February 18, 2018

Facilities Work Shop Summary

Please excuse my tardy posting. My intention is to pre-post this type of information before meetings!  The school board met last night to review the district’s facilities.   Board workshops are open public meetings but do not follow as regimented a protocol as regular business meetings of the school board.

I spoke to the board about three types of facility concerns.   Obviously my designations have considerable overlap between one another.  I labeled the three types of facility concerns as short term, medium term, and long term concerns.

Short Term Concerns:  Dominated the three and half hours of discussion.

1. Energy Upgrade’s to the Main Campus

2. Springdale School

These two short term concerns have long term consequences and dominated most of the conversation.  I will provide a brief overview of this discussion at the end of this post.

Medium Term Concerns:

1. East campus septic project.   We are moving forward with bids on the east campus septic project.  This project is mandated by the state and has nothing to do with the size of our school.  The board has budgeted $50,000 for this project this year and is looking to budget another $50,000 next year.  The good news is that initial estimates of the project seem to indicate that it may be less costly than first anticipated.

2. Main gym floor refurbishment.  The main gym floor will need to be resurfaced in the next 2 to 5 years.   The cost of this project could range from $20,000 to $40,000.

3. Parking/bus pickup locations. Parking is an issue.  The district is exploring providing alternate pickups for either buses or automobiles behind the main campus.

4. Pay off of the grade school bond.  The grade school bond will be paid off in a little more than 2 years.   Corbett residents will see a significant reduction in their taxes.

Long Term Concerns:

1. Middle School building or removal and reconstruction.   The middle school building is in poor shape.  It will need to be replaced or rebuilt.  This will only be possible with the support of a construction bond.   It is poorly heated, poorly cooled, has seismic issues that will need to be addressed, fire, life, and safety issues will need to be resolved when it is rebuilt.   This is a long term project that will require voter approval.

2. Transportation building renovation or reconstruction.  A smaller long term project is the bus barn.  The new school buses do not fit in the existing building.   At some point a new facility will need to be built.

Short Term Concerns Review:  Most of the discussion revolved around these concerns.   McKinstry Inc. is completing a review of the main campus and the energy use patterns associated with our current buildings.  They will provide the district with an energy saving project recommendation that will be supported by the energy savings it produces.   Every single building on campus is performing well below the industry standards for similar buildings.  These inefficiencies are obvious in some buildings where the temperatures can soar to more than 90 degrees in classrooms on hot days and plummet into the 50’s on cold days.

A crude example goes something like this.  If you are spending 100 dollars per month on energy for heat and you reduce your expenditure to 50 dollars per month by buying 750 dollars worth of new boilers you could finance those boilers over 15 years just by the energy savings you realize each year.   Each year  for the first 15 years that you did not waste the energy would be better for the environment and more comfortable for staff and students; while each year after that would represent real dollar savings for the district.

The board discussed at length many scenarios involved with Springdale School.   Via consensus  building’ the board authorized me to spend a relatively small amount of money to gain further insight into the cost of renovations associated with the Springdale School.   The board will need to determine if it will take advantage of zero percent interest dollars available to refurbish Springdale School before the end of October.   One critical component of determining if the board will continue with reservations is the cost of those reservations relative to the potential to generate revenues from that facility.

I am happy to talk to you about these facility concerns and look forward to building more consensus around these issues.

Randy Trani
Corbett Schools

Randy Trani About Randy Trani

A science teacher at heart, Dr. Trani loves the Corbett school community and the Corbett community at large. As a resident of Corbett Dr. Trani is committed to delivering quality education to Corbett students. Dr. Trani became the principal of Corbett Schools in 2004, promoted to Superintendent of Corbett School District #39 in 2010.