FISD statement on proposed 2022 bond package
At a special called board meeting on Feb. 17, the Forney ISD Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve a May bond referendum proposed by the Facilities Planning Committee. The bond package to go before voters in May will not increase the district's tax rate. The district tax rate is currently $1.37 and has lowered 17 cents over the last 3 years.
Unprecedented enrollment growth is expected in the next few years as housing demands have increased across Forney. The latest quarterly enrollment report forecasts a staggering 25,000 students in five years, and 35,000 students by 2031. The report is based on the latest data of housing starts, inventory, land use and enrollment trends presented by leading demographer Zonda Education.
“No matter where you look, you’ll see growth in Forney. Enrollment increases are occurring across the district every day. We have exceeded the enrollment projections for 2021-2022, and we anticipate another 2,400 new students to FISD next year,” said Superintendent Dr. Justin Terry.
In November 2019, the Forney ISD community passed a bond referendum with a 73% approval rating. Since then, the district has utilized a combination of bond funds, growth revenue, and savings to build facilities to accommodate the district’s fast growing student population.
As a part of the 2019 bond, the district opened three new schools last fall including Rhodes Intermediate, Jackson Middle, and Griffin Elementary. Two additional campuses, Willett Elementary and the new Johnson Elementary will open in Fall 2022. The Keith Bell Opportunity Central, which is a career, college and community center that also includes an early childhood center, broke ground last month, and is scheduled to open in 2023.
Due to under budget 2019 bond construction projects, Forney ISD is also building elementary #10, adding a gym and tornado shelter to Rhea and Smith Intermediate campuses, and expanding the transportation hub at North Forney. In addition to bond projects, Forney ISD announced equitable master plans that include 9th grade expansions for Forney High and North Forney High.
Forney ISD will complete the projects from the 2019 bond referendum by Fall 2024.
“We had a diverse group of 55 citizens from students and parents to staff to business and community leaders who volunteered their time to serve on our 2022 Facilities Planning Committee. They studied new enrollment projections, current facility capacities, budgets, construction costs and more before creating and recommending a bond package to our school board,” said Terry. “I appreciate their dedication and careful consideration in planning for our students’ future.”
The Facilities Committee recommended a bond proposal to accommodate 35,000 students that includes five elementary/early childhood schools, two expansions to elementary/early childhood locations, 4 campuses for middle or intermediate students, 2 middle school expansions, a high school, and the OC Phase 2 for additional high school capacity. In addition, it includes land acquisition for new facilities, a transportation center, and additional Forney Learning Academy space. The total proposed package is for $1,294,000,000.
For more information on Forney ISD’s fast growth, please visit FISD Growth to view the latest demographer projections.