Archive for Thursday, December 1, 2005

District officials plan to poll patrons on future schools

December 1, 2005

In an effort to gauge public opinion, Basehor-Linwood school superintendent Jill Hackett soon will poll school district taxpayers.

On the heels of a failed, $22.9 million bond proposal in November, district administrators and school board members are attempting to decide on contingency plans to handle a burgeoning student enrollment and overcrowding at some local schools.

The poll will be released to patrons either late this week or early next week, the superintendent said. She hopes to receive responses before the Christmas break.

Administrators and members of the District Advisory Council -- a group of district patrons who meet with school officials to consult on educational issues -- will use poll results as they plan for district schools. The DAC is set to resume its regular meeting schedule in January.

Plans for local schools were topics of discussion for administrators and school board members at Wednesday night's work session, and details from that meeting will appear in next week's edition of the Sentinel and on the Sentinel's Web site:

However, Hackett has maintained it's possible the district could propose the same bond issue in April or next November.

The superintendent requested the district's architecture firm -- Horst, Karst and Terrill Architects -- to research how much inflation might affect the $22.9 million plan if it were put before voters next year. The firm responded to the district earlier this week with a price tag ranging between $24 million and $25 million.

The school district hasn't ruled out proposing an entirely different plan, either. Hackett said school officials would consider myriad scenarios, including a plan that would include a new middle school in the center of the district.

She has also said that a staple of any bond plan would include a new elementary school because the school district's current elementary schools already are near enrollment capacities.

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