A new elementary school broke ground Wednesday. The Clark County School District might have trouble filling it, not with students, though.
By May 2017 there will for sure be more than 50 classrooms and hundreds of students at the school near Arville Street and Mesa Verde Lane. One thing is harder to guarantee.
"I think it's sad, and I think that the teacher's pay rate should be higher, of course, because they are teaching our children," said Summer O'Donald, a parent with kids in CCSD schools.
The district is upping its game to make sure there will be enough teachers to fill this and five more elementary schools that are breaking ground this year. Teachers now make $40,000 right off the bat. That's an increase of several thousand dollars from the old starting pay.
"I'm very excited. As I've used the term numerous times, I'm cautiously optimistic. Our recruiting numbers are coming in well," said Pat Skorkowsky, the superintendent of CCSD.
Right now the numbers look good: 235 teachers have put in for retirement so far this year. That number is down from 527 in the entire 2014-2015 school year. As for teacher openings, latest numbers from CCSD show, there are 751, compared to more than 1,200 this same time last year.
Within 10 minutes of the construction site at Arville Street and Mesa Verde Lane, there are five other elementary schools. Planners hope this newest one will relieve overcrowding in all of them.
"The new schools teachers want to go to, so it's filling our older schools that's hardest," explained Carolyn Edwards, a CCSD trustee.
Some teachers will leave along with the students to fill in new schools. Regarding new teachers, CCSD is trying to recruit from both ends, straight out of college and people about to retire in other districts who might consider a move to Las Vegas.