School board considers another bond in 2020

Voters may have second chance to vote on construction funds
By Dan Aznoff | Oct 18, 2018

The Everett Public Schools board approved creation of a committee to study whether to give voters a second chance to approve a bond measure to pay for construction of new classrooms and improvements to deal with overcrowded classrooms.

About 20,000 students currently attend school in 1,038 classrooms in Everett Public Schools.

In another 10 years, district officials estimate another 1,858 additional students will move into the district. Snohomish County is the second fastest growing county in the state, and Everett Public Schools is growing faster than any other school district in the county, according to a spokesperson for EPS.

Growth across the district is evident at schools with portable classrooms and congested parking lots, as well as city streets during pickup and drop-off times. The district’s 26 schools are home to 140 portables – most at schools in the district’s southern region where growth is accelerating at a faster rate. Jackson High School currently utilizes 19 portables to accommodate the overcrowded campus.

This growth and the need to modernize existing school structures are among the reasons the board is considering a school construction bond in 2020. The board passed Resolution No 1187 forming a Capital Bond Planning Committee at the regular board meeting on Sept. 25.

The committee will be organized to include about 24 community members as well as representation from district staff and students. The committee will be tasked with developing a recommendation by early summer 2019 on whether the district should propose a bond in 2020, and if so, what elements should be part of that bond.

“This committee has a big job ahead of them,” board President Caroline Mason said. “We need more space for our growing student population, and have many older schools that are in need of updating.

“The board would like the community’s input on how to address these problems, and we look forward to their recommendation.”

Applications to be part of the Capital Bond Planning Committee were made available beginning Tuesday, Oct. 10. Interested persons are invited to submit an application online about their background and interest in representing the community.

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