Barren County School District looks for ways to address student growth

GLASGOW Ky.-The Barren County School District recently met with an architect from the RSB design firm from Owensboro. This happens every four years to discuss and address needs for the district. One of those needs is more space for the middle school and freshman.

“We look at the age of students and where we have our greatest population. When we look at those projections, it’s looking like if the committee were to decide on a new building, it would probably be a middle school,” said Barren County School District director of pupil personnel Anthony Frazier.

A new middle school is estimated to cost around $25 million. District officials said Barren County Middle School has and will continue to see growth. To alleviate the crowding, the Trojan Academy connects the middle school to the high school, providing extra space for both the middle school students and high school freshman.

Even the Trojan Academy is getting full. Students in band often need to utilize the high school space, and the gym and cafeteria in the Trojan Academy are in the same spot. Superintendent Bo Matthews said a high student population isn’t necessarily a bad problem to have.

“That’s a vital sign. If you have student enrollment that continues to increase, that’s a credit to your staff, the programming offered to the students, and certainly facilities is a part of that,” Matthews said.

While a new or expanded middle school isn’t guaranteed, Matthews said all good decisions start with what’s best for the students.

“Ultimately, it’s all about the students. We’re being very cautious and judicious about the impact that this plan is going to have on our students. As long as we keep our mind on what’s best for the students, we’ll make good decisions,” Matthews said.