Tuesday, voters approved Pasadena ISD’s $175.5 million bond issue to provide three replacement campuses, three new campuses, program-based campus additions and renovations and new technology.
According to Harris County reports, 74 percent of voters, voted in favor of the bond.
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kirk Lewis said the resounding backing of the bond reflects community support of the district’s needs.
“This is an investment that will yield positive results for our students, staff and the community,” Lewis said. “We are incredibly thankful for the voters and everyone involved for being supportive to the very end. We look forward to the next chapter.”
The schoolhouse bond will allow Pasadena ISD to move forward with the facilities construction plan at no tax-rate increase. The plan includes:
- Dobie High School Ninth Grade Campus
- Rayburn High School Early College High School Wing
- South Houston High School Early College High School Wing
- Renovations to Memorial High School for an Early College High School program
- Career and Technical High School Expansion Wing Addition
- Construction of Intermediate School #11 (Riverstone Ranch Area)
- Construction of Elementary School #36 (near Minnesota and Almeda Genoa Road)
- Replacement Campuses for: Mae Smythe, L. F. Smith and Pomeroy
- New Technology (expansion of 1-to-1 technology initiative and network/infrastructure updates)
- Facility Management
The Board approved the 2014 Bond Package based on a recommendation by the Future Facilities Committee, comprised of parents and community members who engaged in conversations with the board, staff and community since September 2013. The 2014 bond issue addresses needs identified by the FFC in the 2011 bond that had to be removed from the earlier bond package because of cost.
Lewis said the master facilities plan slated in the $175.5 million bond package was mainly fueled by rapid growth in Pasadena in recent years and will provide facilities and programs for future growth.
“The bond will ensure enrollment relief at existing high schools to address crowding due to new housing developments in the district,” Lewis said. “Now, we can replace some of our oldest campuses so we can make sure our students are learning in the best environment we can provide.”
The largest part of the bond called for $60.5 million to build replacement campuses for Mae Smythe, L. F. Smith and Pomeroy elementary schools to address roofing and infrastructure limitations and classroom space.
The $54.45 million segment of the bond will fund renovations and additions to each high school campus. This includes the addition of a Dobie High School ninth grade campus, additional classroom space to accommodate an additional 200 students at the Career and Technical High School, and renovations to the remaining high schools providing extra space for an Early College High School program.
An estimated $46.1 million will be used for construction on the new campuses, Elementary #36, which will serve the Almeda-Genoa area of Houston and Intermediate #11, which will serve the Riverstone Ranch subdivision.
Another $12 million will go toward expanding the district’s 1-to-1 laptop technology initiative and equipment across the district.
The remaining $2.5 million is planned for a facilities management team to assist in the construction of the bond projects.
Now that the bond has passed, construction planning and scheduling are in the beginning phase. Look for more information in the following weeks.