The Robstown Independent School District held groundbreaking ceremonies at the location of two new elementary schools last week, and students hope to move into the new facilities one year from now.

The groundbreaking ceremonies for the new Lotspeich and San Pedro Elementary Schools were held January 8, two weeks after demolition began on the old structures.

Speaking before crowds of students at both schools, Superintendent Roberto Garcia said the transition process during the construction of the new schools would require the help of the students.

"I'm going to ask for your patience," Garcia told the students. "In about 12 months you will be able to move into your new school."

Once the schools are completed, Garcia said, the students would again be asked to put in the effort of making the new buildings "centers of learning."

"What we're making is a building. When you put the teachers and students in it, it becomes a school," Garcia told the elementary school students. "And when you start to learn, it becomes a center of learning."

Lotspeich student Jaclyn Arrisola and San Pedro student Chris Garza read statements thanking the board and the community for the construction of the new schools, and principals Norma Castaneda and Terry Castaneda said the students would work hard in the new facilities.

Father Williams Bakyil, of St. Anthony's Catholic Church, gave an invocation and a blessing for both of the new construction sites.

RISD Board Member Rosendo Espinoza remarked on his time as a student at Lotspeich Elementary School, and explained to the students that one day they might grow up to be leaders in the community. He also thanked the voters for approving the bonds that will fund the new schools.

"It takes a community effort to build something so beautiful," Espinoza told the crowd.

In November, the board approved the sale of the $15.5 million bonds approved by voters to build the new Lotspeich and San Pedro Elementary Schools. The 32-year bonds were sold on the market at a rate of 5.724 percent, which will bring an estimated increase of 11.64 cents to the district's interest and sinking fund tax rate.

In that same meeting, the board also approved the naming of Ewing Construction as the contractor for the construction of the two new elementary schools.