Dripping Springs ISD prepares to vote for name, principal of new elementary school

Corgan Architects presented potential schematic designs for the district's fifth elementary school last year. (Courtesy Dripping Springs ISD)
Corgan Architects presented potential schematic designs for the district's fifth elementary school last year. (Courtesy Dripping Springs ISD)

Corgan Architects presented potential schematic designs for the district's fifth elementary school last year. (Courtesy Dripping Springs ISD)

With Dripping Springs ISD set to open its fifth elementary school before the start of the 2021-22 school year, the DSISD board of trustees is set to vote on a name for the school Jan. 25. At the board's Jan. 18 agenda review meeting, leaders from the DSISD Schools Naming Committee gave their top recommendations for a name: Cypress Springs Elementary; Darden Hill or Darden Hill Springs Elementary; and Wildwood Springs Elementary.

Traditionally, DSISD schools are named after local springs, much like the city Dripping Springs is named after an actual spring in town. According to Naming Committee coordinator and DSISD Executive Director of Communications Dale Whitaker, community members surveyed felt that this tradition should continue.

"They felt very, very strongly about it," Whitaker said.

However, one of the committee's strongest recommendations was for the name Darden Hill Elementary, with strong community support for a name that honored the school's location at the intersection of Darden Hill and Sawyer Ranch roads. Whitaker said that name also honored the history of a former local school in Driftwood called Darden Hill School that served students in the early 1900s.

A majority of community survey respondents—50.9%—said they would prefer the name of an actual local springs be used. Wildwood Springs, for instance, is located in Dripping Springs west of Nutty Brown Road on Wildwood Hills Lane. Many respondents, though, said they would not mind if the board used the name of a fictitious spring when naming the school. That led the committee to recommend the extended name Darden Hill Springs Elementary. Another option strongly considered was Bluff Springs Elementary, in reference to the historic Darden Hill School's geography.


However, the name most popular with survey respondents was Cypress Springs Elementary, referencing springs close to, but not directly in, the city of Dripping Springs.

"Cypress Springs was both the committee's biggest agreement and strongest consensus and also the most frequent response to the community survey," Whitaker said.

The board of trustees will hold further discussion of the fifth elementary school's name next week before taking a vote. Board members will consider another item of importance to the school on Jan. 25 as well; a vote to hire a principal of the under-construction elementary school is also scheduled.
By Olivia Aldridge

Reporter, Central Austin

Olivia joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in March 2019. She covers public health, business, development and Travis County government. A graduate of Presbyterian College in South Carolina, Olivia worked as a reporter and producer for South Carolina Public Radio before moving to Texas. Her work has appeared on NPR and in the New York Times.