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Marshall school board votes to put building bond issue on November ballot

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

(Photo)
The design for a new elementary school presented by ACI Frangkiser Hutchens and approved by the Marshall Board of Education Tuesday, Aug. 18.
(Contributed image)
The Marshall Board of Education voted unanimously Tuesday, Aug. 18, to place a bond issue on the November ballot asking voters to give the school district permission to borrow about $20 million for construction of a new elementary school.

Bonding advisor Dick Bartow said the debt service levy would need to be 80 cents to support $20 million in bonds over 20 years.

Superintendent Craig Noah noted that the district will be rolling back its levy an estimated 24 cents, meaning the net tax impact of the building bonds will be considerably less than 80 cents.

Bartow offered an example of the tax impact the 80-cent levy would have, noting that the owner of a $100,000 home would pay about $12.67 per month. The levy rollback will reduce that amount, Noah said.

(Photo)
The Marshall Board of Education authorized the district to enter into a contingent contract for the Banks property on South Odell Avenue to be the home of a new elementary school if voters approve a bond issue in November. The intersection of Drake Road and South Odell Avenue is in the far upper left corner of the image.
(Contributed image)
The board also approved an alternative two-storey school design that will house 800 students, serving grades two through five, and eliminate the need to renovate and build additions to Benton and Northwest elementary schools.

An earlier design would have served grades three through five and housed 600 students, making the additions to the older buildings necessary.

The board also authorized the district to enter into a contract for the Banks property on South Odell Avenue contingent on the passage of the bond issue.

In other business, the board approved a slightly amended contract with Titan Construction, which will provide construction management services for the new school project if the bond issue passes.

The board adjourned and agreed to meet in closed session.

Board members Cindy Brandt, Mark Gooden, Kathy Green, Anita Wright, Teri Wright and President Larry Godsey were present. The next board meeting will be Tuesday, Aug. 25, at 7 p.m. in the Central Administration Office at the intersection of Vest Street and Miami Avenue.

More information to follow.

Contact Eric Crump at marshalleditor@socket.net


Comments
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I'm voting no cause I believe one site two schools k-4 in one 5-8 in other.One site 2 schools less hassle with parents less shuddling busses from school to school.Then the kids wouldn't have to wait as long to be picked up and parents can slow the hell down and not be cutting others off in traffic tryin to get to other school buildings to pick up others. My opinion but a good one.Untell they can get the money to do all at once I vote NO NO NO NO.Everyone needs to realize it cheaper to do all at one time then come back in 5-10yrs and add on.

-- Posted by arojr on Mon, Aug 31, 2009, at 2:20 AM

farmer'sgranddaughter we did not let our children go to the pool or anywhere in the park or even the show or the skating rink with out one of us until they where 15, our youngest is now almost nine he now lives in another state and I know for a fact he does not even ride his bike without an adult with him.

If you feel safe letting your kids walk to school with out you that is your business, of course I have no idea how old your kids are or where you live so it may be safe for them.

Your right we cannot lock ourselves inside due to fears of what might happen or because we are afraid about our kids being abducted.

-- Posted by Gal66 on Tue, Aug 25, 2009, at 7:08 PM

To Gal 66,

The "school directory" on www.dese.mo.gov will show you exactly how other districts of all sizes and various populations are formated and the distribution of grade levels within their buildings. Very few towns of Marshall's size or within our school systems of competition have a huge school for all grades or

Even though our current local school structure has inconveniences, it is the next best thing to a neighborhood format. Even some of the suburbs ( which Marshall is not) have at least what we have here or K-4 or K-6 in multiple buildings scattered within their little community, not a huge school resembling a charter or magnet format!

As for Marshall, our streets are pretty safe for kids from Bueker, etc walking home from school depending on where they live and of course the age and maturity level of the child. Sidewalks are certainly an issue for specific parts of town. Where are the sidewalks on Odell past Los Tres Amigos?

