Bond Proposal Question 3: Vote Yes!
Complete Mechanical Replacement at Iola Middle School
There are a myriad of factors that impact student learning and achievement, but few are as essential as climate control. Although not a fun or exciting subject to talk about, in today’s schools it’s essential that students and educators are comfortable in the school setting. Studies show something as simple as climate directly affects overall attitude and experience for both students and teachers.
Iola Middle School is arguably the nicest of USD 257 facilities. This is primarily due to the last successful bond election in 1993, which allocated funding to remodel it. Part of this remodel was a new Mechanical System (Heat/Air System and Domestic Hot Water), which today is 25 years old and beyond its life expectancy.
The life expectancy of a mechanical system is a general term, and many times you can get more years than can be expected. But in our case, the middle school was not that lucky. For several years now, Iola Middle School has struggled to maintain comfortable temperatures in classrooms. It is now normal for classrooms in Iola Middle School to have drastically varying temperatures, sometimes 7-10 degrees in variation, and sometimes rooms next door to each other.
Most of us can understand how a classroom with more than twenty students in it, struggling to get above 65 degrees in colder months or below 80 degrees in the warmer ones, is not an ideal environment.
This also creates an efficiency nightmare in terms of financial cost. When rooms are different temperatures or unable to meet desired temperatures, the systems run constantly without being able to turn off or function at low speeds. You would think a system like this could have another solution, but the reality is clear: These systems are 25 years old and at this point the only responsible solution is to replace them.
A “Yes” vote to question three on the ballot would approve a $2.8 million dollar investment to completely replace the mechanical system at the middle school. If successful, the 35% state aide would kick in and cut the financial burden for USD 257 to approximately $1.82 million dollars. The property tax increase for the owner of a $70,000 home would be approximately $1.18 a month or $.04 per day.
Our kids. Our schools. Our future. Vote Yes-Yes-Yes on April 2nd!