Construction on Denton Independent School District’s fourth comprehensive high school is underway in the eastern portion of the district, with students anticipated to begin taking classes at the school in August 2016 for the start of the 2016-17 school year.
Dr. Ray Braswell High School, named after a former longtime Denton ISD superintendent, is under construction at the southeast corner of Navo Road and U.S. Highway 380. Balfour Beatty was approved by trustees as the construction firm to make the school. Previously, trustees unanimously approved a guaranteed maximum price of $113.9 million for Braswell High School, meaning the district’s total cost of construction will not exceed that amount.
“We are proud to be working with the district once again,” said Charlie DeVoe, senior vice president of Balfour Beatty’s central region. “These projects will allow us to apply the latest innovations in construction methodology and technology, and deliver more efficient, cost-effective solutions to Denton ISD.”
Balfour Beatty has extensive experience constructing Denton ISD facilities, having built more than 50 projects for the district, including its newest secondary campus, Myers Middle School.
District officials anticipate Braswell High School will open for the 2016-17 school year and serve freshmen, sophomores and juniors. The school will serve residents in the U.S. Highway 380 corridor, located in the eastern portion of the district, and be located just off the highway in Little Elm.
Denton ISD Superintendent Dr. Jamie Wilson said the district is designing the school with the future in mind, both in terms of its features and the planning of the campus.
“The architects at VLK were really charged with designing a high school that will take the district forward into the future and provide as much flexibility as possible,” Wilson said. “We’re trying to make this high school a focal point of the 380 corridor.”
If the 380 corridor continues its rapid growth as expected, the district has a potential expansion of the school already planned that would increase its capacity from about 2,400 students to more than 3,000. That expansion would include a ninth-grade facility, similar to the one recently approved for Guyer High School by voters in the November 2013 bond election. The school’s athletic facilities, the Bill Carrico Athletic Complex and Field House (named after a former longtime Denton ISD teacher, coach and administrator), could also be expanded with voter approval.
Braswell High School is slated to include numerous features to enhance education, such as large classrooms; student/teacher conference spaces; robust technology integration; and separate traffic areas for students, parents and buses. Some examples of unique features at the campus include outdoor learning spaces, electronic device charging stations in the library, and the ability to only allow access to certain parts of the school for special events.
The district has not yet decided on a mascot or colors for the schools, though students who will attend the campus will have input on those selections at a later time.