I am not about to put my child on a bus to bring him home from school just a few blocks away. Your fears of abduction in Marshall tell us that our kids cannot even go to the pool, YMCA or the park to play tennis, golf or basketball. We cannot lock ourselves inside due to fears of what might happen or because we are afraid about our kids being abducted.

Adults get kidnapped too. Even an adult can be kidnapped while jogging or walking with their ipod or phone stuck in their ear!

We all just need to pay attention!

There is more danger for kids under the age of thirteen who are allowed to run around town at all hours after dark than walking home from school. I see this quite often. I also know of one child who repeatedly plays in the street - he or she has nearly been hit several times! I have seen other children playing in their driveways but very close (practically) to the street, riding bicycles on the wrong side of the road or weaving in and out of traffic. They are just as much at risk. What about adults riding around the square at a busy time of day through traffic with kids riding behind them or adults walking across Odell Avenue in the dark wearing dark clothing!

We as parents and citizens need to remain vigilant and aware of our surroundings at all times. But we cannot live in fear for what might happen, especially if we don't know where our kids are or do not keep track of their actions.

We can teach them about responsibility and stranger danger. They are safer walking with a group of friends after school than they are running around a mall or out on the streets after dark.

There is always safty in numbers!

Responsibility can help us feel safer too.

Walking home from school is one of the simple pleasures of life that can eventually prove to be a wonderful memory even in one's college days if the location is right!

-- Posted by farmer'sgranddaughter on Tue, Aug 25, 2009, at 2:54 PM

Gal66, that is one of the BIGGEST reasons my child wouldn't walk to school. Unless I could stand outside my house and watch them walk there. It may be ok for high schoolers to walk or bike to school but I see way too many kids 13 and under without adult supervision running the streets of this town. I've even seen them out after dark walking in groups on the streets and would be willing to swear they were all under 13.

BTW, a tad off topic but why would I let my child walk anywhere in a town that has little to no sidewalks? My part of town has none and I've noticed most areas around here don't either.

-- Posted by STLgirlMarshallMom on Tue, Aug 25, 2009, at 12:24 PM

farmer'sgranddaughter this is for you.

"An estimated 58,200 children are abducted by a nonfamily perpetrator each year"

So, have abductions by strangers increased or decreased? The DOJ study finds: "No scientific basis exists to conclude that there has been a true decline -- although it is possible. On the other hand, NISMART--2 results do not indicate an increase in abductions by strangers."

http://msnalist.spaces.live.com/blog/cns...

I am glad my daughter is not willing to take the chance and I hope you never regret that you did!

I am still waiting for the name of one of these towns with neighborhood schools that has close to the same number of students as Marshall.

-- Posted by Gal66 on Tue, Aug 25, 2009, at 9:47 AM

This is to Gal 66 and some of the others that oppose their kids walking to school. What is wrong with that? My child walks to Bueker or takes his bike on a safe uncongested route to school. It is a great way to spend a few minutes a day peacefully with neighborhood friends. In the winter or when it rains, I provide transportation.

Could it be that too many kids walking too school means that driver's have to pay attention to their surroundings in the mornings instead of waking up on their cell phones? My child was walking his bicycle near the square last week ( on the proper signal)when a red CRV type vehicle was coming off of the square at lunch time and nearly hit him. We all need to pay attention to our surroundings when driving, no matter what time of day it is or what street we are on. Walking to school, to work or anywhere is healthy for our bodies or minds. Cell phones and other technical devices are controling our lives!

Maybe there are even too many computers in school!

Today's kid's are too soft. They need all of the exercise that they can get! We all do.

As for the comment from Taurus13, get real! Tearing down all of our old buildings is a total waste of tax dollars not to mention our natural resources and history. You haven't lived in Marshall very long obviously! I hope that you never end up on our school board or city council!

Over all, there may be good and bad points about this current proposal. But the school board should not be hasty right now. Let's not rush the process, let's take our time so our community does the right thing. Neighborhood schools are not as obsolete as parents and voters were told in the 1970's when we passed a bond issue proposal to build MHS, making our old high school Bueker Middle School. Fifteen years later, we still wanted some sort of neighborhood school.

