No More Space


Samantha Fuller, News Editor

Rathdrum, Idaho’s population has been growing tremendously, which inevitably means more students attending Lakeland High School. 

According to Leon Duce, City Administrator of Rathdrum, Idaho, the current population in Rathdrum, Idaho, is about  10,223. The town has grown quite rapidly over the past couple of decades. According to the City of Rathdrum website, the increase in population has been estimated to be about 45 percent more in growth. 

Since there is so much growth happening in Rathdrum, more students are starting to attend LHS. 

Although there has been massive growth in the Rathdrum community, the number of new students attending the Lakeland School District is lower than one might expect. 

The 2021-2022 school year is estimated to have had about 820 students that attended LHS by the end of the school year. The 2022-20233 school started off with about 891. 

However, despite the 71-student difference between the two school years, the number of the 2021-2022 school started off at a higher number than 820. 

According to Dustin Frank, Principal Assistant at LHS, the previous school year had over 900 kids attending at one point. 

The school still does have to adapt to the number of students coming in so they can maintain a professional environment. 

Frank and the school are doing everything they can to ensure students have the best environment possible. 

“Every single space or classroom is being used in one way or another. Our class sizes are still fairly small, and I know that is one thing our district wants to prioritize for our students and teachers to have the biggest impact possible,” said Frank. “We feel like teachers a bigger impact teaching 20 kids in a class rather than 35 to 40 kids in a classroom.”

However, there does come the question of whether there is enough space. 

Lakeland Middle School was initially made as the high school but has since changed. The high school is also running tight on space since the number of students has increased. 

The school is doing everything it can to accommodate any space issues the school may be having. 

“We can’t just make classrooms appear out of nowhere,” said Frank. “There are other ideas that we do have for the future if some action needs to be done. Right now, we are still doing good with everything.” 

Frank also explained that building a new school may be a decision that has to be made. There is no telling whether that be in months, decades, or ever. 

This idea is not anything set in stone; however, it may be something that will be addressed in the future. 

Although there is enough room for the students, some staff members have been moved around frequently due to not having space for them. 

Whitnee Johnson, an Administrative Assistant, is currently located in the library lab. This is Johnson’s sixth location while in her fourth year working at LHS.  

Although Johnson has had to pack up all her things time and time again, she enjoys being in the library because she has other people to talk to throughout the day. 

“It’s not ideal, but I just go where I’m told and where I need to be,” said Johnson. 

There was discussion about whether Johnson should be located in the conference room next to John Hatcher, armed guard’s office, or in the softball and baseball batting cages above the new gym. Johnson ended up in the library.

Moving so much in such a short period of time can be pretty annoying. Moving around the school is a lot of work, especially six times. 

However, Johnson is not too bothered by the situation. 

“It’s just a little tiny bit frustrating have to move so much, but I work wherever I need to,” said Johnson. 

Students at Lakeland also have to adjust to being around more kids at school. 

Some students believe it can take away from their education due to more students. 

Baylee Frank, a junior who attends LHS, has noticed the number of new students coming in. 

“I do think that having more kids at Lakeland can take away from how much time a teacher can have with me,” Frank said. “However, it is not dramatically life-changing, so I am not too worried about it.” 

Teachers have yet to find the increase in students to be a problem for them. 

The LHS staff believes that having more students makes no difference in the learning environment. 

LHS is glad for all the new students that have moved to the area or become a part of the school. 

“It makes no difference to me. I do like see all the new faces coming into Lakeland, and we as a staff are glad to have them,” John Keating said. 

As the town sees all the new growth to come, LHS will have to plan and prepare for whatever may come. 

Rathdrum, Idaho, is growing quickly, and the growth is expected to continue. 

Everyone is excited to see what can be done to further grow the school and community. 

“I think that Lakeland is great, and I am glad that we have more kids,” Dustin Frank said.