Plan to improve Boise school buildings approved

Board approves new Boise School District plan.

BOISE - The oldest school district in the state is in the need of a complete overhaul. That's according to parents of students who attended a special board meeting Tuesday night.

With 52 percent of schools in the Boise School District built more than half a century ago, Holler says they know the facilities have needs.The needs stem from problems like overcrowding and poor classroom conditions.

"They're not getting any cheaper as it relates to addressing those needs," said Hollar.

Overcrowding in the Boise school system causing safety issues is just one of the concerns the district is facing as they push forward with a master pan to help improve the district's 46 schools.

The "Facility Master Plan" has been in the works for 13 months. Dan Hollar with the school district says 1,200 parents took surveys and the board held six public meetings over the span of that time to make sure they would have the community's support with the plan.

Hollar says Amity Elementary School is dealing with poor conditions throughout the building. 

"Any given rainy day you'll see buckets in the school addressing the leaking roofs and carpeting issues there," said Hollar.

"Having safe, warm, comfortable places for our students to learn is important to our families," said a parent, Sue Lovelace.

RELATED: Boise School District eyes major facilities overhaul

At Whittier Elementary School, parents say overcrowding is a safety issue.

One parent says, "Adding more portables is not the solution because the 11 portables we already have created a safety issue now."

Another says, "We're just busting at the seams."

Now, parents throughout the district could be seeing some relief from this plan that was approved at this special board meeting.

The board is moving forward with the administration's recommendation of a $172.5 million bond that will not increase the current tax rate of district residents. 

"Being able to do it without raising the tax rates is the key to this," said Lovelace.

The plan will serve as a guideline over the next 10 years to show the Board of Trustees what schools need improvements, where they need to be made, and how much those improvements will cost. 

"We know that growth is not only here in the district but will also continue," said Hollar.

So what's next? The Board of Trustees will meet on November 14 to take up the recommended bond amount. If approved, it will be up to the voters in March 2017.

Copyright 2016 KTVB


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