School Board looks at cheaper construction plan |

School Board looks at cheaper construction plan

Collin Smith

— The Moffat County School Board heard a presentation Thursday from Neenan Archistruction for elementary school renovations and new middle school construction projects, then presented a new idea to build the middle school on top of the existing one, hoping to save about $2 million on the November bond proposal.

“How can we get back to our target of $28 million (for the bond)?” Superintendent Joel Sheridan asked. “This is a new idea, but we think we can superimpose the new middle school on top of the old one, and only keep the best of what we have, like the gym and the auditorium that we would otherwise have to give up.”

The new plan would also allow the school district to keep the current baseball field instead of building a new one.

Community and board members in attendance approved of the idea, most notably because it allowed for the auditorium to remain a part of the middle school.

One caveat to the new proposal is that middle school students would have to attend an interim site, currently planned for nearby Craig Intermediate School. Sixth- through eighth-graders would attend the school, as planned for the future middle school.

Community and board members were concerned the interim plan would under-serve students because of overcrowded conditions necessitating modular portable classrooms.

In the case that the school district does not get enough money from the bond proposal, residents J.B. Chapman and Dave DeRose have started Citizens for Moffat County Schools.

“The ball is rolling,” Chapman said. “We believe this is for the schools, the kids, the future of this community, that this is the right plan for this community. Now is our time to take responsibility for the schools.”

DeRose became interested in fundraising three years ago when proposals for the school district, a new recreation center and other community projects failed.

“We needed $85 million then, and we didn’t get any of it done,” DeRose said. “You have no control over your revenue and that’s why I’m here. This is important.

“If we do not educate and socialize our kids, we will incarcerate our adults.”

The School Board moved to have a special meeting open to the public at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 9 to decide which construction plan will be part of the November bond proposal. Neenan Archistruction will then give a new presentation.

Collin Smith can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 204, or at cesmith@craigdailypress

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