In a Nov. 2 referendum, Central Public Schools will ask voters to consider two bond referendum questions to address building deficiencies at every level, inside and out. Our community supported an operating levy increase and a technology levy in 2019, which is used for district operations including teaching and learning, as well as expanding our technology program. A bond referendum funds facility improvements and construction projects.
Our Age is Showing
Portions of the high school were built in 1935 during the Great Depression - that’s 86 years ago. Many systems are long past the end of their expected life span.
Interest rates are at historic lows and construction costs are increasing. Waiting even one year to complete this work could increase project costs by $8 million ($2M construction inflation, $6M if interest rates increase by 1% in a year.)
If the referendum is not approved, the needs will not go away. The school board will return with another referendum proposal until needs are met.
Did you know?
According to a staff survey:
Staff in our district don’t believe that our school buildings motivate students when they walk into school or that our buildings allow for different learning styles.
School has changed a lot since our buildings were built.
There is a need for spaces that are conducive to collaboration, group work, and flexible learning to keep up with current teaching and learning methods. Our buildings were built to last, but they are no longer conducive to a modern learning environment that relies on flexibility, teamwork, and different learning styles.
Central Elementary School
Our elementary school was built in 1981 and has seen more recent upgrades but the improvements outlined address a number of ongoing issues including classrooms that are in rough shape after 40 years of use and systems that are beyond their useful life including air handling units from 1981.
The building would be remodeled for 21st century learning with new planning rooms, dedicated community education space, improved Early Childhood Family Education/preschool rooms, and open study areas. Special education spaces would be right sized, a Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) classroom would be added, and new, flexible furniture would be added throughout the school. These issues would be addressed in Question 1 of the referendum.
Elementary School deficiencies include:
Central Middle/High School
The Central Middle/High School building was built in 1935 with additions in 1952, 1962, 1975, 1980, 1982, 1994, and 2011. It’s been nearly 27 years since it last had significant renovation. There are a number of issues with the exterior, infrastructure, interior, and systems throughout the building that need to be addressed including ADA, safety, and security upgrades.
Based on staff, student, and community feedback, our facilities consulting firm recommends a number of configuration changes including the addition of a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) lab, new school office and flex space, open study space, new lockers, and improvements to classroom spaces including ceiling tiles, flooring, cabinets, paint, and new flexible furniture. The roof on the 1962, 1975, 1982, and 1994 additions of the building is past its useful life expectancy.
Middle/High School deficiencies include:
In addition to our buildings, our sites and athletic facilities have greatly deteriorated and are in need of attention. These issues would be addressed by question 2 of the referendum.
Site deficiencies include: