When Missoula voters decide on whether or not to approve of general voted levies for the school district this May, MCPS Superintendent Mark Thane hope they will keep in mind how many more students the district is serving.

"We are asking for a voted levy in both our elementary and our high school districts," Thane said. "Just to frame in context: since the 2011-12 school year our elementary district has increased by 611 students, that's almost 12 percent growth. Missoula is in a growth cycle right now and we are seeing that in our schools.  600 is, in our book, another elementary school."

Speaking of another elementary school, Missoula is about to open the brand new Jeannette Rankin Elementary, which will serve the children that currently go to Cold Springs Elementary, however, Thane says it will be at capacity on day one.

"We, as part of our 'Smart Schools 2020' are increasing capacity of all nine of the elementary buildings to 500 students, and there is a reason for that that we ascertained when we went through our smart schools study," Thane said. "Cold Springs itself, the new Jeannette Rankin will not have capacity that exceeds that 500, it will basically be full."

Thane says that Lewis and Clark and Rattlesnake Elementary schools are also at capacity.

More From 96.3 The Blaze