May 22, 2015
Dear Princeton Community,
As the school year draws to a close, it is time to give you an update on our construction projects. We have so much going on. Please take a moment to thank our School Board for bravely moving forward with a bond referendum last spring, to make all of this possible.
New Primary School
We had our groundbreaking ceremony, complete with a Kindergarten student representing each class. They will be second graders when the new school opens. The Kindergarten students had fun trying to dig holes with golden shovels, on a sunny, windy day! Footings were put in on April 11, and our on site construction manager became a busy guy. Workers were moving dirt and putting up construction fencing. Next week the construction trailer will be installed, and weekly construction meetings will begin. Meanwhile, a furniture inventory has taken place, and teachers are discussing furniture options. Discussions about library shelving, cafeteria tables and desks! Our Science Specialist Tom Ostroot and Principal Greg Finck visited another school district that has an outdoor classroom, since there is one in the plans for our school. Our school district calendar has been adjusted to maximize time for construction during the summer of 2016. Plans are to remove the portables right away, hold a sale of items not going to the new school, allow our police department to use the school for drills, and finally raze the building.
Another change that happened is that the official names have been decided:
Princeton Primary School (PS) and Princeton Intermediate School (IS), to align with Princeton Middle School (MS) and Princeton High School (HS).
The High School work is at the user group stage—where the users (teachers, administrators, secretaries, custodians) visit with the architects about their needs for the spaces. Remember the projects are a big two-station gym, a clean industrial lab with connections to our other shops and the high school, updating and adding restrooms, adding another line in the cafeteria, and providing a secure vestibule.
Bids will go out in early July. Tentative plans are to put in footings for the new gym during winter break, while students are gone. Most of the work will happen during the summer of 2016.
Early Childhood Center
Since we were awarded $509,000 in a state grant, work has begun on that dream. We are very short of space for our Early Childhood Programming, and it looks like if we are creative, we can “find space” within our current building. Initial planning and user groups meetings have begun.
Special Education Transition Program, Adult Basic Education
We are still looking at options for these programs. We may have room in the current District Office or possibly in the old Police Station. Those options need to be discussed by our School Board.
To make room for student programming, we were looking for a small footage option for District Offices. The idea came about that maybe the District Offices could co-
locate with City Hall personnel. This is an idea that has yet to be vetted, and so discussion by the City Council as well as the School Board needs to take place.
As you can clearly see, we have a lot going on during this always-busy time of year! Stay tuned for the next installment, and have a good time watching our construction projects proceed!
Julia Espe, Superintendent of Princeton Public Schools