The Park City School District master planning committee held a question and answer forum on Tuesday evening to get public feedback on the grade alignment options. Four options were presented in the April 16th school board meeting.
The board’s next meeting is May 21st and they hope to be closer to a decision on what grades will be in which schools. The planners say there is community wide support to have ninth grade in the high school and to keep seventh and eighth grades together.
The master planning panel answered audience questions about the criteria, costs and timing of issues related to grade alignment. Some in the audience wanted to talk about the high school options. How soon would ninth grade be back in the high school? When could the district begin construction if the funding was available? Are the planners considering two high schools? Where exactly will the ninth-grade expansion be?
Parent, Christina Miller said she has been involved in the grade alignment conversation for five years and is ready for a decision. She believes Park City should have just one high school.
“It’s really time to rip off the band aid and give us a deadline for when this process is going to be done. Miller said Treasure Mountain Junior High School is a sick building saying it has caused strange illnesses in people who have worked there.
“Please tell me. I see remodel of Treasure in here but as a parent whose had children go through Treasure and spending a lot of time there. The water you can't drink. So, tell me please you're not thinking of actually remodeling that school where the walls won't stand up if the snows against them, versus burning it down and starting anew.”
Britta Mosley has kids who play baseball and she says her group wants to know where the ninth-grade wing will be located. Should it expand into the baseball diamond, her group wants the school board to consider replacing the dirt field with turf.
There are over a hundred families who are part of our sports program for the Park City baseball youth and high school program. For our kids, I mean they’re traveling over 1000 more miles, missing over 20 hours of additional school by having to leave much earlier, leave more days because they can't get on their fields to practice.”
Kara Hendrickson praised the work of the planning committees and said the public might get more engaged if they know when the final decision will occur.
“What’s the deadline to make these decisions? Or to these questions, because we’ve been having these great conversations for a year."
GSBS Consulting Architect, Clio Reynor said a new building typically takes about three years to plan and build out providing funding is in place. Remodels and expansions can be quick and phased in over summer breaks and some can occur while school is in session.
Superintendent Jill Gildea told the audience they’ll collect more input through a survey between now and May 21st. And, she expects there will be some decision making between then and the June 19th board of education meeting.