The Marshall School District Facility Committee has been meeting on a regular basis and the members of the committee have been working very hard to develop a plan to address the facility needs of our school district.
I thought that I might take a few minutes and let you know where the committee is at this time as well as inform you of some of the issues that they have been dealing with.
What ideas has the committee come up with?
The committee has not yet developed a final recommendation to present to the Board of Education. The committee has, however, developed some preferred ideas that it is now seeking input on.
The preferred ideas that the committee has developed for addressing our district needs are:
1) construct one new elementary building for either third through fifth grades or kindergarten through second grade (a majority of the committee has expressed a preference to date for the grades 3-5 building first and the K-2 building at a later date);
2) renovate Bueker Middle School, which will include air conditioning;
3) provide air conditioning for the industrial arts building;
4) utilize either two or three of the existing elementary buildings for the grade levels that are not housed in the new building;
5) add two new science labs at the high school; and
6) move the alternative high school to one of the vacated elementary buildings.
As I said earlier, these ideas are certainly not set in stone and the committee is not yet ready to make a final recommendation. These ideas are the preference at the present time.
The committee has been seeking input
During the last few weeks, facility committee members have met with all teachers and classified staff members in the Marshall district. The committee has not been trying to sell its ideas but rather to present these ideas and get feedback on these, as well as other ideas.
If you can remember, the committee solicited input from the community last year, and many of the suggestions that were made played a part in the tentative plan that has been developed so far.
The committee has not yet decided whether it will seek further community input before making a final recommendation.
What about a new school site?
At the present time, the committee is exploring around eight different pieces of property in the Marshall area as possible sites for a new school complex. The committee is looking at sites that are 40 acres or more that could serve as a school complex site for future years.
If anyone has a site of this size that is either within, or in close proximity to, the Marshall city limits and is relatively flat, don't hesitate to call me at 886-7414 or call Scott Hartwig, who is the chairman of the site recommendation committee, at 831-5202.
What all has the Facility Committee done?
As I said earlier, the facility committee has taken their task very seriously and the committee members have given generously of their time and energy.
The committee has met monthly for the past 15 months, and the members have visited at least four other schools, have done extensive research on school facility trends and practices and have met with different experts in the field of facility development. As I stated earlier, the committee has also spent considerable time gathering input from many different people in the Marshall School District.
What is the timetable for the committee?
The committee has expressed a preference of having an issue of some type ready to place on the April 2003 ballot, but that is not yet a certainty.
In order to accomplish this, the committee would need to have their recommendation to the Board of Education sometime in December.
Remember that the Facility Committee will make a recommendation to the board and the board will decide if and what to place on the ballot.
Any issue that is presented will have to be approved by the voters of the district before it can become a reality.
Who are the members of the Facility Committee?
Following is a list of the people who have served on the facility committee for the past 15 months: Lester Bailey, Deb Barton, Arline Borchers, George Clemens, Richard Clemens, Ruthie Cramer, Wayne Crawford, Tony Day, Ron Drake, Janelle Duncan, Renea Ehler, Deb Fisher, John Fletcher, Carol Grote, David Hague, Scott Hartwig, Chuck Hines, Chuck Hird, Walter Keith, Mark Kennedy, Karl Kirchhoff, Sara Kirchhoff, Barb Lockhart, Tom Marshall, Becky McRoberts, Clay Mead, Edward Miller, Sharon Mills, Della Newman, Chuck Reiff, Dan Roy, Tom Semmens, Morris Shikles, Laura Smith, Jack Thomas, Steve Washington, Beverly Wilson and Dale Zank.
We certainly appreciate all of the time and effort that these folks have given. If you have a suggestion on an idea that you believe the committee needs to consider, don't hesitate to contact one of the committee members.