GEORGETOWN — It will be a double dose of the old before the arrival of the new for Sussex Central High School.
The number of modular classrooms on campus will increase by two units for the 2022-23 year, addressing the school’s chronic capacity issues — a problem that should be remedied with the opening of a new SCHS in fall 2025.
Indian River School District’s board of education voted 8-0 Monday to approve the request for two dual-classroom units. The state bid price with WillScot, a mobile trailer/office firm, is just over $203,000 for both units for three years. The lease agreement also covers ramps.
Sussex Central High, which opened in 2004, was built for 1,500 students. At that time, the school’s enrollment was 1,250, said Principal Dr. Bradley Layfield. As of Sept. 30, 2021, the count was 1,916. “But we currently have 1,968 students attending,” Dr. Layfield said Monday.
Already on the Patriots Way campus, just north of Millsboro, are four leased dual modulars, equating to eight classrooms, plus two single-classroom units IRSD obtained from the Cape Henlopen School District at no cost.
“We have had no or few issues with the existing units,” said Joe Booth, the district’s supervisor of buildings and grounds.
The two additional modulars would give the high school the equivalent of 14 more classrooms. In general, each room can accommodate about 30 students.
Local funding will be utilized for the lease, along with some minor cap expenditures for alarm and communication requirements, Mr. Booth said.
Some existing modulars will have to be relocated to make way for construction of the new 2,200-student school — approved in a February 2020 referendum after being rejected in May 2019.
When it opens, the existing high school will transform into a new Millsboro Middle School, and the current middle school downtown will be converted into an elementary school.