TROY — The Troy City Schools board of education met in a workshop session Tuesday to discuss the future of its facilities.
All board members were present at the session held at the Miami County Educational Services Center. No information regarding new construction or levy campaigns was discussed during the meeting.
Superintendent Eric Herman presented information about the cost assessment of each of the district’s buildings.
The district’s 1.1-mill permanent improvement levy generates $700,000 for building and grounds improvements per year.
“You have older buildings and you have to do something with them. They aren’t going to last forever and we have to come up with a plan on how to deal with it and how to get there and be able to take care of it,” Herman said. “Permanent improvement is a nice idea, it’s just not enough to get them all done.”
For example, Cookson and Forest elementaries are on the district’s list to replace their roofs. The estimated costs to replace the roof at Forest Elementary is $243,000 and a new roof at Cookson Elementary would cost $1 million. Heating systems at Concord Elementary would cost $2.5 million or $8 million for a new heating system at Troy High School. A new heating system at Troy Junior High would cost $3.5 million. The junior high is the district’s “newest” building, which opened in 1973.
Herman said the assessments of the district’s buildings don’t include problems that may arise as repairs are being made such as asbestos abatement and other issues. According to building renovation estimates prepared by the Ohio School Facilities Commission, repairs including basic heating, air conditioning and electric would cost $45 million for Troy City Schools’ nine school buildings. Previous figures were estimated around $51 million by the district’s SHP firm.
“Permanent improvement levy just isn’t enough,” Herman said.
Herman said the district has been good managers of money and have made efforts to conserve funds to upkeep its parking lots and building repairs.
Herman said it would be hard to decide where the needs would be traded off.
“With $700,000 it is eventually going to go somewhere. If you look at our buildings, we do a good job. If you look at some of our expenses, we have coming forward are going to be bigger,” Herman said.
Herman also passed out information about the district’s current building instructional space. All elementary school buildings have been designated as “full.” For example, Concord and Cookson have plans to remove computer labs to allow for more instructional space. Heywood Elementary School plans to remove computer labs to allow for more space. Troy Junior High has one small classroom open and Troy High School has one classroom on its third floor open for instruction. Herman said the schools have adapted to use laptops like Chromebooks within the class to open up space for more instruction.
Herman also addressed the district’s diversity of its 4,736 students.
According to the superintendent’s report, 119 students are Asian or 3 percent of the district population; 178 students are non-Hispanic African American or 4 percent of the district; 106 Hispanic students or 2 percent; 7 percent of students or 342 students are designated as multi-racial; 84 percent of students are white with 3,965 students; and Pacific Islander students are 0.003 percent of the student population.
The board adjourned into executive session after two hours of presentation and discussion for personnel. No action was anticipated.
Last December, Troy City Schools board of education approved to enter into a real estate agreement to pay up to $25,000 to preserve its opportunity to purchase approximately 59 acres for potential school construction projects.
The site, located at 3054 W. State Route 55 and Nashville Road, will stay under contract through 2018 to allow the board additional time to explore its building options for the district. Last August, the board approved a contingent contract for $733,375 from the late Don Isern heirs. The property is to the west of Kensington and Edgewater developments.
Last November, Troy voters rejected the 4.61-mill levy to build the two new elementary schools at the State Route 55 site and make improvements, such as adding air conditioning to the common areas at the high school.
The bond issue received 2,713 votes for the project and 4,062 votes against the project.
The district qualified for 33 percent state funding from the Ohio Schools Facility Commission if the levy was passed. The OFSC would have funded approximately $16 million for a total project cost of around $63.3 million.
The district planned to build two separate elementary schools on the site to house pre-kindergarten through second grade in one building and third through sixth grades in another.