Little Rock To Create Middle School in West, Plans To Build A High School In Southwest

Oct 1, 2015

Superintendent Baker Kurrus said the district will compete to keep middle school students in public schools in West Little Rock.
Credit Sarah Whites-Koditschek / KUAR

The Little Rock School District plans to open a new middle school in West Little Rock as early as next year. Superintendent Baker Kurrus announced Thursday the district has a tract of land and possible middle school building under a $11.5 million dollar contract. 

Kurrus said discussions will also begin with community members about plans for a “world class” high school in south Little Rock which he said could take four or five years to construct.

"We have need in both areas that's demonstrable, I'm in those areas all the time. I'm responding to those needs. We also have competition in those areas, very strong competition."

Kurrus expressed concern about west Little Rock residents moving their children out of the district for middle school. Last January the district’s school board had agreed to build schools in both parts of town contingent on the passage of a millage campaign.

Under the school board's plan, the schools would have been built in tandem as a compromise between interests. West Little Rock is a primarily white, wealthier area, Southwest Little Rock is a poorer area with more people of color.

The state took over the Little Rock school district and disbanded the school board in January.