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514 W. Quincy St.
San Antonio, Texas 78212
210-554-2200 (phone)



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Frequently Asked Questions

  • We will look across all of our schools with the goal of ensuring there is an equitable distribution of resources. A stronger and more successful future for our community's children may mean reorganizing school sites to better serve students. Depending on the outcome of the study, for the 2024-2025 School Year, this rightsizing may involve closing school buildings, co-locating schools to the same campus, or consolidating multiple schools into one school.
  • We want to deliver on the promise of an excellent education to our students and families, and we are faced with a fundamental problem. Our enrollment and school-aged population have been declining for more than two decades, and according to demographers, the student-aged population will continue to decline for at least five or 10 more years. In the past, we have resisted closing schools as our enrollment declined. As a result, our schools have gotten emptier. We invested in innovation and it worked, but we have not recovered enough students to reverse the trend. At this time, our resources are spread too thin, creating inequities experienced by our students and their families. In large urban districts across the nation, school district leaders are facing the same challenge of the need to downsize.
  • Design capacity is the number of students at 100% utilization of general and special education classrooms at a school. Functional capacity is approximately 85% of design capacity and is considered the optimal utilization of a school facility. The other 15% of capacity allows for flexibility to assign rooms for other purposes, such as for parent resources and pull-out programs.  It also accounts for utilization of classrooms below 100%.

    Design capacity (100%) is calculated by multiplying the number of classrooms on a campus with the maximum number of students per classroom according to grade-level and program type.  The capacity calculation excludes certain special-use spaces such as PE, music, science, and computer rooms in elementary schools, and CTE labs in secondary schools.
    When reviewing the capacity data for schools, it is important to keep several factors in mind. For example, campuses that show utilization rate at or close to 100% capacity may not have flexible spaces for other purposes. Some campuses may show low utilization because a school may have opened in recent years, are still adding grades, and is expected to accommodate future growth for new grades. Other campuses, including St. Philips Early College High School, are held in leased buildings with shared spaces, and their utilization rate cannot be similarly calculated. 

  • Rightsizing, if done thoughtfully, can be an opportunity to build higher-quality schools. When the number of buildings and the buildings’ capacity is better matched to the proper student enrollment, schools can be more equitably and robustly resourced.

    Some of the advantages could include: smaller class sizes and campuses having greater access to extraordinary academics, special education services, fine arts, and athletics, among other essential services such as social emotional learning and mental health support. Teachers may no longer be at a campus where they are the only one teaching a certain grade level or subject, and now with peer educators, be able to collaborate on curriculum and feel more supported – further enhancing a child’s education and a teacher’s experience. Students also may experience a broader range of student peer interactions, and now with more educator and staff support, receive more enrichment or intervention services based on their individual needs. Additionally, with fewer school buildings, there may be an opportunity to staff each campus with a safety and security officer, further enhancing school safety. 

    All of these advantages could lead to more thriving students and staff, and therefore, more thriving schools.

  • If rightsizing is approved by the board, we will stand by our staff and families throughout this process. Throughout the spring and summer, all families and staff will be fully supported with their enrollment and career options in the district. SAISD expects to keep most, and preferably all, staff.
  • We understand that previous school closures in other school districts have had negative impacts. We also believe that rightsizing, if done thoughtfully, can be an opportunity to build higher-quality schools. We will minimize negative impacts by transparently engaging with the community, sharing the potential positive outcomes, including consistent class sizes across the district, more programming, and higher quality school environments. We will honor the history and traditions of school communities, and we will engage the community in how to repurpose any closed schools for the benefit of the community. 
  • At this time, there is no impact. All schools will open in August 2023, and we look forward to welcoming students on our first day - Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2023.

    Beginning in late August 2023, parents, students, employees and community members will begin receiving invitations to participate in the Study of School Building Capacity, looking ahead to the 2024-2025 School Year. Currently, no changes are known for the 2024-2025 School Year. The Board of Trustees have simply asked the District to conduct the study, engage the community, and to come back with a recommendation.

