School Renovation Budget Proposed; Hearing Set for Jan. 17

The county school system has scheduled a public hearing for Jan. 17 on a five-year, $728.5.million capital improvement program announced recently by Superintendent Jack D. Dale. Of that amount, only $481.4.million in projects is funded.

The renovation, construction and maintenance plan covers the period from budget years 2007 to 2011 and predicts needs up to 2016. The total cost of the 10-year capital program is estimated to be $1.85.billion.

New construction projects include elementary schools in the West Fairfax, Coppermine, Laurel Hill and Falls Church-Annandale areas of the county. There is also money to add modular classrooms at Churchill Road, Forestdale, Mantua, Waynewood, Hybla Valley, Marshall Road, Herndon, Mount Vernon Woods, Rose Hill and White Oaks elementary schools.

Also included are a 10-room addition at Jackson Middle School, a 24-room addition at Westfield High School, a 10-room addition at Langley High School and a modular addition at Cooper Middle School.
Renovations are planned for 21 elementary schools, six middle schools and seven secondary and high schools, according to a news release.

About $7.5.million is proposed for a central Fairfax adult education center, which has already been funded, and $7.5.million for an adult education center in western Fairfax, which has not yet been funded.
The five-year plan includes changes in a number of projects on the basis of adjusted enrollment projections.

The peak year of enrollment is expected to be 2007, with 164,724 students. The projections have been reduced because of a continued outward shift of students.

"After studying the revised enrollment figures, we have reassessed plans for new schools and modular additions planned for some schools," Dale said. "Several of these schools, including Lynbrook, Woodley Hills and Annandale Terrace elementary schools, are no longer recommended for modular additions.
"Some existing [capital improvement] projects are being considered for a reduction in scope; for example, the addition to Langley High School may be reduced from 16 to 10 classrooms and the replacement for Glasgow Middle School may have a capacity of 1,250 students rather than 1,500. The School Board will make the final decisions on these projects."

The hearing will begin at 7 p.m. at Jackson Middle School, 3020 Gallows Rd. in the Falls Church area.
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By Steve Fehr |  December 26, 2005; 10:59 AM ET  | Category:  Schools
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