Submit Content

APS Students Returning to More Relocatable Classrooms

Arlington Public Schools will be opening next week with at least 600 more students than a year ago and 14 new relocatable classrooms to accommodate the burgeoning student body.

Relocatable classrooms —  superintendent Dr. Patrick Murphy prefers the term “learning cottages” — are here to stay in Arlington County. The school system, having determined that the portable units are ten times more cost-effective than physically building a new classroom, has started buying rather than leasing the “relocatables,” and has started buying them four at a time for a further cost savings.

This summer APS added four relocatables each to Glebe, Carlin Springs, and Barrett elementary schools. One relocatable was installed at Nottingham Elementary and H-B Woodlawn, according to APS spokesperson Frank Bellavia.

The school system also likes relocatables because of the flexibility they provide. They can be moved from school to school, can be put into reserve in case of a sudden influx of students, and can be removed if the student population enters a cyclical downturn, as it did in the 1990s.

Indeed, although student enrollment is projected to increase through 2020 (see chart below), school board member Sally Baird says the increase is as much a “generational spike” in certain areas of the county as it is a result of Arlington’s steadily growing population. That growth, she says, is only temporary.

“There will be, at some point, a plateau,” Baird said.

In addition to the “relocatables” — APS is also implementing a number of strategies specifically intended to allow then to squeeze in more students without laying a single brick.

Class sizes have increased by one student across the board, with the exception of the fourth and fifth grade classes. At high schools, classrooms are being utilized six out of seven periods, up from five. And Washington-Lee High School is offering “zero period” classes before the start of school, a strategy that may spread to other high schools.

One thing that the school system is no longer considering is redrawing school boundaries. Although the idea was under consideration, it was panned by parents when polled for an APS survey.

“One of the top messages and feedback [from the survey] was: don’t change the boundaries,” Dr. Murphy said during a community chat last month. The survey suggested that parents considered relocatable classrooms the lesser of two evils when the other option is changing schools.

The redrawing of boundaries was also considered by consultants the school system hired to study crowding problems earlier this year. Their conclusion: since all schools are at or near capacity, redrawing boundaries would be of little benefit.

Editor’s note: This article has been revised with an updated number of relocatable classrooms, as provided by APS. Other figures cited in this article are sourced from Dr. Murphy’s community chat and Power Point slides from prior school board meetings.

Recent Stories

Learn how reviewing your Master Insurance Policy can save money on your condo/HOA budget.

An art installation in the shadow of the under-construction first phase of Amazon’s HQ2 is getting taller. Last month, crews began laying the groundwork to build “Queen City” by Nekisha…

Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop in Rosslyn appears to have made its last sub. The Delaware-founded and currently Las Vegas-based fast-casual sandwich chain seems to have closed its eatery on the ground…

It’s almost as automatic as Steph Curry draining free throws at this point. Whenever there’s a soaking rainfall, it seems that some drivers cannot help but slide off the road…

INF Care Virtual Concierge is a new and inviting option to remote assistance that leverages the best of what technology should encompass with quality interaction.

For the busy individual that needs a way to reduce stress and tackle caring for an older family member that lives alone.

or

For the maturing adult that just needs help with everyday tedious tasks, connectivity, and access to data on their everyday habits to pinpoint areas that need more attention.

Read More

Submit your own Community Post here.

Looking for a more convenient way to work out?

On the Go Fitness Pro offers in home personal training. We bring the gym to you, so you can save time and skip the hassle of going to the gym. Plus, our trainers are certified and experienced, so you can be sure you’re getting the best possible workout.

We provide all the equipment needed for a great workout or we can use the equipment that you have.

Schedule a free consultation today and see how we can help you achieve your fitness goals.

Read More

Submit your own Community Post here.

Mini Photo Sessions for Family & Pets

Mini Family & Pet Photo Sessions
Beat the rush and sign up to get your holiday photos now!

Bring your kids! Bring your dogs!

Check out the DeSilva Studios website. Look at the images and see if you like them

Vini Franchetti Wine Dinner

Join us as we explore Vini Franchetti & their two sister vineyards Passopisciaro (Sicily) and Vini Franchetti (Tuscany) for our Sicily/Tuscany Wine Dinner!

Sunday, Oct 9 @ 6pm

Special Guest: This wine dinner we will be hosting the wine maker

×

Subscribe to our mailing list