  • All schools will open in August 2023. We are here for our kids, and we are here for the future. To safeguard our future, we are having conversations with our community about how we can come together to strengthen the foundation of San Antonio ISD so that every child succeeds for many years to come. You will have a say in these conversations.
  • We are committed to our students and we are committed to our staff. If recommendations to close or consolidate schools are approved by the Board in November, affected families and affected staff members will receive exceptional VIP customer service. Each affected school will have a dedicated enrollment specialist to assist families with the transition to a new school in the district – one that is close to you or one that best meets your child’s wants and needs. Additionally, Human Capital Management will work closely with each affected staff member to help them find alternate positions within SAISD that match their qualifications. Our goal is to retain staff members and to honor their service to our district.
  • You will have a say in this conversation. We will be holding many community meetings to gather your input. As soon as meetings are scheduled, the information will be posted on this website, and promoted broadly through social media and telephone calls. You may also reach out to us now through this comment form.
  • We agree that communities should have a say in this process. We will hold multiple rounds of community engagement to share our initial ideas and gather feedback. Our plans will be informed by this feedback. Whether the community votes is a decision for the SAISD Board of Trustees. We believe the SAISD Board of Trustees, as the democratically elected representative of the community, has been empowered to make decisions that they believe are in the best interest of the communities they serve.
  • There are three key dates for Board action.

    June 20, 2023: Board acts on the rightsizing resolution.

    • After the Board of Trustees passes the resolution, staff will develop a Rightsizing Framework. The framework is a decision-making tool to organize criteria that will be used to identify schools to be co-located, consolidated or buildings closed, as well as schools suitable to receive students.
    • Through the summer and into September 2023, we will gather extensive feedback on the Rightsizing Framework. This will include, but not be limited to, holding two regional meetings in each of our comprehensive high school feeder patterns. This feedback will result in changes to the Rightsizing Framework that will inform our Initial Recommendation.

    Sept. 18, 2023: Board hears staff presentation on the Initial Rightsizing Recommendation.

    • Immediately after the Initial Recommendation to the Board, we will inform the affected staff, families, and students.
    • Between Sept. 18 and Oct. 27, 2023, we will gather extensive feedback from our communities on the Initial Recommendation. This will include, but not be limited to, holding two regional meetings in each of our comprehensive high school feeder patterns. This feedback may result in changes to the Initial Rightsizing Recommendation that we present to the Board of Trustees.

    Nov. 13, 2023: Board acts on the Final Rightsizing Recommendation

    • The Trustees will vote on the Final Recommendation as a total package, not one school at a time.
    • Should the Trustees approve the Rightsizing Recommendation, a Transition Team of experienced educators and leaders will mobilize to support students, families, and staff. We will meet with the community at each affected school at least twice after the Board's decisions.
  • In the Board’s resolution that was passed on June 20, they presented a timeline that allows for multiple rounds of feedback. A minimum of 28 community meetings will be held, with four each in each Trustee's Single-Member-District. We will also engage multiple stakeholder groups individually, such as the Growth and Development Committee, Children’s Cabinet, District Advisory Council, neighborhood associations, San Antonio Alliance, and many others. We believe this engagement will provide the community many opportunities to have their voices heard, and this feedback will inform our plans. 

    We have been discussing the concept of rightsizing with SAISD staff and the broader community for the last year. In our research at other school districts who have done rightsizing in a more effective way, there is a recommended window of time to share school closure and consolidation recommendations. That window is roughly what we are recommending - between the late summer and fall. To share school closure recommendations any earlier in the year would create more uncertainty and anxiety with staff and families. To share later would in the year be too late to allow families to have clear and accurate choices for schools for next year. In summary, no matter whether we present recommendations this school year or delay this process until next year, the window of time to share recommendations would be roughly the same. 

    Also, the challenge of under-enrolled and low capacity buildings has been with SAISD for decades. The demographic data is clear that this structural problem is not going away. Therefore, the time to analyze this challenge and make recommendations is now.

