New Schools and Expansions

  • The Washoe County School District has invested nearly $1 billion in new schools, rebuilds and upgrades since the capital funding ballot initiative passed in 2016. Thank you voters! 

    The district's first major expansion project was at Damonte Ranch High School, where in 2017, 22 classrooms were added to address overcrowding and leave room for growth. In August 2019, three new schools opened - the first new schools in a decade - Sky Ranch Middle School in Spanish Springs, Desert Skies Middle School in Sun Valley, and Nick Poulakidas Elementary School in south Reno. In August 2020, two more schools opened - Marce Herz Middle School in south Reno and John Bohach Elementary School in Spanish Springs. In August 2021, Michael Inskeep Elementary School in Cold Springs opened its doors. 

    Procter Hug High School opened a brand new campus in August 2022. The district is constructing a new career and technical education academy, the Debbie Smith CTE Academy, on the site of the former Hug High School. This school, the second CTE high school in the district, is under construction and the planned opening is fall 2025. Construction on the new O'Brien Middle School, rebuilt next to the existing school, and the expansion and upgrades at Swope Middle School were completed in 2022 and 2023 respectively. Most recently, we opened JWood Raw Elementary School. The school opened in August 2023, is located within the Damonte Ranch Planned Unit Development and relieves overcrowding in south Reno elementary schools.  

    Future schools are dependent on growth and the district works closely with the cities of Reno and Sparks, Washoe County, the Truckee Meadows Regional Planning Agency and local developers to forecast future enrollment, and thanks to our increased capital funding, we will be able to build new schools as they are needed. 

    collage of new schools

    All of the new schools will comply with the most recent energy standards, and include energy efficient lighting and HVAC systems, as well as ground source heat pumps. The new buildings also include up to date safety and security features. 

    The new schools have reduced overcrowding in schools across Washoe County, and more relief is expected as other new schools are built. Since the capital funding ballot initiative passed in 2016, the number of schools facing overcrowding has decreased. 

    In the summer of 2022, WCSD hired CannonDesign who started their work to conduct a comprehensive assessment of every WCSD facility, perform demographic studies and facilitate a transparent planning process. This work is to help with a long-term facilities plan to ensure that every student in our district grows and thrives in the best possible learning environment. The Facility Modernization Plan (FMP) will guide and inform facility use and capital investment decisions for the next five to 10 years.

     For more information, please look at our Capital Projects timeline.