Facilities Planning Questions and Answers March 25, 2015

Standard

I asked a few questions regarding the ongoing Facilities Planning process from Janene Fogard, Deputy Superintendent of LWSD. (My email was cc’d to Kathryn Reith, Director of Communications as she is my usual contact; but answers were provided in total by Janene Fogard).

1) Is there an available listing of the age of current structures in the District? (I do have a list of the proposed modernization/tables for Phases 3 & 4 from the website)

In terms of school buildings, the links to the documents below give information about the age and condition of each school building. The second link provides a summary of portable buildings. These do not include non-school buildings.

Permanent Building Existing Conditions

Temporary Facilities Existing Conditions

2) What properties does the District have purchased but unused for future school development?

The first document listed below provides a map of district sites and undeveloped properties. This document has not been updated for the recent property purchase of a potential middle school site in Redmond Ridge.

The second document shows school sites with identified potential for additions or expansions. It includes several pieces of property that are adjacent to part of an existing school site and therefore not identified as vacant sites on the map in the first link.

Map of District Sites

Identified Potential

3) Are plans drawn for proposed schools on specific properties (I’m thinking of the property I believe the District owns near 116th for an elementary school). Are there plans drawn and available for modernization on Juanita, Rockwell and other proposed projects (Phase 3)?

No, plans were not completed for the Phase 3 proposed projects. Preliminary studies and site due diligence was conducted, however, plan documents were not completed. The funding for developing detailed plans was included as part of the proposed project. Since the funding measures did not pass, funds were not available to continue development of construction drawings.

4) What is the decision-making process between building a ‘permanent’ building (similar to “B” Wing at RHS) vs. a temporary classroom (portable)?

When additional space is needed at a school, the district looks at a variety of options to address these space needs. For example this fall, given last Spring’s failure of the proposed bond measures, the district needed to make decisions to meet our short-term space needs. Options for short-term space needs that were reviewed include: 1) reducing the current standard of service identified in our Capital Facilities Plan, 2) making interior building modifications to increase available capacity, 3) adding portables (both traditional and “green portables”), 4) building additional permanent classroom capacity and 5) leasing space. The decision-making process took into account the expected short and long-term space needs, growth and enrollment patterns as well as costs and funding implications to accomplish each option.

For example, permanent construction, whether a whole building or an addition to an existing building, costs significantly more than other options including the addition of portables. Therefore available funds and the requirement for a funding measure to support construction costs for permanent additions is the primary consideration between constructing a permanent addition and adding temporary portable classrooms or other less costly options. The projects that were selected best met the space needs within the available funds. With limited funding, we could not do permanent additions for all of the space needed.

Notes from March 19th Long-Term Facilities Planning Task Force:

My thoughts from above links and answers:

Oldest buildings in LWSD (classroom, not non-school buildings):

Peter Kirk Elementary School, built 1975
Rockwell Elementary School, Built 1981
Samantha Smith AND Alcott Elementary School, built 1986
Kamiakin Middle School, built 1974
Evergreen Middle School, built 1983
Emerson High School, built 1983
Juanita High School, built 1971

School and buildings planned for modernization in Phase 3 and beyond:

Future Phases

  • Evergreen Middle School
  • Juanita High School
  • Kamiakin Middle School
  • Kirk Elementary
  • Mead Elementary
  • Rockwell Elementary
  • Alcott Elementary
  • Blackwell Elementary, Dickinson Elementary, Eastlake High School, Emerson High School, Inglewood Middle School, McAuliffe Elementary, Redmond Elementary, Resource Center, Smith Elementary, Support Services, Wilder Elementary

The District has 9 undeveloped property sites plus the Redmond Ridge property not included per email above. Of these 10 site, 3 are listed as “not usable” for one reason or another, 1 has “restricted or limited use” and one is a bus satellite site. This leaves 5 sites available for potential future schools (2 listed as elementary, one listed only as “potential), one listed as four-acre site and the Redmond Ridge site).