Yes, there are town's the size of Marshall and larger that still have neighborhood schools. Some of us just refuse to acknowledge that fact.

-- Posted by farmer'sgranddaughter on Mon, Aug 24, 2009, at 11:36 AM

Many older children have to get ready in the morning by themselves because their parents have to leave for work. I see many older elementary kids walking and riding their bikes to school.

Why put the "New" elementary so far from the majority of kids that walk and ride their bikes??

This whole plan does not seem very well thought out just a huge push for something new by administrators who do not truly know the community as a whole because of not living in Marshall long enough and the other not living in Marshall at ALL!!!

I know if I were to build a new house I would take at least a year to plan exactly what I wanted and needed plus COULD I AFFFORD IT????

I agree with WTF.................. by the way many places LARGER than Marshall have neighborhood schools have you heard of the suburbs????? This is a common occurance through the nation and neighborhood schools work, it does not matter the size of the town! Also I do realize Marshall is not the suburbs for those of you who like to comment on my comparison......

-- Posted by Tito on Sun, Aug 23, 2009, at 3:17 PM

It's a waste of money to spend money on just three grades and the other grades have to suffer. I say they build one building for 1-8 or k-8. You could even put 8th grade in the high school for pre high school classes and just have k-7.

The old buildings should be tore down, sold, or given away. Make a juvenile detention out of one and parks at the other for neighborhood kids. A lot of people believe we need a juvenile detention center and I believe it too.

I feel sorry for the police to have to put up with some of these kids who break the law all the time. The kids don't get any punishment for breaking the law.

Sorry I got off the subject!

I have grand kids too, and believe one building is the best idea.

-- Posted by Taurus13 on Sat, Aug 22, 2009, at 9:48 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
The proposed building will house four grades (2-5). That's the most building the district can get for the money it can borrow, according to the architect. New facilities for kindergarten and first grade are part of the board's plan for the future.

WTF name one town the size of Marshall that still has neighborhood schools?

I do not have any kids left in school here is Marshall but I do have grandkids and if my daughter lets them walk to school or ride a bike to school she will answer to me!!! But I know she would not do that because she is not that stupid!!!!!

WTF do not base your opinion of how run down the schools are on someone elses say so go have a look for yourself.

You pick the time and place to start and I will meet you there and we will go look together and I would bet we would be able to have free run of the place to look where we want if we do it after school.

I am willing to go have a look are you?

PS I will not take a guided tour to see only what someone wants us to see I want to see it all.

-- Posted by Gal66 on Fri, Aug 21, 2009, at 9:53 PM

"If the school board wants to see honest opinion, read the thoughts here on MDN. Why? Because the people in the community can hide behind a screen name and not have to worry about the back lash."

Based on the recent series of articles in the MDN, I would guess they are reading the posts. It will do more good if we keep it constructive and realistic.

-- Posted by outsidelookin'in on Thu, Aug 20, 2009, at 12:29 PM

The congestion is also bad because people picking up their children can't read the rules and follow them. If the rules say "stay in your car" that means "stay in your car", yet parents are unable to comprehend that.

South Odell is a disaster as it is with new intersection, there was just another accident the other day. Allowing for increased traffic will require expansion of Odell plus a stop light = more money.

The majority of school taxes are paid by home and business owners right? Those who own houses/business that don't have school children won't pass this. Those that don't own homes/business won't have to fork out the extra dollars or won't show up to vote. (The latter is based on my assessment when I arrive to my polling place to vote.)

If the school board wants to see honest opinion, read the thoughts here on MDN. Why? Because the people in the community can hide behind a screen name and not have to worry about the back lash.

