A special school district general obligation bond election will be held this upcoming summer in August, Roswell school officials say. According to school district bond reports, the bond will allow continuation of the remodeling or replacement of four elementary schools already approved by the Public School Capital Outlay Council â€” a state body which provides grant money to schools based on need.
The bond would also allow for remodeling of two high schools, Roswell and Goddard, and Parkview Early Literary Center without financial assistance from the PSCOC.
Superintendent of the Roswell Independent School District Michael Gottlieb said passage of the bond would help bring school buildings and facilities up to code and current safety standards without raising property taxes. Gottlieb noted that all 19 schools in the district have asbestos (although it was recently eradicated from three schools), only two schools have secure entrances and other schools have antiquated heating and cooling systems.
The four elementary schools that would benefit from the bond passage are Berrendo (total remodeling cost: $9,880,371 with $7,113,867 from PSCOC), Military Heights (total remodeling cost: $7,411,839 with $5,336,524 from PSCOC), El Capitan (total replacement cost: $16,969,694 with $12,218,180 from PSCOC) and Valley View (total remodeling cost: $7,987,243 with $5,750,815 from PSCOC).
Goddard High School will receive $3 million to replace the heating and cooling system and finish the sports field and $1.5 million for asbestos removal, ceiling replacement and cleaning the plenum, without help from PSCOC. Roswell High School would receive $300,000 without help from PSCOC to build a field house for girls athletics in compliance with Title IX. Parkview Early Literacy Center would receive $1.75 million without the help of PSCOC for a new roof, heating and cooling. PSCOC already voted last Thursday to award the four aforementioned elementary schools funding for planning and design for renovations.
Usually these awards are made annually at the end of July, but PSCOC decided last September to allow a delayed 2010-2011 Special Standards-Based Capital Outlay Award cycle to begin design for the top 60 neediest schools. Valley View, Berrendo, Military Heights and El Capitan elementary schools were deemed especially needy as they ranked 10, 33, 37 and 48, respectively, on the New Mexico Condition List. The NMCL measures the physical condition and adequacy of a school facility based on the stateâ€™s adequacy standards.
The school district has spent nearly $58 million updating schools since 2004, according to construction project reports. Most of the schools have not been updated since they were built. The four elementary schools listed and Roswell High School were all originally constructed in the mid 1950s while Goddard was built in 1965.
The School Board made it a goal to revamp school facilities in the early 2000s, Gottlieb said. Since then, the schools have relied on general obligation bonds passed by voters and PSCOC to provide funding for the Facilities Master Plan.
PSCOC covers 72 percent of the total renovation cost, if local funds (usually through bonds) cover the remaining 28 percent and if the district complies to state guidelines. In previous bond elections, voters approved funding to renovate East Grand Plains, Missouri Avenue, Pecos, Monterrey, Sunset Elementary schools as well as provide science labs for Goddard and Roswell high schools.