Douglas School District plans to expand as community does

The district purchased 20 acres of land so far for one of the elementary schools.
The Douglas School District has plans to expand.
The Douglas School District has plans to expand.(KOTA)
Published: Sep. 23, 2020 at 5:07 PM CDT
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BOX ELDER, S.D. (KOTA) - Between community growth in Box Elder and the future of the B-21 Project at Ellsworth Air Force Base, the Douglas School District has plans to expand.

“So we did a master’s facility plan. And right now we’re about 2,800-2,900 students. It differs year by year. We expect to be almost close to 5,000 students in about five years,” says the Superintendent of the Douglas School District Alan Kerr.

With anticipated growth Kerr says in their master facility plan, they estimated the district needs a new high school for 1,400 students.

“When that’s built, we will have two middle schools because the old high school will become a middle school as well, and we need three more elementary schools as well,” says Kerr.

When it comes to land, the district purchased 20 acres for one of the elementary schools between Creek Side Estates and Prairie View. As to when construction will start.

“So that’s all dependent on DOD funding for outside the wire funding for the B-21 expansion. And we’re hoping and working with our legislatures that, that will be appropriated this fall,” says Kerr.

The district is still working on purchasing land for another elementary school and high school, and for the high school, they’re looking for 50 acres.

With this growth, Kerr says it’s good to see the city of Box Elder thriving.

“You know I’ve been in districts as a superintendent where they’re dying. They’re rural; they don’t have any enterprise coming in. This is exciting that this community is really expanding and growing,” says Kerr.

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