In early June 2015, a couple of weeks after McKinney voters returned three incumbents to the McKinney Independent School District Board of Trustees, this sign was placed at the southeast corner of Hardin Boulevard and McKinney Ranch Parkway. There was no public announcement, hearings, discussion, citizens panel or any public hint, that the district, was even considering a new stadium.
According to documents obtained from the district, board members have approved a 12,000 seat stadium with total costs (construction and land) exceeding $60 million dollars with a projected completion date of August 2017.
The $62 million price tag includes over $52 million (construction and associated costs), plus nearly $10 million in land.
District plans propose a August 2017 stadium completion and a May 2016 Bond Election.
The proposed site is located just 3 miles away (as the crow flies) from Allen ISD’s 18,000 seat $60 million stadium, a project that received national scorn, including Forbes noting “wretched excess of the state’s mania for high school football, the kind of schoolboy facility inspired by Jerry Jones‘ understated (that’s sarcasm) Cowboys Stadium. While everyone else — actually, Allen, Texas, too — was dealing with cuts in education funding that those in public schools feared would interfere with learning, here comes one town responding with its own anti-education initiative: a massive, taxpayer-funded monument to concussions.”
Although Allen and Frisco can point to stellar academics, McKinney ISD student achievements are less than stellar.
According to the Texas Education Agency, 2014 Accountability Rating System, McKinney ISD ranks 9th among Collin County’s 15 ISD’s in Student Achievement, that “Measures campus and district performance based on satisfactory student achievement combined over all subjects for all students.”
Just last week, MISD approved a “$206.7 million operating budget for the 2015-16 school year, with an increase of $9.1 million, or about 4.6 percent, higher than this year’s budget. It assumes an 8.5 percent value growth, which accounts for increased property taxes and resulting state funds, and about 200 more students.”
McKinney ISD Superintendent Rick McDaniel said “I think the state can do more, but the thing I admire the most about McKinney is our taxpayers recognize that we’re going to spend their money frugally and get the most bang for the buck, I think we allocate pretty well, considering what the state gives us.”
This is not the first time that McKinney ISD has asked voters to pay for a new stadium. In February 2000, McKinney voters approved a $298.5 million bond package that designated $13.5 million to build an athletic stadium and $6.9 million for a natatorium. By 2003, the district decided that “Things like football stadiums and natatoriums are going to have to take a back seat.”
The construction of a $30.2 million Aquatic Center, is set for a July groundbreaking, but this is a McKinney Community Development Corporation (MCDC) and City of McKinney project. McKinney ISD declined to be involved, according to Trustee Lynn Sperry because the “costs were too high”.
The center is located in Allen ISD jurisdiction.
Correction – the Aquatic Center IS located in MISD.