  • Site 31 is on 244th Avenue NE — Redmond Ridge area
  • Site 28 is between NE 116th Street and NE 128th Street –Washington Cathedral area
  • Site 59 is off 228th – Sammamish area
  • Site 91 is four acres on NE 95th Street east of Red-Wood Road

I’ve sent a reply email with more questions regarding building plans (architectural blue-prints), life-span of buildings and the amount of unused bond funds remaining.

Advertisements

Disney’s Cinderella Movie Review March 14, 2015

Standard

I’ll put in the ***SPOILER ALERT*** but really, is there ANYONE who doesn’t know the story of Cinderella?  If you don’t, then get to a library right now and either read the book or watch any one of the following movies – Disney’s Animated Cinderella (1950), Ever After (1998), A Cinderella Story (2004), Roger and Hammerstein’s Cinderella (actually a movie about the theater play 1957 and 1965).

The first hint of this movie made me reluctant to see it.  A live action movie about Cinderella?  Disney will surely muck it up.  I mean, they’ll cast someone(s) horrible as the main characters or screw up the story or make it politically correct or change the time period.  Maleficent is a perfect example of this.

And then, I followed the casting choices and watched the trailers and fell in love.  Okay, maybe it was just a crush, but tonight, after watching the movie, I fell in love with the story all over again.  You can read plenty of professional reviews (pluggedin.com gives a great rating system and outlines all the swear words, sex, violence and offensive items in the film).  This is NOT a professional review.

What did I not like?  More what I found out of place.  None of the female characters dressed in the same time-period for their costumes; while the men seemed to all dress from the same time period (except Ella’s father who was out of place).

There were a few pieces of dialogue that were difficult to understand; and the story, although familiar was a bit slow at the beginning.  Even though you know what’s coming, at some points I wanted to get there a bit faster than the movie moved.

What I loved?  EVERYTHING!  The costumes, the characters, the story, the scenery.

Cinderella’s family is complete until it’s not and then the step-mother and –sisters come into the picture and she remains the same person even though the people around her are just cruel and evil and mean and her life is less than perfect.  She talks to the animals, keeps the house, does the laundry and the cooking and the shopping and still manages to sew a dress and make a cozy sanctuary in the attic of her home.

Lucifer (the step-cat?), Gus-gus, Josephine and several other animals make appearances; there’s even some lizards, a goose and of course, the pumpkin.

The Prince is completely charming and funny and handsome and conflicted.  He struggles with doing what’s right and doing what his heart tells him; pleasing his father, taking care of his kingdom and dealing with loss. And those eyes burn a hole right through you!

The Step-mother is wicked and evil and mean and beautiful, as are her daughters.

And the Fairy God-mother?  Perfect.  I’m a HUGE Helena Bonham-Carter fan; although usually she over-does her characters.  She was absolutely flawless in her part and not over the top.

The costuming is fantastic, the castle and countryside are beautiful, and the ball was stunning.

There’s little singing (which I LOVED) and beautiful dancing.  There’s horse riding and fencing and magic.

I loved that the Prince grieved for his father.  I loved that Ella understood and encouraged him to do what was right.

And the casting of Ella (Lilly James) and Kit (Richard Madden) was perfection.  I’ve never watched Downton Abbey OR Game of Thrones and so the characters were fresh and new and completely believable.  And good heavens, but they are both beautiful!  Swoon-worthy beautiful.

There’s even some physical chemistry that’s hinted at with gasps and smiles and a couple of unfulfilled kisses.

Although the reviewers would like you to believe the message is to “be courageous and kind”, and it’s repeated often throughout the film; the message I found most “charming” was that it took courage to be yourself and not what others wanted you to be.  (I can’t remember the exact quote).

All in all, this is a movie I will watch over and over again; and will buy as soon as it comes out on disc.  It was totally and absolutely perfect.  And I even made it through the “Frozen” short beforehand without throwing up or screaming.  (The short, by the way, was contrived, thin and although funny; not really even worth a mention.  But some of you know how much I loathe Frozen, and I know you’d ask.)