During the past five years, the Richardson Independent School District has experienced burgeoning growth throughout the district.

Although district officials have tried to keep pace, the rapid growth has led to overcrowding problems in three of our four high school areas. The need for space has, therefore, become a primary and urgent concern.

While the Lake Highlands area is the most visibly impacted by serious overcrowding at this time, the entire district is feeling the effects. Current projections indicate the space problems will shift to other areas in the near future, so solutions for overcrowding must come from all geographic areas of the school district.

Plans and solutions for these urgent problems must not have a selfish focus. Without an entire district focus, the overall quality and effectiveness for which RISD has come to be known will diminish.

In the fall of 1994, the RISD Board of Trustees charged a 21-member committee to study issues relating to school use during the next 10 years. After extensive research and examination, the committee presented its recommendations to the board.

Possible solutions determined by this group include constructing new buildings, transferring students, boundary adjustments, magnet schools, teaming of schools, program options, special needs programs, grade configuration changes, school-year length and school-day length adjustments.

These are just suggestions, and no decisions have been made. Trustees are studying all the material and are developing a plan for extensive community input.

The RISD is comprised of a large portion of Dallas, most of Richardson, all of Buckingham and a small part of Garland. But the school district itself is the real community for most of us within its confines.

We have a seven-member elected Board of Trustees (six at the present time, due to a resignation) that represents district residents with at-large positions. Every member of the board must be elected by the entire populous of the RISD and must, therefore, answer to every voter. In my opinion, this is one of the strengths of our school district.

In a large district such as ours, each of the four high school areas is an entity unto itself, yet very dependent on the other areas.

Each board member feels a tremendous responsibility to each and every school, as well as every school area in the RISD. We need to be informed at all times of the successes and failures, needs and wants, pleasures and displeasures of each of these different and diverse sections of our district.

Customer satisfaction is a major goal for the district, and being kept informed by our constituency is of utmost importance.