From the School Board, we want to share information about the Capital Improvement Plan and Facilities Master Plan with the community. Many of you have likely seen the total price tag and rightly, feel anxious or concerned.
We know that we have a tremendous amount of square footage across our six schools, and that most of our schools are on the older side- with parts Matthew Thornton being 70 years old. As a first step in understanding where we stood, in November 2019, the school board hired a firm to go through our schools and assess where we are today and identify our most pressing areas of need and recommend priorities.
We learned that while many of our mechanical and electrical systems are near end of life, they would have reached their end-of-life years ago if it weren’t for the amazing work of our facilities and custodial teams across the district. We also learned that while grandfathered, parts of our buildings no longer meet current building code, impacting our ability to do certain renovations. Additionally, our buildings are less conducive to the way today’s teaching and learning happens- such as insufficient lab, art and library spaces as well as interior classrooms that lack access to natural light.
We also want to share what this plan is an is not– this plan is not a work order and it is not a project plan. Any large scale planned improvement goes to voters for their approval or denial and this is no different. While a CIP plan covers municipal buildings, in many ways it is similar to how any of us might look at our homes and think we want to add a garage one day but we need to prioritize replacing old windows instead- this plan identifies wants and needs, and is the first step in providing the entire community the information we need to have informed conversations and make informed decisions.
You can learn more about the Facilities Master Plan by going to our Facilities Master Planning Committee site https://sites.google.com/londonderry.org/fsc
Londonderry School Board