KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) — A proposed improvement plan introduced during a joint work session between the Kingsport Board of Mayor and Aldermen and Board of Education recommends developing two new elementary schools for the district, and consolidating others.

The recommendations in the “Proposed Facility & 10-year Capital Improvement Plan” were presented for consideration during the Monday session by Kingsport City Schools (KCS) Superintendent Chris Hampton. Suggestions included in the plan were created based on a study that has taken place since mid-2022 involving enrollment, facilities and school conditions, according to KCS.

The plan starts with in-depth statistics regarding KCS’s key needs, or “challenges”. The plan states, “KCS operates $820M worth of facilities with approx. $102M in currently identified deficiencies.” It goes on to say that three schools (Jefferson, Johnson and Washington elementaries) are more than 95% utilized, with 85% capacity being considered the industry standard for optimal operation.

All images used provided by Kingsport City Schools and can be found in the ‘Proposed Facility & 10-year Capital Improvement Plan’.

Recommendations included in the potential plan for the next five years of KCS include renovating the Tribe Athletic Complex, formerly Sullivan North High School, into a new elementary school; and building a new elementary school in Lynn Garden that would consolidate Kennedy and Roosevelt schools. KCS also suggests relocating and expanding Cora Cox Academy to an unused elementary school.

Under the recommendations, new schools and redrawn zones would result in the closing of Jackson Elementary.

KCS said in the plan that the main benefits of executing the suggestions would be improving classroom adequacy, addressing capacity needs with cost-effective strategies and improving operational efficiency through consolidating elementary schools.

The plan stresses that downsizing of staff is not anticipated with the potential 10-year plan. The presentation states, “Though the recommendations include a consolidation of physical school facilities, the facility plan actually anticipates needed service to an increased number of students in the coming years.”

The plan states that “KCS and City of Kingsport administration will continue to work together to refine and finalize the specific details required to effectively implement the long-term plan.”

The Kingsport BMA will now consider the possible formal actions required to move forward with the proposed plan, including specific attendance zoning changes, resource allocations and funding.