Saturday, May 05, 2007

Report from the Last Bond Election

This Standard Times report from the last bond election is interesting for comparison.

Proposition 1 proposes far-reaching improvements

Staff report

If little things add up, then that certainly holds true for bigger things - like 100 new classrooms, a new 800-seat auditorium and dozens of other significant improvements recommended to San Angelo school patrons under Proposition 1.

A Standard-Times review of the numbers shows that the $23.9 million proposal on Saturday's school bond issue ballot is far-reaching. The price tag, it appears, in large part results from efforts to simultaneously address issues on all of the district's more than two dozen campuses.

The detailed proposition - termed ``the essentials'' by district officials - stands in sharp contrast to the simplicity of the second ballot question facing voters Saturday. Prop 1 consumes eight pages of a financial report; Prop 2 requires barely a page to lay out its proposal to spend about the same amount of money for a new elementary, new junior high and 19 multipurpose buildings.

In analyzing Prop 1, the newspaper took the district's campus-by-campus listing of proposed improvements and analyzed it in a different way - bundling all new classroom construction into one category, general remodeling into another, fine arts and vocational improvements into yet another, and so on.

The result is seven groupings of expenses that are perhaps easier to digest for voters still making up their minds about the merits of the proposition.

In a nutshell, voters who study the Prop 1 numbers in this light will find the proposal offers these budgeted items:

·CLASSROOMS: $12.1 million districtwide for new classrooms.

·REMODELING: $3.3 million for major remodeling of campuses.

·ADMINISTRATION: $600,000 for improvements to administrative facilities at 18 separate campuses.

·ATHLETICS: $1.4 million for improvements in athletic facilities, including upgrades to Central High's swimming, tennis and gymnastics facilities, and substantial improvements at Glenn, Lincoln and the district's two high school stadiums.

·_ROTC: $75,000 to purchase the former National Guard armory for use by Central's rapidly expanding ROTC program.

·_FINE ARTS AND VOCATIONAL: $4.7 million for band, choral, dramatic arts and vocational skills facilities, including a projected $3.6 million for a new 800-seat auditorium at Lake View High and substantial improvements to the Central auditorium and theater.

·_OTHER CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS: $1.8 million for other capital improvements and contingencies, depending on whether one or both propositions are approved.


More than $12 million would be spent on new classrooms, libraries, computer labs, science labs and major remodeling of Lake View High ($520,000), McGill Elementary ($100,000) and Crockett Elementary ($200,000).

The new classrooms, intended both to add space and to replace many of the older portable classrooms that dot the district's campuses, are projected to cost about $80,000 each, on average, to build and fully equip to the needs of today's students. The price tag for 100 is about $8 million alone.

Ten campuses would receive classroom additions that are budgeted starting at nearly a half-million dollars each and going up:

·Glenn Junior High, $2,150,000 (two projects, including library).

·Lake View High, $1,600,000 (in addition to the $520,000 major remodeling and a $3.6 million combined auditorium and classroom addition).

·San Jacinto Elementary, $1,218,000.

·Reagan Elementary, $1,155,000.

·McGill Elementary and Fannin Elementary, $1,008,000 each.

·Santa Rita Elementary, $790,000.

·Central High, $506,200 (includes completing classroom project in PWC building and enclosure of Bacon porch).

·Glenmore Elementary and Austin Elementary, $480,000 each.

Some examples from the library projects: Alta Loma Elementary would get a new library and computer room, Central High's library would be expanded and remodeled, Lake View High's library would be remodeled, the library at Austin Elementary would be expanded, Glenmore Elementary would have two classrooms remodeled into a library, Holiman Elementary would get a new library and the library at Sam Houston elementary would be remodeled.


More than $3 million would be funneled into upgrades of basic facilities on the district's campuses. The money would be spent for such things as restroom additions and improvements, floor tile and carpeting, window repairs and replacements, additional parking, covered walkways, drinking fountains, lighting, electrical improvements, heating and air conditioning, marker boards, teacher storage cabinets, shelving, ceiling repairs and expanded cafeterias.

Other items include work to correct a drainage problem at Bonham Elementary, a new intercom system for Central High, remodeling to meet health and safety codes, and repairs to doors, door frames and walls throughout the campuses.

