Friday, October 13, 2000
School plans to request additional funds for expansion study
Carlisle Public School is proceeding with preparations for developing a feasibility study to determine the scope of work and projected costs for additional educational space. The current enrollment of the pre-kindergarten through grade eight school system is approximately 807 students and the capacity of the current facility, according to the Department of Education, is 900. Thirty-four additional students were enrolled this current school year. The fee for the feasibility study, not to exceed $12,000, is to be requested in an article on the Warrant of the spring Carlisle Town Meeting. This request must come from both the school building committee and the board of selectmen.
On October 3, the Carlisle School Committee realized that the funding request for the feasibility study would require a great deal of information. Committee member Suzanne Whitney Smith suggested that current enrollment projections could be validated; much of the information and raw data has already been collected. Business manager Eileen Riley stated, "You can eat up half the money just on future demographics." However, member Harry Crowther commented that they needed to be confident that the numbers are right. Smith responded, "You can look at the record of enrollment over the last few years."
The all-encompassing study to be requested is expected to include a building outline for the number of classrooms and building elements required, a preliminary site analysis, determination of the location of proposed additional educational space, roadways and parking, estimated costs of the project, a review of soils exploration and evaluation of sewage disposal requirements.
Smith added, "If the Banta-Davis Land is not recommended, there may be a need to look for alternative sites." Member Cindy Nock wondered if the facility could accommodate a broader community use, open to other town organizations. Superintendent Davida Fox-Melanson responded that the Department of Education would not provide reimbursement for space developed for community use.
In conclusion, chair Paul Morrison commented that a lot was expected for $12,000.
Last spring, Annual Town Meeting approved $15,000 for architectural, engineering and other professional services for a new school feasibility study. That funding was for a preliminary study, according to Smith.
© 2000 The Carlisle Mosquito