News Column

Hayward schools to put $229 million bond measure on November ballot

June 26, 2014

By Rebecca Parr, The Daily Review, Hayward, Calif.



June 26--HAYWARD -- If voters approve a $229 million school bond measure in November, the money would be spent to rebuild or replace four schools, add science-technology centers at the three high schools and open a performing arts center.

"If you take a look at our schools, you can pretty much say they are falling apart. It's deplorable for the kids to be in that environment," said school trustee Luis Reynoso.

The school board voted unanimously Wednesday to put the bond measure on the ballot. It will need the approval of 55 percent of the voters to pass.

Landowners would be taxed an estimated $49 per $100,000 of assessed property value for 20 years.

The schools that would be rebuilt or replaced are Cherryland, Harder, Lorin Eden elementary schools and Winton Middle School.

The performing arts center would be constructed on the Mount Eden campus because that's where there is enough room, said Superintendent Stan Dobbs.

"It will be at Mount Eden, but it's not the Mount Eden performing arts center -- it's the entire district's performing arts center, for all the schools," he said.

The center would be built on the site of a no longer used swimming pool, the superintendent said.

The high school tech centers would be separate buildings for classes in science, technology, engineering, arts and math, Dobbs said.

"Students can learn computer programming, science, technology, all the things you need in the future to succeed," he said.

Money also would be spent to upgrade athletic fields at the high schools, including adding lights.

"We want to have Friday night lights to bring our community and alumni back," Dobbs said.

Other projects include security equipment, better disability access, improved parking, upgraded restrooms and an updated emergency communication system.

"We'll go as far as the money will let us," Dobbs said.

The bond measure is part of a 20-year plan the district adopted in 2005 to upgrade schools, Dobbs said. In 2008, voters approved Measure I, a 20-year $205 million bond, or $59 per $100,000 of assessed property value.

Measure I money was used to rebuild or renovate five schools: Martin Luther Jr. Middle School and Fairview, East Avenue, Schafer Park and Tyrrell elementary schools. Those schools opened in 2012. The district also improved technology throughout the district.

Contact Rebecca Parr at 510-293-2473 or follow her at Twitter.com/rdparr1.

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(c)2014 The Daily Review (Hayward, Calif.)

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Source: Daily Review (Hayward, CA)


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