56° F Sunday, April 30, 2017

Dear Editor:

On April 11, there will be a second community meeting to discuss the Eanes school district Facilities Master Plan. The meeting will be at Valley View Elementary School, and will run from 6:30-8 p.m. Please make plans to attend; after all, our schools are shared assets and what happens to them affects our entire community.

This initiative began in December 2012, when the district began an ambitious effort to identify and prioritize the facility needs of each of its nine campuses. The results of this initiative will inform ongoing district discussions about what to do, where to do it, and when.

So why is the district doing this?

Consider two examples. We currently have portable and modular buildings on eight of our nine campuses. Many of those temporary facilities are now 20 years old. Moving those children and activities into the body of a school will require new classrooms. How that will be accomplished is but one of the discussions to be addressed as part of this initiative.

Discussions about the form of the classrooms themselves are perhaps more important to the Facilities Master Plan process. Technology, teaching methodology, and the needs of our children are rapidly evolving. The settings within which learning takes place must also adapt to meet the challenges of our new paradigms.

These are big issues, and the master plan is part of the district’s long-term strategy to address them.

Toward this end, 14 committees have been formed. They are comprised of teachers, students, staff, parents, retirees and business owners. They are focused on everything from instruction, enrichment, extra-curricular programs and operations on each of our nine campuses.

A team of professionals, including architects who specialize in innovative learning spaces, is coordinating the master planning initiative and facilitating group work with the varied committees. This work will be shared through various community meetings, including the April 11 meeting, to ensure the Eanes community is informed and able to provide input.

Please make plans to attend the community meeting on April 11 at Valley View, and make sure to check the district website for updates and other opportunities to participate. If you represent a group that would like a presentation on the initiative, please send an email to Claudia McWhorter, cmcwhorter@eanesisd.net.

The Community Engagement Committee of the Facilities Master Plan Process

Eanes school district
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