February 2018 School construction bond INFORMATION

After two years of community outreach and critical study to evaluate and prioritize projects into a fiscally responsible Long-Range Facilities Plan, the Battle Ground School Board voted to place a bond measure on the February 13, 2018 ballot.

Bond Highlights

  • The bond would replace four old and overcrowded schools, construct a new primary and middle school campus; replace or renovate other buildings; provide improvements to safety and security at all schools; update some middle and high school classrooms for science, engineering and skilled jobs training; and provide some recreational improvements
  • Projects have been selected to maximize matching funds from the state, and the district will be able to take advantage of historically low interest rates
  • The total schools tax rate in 2019 is expected to be less than in 2017, even with the new bond 
  • The bond requires approval by a 60 percent supermajority to pass

Two Years of Community Planning

A team of dedicated volunteers from every area of the district met weekly to prioritize projects in a Long-Range Facilities Plan based on community input from residents like you. They studied the age and condition of each building and considered when each becomes eligible for state matching funds. This bond is Phase I of the three-phased facilities plan.

Top 4 Identified Needs

1. Replace aging facilities.
Several of our schools are 40 to 60 years old and have been rated "poor" for structural integrity and functionality. Construction experts have determined it will cost as much to renovate these buildings as it will to replace them. Students will benefit from safe and modern learning environments, and the district will benefit from cost-saving energy efficiencies. In newer schools, facilities improvements are needed to preserve your investment in schools.

2. Address overcrowding and keep class sizes small.
The district has taken steps to handle growth in the southern part of the district, including revoking boundary exceptions at four schools and adding portables. At Glenwood Heights Primary and Laurin Middle, 42 percent of the classrooms are in portable buildings. The district needs additional classroom space to keep class sizes small per state requirements.

3. Improve safety and security.
All schools in the district need improvements in door locks, controlled entrances, and additional cameras to keep our students and staff safe.

4. Update classrooms to meet learning needs. 
Schools need technology and classroom improvements to provide skills in the areas of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and career and technical education so graduates can be college- and career-ready.

Fiscally Responsible

  • The total schools tax rate in 2019 is expected to be less than in 2017, even with the new bond.
  • Projects were selected to maximize up to $61.6 million in state matching construction funds.
  • The district will be able to take advantage of historically low interest rates.
  • Architectural designs for new schools will begin with Battle Ground's prototypical school model to help save costs.

For Pennies Less

The local cost of the bond is $224.9 million after an anticipated $61.6 million in state matching assistance. The total schools tax rate (per $1,000 of assessed value) is projected to be two cents lower in 2019 (when bond collection begins) than in 2017.

2018 is an "exception year." Tax rates will temporarily increase for one year. The increase is due to sweeping changes made by the State Legislature for school funding, not the bond, which will not begin collection until 2019 (see chart).

The bottom line: The total schools tax rate in 2019 is expected to be less than in 2017, even with the new bond.

Click the titles below to expand for more information on each topic.

      

Major Bond Projects

Glenwood Heights Primary & Laurin Middle School

  






Pleasant Valley Primary & Middle schools

  







Read more about the bond on the BGPS News Blog.


 DYNAMIC FACILITIES 

  Building Now and for the Future


One of the goals in Battle Ground Public Schools Strategic Plan is to provide safe and secure facilities that are equipped to prepare our students for college and careers and accommodate a growing student population.

With that goal as the guiding principle, a community-led team of dedicated volunteers from every area of the district worked for two years - often meeting weekly - to craft the Long-Range Facilities Plan, which charts a course for providing appropriate facilities for educational instruction now and into the future.

The Facilities Improvement Team (FIT) presented their plan to the Board of Directors in the spring of 2016, along with the recommendation to run a bond measure that would fund Phase I of the plan. The board passed a resolution to put a bond before voters on the November 8, 2016 general election ballot. The bond failed to get the supermajority it needed to pass.

Phase I projects will:

  • Replace deteriorating schools and accommodate growth
  • Make safety and security updates 
  • Enhance schools for 21st century learning. 

Last Bond

Voters last approved a school bond in 2005* at a rate of $1.26 per $1,000. 

*The 2005 bond paid for Daybreak Primary and Middle, Tukes Valley Primary and Middle, Chief Umtuch Middle, Amboy Middle, Captain Strong classroom expansion, Technology and safety upgrades, Laurin commons, Refurbished PHS track and auditorium and replaced roofs, Converted BGHS cafeteria into stage/cafeteria.



Contact Us

Please feel free to contact the district office for additional information by calling (360) 885-5300 or by emailing communication@battlegroundps.org