The Madison County School District has approved building one new school to accommodate sixth grade students that will feed into Germantown Middle School and construction of additional classrooms at two other schools.

MCS Superintendent Charlotte Seals said the district has embarked on the first phase of building the new school — requesting proposals from bidders for architectural design.

After proposals are submitted, the district will pick one. When they receive the design the bidding process can begin for actual construction.

Seals said the district hopes construction will begin next summer, with a target date for the opening of the new school set for fall 2021.

“It’s a very lengthy process,” Seals said. “But that’s the goal.”

The district does not have to submit a request for proposals for the additional classrooms. Those contracts will be extended to the original builders of the existing structures. 

The plan the board approved includes six new classrooms at Mannsdale Upper Elementary and 12 in the Ridgeland zone at Ann Smith Elementary.

All of the construction the board approved last week will be paid for out of existing funds.

“The district has been incredibly fiscally responsible over the years,” Seals said. “That has allowed us to go ahead with these projects. This is a major effort, but it’s all a part of our Capital Improvement Campaign. We are trying to get out of the business of doing major building projects and maintaining and improving our current sites."

She added the district doesn't want to look up in 10 years and realize they have an overcrowding problem.

Germantown Middle School has an estimated three percent growth rate, per year.

The district has already completed the first phase of a project to replace the old HVAC unit at Madison Central High School, completed re-entry modifications at the entrances of four different schools, and added outside lighting to and renovated the field house at Ridgeland High.