  • We are still in the process of engaging the community in the creation of our rightsizing framework. This framework will include the values, criteria, and context to help us make recommendations on rightsizing, which could include school consolidations and closures. We have not made any decisions or recommendations on a number of schools. We will only recommend school closures if we believe a closure is necessary to create higher quality schools, based on the data and our best judgment that has been informed by community feedback.
  • After we finalize the rightsizing framework and make our initial recommendations, we will analyze the impact of our rightsizing recommendations. To the extent that we have quantifiable data, we will show our estimates for how these rightsizing recommendations will improve services, offer more programming, and meet the other goals we have for this process.
  • After we finalize the rightsizing framework and make our initial recommendations, we will analyze the financial impact of our rightsizing recommendations. As soon as we have this information, we will share it with the SAISD Board and community.
  • We have some high-level ideas of how we will use buildings and spaces to benefit our communities, so that these facilities continue to contribute to a thriving community. However, we also believe that communities should have a say in what happens to a school site if the Board recommends a closure or consolidation. We will deeply engage the community to learn their vision for the best future use of a school property.

    Some potential uses can include:

    Working with developers to create low-cost housing for our staff, so they can live and work in our communities.
    Work with nonprofits to use buildings for fine arts centers or to provide mental health services to our families, resources that need to grow in our San Antonio community.
    Turn the area into a beautiful green space for community use, allowing nature to add peace and beauty to our neighborhoods.

    However, because we do not have a list of rightsizing recommendations yet, and we won’t until the September board meeting, it is premature at this time to present plans for specific schools. That process will happen after the Board reviews our rightsizing recommendations in November.

  • We are a strong supporter of community schools. Currently in SAISD, we have one school, Graebner Elementary School, that is working toward a path to becoming a community school, in partnership with UTSA. We have other schools that incorporate aspects of the community model, such as in-school health clinics at Tafolla and Davis middle schools. We also offer extensive services to our students and families through our partnership with Communities in Schools. For any schools that are proposed for closure, we will extensively engage the community on potential re-use. If the community is interested in a new model, such as a community school, we will work with the community to create opportunities that meet those needs.
  • Bond money will follow affected students where it makes sense. We will reinvest in our facilities, bring them closer to the contemporary standards common across Texas and the United States.  
  • SAISD is a strong supporter of green initiatives, including:
    Water conservation: Leak detection devices and centralized irrigation controls
    Energy Conservation: Energy efficient HVAC systems with optimal start/stop times, LED Lighting and innovative reflective roofing materials
    Sustainability: Solar panel and battery storage, propane and electric school buses, campus and department recycling programs, training for campus Energy Champions in Fall 2023.
    Battery Powered Lawn: The district has purchased and are currently implementing battery powered lawn mowers, blowers and weed eaters to support a true green environment.
  • We agree that all workers deserve fair wages and decent working conditions. We plan to work with our current contractors to learn what protections are currently in place. We can also research how to place standards in new contracts for construction projects going forward.
  • Only about 20% of our student loss is a result of in-district parents selecting out-of-district options. 

    A demographer has provided us two reports that analyze the demographic landscape in the district and how it affects K-12 education, including the effects of a declining birthrate and the unaffordability of housing in the urban core leading to family mobility out of district boundaries. For instance:
    o The under 18 population has declined 14 percent since 2010.
    o Births have declined 36 percent in San Antonio ZIP codes since 2007.
    o It is important to note: It is infants who become first graders, and that number is dropping faster than the number of older students. In 1998 we had 5,147 first graders. In 2023 we had 3,221.

  • While rightsizing has the potential to save the district money, our ultimate goal is to elevate the standard of education in our community. This is about living up to our promise of an excellent education for all students. Rightsizing, if done thoughtfully, can be an opportunity to build higher-quality schools. When the number of buildings and the buildings’ capacity is better matched to the proper student enrollment, schools can be more equitably and robustly resourced.

    Earlier this year, we developed a five-year strategic management plan – one we call Always Learning – to ensure we deliver on our promise of a high-quality education for every child. What became clear as we collaborated with our community to create Always Learning was that we could do better for our children by ensuring each student had the same access to extraordinary educational experiences and resources regardless of the campus where they were enrolled. In order to deliver this level of educational equity, we need to address school facilities that are becoming emptier, underutilized and under-resourced. 

    While rightsizing will ensure every student receives an equitable, high-quality education, we want to be transparent and share with you that the district and its students will realize better efficiency and financial stability as a secondary benefit.

  • We made tough cuts made at the non-campus, district level. Central Office budget reductions equaled $16 million in 2022-2023, and an additional $6.5 million will be made in 2023-2024. 

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