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Katy Independent School District

2017 Bond

Capacity & Growth

 What is design capacity?
 Design capacity is the maximum number of students that would be able to occupy all regular classrooms and common areas (i.e. library, cafeteria, gyms, computer labs, fieldhouse, etc.) simultaneously on a campus. High school maximum design capacity is 3,000 students.  Design capacity for an elementary school is 1,030; junior high is 1,400; high school is 3,000. 

What is functional capacity?
Functional capacity is based on actual classroom and common area utilization. For example, a classroom designed for 25 students that is repurposed for a special education classroom may only hold a class of 15 students due to the materials and/or equipment used in that classroom. This scenario applies to libraries, cafeterias, gyms, computer labs, and fieldhouses as well. Currently, design capacity is used in standard reports, but does not reflect the functional use of a building. Functional capacity is 10% less than design capacity which allows for the best functional use of a campus while ensuring a positive learning environment, as this is what is best for students. â€‹

What is the methodology for determining functional capacity?

Our equation is: "3,000 students � 10% = 2,700 students."  This is functional capacity.​​​

Bethke Elementary and Tays Junior High were a part of the 2014 bond and opened in fall 2016. What would have happened to the enrollment of schools located in the southwest and northwest quadrants, had Bethke and Tays not have been built?

The fall 2016 actual and fall 2017 projections for the campuses relieved by Bethke would be:


2016 Enrollment

2017 Enrollment

Golbow Elementary882920
King Elementary1,4521,736
Morton Ranch Elementary1,0281,135


In the fall of 2017 projections for the campuses relieved by Tays Junior High* would be:


2016 Enrollment

2017 Enrollment

Seven Lakes Junior High2,1052,300
WoodCreek Junior High2,2632,663

*Note: Tays Junior High opened near capacity ending this school year at 1,390

What are the enrollment projections for Bethke Elementary?

School Capacity 2017-2018 2018-2019 2019-2020 2020-2021 2021-2022 2022-2023 2023-2024
Bethke Elementary1,0301,0921,3901,7252,1992,7143,4294,174

What existing campuses will be relieved by the new schools proposed in the 2017 bond package?

  • Elementary #41: Randolph Elementary, Jenks Elementary

  • Elementary #42: Bethke Elementary

  • Elementary #43: Bethke Elementary and potentially Bryant Elementary

  • Junior High #16: Seven Lakes Junior High, WoodCreek Junior High, Tays Junior High

  • Junior High #17: Katy Junior High, Stockdick Junior High

  • High School #9: Seven Lakes High School, Tompkins High School, Katy High School

What are the current enrollment numbers at the schools that will see relief?

School Current Enrollment

Bethke Elementary*


Jenks Elementary*


Randolph Elementary


Katy Junior High


Seven Lakes Junior High


Tays Junior High


WoodCreek Junior High


Katy High School


Seven Lakes High School


Tompkins High School


* Opened in 2016     ​​

If growth predictions are spot on and Katy ISD manages money well, why are schools opened at above 100% capacity?
In general, new schools are not opened at 100% capacity, but high growth areas do rapidly exceed capacity prior to the opening of a new adjacent school constructed to provide relief.
Are the newer schools over capacity?
Newly constructed schools in high growth areas soon exceed design capacity. Portables are utilized as a planning tool to enable the school enrollment to grow to support the construction of an adjacent school.
Is there a plan to redesign our school layouts to allow more classrooms (primarily at the elementary level)?
As part of our 2014 Bond, we have new designs for our elementary, junior high and high schools. Upon review of these new designs, the design capacities did not change from our district standard.

Currently, when a campus or space is repurposed, capacity for students is reduced (which results in the need for more schools). What are the benefits of repurposing?
This provides space for programs that allow campuses to allocate space for District programs.

School designs appear to be based on space per child. The philosophy seems to have changed to a functional basis driven by the matriculation of programs. Should this not be used as a basis for justification of overcapacity and growth?

Programs vary year to year. School utilization is monitored to determine if portables are projected to be required for a long term whereby an addition may be considered as part of the Long Range Facility Plan (LRFP). Campus programs do impact the capacity and is one of the components that contribute to the need for additional classrooms. 

*When designing schools, the District is required to follow TEA guidelines. TEA guidelines are represented in square feet per student.

What are �geo-coded� students?
The process of assigning information to geographic coordinates. For students, the geographic data includes a street address. Geo-coded students are tagged to their residence (street address).

Is it possible to apply the programmed space of the new prototype schools to older schools to determine a standardized �functional� capacity for each school?
No. Functional capacity varies from school to school based upon a variety of factors including: grade grouping, special programs, etc.
Since new schools will be needed, will there be an emphasis on making each school different requiring new blueprints and costs, or will layouts be duplicated to save expense?
New prototype designs are being considered. The new prototype is then proposed to be utilized for future schools in a �refined repeat� manner gaining constructive input from the previous school occupants. 
How does each school determine how they pursue money for certainprojects?
Each campus completes a Long Range Facility Plan (LRFP) questionnaire. In addition to dialogue and analysis with department leaders, review is undertaken with technical personnel both inside and outside of the District. Campuses have two sources for projects. They can request funds through Maintenance & Operations or have a project considered via a bond.

Why doesn�t Katy ISD design the schools to accommodate with all known programs?
When design commences, we design with the needed programs for that particular school in mind, but it would be expensive to provide space for all programs that might not even be placed at that school.
How have the sizes of �traditional� classrooms changed over time for a given number of students per room?
The Texas Education Agency (TEA) determines the class size requirement. For grades 4 and under, the 22:1 ratio has been the standard for a while. They have changed over time; however, we do not have a historical report that we can provide.
From a facility standpoint, how does Katy ISD currently quantify and determine what are wants vs. real needs?
In addition to dialogue and analysis with department and campus leaders, analysis is undertaken in conjunction with technical personnel, both inside and outside of the District.

Many of the campuses have portables. Is the use of portables a sign of poor planning?
Judicious use of temporary buildings is part of Katy ISD�s overall facility plan strategy and will continue to be as long as the District is growing rapidly. Placing temporary buildings on an interim basis allows the District to assess growth carefully before constructing new campuses and to open new buildings with enrollments that are large enough to make them cost-effective to operate. â€‹

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