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Plant Levy – What Happened to Maintenance?

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The school district is claiming we need to rebuild many schools at once because they have been neglected. What happened to maintenance? How did our administrators allow this to happen?

It is being framed that these buildings are “at the end of their useful life”. But did you know the worst-rated school, the 109-year-old Alternative High School (LPOHS), is being kicked down the road again? Here’s the history:

  • The 2001 Facilities Master Plan rated LPOHS in the worst condition and nothing was done.
  • The 2008 Plant Facilities Levy revolved around Kootenai Elementary, and LPOHS only received $12,000.
  • In 2012, LPOHS was considered again. Inquiries were made to the Department of Education regarding the option of moving the school to the High School campus. Again, it was dropped.

Fifteen years roll by and the present Facilities Plan’s summary chart shows it at a 35 rating. One has to realize that’s a typo if you look in the detailed appendix where it shows the individual components which add up to only 25 – the lowest rating of all the schools, again. Why is it being pushed into the Phase 2 of this plan which is planned for 6 years from now?

Even Teater Consulting, the company hired by the school district to conduct the facilities review, recommended LPOHS to be addressed as one of the two top priorities. Yet, the chair of the Facilities Planning Committee describes the decision to not address it as “leaving LPO in the parking lot“. The school board conversation was stifled, and then it was dropped like a hot potato.

The LPOHS project was replaced by the addition of four classrooms to Sandpoint High and the reconstruction of five athletic fields and a new track on the Sandpoint High School campus.

The decision-making process on LPOHS is inexplicable, irresponsible and negligent. I’m voting against this levy.

Bob Stout

Sandpoint, ID