School Committee Approves Long Term Capital Plan
At the September 26 Meeting, School Committee members unanimously approved moving forward with the Long-Term Capital Plan to address Brookline's overcrowded schools, substandard facilities, and historic enrollment growth over the past ten years. Through this plan, the district will renovate and expand the Pierce School through the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) partnership, renovate and expand the Driscoll School, and continue plans to build a new K-8 school at Brookline.
Discussion of a ninth elementary school in Brookline began in 2008. At that time, the School Committee chose to pursue an "expand-in-place" strategy and began adding classrooms to existing schools through dividing classrooms; converting offices, locker rooms, and hallways into classrooms; renting private buildings; and building new classrooms or adding modular classes. Since then, the School Department has added 55 additional classrooms across the town using the expand-in-place strategy.
In 2011, as it became increasingly clear that ongoing enrollment growth would exceed the capacity of the expand-in-place strategy, the Town commissioned the first site selection study. Over the next eight years, elected officials, town departments, and community members have been trying to identify a site for Brookline's 9th elementary school. As the district continues to determine a suitable location, the district will begin programming a new 2-section school at the Old Lincoln School site. Should this option be pursued, this new school is set to open at the end of the BHS renovation in 2021. The Long-Term Capital Plan can be accessed here in its entirety.