Glenbard community forums will focus on long-range facility plan process
Glenbard High School District 87 will host four community forums this month to share information about its districtwide facility needs and development of a new 10-year facility plan to address those needs.
Superintendent David Larson said, "We are looking forward to sharing information and listening to the community's feedback during Facility Planning Community Forums at each of our high schools."
The community forums will be an open house format from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on the following dates:
• Wednesday, Sept. 20, at Glenbard East, 1014 S. Main St. in Lombard;
• Thursday, Sept. 21, at Glenbard North, 990 N. Kuhn Road in Carol Stream;
• Wednesday, Sept. 27, at Glenbard West, 670 Crescent Blvd. in Glen Ellyn;
• Friday, Sept. 28, at Glenbard South, 23W200 Butterfield Road in Glen Ellyn.
Community members are encouraged to stop by anytime between 5:30 and 8 p.m. and stay as long as they would like.
Glenbard's four high schools, which range in age from 50 to 100 years old, continue to have numerous capital improvement needs. Glenbard is developing a new 10-year facility plan that will consider instructional best practice, safety and opportunities to connect and collaborate. Additional funding would be necessary to implement a new facility plan.
Learn more by visiting www.glenbard87.org/long-range-facility-plan/.
In 2013, the district completed a comprehensive facility assessment and developed a 10-year facility master plan that identified approximately $300 million in needed repairs and improvements. By committing dollars from its operating budget, and passing a $35 million zero-tax rate increase bond referendum in 2014, District 87 completed $154 million of repairs and upgrades in 10 years, with $119 million funded by annual operational dollars while maintaining balanced budgets.
The work completed included upgraded science labs and a science classroom addition at Glenbard West, as well as maintenance items (referred to as "warm/safe/dry projects") such as new mechanical systems, air conditioning at Glenbard East and Glenbard West, roof and parking lot replacements, restroom upgrades, energy efficient lighting and much more.
Where Glenbard is going
In addition to completing the remaining warm/safe/dry items from the 2013 facility master plan, the district needs to look at where it can make improvements to enhance learning experiences for students.
This includes identifying ways that facility improvements can enhance "Profile of a Graduate" learning experiences; provide versatile and collaborative spaces for students and community groups; centralize services that support students' social/emotional well-being; and provide efficient access to technology and tools.
Even though District 87 is continuing to commit dollars from its operating budget to address facility needs, current funding will not be enough and a referendum would be needed to provide the remaining necessary funds. Learn more by attending any of the Facility Planning Community Forums referenced above.
Through sound fiscal stewardship, Glenbard District 87 continues budgeting dollars for a new 10-year facility plan.
Alternate revenue source bonds will accelerate projects from the 2013 master facility plan, such as renovations to science labs and restrooms.
Glenbard's ARS bonds are expiring. The district approved issuing a new series of ARS bonds that will total about $29 million of debt within Glenbard's operating budgets. It will not increase the district's tax rate.
A referendum would be necessary to provide the remaining needed funds.
• Facility improvements are necessary to support instructional environments.
• Without a large, one-time revenue source, some improvements are not possible.
• Construction costs will increase, but efficient borrowing yields a high return on investment.
• Instructional spaces demand attention, but a lack of funding postpones improvements.
• Glenbard District 87 facilities -- particularly entrances, cafeterias and collaboration spaces -- are behind peer districts.
• In 2014, Glenbard District 87 committed to $100 million over 10 years; however, the district exceeded that commitment by spending $154 million over the past 10 years ($35 million from 2014 referendum) while maintaining balanced budgets.