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Lingleville proposes building

Lingleville ISD invited community members to the school Jan. 24 where they unveiled a proposal for a building, which will allow the campus to meet growing demands and increase security.

“We’re not desperate for class space, but we’re wondering what happens when we are,” said LISD Superintendent Curt Haley. “What happens if we get another 10, 15 or 20 students next year? We know Erath County is growing.”

Haley said the school board has been discussing the needs of the district for the past two years and the building proposal grew out of those discussions. He also stressed that the design is in early phases and is being presentedtothecommunity for feedback.

The building proposed would sit between the old school building and the newer one that contains the gym. The 25,074-square-foot building would link the two buildings and construct one main entrance, allowing them to keep the other doors locked and the campus more secure.

The design also includes offices and 10 classrooms, including a modern junior high lab with moveable tables and a vented hood and a dedicated art classroom with northern light. Haley said that the campus currently has no extra classrooms unless they move one into the old ag shop and that classes are still being run out of the portable buildings, which he described as “temporary at best and been here 20 years at least.”

Haley credits the new design for its open concept and visibility, saying that administrators can see every academic door down the hall from the new office.

“The cafeteria was the biggest glaring need,” Haley said when talking about the new building’s design. “The cafeteria is adequate and was probably great when we had 160 kids.”

The converted classroom building was last remodeled in 1996 and has seating for 81 students. Lingleville currently has 168 kids in elementary and 108 in the secondary campus. This means that the school starts serving lunch at 10:30 a.m., starting with Kindergarten and pre-Kindergarten students, with an ongoing rotation through the grades.

“By the time Kindergarten gets to lunch, they’re not hungry if they had a big breakfast,” Haley said, adding that many of the younger students are hungry by the end of the day, even with scheduled snack times.

The early lunches also make scheduling difficult on elementary teachers.

The 6,000-square-foot cafeteria includes the latest amenities and has been designed with input from the cafeteria staff for maximum efficiency. It can also be separated from the rest of the school by locking doors, making for a modern community room for Lingleville.

It also includes indoor seating for approximately 250, meaning the school can pare down their lunch schedule to two periods.

The design also includes a 912-square-foot porch at the rear of the cafeteria for outdoor seating.

This porch faces the playground, which would be obscured by the building’s “dogleg” design. This was a conscious security choice as the proposal hides the playground from the road with wrought-iron fencing planned between the buildings to enclose it.

Haley said the first meeting of the building’s design was positive, with families feeling that it improved the campus’ aesthetics and design. The meeting even netted one change as a member of the audience suggested raising the windows on the teacher workroom to match the cafeteria windows next to it.

The school isn’t rushing into anything and plans to have several more meetings on the building proposal. There is also a video tour of the plan produced by architects Dale Rabe & Partners, available on the main page of the school’s website (lingleville.us) that Haley hopes to show in the foyer during Friday’s homecoming game.

“It’s logical and looks like it belongs there,” Haley said of the buidling’s design. “The extra security measures are just the icing on the cake.”

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