As part of its $750 million bond package voters approved more than three years ago, Richardson ISD plans to begin renovations at two elementary schools in May.

The work includes site improvements and repairs, new finishes, upgrades to mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems, and space reconfiguration, according to state filings. At Stults Road Elementary School, the estimated construction cost is $9.1 million, and at Northrich Elementary School, that figure is $8.8 million. Both projects are scheduled to be completed by July 2025.

“Several campuses have been identified as in need of renovation or expansion due to student growth, the age and condition of the school building, or recommended safety upgrades,” according to a district bond document. “Campuses targeted for major construction efforts were built between 1953 and 1980. Bond 2021 school construction begins a long-range vision to address RISD’s aging campuses that will span bond proposals through 2036.”

BRW Architects of Dallas is listed as the design firm on the filing. Its education portfolio includes work with Dallas ISD, Fort Worth ISD, and Arlington ISD.

The 2021 bond was split into Proposition A and Proposition B. The former provides $694 million in funding for infrastructure and safety constructions and renovations at Northrich, Stults, Brentfield, and Mohawk elementary schools, Hamilton Park Magnet School, and Lake Highlands and Forest Meadow junior high schools. The latter provides $56 million for technology devices for students, teachers, and staff.

Student enrollment at Richardson ISD is about 37,600. The district, with 55 campuses, serves students from Richardson, Garland, and Dallas.

A number of North Texas school districts have seen falling numbers of students enrolled each term, as previously covered in The Dallas Express. In some cases, this has sparked budget issues and “rightsizing” analyses for facilities, such as at Fort Worth ISD, where several of its campuses are below 70% capacity and thus at risk of closure.

Dallas ISD has also seen declining student numbers but still has a growing multi-billion-dollar budget. The district has continued to log dismal student outcomes. Only 41% of Dallas ISD students scored at grade level on the STAAR exam in 2021-2022, according to the latest Texas Education Agency accountability report. Additionally, almost 20% of seniors did not graduate within four years. By comparison, Richardson ISD saw 50% of its students pass at grade level on the same test and graduated 92.6% of its seniors within four years.