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updated: 2/16/2012 6:47 PM

District 59 opts to expand Frost Elementary School

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  • Fine arts teacher Andrew Brand works with 29 students during his class at Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect. Elk Grove Township Elementary District 59 school board this week decided to solve the school's overcrowding problems with a permanent four-classroom addition.

       Fine arts teacher Andrew Brand works with 29 students during his class at Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect. Elk Grove Township Elementary District 59 school board this week decided to solve the school's overcrowding problems with a permanent four-classroom addition.
    Bill Zars | Staff Photographer

  • A teacher works with students in the hallway at Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect. Elk Grove Township Elementary District 59 school board this week voted to build four new classrooms at the school to alleviate overcrowding.

       A teacher works with students in the hallway at Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect. Elk Grove Township Elementary District 59 school board this week voted to build four new classrooms at the school to alleviate overcrowding.
    Bill Zars | Staff Photographer

  • Pam Schakowsky teaches a science experiment to her first grade class at Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect. District 59 will build four additional classrooms at the school to address overcrowding.

       Pam Schakowsky teaches a science experiment to her first grade class at Robert Frost Elementary School in Mount Prospect. District 59 will build four additional classrooms at the school to address overcrowding.
    Bill Zars | Staff Photographer

 
 

The Elk Grove Elementary District 59 school board voted 3-2 this week in favor of adding four classrooms at Robert Frost Elementary School to alleviate overcrowding -- a decision cheered by parents who packed the meeting.

Board members Sharon Roberts -- who is the acting president after the resignation of Tom Dowd -- Brian Kiel and Janice Krinsky voted in favor of adding classrooms; Mardell Schumacher and Barbara Somogyi voted against it. Trustee Robert Weber was absent.

The proposed 7,500-square-foot addition is estimated to cost about $1.8 million. It will be funded through the district's healthy reserve fund, which is at more than 50 percent of the district's roughly $90 million operating budget for this academic year.

The next step is going out for bids, district spokeswoman Betsy Boswell said.

District administrators propose building the addition this summer.

School board members were considering adding temporary modular classrooms at the Mount Prospect school -- similar to what has been done at two other district schools -- but opted for the more permanent solution after parental pressure.

Schumacher wanted modular classrooms, calling it the cheaper option. Modular classrooms could cost up to $370,000.

Somogyi wanted the board to further study the issue before making a decision.

The district held two public forums in January in which a majority of the 150 Frost parents present overwhelmingly supported building four additional classrooms at the school over seven other options outlined by the administration.

The school board heard from a demographer this week who confirmed enrollment at the school will continue to grow in the near future, Boswell said.

Enrollment at Frost has grown from 398 students in the 2008-2009 academic year to about 480 students in 2011-2012, greatly exceeding the district's projections.

Officials hope the addition will help maintain class sizes between 20 students and 24 students per classroom, depending on the grade.

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