Tulsa County Independent School District No. 5 has several projects under way that are wholly or partially financed with proceeds from $155 million of lease revenue bonds approved by voters in 2008.
The bonds are supported by proceeds from annual sales of general obligation debt.
School districts in Oklahoma cannot have outstanding debt equivalent to more than 10% of the net assessed property values in the district.
The lease revenue bonds allow school districts to receive sufficient funds for large projects without stretching them out over several years.
A groundbreaking ceremony was held last week for the district’s new aquatic center, and two other projects are to begin soon. The district, which serves the Tulsa suburb of Jenks, has also purchased four plots of land for an expansion of its central campus.
The expansion effort will include demolition of the existing administration building and construction of a math and science center on the site.
Other projects that are scheduled to get under way soon include five to six additional elementary school classrooms and 22 new classrooms at the district’s middle school. Both are to be completed before the beginning of the school year in fall 2010.
The district’s projects are based on a 2007 study that estimated the school system’s total enrollment at 13,000 by 2022. The study said the high school must accommodate almost 700 additional students by 2022.
Another study, based on recent increases in enrollment, put the number of additional high school students at more than 1,200.
The school district, which has some 9,500 students, has been adding more than 200 students a year for the past three years.
The district’s bonds are rated Aa3 by Moody’s Investors Service.
District voters approved bond issues of $21.5 million in December 2007, $19 million in 2006, and $14.9 million in 2005.