From staff reports
Nearly 40 community members attended the Mineral Wells ISD town-hall meeting at Lamar Elementary Tuesday evening, providing a first glimpse into the district’s proposed $25 million bond project.
On Nov. 5, voters will decide the fate of the bond package, but until then, the district has several events lined up to help inform the community.
At Tuesday’s meeting, MWISD Board President Joe Ruelas presented an overview of band facts, along with Sloan Harris of VLK Architects and Kay Brown as a representative of the MWISD Facilities Study Committee – a 28-member group of business leaders and citizens who visited each campus and examined the district’s needs earlier this year.
Harris outlined a 10-year long-range facility plan for all district facilities and discussed VLK’s involvement on the project.
Brown presented an overview of the committee’s evaluation process and its recommendations, the first being the replacement of Lamar Elementary School, estimated by VLK at $23 million. Brown, a retired MWISD teacher, informed Tuesday’s audience that Lamar was built in 1955 and is the oldest active campus in the district.
If voters approve the proposed bond, the new elementary campus will be located on the same property as the existing elementary school and will be designed to serve approximately 850 students. Lamar currently has 747 students and 11 portable buildings – these are supposed to be temporary but have been around for numerous years.
At the town hall meeting, Supt. Gail Haterius said some in attendance “were wondering if the school would be on the same property as it currently is,” which it will be.
She added that others asked if the current classrooms will be affected by construction. “It will most likely be staged,” which she said will allow students to move in as a stage is completed.
If the bond measure passes, Haterius said the projected completion date for the replacement elementary will be in the fall of 2015.