The Frisco ISD Board of Trustees on Feb. 8 approved the district's 43rd elementary school to be named the Buddy and Joni Minett Elementary School and 12th high school to be Panther Creek High School.
The elementary school was named in honor of Buddy and Joni Minett, whom Deputy Superintendent Todd Fouche praised for their years of service. Buddy, who served in several public capacities, spent time on both the Frisco ISD board and Frisco City Council. His wife, Joni, in her youth was frequently involved in the Frisco Homecoming Parade, now the Frisco Community Parade. She is a Frisco ISD alum, has administrative experience, is a lifetime PTA member and frequent volunteer.
Panther Creek High School gets its name from the creek that borders the campus property, Fouche said. Panther Creek, according to the deputy superintendent, is believed to have been the base where settlers in the 1800s got fresh water.
Any resident can nominate someone to have a school named in their honor, according to FISD. A citizens' committee helps research and maintain a list of candidates, the district’s website states, and a subcommittee of the FISD Board of Trustees considers all priority nominations before a final recommendation is brought to the entire board for consideration.
“It's incredible to sit with namesakes of our schools and listen to the history that has brought us to where we are sitting,” Board Vice President René Archambault said of the subcommittee. “It's a really great committee to be able to sit on.”
Minett Elementary School is funded under the district's 2014 bond program and will be built northeast of FM 423 and Rockhill Parkway adjacent to the Somerset Park and Hollyhock subdivisions. Panther Creek High School, which will be built northeast of Teel Parkway and Dakotah Road, is funded through the 2018 bond program. The district’s 43rd elementary campus is projected to cost $28.8 million, according to FISD Assistant Communications Director Meghan Cone, while the projected cost of the district’s 12th high school is $125.8 million.
The total square footage of Minett Elementary School will be 83,470 square feet, and the total square footage of Panther Creek High School will be 389,694 square feet, according to Cone. The elementary school was designed to accommodate up to 760 students, and the high school was designed to accommodate up to 2,100 students.
Dirt and utility work at the site of Panther Creek High School began in September 2020. The project is currently about 14% complete, according to Cone. Cone said initial groundwork on Minett Elementary School will begin in mid-April.
Actual enrollment will depend on attendance zones, which will be drawn this coming fall, Cone said. Both campuses are scheduled to open in August 2022.
Editor’s note: The original post has been edited to correct an error. Only Joni Minett is a Frisco ISD alumni.