By Rick Palsgrove
The Groveport Madison Board of Education is considering placing a bond issue on either the November 2018 or spring of 2019 ballot to fund the construction of new school buildings.
The board is contemplating contracting with a research firm to provide the district with analytical information on community feedback, potential building configurations, district needs, costs, an implementation plan, and comparisons with similar school districts.
The board will hear presentations from potential research firms at a future board meeting. If the board decides to move ahead, it must select a research firm by this November in order to obtain the information it needs to make a decision on a future possible bond issue.
Regarding the potential cost of contracting with one of these research firms, Superintendent Bruce Hoover said one such firm he has talked to said it could be hired for an estimated $39,500 for one year of work.
Currently the district has a high school, three middle schools, and six elementaries. The high school will be demolished in the summer of 2018 and the new high school is scheduled to open in the fall of 2018.
The other nine schools in the district and the year they were built are: Asbury Elementary (1963); Dunloe Elementary (1967); Glendening Elementary (1968); Madison Elementary (1967); Sedalia Elementary (1969); Groveport Elementary (1923); Middle School Central (1952-56); Middle School North (1975); and Middle School South (1975). Groveport Elementary and Middle School Central are on the National Register of Historic Places.
The board has discussed moving away from the elementary and middle school concept and instead building three buildings that would each house 1,400 to 1,600 students in grades K-8. This would reduce the number of school buildings in the district from 10 to four. Chris Dumford of VSWC Architects has stated each of the potential K-8 buildings could be 180,000 square feet and be situated on 24 to 34 acres of land on different sites. The estimated costs for three potential K-8 buildings has not been determined.
The board has not yet decided on what building plan to pursue or when to place a possible bond issue on the ballot to fund new buildings.
“Let’s see where the research takes us,” said Board President Bryan Shoemaker.