Roy Smith brought up an interesting issue on the tail of another thread but I thought it deserved its own. What is the capacity size at any given building? Would we want schools full to capacity?
In my work on the CAC (and later on), I found that Facilities uses different capacity numbers. It's quite puzzling. There are different factors in determing capacity like teaching stations (actual classrooms), special ed rooms, a teachers' area, etc. What I saw on the CAC is that when a school was underenrolled, many schools found uses for their extra space and were loath to give it up. I get that (especially in older buildings that weren't designed to have an art room as many new buildings do have) but the extra rooms have to do more than be storage or extra room for art projects. The district doesn't help by publishing/stating different capacity numbers (depending on the issue they are speaking on). We need realistic numbers that do not change (unless a new program comes in that requires taking a teaching station).
I recall when my older son started at Eckstein about 100 extra kids were placed in the school based on parent complaints. That was about 10% more kids at the school. This placed a tremendous strain on resources and, to my amazement, the school continued to grow. Eckstein is a fine school, well-run with good academics and a great music program but many parents are turned off by (or reluctantly accept) its large size. I was told that in the 70s Eckstein had 2000 kids (similiar to the story Roy heard about how big Jane Adams was at one time). All I can say is, "Who wants a 2,000 seat middle school?"
Roosevelt was built for 1600, has 1700. Ballard is way overloaded. I was told recently that Hale will be rebuilt for 1400 (they currently have about 1150ish). Hale doesn't want to be bigger but population growth in the north and the fact that we're paying to rebuild their building to 1400 means they are likely to have little choice but to grow.
Capacity seems a little like Goldilocks; not too many, not too few, but what is just right?