The Long Range Task Force met for the final time this week and, as you would expect, the meeting began with a conversation about Bethel’s recently passed School Construction Bond — an event that will solve many of the issues the Task Force was looking for alternatives to in case of the bond’s failure.
But just because bond passed doesn’t mean the work of the Task Force is moot.
“Your work has not been in vain,” said Superintendent Tom Seigel. “It will help this board, and future boards, who find themselves in similar situations.”
Depending on how many new students we grow in the next couple of years, the School Board may need a short-term fix as they wait for the construction of the new schools the bond will fund to be completed.
Other districts may also find value in the work of the Task Force if they also fall short of the state’s 60% supermajority requirement and need alternative solutions for housing students.
“Your act as citizens engaged in what’s going on is deeply appreciated,” said Seigel. “You made a difference. You really did.”
The School Board will be reviewing the bond construction calendar at the School Board meeting on Tuesday, February 26. The district’s priority is to relieve the overcrowding at the elementary and high schools first, so Elementary #18 and the new Bethel High School will lead the way.
The Task Force will present their final recommendations to the School Board in March.