MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- 16 schools in the Milwaukee Public School District are back in session. Ronald Reagan College Preparatory High School is one of those. The students are used to starting at this time of year, but they are not used to having a whole school to themselves.
“Usually you know everything as a senior, but this year it`s totally new, you`re going through it with the freshmen,” said senior Meagan Bertram.
“I’m actually really jealous that the freshmen come in here with the entire building,” said senior Hao Tran.
Last year, some of the building was off limits to the high schoolers; the lower floors specifically were home to a different school. But this year the whole building is Reagan High School.
“It's exciting because a lot of freshman are asking where the floors are and what room is that in and I`m like I don`t know it's on the first floor somewhere, it's new to me too,” said Bertram.
To fill the space, they also have more students, and have hired 13 more teachers. The principal says it was a necessary change based on how quickly the school is growing.
“Going from 127 students (in 2003) to today, 1,250, it`s a very popular program in the community,” said principal Mike Roemer.
Roemer says what makes it so unique is it's an international baccalaureate school. “Students come from out of the district and in the district because of the college preparatory nature of the program,” said Roemer.
And with no sign of that popularity shrinking, Roemer says they plan to keep expanding, something even graduating seniors said they are looking forward to.
“I really just want to come back here for a 40 year reunion, and see how big the school has become because from 2003 to 2013 we really grew, from 150 kids to 1250 kids. That`s a lot. So I want to see what happens in the next 20 to 30,” said Tran.
Reagan was ranked third best high school in the state of Wisconsin according to the Washington Post. MPS' Rufus King International School was number two.