Parent Brent Ranabargar watched Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD transform over his two decades of living there.

“What used to be rolling hills and quiet streets are now packed with houses and bumper-to-bumper traffic,” Ranabargar said.

More growth is coming to his school district, which covers 73 square miles in northwest Tarrant County and includes Saginaw, Blue Mound and portions of Fort Worth. Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD proposed a $659.1 million bond to manage an influx of 4,765 new students over the next seven years.

The bond proposal comes more than a year after voters overwhelmingly denied a $275 million package

Voters will consider the bond in the Nov. 7 election. Early voting begins Oct. 23 and ends Nov. 3. The last day to register to vote is Oct. 10.

Voters will consider four bond propositions:

  • Prop A is $540.9 million and calls for the construction of four new campuses, improvements at other campuses, an agricultural sciences building and better security.
  • Prop B’s $20.2 million is planned for the purchase of devices and other technology.
  • Prop C is $47 million to improve Saginaw High School’s athletics building.
  • Prop D calls for a $51 million swimming facility.

What projects are planned in the bond?

Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD voters will consider a four-part, $659.1 million bond in November. Here’s what the district plans to do:

Prop A – $549.9 million

New and replacement schools and additions:

  • Wayside Middle School replacement
  • Saginaw Elementary School replacement
  • New Middle School (No. 7)
  • New Elementary School (No. 19)
  • Watson High School addition
  • New Agricultural Sciences Building
  • Land for future schools

Safety and security:

  • Playground improvements – 16 campuses
  • Security cameras – various locations across the district
  • Secondary vestibule buzz-in system
    • Middle Schools – Creekview, Ed Willkie, Highland, Marine Creek 
    • High Schools – Boswell, Chisholm Trail, Saginaw, Watson, Hollenstein Career and Technology Center
  • Police equipment
  • Sidewalks
  • Fencing
    • High Schools – Boswell, Watson

Replace Aging Systems:

  • Roofs
    • Elementary Schools – Bryson, Eagle Mountain, Gililland, High Country, Remington Point
    • Middle Schools –  Creekview
    • High Schools – Boswell 
  • HVAC
    • Elementary Schools – Bryson, Chisholm Ridge, Comanche Springs, Elkins, Gililland, Greenfield, Hafley Development Center, High Country, Lake Pointe, Bryson, Remington Point 
    • High Schools – Boswell, Saginaw 
  • Carpet
    • Elementary Schools – Elkins, Eagle Mountain, High Country, Lake Pointe, Northbrook, Parkview, Remington Point, Willow Creek 
    • Middle Schools – Ed Willkie, Highland
    • High Schools – Boswell High School, Chisholm Trail High School, HCTC
    • Facilities – Maintenance Facility
  • Vinyl Coated Tile
    • Elementary Schools – Bryson, Elkins, Eagle Mountain 
    • High Schools – Boswell, Saginaw 
  • Elementary Gym Floors
    • Chisholm Ridge, Comanche Springs, Lake Pointe, Northbrook, Parkview, Remington Point 
  • Tennis Court Resurfacing
    • Middle Schools – Creekview, Ed Willkie, Highland, Prairie Vista 
    • High Schools – Boswell, Saginaw 
  • Track Resurfacing
    • Middle Schools – Creekview, Ed Willkie, Highland, Prairie Vista 
  • Wood Gym Floor Sanding
    • Middle Schools – Ed Willkie, Highland, Prairie Vista 
    • High Schools – Chisholm Trail, Saginaw 
  • Saginaw High School Scene Shop Addition
  • Marquees
    • Middle Schools – Creekview, Ed Willkie, Highland, Prairie Vista 
    • High Schools –  Boswell, Chisholm Trail 
  • LED Gym Lighting
    • High Schools –  Boswell, Chisholm Trail 
  • Vehicles – to serve emergency and security for staff, students, maintenance

Prop B – $20.2 million

Purchase of devices and any infrastructure and equipment to support the district’s technology needs.

Prop C – $47 million

Saginaw High School athletic improvements:

  • Indoor multi-purpose facility
  • Locker room
  • Weight room
  • Training room
  • Team room additions

Prop D – $51 million

Natatorium, a swimming facility, to support district water sports and provide community programming, such as drowning-prevention programs, health and fitness classes and special events in association with a community management partner.

New homes fueling growth

The school district is seeing an increase in the number of single-family homes starting construction, demographer Bob Templeton told trustees on Aug. 28. New home construction is down 20% from 2022 across North Texas because of higher interest rates, he said.

Over the next year, 3,950 homes should be completed and ready for their for-sale signs in Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD, the demographer said.

“Eagle Mountain-Saginaw has the highest number of lots in development of any school district in the DFW region. You have more lots in the development pipeline than Northwest ISD,” Templeton said, referring to the booming district in far north Fort Worth.

Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD had 23,093 students during the 2022-23 school year. The district is expected to grow nearly 21% to 27,858 students by the 2029-30 school year, according to demographers Zonda Education. 

The district will be on the cusp of breaking 30,000 students by the 2032-33 academic year.

Battling inflation

The proposed bond was built with inflation in mind, Chief Operations Officer Clete Welch said.

Administrators plan to group projects together based on their potential vulnerability to inflation. Doing that should allow the district to keep costs down and stay within the budget decided by voters.

Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD can shift projects around depending on inflation and changing demographics, Welch said. For example, the northern part of the district is growing and may need another elementary school. However, construction on the new school is not planned until 2028.

“We’ll have to keep our eyes on things,” he said.

Trustee William Boaz questioned what would happen if voters deny some propositions. 

“Hypothetically, let’s say something doesn’t pass. Can we move something up?” Boaz asked.

The chief operations officer confirmed that administrators can move projects up depending on the election’s outcome. However, decisions would be based on the size of the project.

The bond has $25 million as a buffer just in case prices increase or for any unforeseen expenses.

If voters approve the four-part bond, construction would begin during the 2024-25 school year.

“The sooner we can build them, the less inflation we’re exposed to,” Clete Welch said.

Fraction-of-a-penny tax increase

Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD officials do not expect the bond to impact property taxes by much.

Robb Welch, chief financial officer, expects the school board will need to increase the district’s debt service tax rate by one-tenth of a cent. The increase would go into effect for the 2024-25 school year.

The average homeowner would pay less than $3 a year to support the bond, according to district officials.

“It doesn’t put any significant burden on our taxpayers. We owe it to our children to take this bond forward,” said Ranabargar, the longtime district resident.

‘The community is growing’

Trustee Blake Mabry was a co-chair of the committee that assembled the bond package, a position he had before his election to the school board in May. 

The committee examined the needs of the entire committee and asked residents why they didn’t support the last bond, he said. Some residents’ perception of what was happening in Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD didn’t match reality and they denied the 2022 bond.

Now, Mabry thinks the district has the right proposal.

“The community is growing whether we like it or not,” Mabry said. “It was our charge to help it grow well.”

Jacob Sanchez is an enterprise journalist for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at or via Twitter. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.

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Jacob Sanchez is an enterprise reporter for the Fort Worth Report. His work has appeared in the Temple Daily Telegram, The Texas Tribune and the Texas Observer. He is a graduate of St. Edward’s University....