FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — It’s nothing new that parking is tight at Fayetteville High School but this school year it’s going to be even worse due to construction on the north side of campus.
They are at two-thirds capacity of what they normally are when it comes to parking. That’s because construction right in front of the football stadium will be the academic and athletic center construction that’s taking over quite a few spaces.
“Now, we are just finding this out a week and a half before school starts… I have no idea where she’s going to park her car,” said parent Erica Erck.
The lack of parking spots is causing some concern for parents of juniors who thought their children who signed up for the lottery were finally going to get a spot.
“We go to all the other schools for sports and see how much space and parking they have and I realize it’s wonderful to be in Fayetteville right in the heart of campus and everything near, the U of A…it’s fun but it’s not functional,” Erck said.
Erck has a daughter who will start her junior year later this month. Her daughter, like many other students, has to be at school for what’s known as "zero hour" at 7:15 a.m.
“I don’t want her walking across a busy intersection on MLK. I don’t want her walking blocks and blocks from someone’s yard in a neighborhood. I want her to have a safe parking place every day,” she said.
Fayetteville High School Principal Michelle Miller says all seniors are guaranteed a parking spot on campus. In the spring, juniors filled out a form requesting a spot and they were put on the waitlist, and no juniors were told that they would be receiving a spot at that time. She says emails went out last week to juniors who were getting spots.
“We always have seniors who will transfer schools during the summer or move someplace else and they had already requested one, so as we finalize what seniors we have on campus, then that will open up more junior spots,” Miller said.
As construction continues, Miller says they will continue to move the fence back gaining more parking spots. When that happens, she says emails will go out to the next juniors on the list.
She says they understand parents' concerns.
“Fayetteville is growing all the time and it creates some geographical challenges and so we’ve been working with this for a couple of years and we’ll continue to work and try and gain more,” she said.
The high school says it does run bus routes to get students to school by 7:15 a.m. Construction on the new building behind me won’t be complete until around the time school starts in the fall of 2024.
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