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Groundbreaking ceremony starts Monforton School expansion project

By Grace Ditzler, KTVM Reporter, gditzler@ktvm.com
Published On: May 09 2014 10:27:08 PM MDT
Updated On: May 09 2014 11:31:41 PM MDT
FOUR CORNERS, Mont. -

Monforton School in Four Corners said they are having growing pains from increased enrollment, but a new expansion project aims to help fix that.

NBC Montana was at the project's groundbreaking on Friday.

Everyone at Monforton School agrees: their school is over crowded.

"Our schools is kind of tiny," said sixth grader Maggie Kleinhans, "I can't wait until it's bigger."

Students explained the overcrowding is most noticeable during lunch time.

"I go and everyone's there and sometimes there's lines out to the hall, in the hall, going back a few feet," explained fourth grader Bronte Quinn.

And at assemblies. "We all have to sit on the floor because there's not enough room on the bleachers," said seventh grader Kyleigh Payne.

Monforton School officials said the crowding comes from the growing number of students. Monforton's enrollment increased by 30 percent in the last twenty months. But a new construction project will add classrooms and a new cafeteria to give these students more room.

Last September, Four Corners voters passed a $2.9 million bond to pay for the expansion.

"In the next few years, Monforton is going to be quite a different school from what we started with," said Monforton parent Kim Hobereck.

Parents and school officials said it is a much-needed project, as the Four Corners community grows with the school.

But Superintendent Darren Strauch said the area is ballooning so fast, it is possible they will fill up again once they finish the expansion.

"Unfortunately, very similar to the $3.5 million bond issue we had that built the new addition that’s right behind us right now, [we're] probably going to open up the doors and be fairly well full," explained Strauch.

For now, the Monforton School community is excited to kick-start the project.

The project is set to be finished by January of 2015.