Sorry that got so long. :)

-- Posted by Scarpetta on Thu, Aug 20, 2009, at 11:08 AM

I am glad that you want to spend money on our schools. It is good to have common place to start a discussion. The problem with "neighborhood" schools is--most parents really do not want their kids to walk to school. Because of their work schedule, also to save money on gasoline. Also your neighborhood school can change-because to keep the buildings close to the same number of enrollment--and people move--no guarantee you will have the same school.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Thu, Aug 20, 2009, at 6:28 AM

You now why there is so much traffic congestion? Because they have to drive and bus kids from one neighborhood to another because thier grade isn't available in thier own neighborhood school. Kinda silly and expensive don't you think? I am very close to someone who was a custodian at one of the elementry schools for a very long time and I have based my opinion on what they have to say. I have no problem spending money on our schools but I think we would be better served going back to neighborhood schools.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 9:34 PM

A building doesn't have to be falling down to be unsafe or inadequate. Go to Eastwood and Southeast. Look at the traffic congestion. Go take a tour with the janitor. Look at how the fix-up approach has worked for the past 40 years.

New Fitzgibbon-new Wal-Mart-new Saline County Jail-new Boonville elementary-new Sedalia HS. The old builings are still there. But no one is wanting to go back to the previous inadequate facilities.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 8:11 PM

So how long until Bueker is deemed to old and we have to build a new school for those three grades?

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 6:34 PM

Is this a elementary building for k-8 or is this a building for 2-4 grades?

-- Posted by Taurus13 on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 5:30 PM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
The proposed building will house grades 2-5. Grades 6-8 will remain at Bueker Middle School. Grades K-1 will be in an existing elementary school building.

What the...Please don't take this as a jibe, but you might not have caught this story:

http://www.marshallnews.com/story/156302...

If you have, then I apologize for the error, but I noticed you've posted no comments on it, and it does answer a lot of the objections you've raised in your comments to this story.

-- Posted by Kathy Fairchild on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 5:08 PM

Your kidding right? A brand new school within walking distance only from the country club would lower property values at the country club?

You want me to think outside the box? Ok, how about we stick with what we have. These buildings are not falling down. I've no problem spending money on updating our schools that we have.

If we absolutley, positively have to have a new school then let's make it K-8 and raze every other building but the high school so we don't have to spend a dime on them.

How about the old fairgrounds where the soccer fields are now across from Hahn & Phillips? Granted it is next to a hiway but there is lot's of access from existing streets.

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 4:30 PM

What the f..... I can't figure out why you think they want the school by them. Did you not read the post that in other towns, once a new school it built, everything else seems to spring up around it? Why would anyone want that to happen to there neighborhood? And wouldn't it lower their property values? I am really confused why you and other bloggers think this is an advantage to those people. You say it needs to be centrally located - but you have yet to state a location where that is possible. Are you wanting to knock down the courthouse and square and build it there? Central is not an option - move outside your little box.

Old Owl and Hombre are on the right track..........

-- Posted by outsidelookin'in on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 12:36 PM

Here we go folks. If you vote for this the country club set will be getting thier brand new, shiney school that will be right in thier cozy neighborhood. Convenient for them and thier property values. Meanwhile in the real world we'll be spending more and more money on busses and fuel to get the little darlings down the HIGHWAY and off to school.

No more walking or riding bikes to school, getting excersize and bonding with your buddies as you go to and from school.Unless of course you are fortunate enough to live at the country club.

If a new school is nescessary, which it is not, it should be more centrally located.

I have no way of proving it but I would bet that thier are only a handful of people pushing for the school and the location that has apparently been chosen.

I don't know about you folks but I don't buy this load of ....!

-- Posted by What the f...... on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 12:11 PM

Years ago, when the school district was pushing a bond issue, an open house was scheduled at BMS to allow all community members to attend, ask questions, give input, etc. KMMO even agreed to carry the open house live on the radio so folks could call in with questions, comments, input, etc and not have to leave home. Guess what? Less than 10 or so community members actualy showed and those that did said nothing! People are complaining that they have no input, but when the district asks for input, they get nothing? What is the district to then do?

