Ramtech Building Systems, Mansfield, TX has announced that the company has secured a new charter school contract for the design, fabrication, and construction of three 7,424 square foot eight-classroom modular buildings to be delivered and installed in the Dallas, Texas area prior to the start of the 2011 – 2012 academic school year. This is the company’s sixth charter school project since the beginning of the year, and brings the total square footage under development for all charter school projects to over 56,000 square feet. The new modular buildings, which include two offices along with the individual classrooms, will be built utilizing Ramtech’s traditional modular construction approach. The buildings will each incorporate nine wall-mounted HVAC units zoned for energy efficient heating and cooling, a factory installed 26-gauge R-panel metal siding for the exterior, and VCG walls and carpet flooring on the interior.
The new modular buildings are based upon Ramtech’s standard floor plan designs that have been used by educational institutions since the company began manufacturing its own products in 1984. The Dallas project also adds to Ramtech’s growing resume of charter school clients, which in 2011 alone also includes projects in the other major metropolitan areas of Austin, Houston, and San Antonio. These projects include a mix of Ramtech’s industry standard portable double classrooms, restroom facilities and toilet trailers, and cafeteria and other multipurpose buildings. The use of modular and portable buildings have been instrumental in the growth of charter schools by allowing them to quickly meet their charter requirements while providing for a means of financing that would not be available by developing permanent construction projects. According to Gary White, Ramtech’s vice president of sales and estimating, “many of the charter schools need to be able to finance their facilities as personal property to be able to take advantage of various leasing options, so modular construction becomes the perfect vehicle to get these projects financed while also meeting their start date requirements.”
The growth of charter schools has exploded around the country as the slow transformation of public education takes place. Beginning in 1995, a revision to the Texas education code established a new type of public school, known as the charter school. Their purpose was to improve student learning, increase choice, establish a new form of accountability, and encourage new and innovative learning techniques. As is the case in many states, the growth of charter schools in Texas has steadily increased since their introduction. There are now 215 available open-enrollment charters available in Texas, along with an unlimited number of campus charters available to universities and independent school districts. To date, there are 558 charter school campuses that are now in operation, serving over 165,000 students.
Sabrina Queen works in Business Development for Ramtech Building Systems, serving the needs of the education market with temporary classroom facilities. She has been in the modular building industry for over 20 years.