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The proposal calls on a nearly $25 million renovation of Hillcrest High School.
Photo courtesy Springfield Public Schools
The proposal calls on a nearly $25 million renovation of Hillcrest High School.

$168M SPS bond proposal gets a name: Proposition S

Posted online

Springfield Public Schools officials yesterday announced the district’s bond request will be called Proposition S on the April 2 ballot. 

Through the ballot initiative, SPS is seeking an 18-cent increase to the debt-service levy to fund the first of three planned bond issuances for systemwide facility improvements. The $168 million bond request follows a similar $189 million proposal that failed in the April 2017 election.

SPS yesterday rolled out an informational campaign, complete with a video, with the Prop S announcement.

Passage of Prop S would pave the way for:
    •    the Phase I renovation of Hillcrest High School for $24.75 million, reducing its capacity to 1,200 students from 1,488 students, and connecting all campus buildings;
    •    the construction of a new Jarrett Middle School at the current Portland Elementary School site for $41.5 million;
    •    new construction of Boyd Elementary School on a site with a larger footprint in the Midtown neighborhood for $20.3 million;
    •    the renovation and expansion of Williams Elementary School to add a storm-shelter gymnasium and early childhood minihub for $17.97 million;
    •    the renovation of Sunshine Elementary School to add new classrooms and a storm-shelter gym for $13.9 million;
    •    new construction of Delaware Elementary School at its current site for $23.8 million;
    •    the creation of a new early childhood center for 250 preschool students, possibly on property near Carver Middle School, for $12.7 million; and
    •    the addition of secure entrances by remodeling 31 schools to have better control access points, for $7.8 million.

“Due to the age and design of these schools, their main entrances are not suited to best monitor who is entering the building,” SPS Board of Education President Jill Patterson said in the video, pointing to Sunshine as an example. “New entrances with secure double-entry points will require all visitors to check in with an SPS staff member before gaining access to the school building.”

The board voted Nov. 27 to seek voter approval of the bond proposal after the SPS Community Task Force recommended $160 million in Phase I projects after a five-month review.

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