-- Posted by OldOwl on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 12:05 PM

I have a question! If we should vote "yes" to pass the proposed bond issue, does that mean that we have voted "yes" to construct any building no matter whether we like their plans or not?

I will repeat an earlier comment - our buildings are not THAT bad! To listen to some of you, including district personnel, they are crumbling at our feet.

The idea of a new building for grades 5-6 is favorable. A new building for 2-8 clouds the issue and does not clarify future of our older buildings. Besides in a system as large as Marshall, grades 2 through 8 should not even be on the same campus, much less in the same building! Our older buildings need to be kept in use, otherwise they will really crumble into ruins. Don't you think that our town has seen enough of that for a while.

Also, I hope the bond issue proposal would include necessary funds to fix the "supposed" water leak at Bueker. All structures leak eventually and leaks can be fixed, if you really want to! Bueker needs to remain in use!

When "our kids" come out of school, they really look like they are suffering! Get real, they are fine! This isn't their idea to completly dismantle our schools.

We can still have 4 neighborhood schools to house at least grades K-3, build for 4-5 (maybe 6) and keep 6 (?)through 8 at Bueker.

I wonder if our school board members ever read this forum. The ideas being presented by our school board are not the only alternatives. This blog doesn't always contain opinions from those who have nothing else to do but blog. Some of us are actually involved in our community matters.

Until plans and actions are clarified, I'm still voting "no" on this for a while.

-- Posted by farmer'sgranddaughter on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 11:33 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
One clarification: The proposed new building would house grades two through five, not two through eight. Bueker would remain and house grades six through eight, but without the need to use the trailers.

Forgot to mention that I agree it makes much more sense to go with a larger building for 4 grades than to sink millions of dollars into the older buildings.

-- Posted by Hombre on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 11:14 AM

A few things that I would like to see being addressed in this are the long range plans for both the school district and the city. Any discussion about a new building cannont be simply build now figure out the rest later.

To the school district: Is this property large enough to eventually house the kindergarten and 1st grades? Does this floor plan allow for expansion to eventually put K and 1st grade in, or are we looking at another smaller building down the line? Can this property eventually house a middle school complex? What kind of time line would be looking at for future new buildings?

To the city: What are the city's plans to address the increase in traffic on South Odell? Just look at any other town in the area, when a new school complex is built on the outskirts of town, development around the school is rapid. Can South Odell handle the increase in traffic? Other than Drake Road off of 65, is there another possible route to alleviate the heavier flow of traffic on South Odell?

Let's make sure this plan is thought through all the way, not just thought through to the point of a new building. If there is a solid, long range plan presented that let's voters know what is anticipated down the line and there won't be any surprises a few years from now, there's a much better chance that voter's will put the plan into action.

-- Posted by Hombre on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 10:58 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
The school board has approached a property owner to the south of the Banks property in hopes of acquiring room for a future elementary school. No agreement has been reached on that deal, from what I understand.

I will vote Yes for the tax increase to help build a new school for the kids in our community . There good kids and deserve a safe and updated shcool to learn in . I have 2 boys who go to school in Marshall and even if I had no kids I would still vote Yes .

-- Posted by ambsun on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 10:29 AM

$10 a month. What do you spend on a cell phone, cable tv, satellite tv? This is one pizza less a month. Go to the old buildings-look at the kids. Would you deny them $10 a month? Think of others before you think of yourself. Pay it forward.

-- Posted by mu-grad on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 10:13 AM

Am I to understand that my taxes ($100,000 home) will go up $126 a year? On top of the $350 they just went up? Are we not in a recession? Should we be spending right now? Say no to taxes.

-- Posted by t-bone picker on Wed, Aug 19, 2009, at 8:47 AM
Response by Eric Crump/Editor:
No. The $126 annual increase is based on the 80-cent debt service levy only. Superintendent Craig Noah said the district is planning to roll back its annual property tax levy, which will offset some of the increase. I believe the school board is planning to vote on the levy Aug. 25, so we'll know more then.


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