoops.

It was the south side that actually experienced an overall population surge - and as a result the southernmost elementary school (Hayes Leonard) has been bursting at the seems for years.
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Old 01-13-2010, 01:57 PM
 
Location: Turn Left at Greenland
17,700 posts, read 35,611,083 times
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Originally Posted by Chuckity View Post
I agree with richb.

There will come a point - and it's here actually - that Lake County will stop growing. Though no one has a crystal ball ... I think we're in for a least a decade no growth.

There's a monster elementary school that was built in Valparaiso - Flint Lake. It was before I moved out here (early 90s), but they way I understood it, it was built on that side of town in anticipation of population growth in that area.

Whoops.

It was the south side that actually experienced an overall population surge - and as a result the southernmost elementary school (Hayes Leonard) has been bursting at the seems for years.
NO KIDDING! We lived in the Hayes leonard district and I was baffled by the size of the school ... Flint Lake ES is a den of luxury comparatively!
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Old 01-13-2010, 02:43 PM
 
Location: Bloomington IN
6,535 posts, read 7,793,687 times
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richb--there are no empty school buildings in Griffith. There maybe fewer students in them at this time than during peak occupancy, but they are all still open. More years ago than I care to admit I was a student during one of those peak time periods. Griffith built one new grade school at that time and reconfigured the grade levels that attended each school depending upon space available so they would not overbuild.

Several years ago I worked on a committee that researched the building needs of my then school district. It's amazing what kind of trends, etc. can be predicted from simple birth records. 1959 was the peak of the baby boom. 1990 had nearly as many births. 2006 also had as many births. Those kids born in 2006 will be filling those schools back up very soon. Gary's vacant schools have very little to do with population trends. To try to use the example of what has happened in Gary to predict what will happen in other school districts is a bit of a stretch.
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Old 01-14-2010, 02:58 AM
 
Location: Northwest Indiana
807 posts, read 2,512,292 times
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There would be a vacant building in Griffith if it was totally up to the school district. However a few vocal folks that made a big stink about closing the oldest building has stalled it for the moment. It still needs to be closed at some point, its old and outdated, and there is plenty of room in the other buildings. With the tax caps in place, keeping unnecessary buildings will be more of a problem.

There may be more students again, but for the most part they won't be living in the towns of Munster, Highland and Griffith as much. They will be located more in places like Lowell, Crown Point, Winfield, Cedar Lake and even more far out places like Hebron and De Mott. Families with children still end up in the newer outlaying communities due to lower housing costs and newer construction. The recession hasn't changed that, and it won't change that anytime soon. On my block in Highland (22 houses, built in the 50's), in the 1960's there was 65 kids in public school. Today there are less then 20. When I moved in the the early 1990's there was even fewer like 3. But there will never be 65 again.

The point is that the peak population is not what a district needs to build for. The highest population rarely last more then a decade or so. What's so bad about being a little crowded for a few years? The buildings don't get caught up to when its largely too late.

Yes, Gary is a extreme case when it comes to smaller population but everywhere it happens to some degree. Yes, Munster is a not the best case to show either since it has the money to replace buildings that most districts would not have the money to replace.

When a new high school, built from the ground up, that can cost up to $100 million nowadays, its no wonder that something like that gets voted down. The voters may have more wisdom then the educators and elected officials of our communities would give them credit for.

Yes, Lake Central is a big high school. Maybe they need to run separate AM and PM high schools to reduce overcrowding. Educators need to be more creative with what they have. To be honest, expecting the taxpayers to foot the bill for more buildings when the existing structures could be scheduled better and used more and maintained better.

The three communities long ago set up the big district to save money overall. In that way it works for most part.

In the opinion of this poster, will LC build a second high school? No.
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