The Vista Board of Education authorized the submission of an enrollment expansion application to the State Charter School Board. This application requests that Vista be allowed to increase its enrollment in all current grades to accommodate more than 300 students on Vista’s waiting list each year. When approved by the state board, Vista can break ground on a middle school campus that would open for students in August of 2020. This new campus would include enhanced technology classrooms, a new performance auditorium, larger classrooms, large gym and commons areas, and shared community space to provide a true STEAMM experience. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics, and Medicine) The middle school campus will provide Vista with the facilities to match the outstanding educational programs we already have in place, as well as the responsibility to expand and enhance our educational programs. We are committed to continue fulfilling the mission and vision of Vista and the promise we have made to the communities of Ivins, Santa Clara, St. George, and Washington and their children. This building will also be large enough to accommodate growth. Vista currently serves grades K to 8 and the intention is to continue to do so. The enhanced space will allow for growth into both the preschool and high school grades in the future should Vista’s school community so desire. We welcome new partners in education and look forward to the wonderful opportunities that will come with this new campus. Further information will be available in July and September once approvals have been granted. The following is a list of FAQ’s that may arise and will be updated as additional questions are brought forth.
When will this expansion occur?
The application will be submitted prior to July 1, 2019. The State Charter School Board will give approval for the expansion by September 2019. If approval is obtained, construction can begin immediately. The intention is to open doors in August 2020 for the 2020-2021 school year.
Where will the new campus be located?
The location has not been determined yet. There is land adjacent to the our current campus that Vista is looking into, as well as several other sites. Vista will announce the location once land has been acquired.
Why build a new campus?
Vista’s current facility was too small almost from the time it opened. The quality of Vista’s productions and programs, as well as the quantity of participants have made it difficult for students and families to have the ideal experience they deserve.
In addition to the need for better facilities, Vista is looking to the future. Santa Clara, Ivins, Kayenta, and other cities in the area continue to grow. In efforts to provide for student needs, Vista will seek to build a facility that will house students for decades to come.
What grade level will the new building house?
This expansion application may include grades K to 9 with the new building housing our middle school grades. In an effort to align with most schools in the area, it may be more appropriate for Vista to host at least a 9th grade and allow students to transition into high schools of their choice at 10th grade.
How does Vista intend to pay for the new building?
Vista has been a good steward over the local, state and federal dollars it has received. Vista has always saved for a rainy day. In addition, Vista’s credit rating has steadily improved over the past decade. At this time, Vista qualifies for low interest rate loans and bonds. The majority of the building will be funded by a new bond request, and gradually be paid down by savings and by state dollars that are awarded to Vista annually.
Vista has begun to develop a number of strong partnerships with influential individuals and organizations that have pledged financial support. Vista’s Foundation also has begun accepting funds for a new facility. We anticipate that highly motivated donors will continue to step forward and assist Vista in creating the ideal environment for teaching and learning.
What does this mean for class sizes?
Vista remains committed to maintaining moderate class sizes. Class sizes should mimic those that are currently in place at Vista.
How will this expansion impact Vista’s enrollment in 2019?
Vista’s cap will remain at the state approved 900. We will not admit additional students prior to the expansion approval.
Will the increase in numbers make it more difficult for students to access performance groups and opportunities?
No. With additional students, Vista will expand its performance groups, programs, or events to accommodate student interest.