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Q: Why are we building a new high school instead of just expanding Windsor High School?

 A: In April 2014, the district held a meeting to discuss the capacity issue at Windsor High School and broach possible solutions such as expanding the current high school or adding a second one. At that time, three committees were formed to gather information on possible options. The committees visited different schools, researched possibilities, and looked at aspects of different facilities the district might want to incorporate into any expansion work.

In December 2014, the committees reported back to the Board of Education and the Board instructed staff to begin investigating the next steps for renovating Windsor High School and considering a new high school in Severance.

Q: What are the district’s priorities in the design and construction of a new high school?

A: The building will be built as a durable brick/steel structure that offers us the flexibility (as we have in our newer buildings) to expand and add-on as we reach capacity again in the future. All mechanical and electrical systems will be designed to make learning environments better and operate with energy efficiency to keep ongoing costs low. The mechanical system will be designed to have a long life; they will use hot water and boilers to heat spaces and have air conditioning. The building will offer students the kind of high school experience our community has come to expect, such as: wrestling rooms, weight room, both vocal and band rooms, drama, auditorium, workshops, multiple gyms, and locker rooms for athletics in addition to PE.

Q: When will the new high school open, how many students will it serve and what programs and sports will it offer?

A: Initially, the new high school will serve 800-900 students and will open in the fall of 2019. The school will be designed to be expanded in the future to hold up to 1,200 students. The district will seek input from the community on specific programs and sports the new school will offer. The community can expect that there may be shared programs between the two high schools to maximize facilities and opportunities for students. Both high schools will offer quality, comprehensive programs. 

Q: How will the new high school affect the district’s athletic classification?

A: The Colorado High School Athletic Association (CHSAA) determines district athletic classifications based on enrollment ranges on a two-year cycle. To determine classifications for individual and team sports, CHSAA takes the total number of high schools in the state and divides them evenly into classifications based on total high school enrollment (from highest to lowest). In our current 4A football classification for the 2016-2018 cycle for example, Windsor High School will be one of the largest high schools with over 1,330 students, while the smallest high school in our class has around 630 students. In November 2017, CHSAA will establish classification for the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 school years. If the bond is successful, Weld RE-4 will petition for the second Weld RE-4 high school to have active membership in CHSAA. In its first year of operation, the new school will be placed in a class based on the October 1, 2017 student count that is submitted to the Colorado Department of Education by the district. In November 2019, CHSAA will set new athletic classifications per its two-year classification cycle.