NAVASOTA, Texas— It’s a great time to be a Rattler.
Leaky roofs, ceiling tiles caving into classrooms, air conditioning units out of service—a mounting list of problems with the aging buildings in Navasota ISD.
As the structures continue to fall into disrepair, the opposite is happening in Grimes County.
The area is growing with development and population which means more children filling the school hallways in Navasota ISD.
Due to the recent bond election, the district will finally be able to start rebuilding.
“If we don’t take care of our facilities, we’re going to lose those facilities,” said Navasota ISD Superintendent Stu Musick.
He said the average age of the buildings in the district is 41 years old.
On Tuesday, voters in both Grimes and Brazos counties passed a $55 million dollar bond that will allow the district to start renovating the aging structures, bringing them back to life.
Plus, the district will be able to make room for the projected growth in population which will bring more students to Navasota ISD.
“We’ve got some aging facilities that need some repair, but we will also have some new construction of additional classroom spaces,” said Musick.
“We’ve got some campuses that are at or beyond capacity,” he added.
One of those schools is Navasota High School which is at 92% capacity.
Enrollment across the district is expected to increase due to the projected number of students entering the district in the next few years.
The Brosig Auditorium will see its first major upgrades in 65 years.
Another improvement project will be restoring the old Rock Gym next to Brule Elementary School.
Among other uses, Musick said the old gym will be renovated so the elementary school students can use the facility to have PE class, which they’ve been holding in the cafeteria.
Navasota High School will also see some upgrades, including new science labs.
Plus, the bond money will allow the district to add more Career and Technology education programs allowing students to graduate with a certification that allows them to enter the workforce in careers such as welding.
Musick said the plans are not only good for Navasota ISD, but also Grimes County and the Brazos Valley.
“It affects the region and whether it’s a part of Navasota ISD proper or surrounding school districts or the Brazos Valley region, what’s good for us is good for all of us,” said Musick.
The other bond, totaling $6.1 million dollars, will allow the district to refinance some of their debt, which Musick said will free up between $700,00 and $800,000 a year for the next nine years.
He also said that both bonds will help the district move in the right direction.
“Navasota’s a great place because it’s big town, but it feels like hometown. We’ve got big city opportunities for students to be involved in and families to be involved in, but it’s still small enough that it feels like hometown,” said Musick.
“It’s just a great place to be,” he added.