The district partnered with the
After the preliminary planning, a community committee made up of roughly 60 parents, teachers, community leaders and business leaders began meeting in November to determine which direction the school district should go.
The committee will recommend the board call for a bond election that will address the structural problems and new equipment, as well as improved safety and security features, and better vocational training. The total cost will be just under
The community committee determined safety and security upgrades were one of the most pressing issues the district should tackle, and bond funds will allow the district to construct single-entry entrances at all of the schools.
"That was one of the things the members of the community put very high on the board -- if we were going to do anything, that would be to increase the safety and security for our students," said
The committee also suggested the district grow the school's vocational training programs. House Bill 5, which passed through
"This is a big step for
The bulk of the bond package,
The district will also remodel Navasota Intermediate to become a third elementary school, and expand the current two elementary schools to all serve pre-kindergarten through fifth grade. Both currently hold pre-kindergarten through third grade.
The intermediate fourth-and-fifth-grade campus was placed under reconstitution order by the
The superintendent said the school hasn't been making progress due to the fourth-and-fifth-grade model, which served to hinder students more than help. He said students didn't receive as much time to bond with teachers and create relationships that will help their education, so the district will address its solution to the intermediate campus within this bond.
"We believe that the philosophy we're moving forward with on that campus, that creating a self-contained environment and trying to create that student-teacher relationship, the ability to go pre-kindergarten through fifth will help create that relationship," Gesch said. "Faculty and staff will get to know our students even better, and use the closeness of our small town to our advantage and create those relationships, rather than transition in just a two-year period."
The district also completed a demographic study last spring and found student population is steadily increasing at a rate of 2 percent per year. Many of the buildings are sitting right at capacity, Gesch said, so they need to create additional classroom space to accommodate future growth. Expanding the intermediate campus to hold more students will also help accommodate growth.
The two current elementary schools,
The bond election will also hold a second proposition for renovations to the district's auditorium and administration building. The auditorium was built in the 1940s and the administration building in the 1920s, and both have not had major updates since their construction, Gesch said. The second proposition would cost
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