Students walk between the main building and 41 portable classrooms at Greiner Middle School on warm spring days or when it’s pouring rain, freezing cold or Texas hot.
That all changes next school year, when a $10-million addition opens. The new wing means all of the students and classrooms will be enclosed in one building, and the school will double in size.
Greiner has about 1,600 students in grades 6-8. If it were a high school, it would be a 4A school. The existing school was built for about 800 students.
The new two-story wing will add six science labs and 33 classrooms. The school currently has six science labs and 12 science teachers, so the addition means each science teacher will have his or her own lab. The new wing is expected to be ready for move-in by July, which means it is expected to be open on the first day of school in August.
The change also will result in more parking, once the old portables are removed. The school currently has just about enough parking for faculty and staff and maybe a visitor or two. Parents often have to park on the side streets, especially if there’s an event at the school.
Since Greiner abuts two busy streets — Edgefield and 12th — pick-up and drop-off have their dangers. So along with the new building, workers are constructing a long drive along Clarendon, from Brooklyn to 12th, where students can load and unload from cars and buses.
Greiner principal Ray Winkler says having everyone under one roof will make the school more conducive to learning.
“It will meet students’ needs a learners and cater to them as people,” he says.