Some other specific examples: carpet or new floor tile at Blackshear Elementary and new carpet at Glenn Junior High and Lake View High (among others), parking improvements and a new traffic circle at Bowie Elementary, new window treatments at Bradford Elementary, Lee Junior High and Central High (among others), an enlarged and updated kitchen at Crockett Elementary, cafeteria additions at Edison and Lincoln junior highs, an upgrade of the electrical wiring at Glenmore, Austin and Santa Rita elementaries (among others), and teacher cabinets and shelving in all classrooms at Lake View High.

At Central High, more than $200,000 is budgeted to improve fire safety by reworking corridor walls, adding doors on classrooms and revamping heating, venting and air conditioning. At Lake View High, a new fire sprinkler system is budgeted for an estimated $180,000.


At least 18 campuses would receive shares of the nearly $600,000 budgeted for improvements to administrative offices.

District officials said many campuses currently can't accommodate the administrative space required for nurses' offices, on-campus suspension, parent-teacher conference rooms and the like.

Also, they said the improvements would include new space for counselors, storage and teacher workrooms.


The $1.4 million budgeted price tag for improvements to athletics facilities includes projects at the junior highs and Central High, as well as improvements to both of the district's stadiums.

At Central, the Gehrig Gym floor would be replaced ($65,000) and the gym air-conditioned. Forty two-tiered lockers would be added in the girls' locker room at Gehrig. The Cottage would be renovated for tennis lockers and offices and public restrooms. Other locker rooms, restrooms and an office would be added for swimming and tennis at the natatorium, which also would receive additional bleachers and fresh paint (total of $218,000). The gymnastics facilities would receive additional bleachers, restrooms and expanded training areas ($185,000). Also, new offices for coaches of girls' sports would be added on the second floor of Didrickson Gym ($60,000).

Other specifics: new locker facilities and public restrooms at the girls' gym at Glenn Junior High ($160,000), new restroom, storage and dressing rooms building for the tennis program at Lake View High ($45,000), replacement of the gym floor, new bleachers and other improvements to the gym at Lincoln Junior High (total of $143,500), repair and resurfacing of four tennis courts at Edison Junior High, new restroom and concession facilities on the north end of San Angelo Stadium ($90,000), four new sections of seating at Lake View Stadium ($160,000) and two new sets of concession and restroom facilities at Lake View Stadium ($150,000).


The $75,000 item for purchase of the former National Guard armory adjacent to the Central High campus is intended to meet the demands of the school's rapidly growing ROTC program.

The co-curricular program - meaning it is an extracurricular activity but also can be counted toward graduation credits - is approaching 200 students.

Officials said the building will require little work to meet the needs of the student program.


The single largest item under the umbrella of Prop 1 is the proposed $3.6 million Lake View High auditorium and related art and drama classrooms and facilities.

The project would include the auditorium-theater, projected at 800 seats, and five classrooms.

Other spending would include about $425,000 for improvements to the theater at Central High, including two new classrooms and an area for constructing stage props. Also, a center aisle would be added to the Central theater to meet fire code requirements, and the Central band and choral facilities would be remodeled.

About $300,000 is budgeted for an Edison Junior High mechanics, wood shop, band and orchestra facility. About $240,000 is budgeted for similar facilities at Lee Junior High. A new Glenn Junior High ensemble room would be added, and the Lincoln Junior High art and choir building would be remodeled.


This $1.8 million category is designed to address two scenarios:

In the event that Prop 1 passes and Prop 2 does not, administrators said this would provide needed funds for additional capital improvements to Crockett and Travis elementaries and to Lincoln Junior High.

Joanne Rice, district planner, said the two elementaries would be less crowded if Prop 2 passed and a new elementary were built. Without Prop 2, they will require some additional spending to relieve crowding. Also, if voters do not approve a replacement for Lincoln, then that campus as well may require additional improvements, she said - although she and other district officials maintain that the aging school must be replaced soon.

If both propositions pass, Rice said the district would use the funds in this category for capital improvements currently unspecified. She said this could include replacement of more of the portable buildings in the district.

1 comment:

  1. What worries me is how much of these projects are going to be screwed up with no one held responsible, just like every other time they take on projects in the this school district. Look at the poor level of upkeep on school properties. Look at the amount of admin employees that are costing us millions, but they cut classes first? I have no confidence in our school district and the school board does nothing to correct issues.