Developer-donated land and a land development standards agreement with the city of Austin could bring a new elementary and high school to Hays CISD within the next few years.

Chief Operating Officer Max Cleaver discussed the agreements during the board of trustees meeting June 17.

Sorting out details

According to agenda documents, the developer of the Crosswinds subdivision in east Kyle is proposing to donate nearly 16.7 acres of land within the development to the district for a future elementary school site. Various contracts are being drafted and vetted, and if approved by the trustees, construction would begin by June 2029, otherwise the property would be reverted back to the developer.

Cleaver said his team has done a site layout on the area and successfully ensured the district’s elementary school prototype fits on it without modification.

The district is also considering entering into a school district land development standards agreement with the city of Austin for a future high school site in east Hays County. Here, the district’s fourth high school could be built and come online by the 2029-30 school year.

Chief Communications Officer Tim Savoy said constructing the high school will be on a May 2025 bond.

Cleaver said the potential site is within Austin’s extraterritorial jurisdiction. The agreement would reduce the amount of “red tape” requirements with the city, including building height restrictions, traffic impact analyses, impervious cover requirements and parking, to make the development process less time consuming.

“What this does is kind of let you get out of the city of Austin requirements, but we still have Travis County requirements,” Cleaver said. “So you still have both requirements, but this kind of eases up the city of Austin stuff.”

Austin and Pflugerville ISDs have entered into similar agreements, Cleaver added.

Why it matters

About 24,607 students are expected in HCISD for the 2024-25 school year, based on district demographer PASA’s moderate projections. This is about 1,100 more students than what the district ended the 2023-24 school year with.

HCISD’s 16th and newest elementary school, Jim Cullen Elementary, will also open for the 2024-25 school year in the Anthem subdivision in west Kyle. Anthem officials say the school will be able to accommodate up to 900 students.

Looking ahead

The board is expected to vote on both items at its next meeting on June 24.