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Superintendent's Message, March 3, 2016

Dr. Cohn
Dear friends and neighbors,
 
What’s most important for our communities’ children?” This is what the Everett Public Schools Board of Directors asked our community over the last two years. More than 10,000 voices responded to the board’s questions.

Four priorities identified by the community are wrapped into the April 26 replacement capital levy and construction bond projects.

Safety - particularly at school entrances to better control who comes into a school. Security camera updates and updated telephone systems to ensure reliable emergency and routine communications.

Maintenance - preventive maintenance now will reduce more expensive repairs later. The bond includes modernization of North Middle and Woodside Elementary schools. Both schools, originally built in 1981, are nearly 40 years old. Renovating them is part of the district’s long-range capital facilities preservation plan.

Woodside, with a permanent capacity of 540 students, now has 685 students from kindergarten through fifth-grade and 10 portable classrooms encroaching on the playground.

North and Woodside are “California-style” sprawling campuses popular in our state half a century ago. That design is less-than-ideal for many reasons, including multiple entrances and exits making it difficult to monitor who is entering the campus and schools and secure them in an emergency.

Replacing aging roofs, flooring, paint, and HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) systems will extend the life of other schools. Much like a home, schools need regular maintenance. Unlike a home, schools are host to hundreds or thousands of students and adults each day.

Growth - enrollment projections show almost 2,000 more students in the district over the next 7 years. The bond will build a new elementary school in the southern portion of the district where growth is fastest. The capital levy and bond also include more portable classrooms to ease overcrowding at schools until more schools can be built.

Equitable access to educational technology - in keeping with the community's expectation that each student achieve to high standards. The levy replaces outdated technology and improves infrastructure to accommodate new technology. Today’s successful workers are expected to come into their careers knowing how to use technology, to research, solve problems in teams and use common software effectively. The bond and capital levy projects are designed to give students experience and training needed to be successful in the modern economy – and provide teachers with tools and training to use technology to improve student learning and success.
 
More details about levy and bond projects appear on our bond and levy web pages. If you have questions, please email bondandlevy@everettsd.org.  
 
Sincerely,
Gary Cohn
Superintendent
 
 
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