May 26, 2019

Committees to study SAD 48 space needs

NEWPORT — In the coming months, three committees made up of SAD 48 School Board members will attempt to sort out the various options available to the district and address the lack of adequate instructional space for district students.

At their meeting Tuesday night, Chairman Robin Duplisea directed the members of the building, budget and educational committees to start work on finding acceptable alternatives to the housing of district students. Each of the committees will meet separately and then bring their findings back to the full board for future deliberations.

In June, Superintendent Ray Freve presented the board with a position paper on the status of the district schools. He stated that the district has placed significant energy and resources in an attempt to provide appropriate educational facilities for its junior high school students, but an acceptable alternative has yet to be found. Freve states that the question now before the board is how long it will be before the district arrives at a satisfactory solution, and how long the current housing set-up can continue until a solution is found.

Freve discussed three possible solutions to address the problem, which may serve as a springboard for other options. The first one outlined by Freve suggests that the district look into the feasibility of vacating the Hartland Junior High School and the Corinna Junior High School, and the portable classrooms. To achieve this, he suggested that double sessions be held at Nokomis Regional High School until a permanent solution is found.

Another avenue that could be researched, he said, would be to review the present grade structure of the district buildings and look at the feasibility of having the buildings service just certain grades.

Also, Freve stated, the district might still want to consider a building application which would provide a long-term solution for SAD 48 students.

Freve stated in his position paper that the above suggestions are for discussion purposes only and might facilitate other alternatives that haven’t been discussed.

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