School Improvement Bond 2021
The State of Rhode Island commissioned a report on the condition of our schools in 2017. The report identified over $40 million in improvements that would address the immediate needs of the schools in the District. Some of this work has been completed with existing funds, but many of these needs are too expensive to fund without the issuance of a bond.
For example, the Junior/Senior High has not had a major improvement to the HVAC system since being built in 1990. The HVAC units and ancillary systems are well beyond their useful life, and the report indicated it would cost more than $4 million to replace!
The School Building Committee was formed and explored many alternatives. They hired educational planners to engage the public to investigate future needs for the educational settings at EWG. They hired demographic forecasters to ensure the enrollment projections supported investments in the schools.
The final recommendation is to address major improvements identified in the Jacobs Report. Structural improvements to the buildings (roofs, floors, ceilings and HVAC) will ensure a safe, warm, and dry learning environment.
Additionally, accessibility and safety improvements to the Wawaloam playground and Sr. High parking lot will ensure safe and equitable access to school grounds. Lastly, Career and Technical enhancements at the Senior High (auditorium, labs, and greenhouse) will meet the strategic long-term objectives of the District.
Video Production Students at EWG High School are producing videos showcasing project support.
Senior High Greenhouse
The current greenhouse is over 25 years old, requires constant attention and repair.
State of the art greenhouse design would provide a 21st century learning environment where students can experience the advances made over the past quarter century in the plant sciences.
Senior High Science Labs
The Exeter-West Greenwich High School Lab spaces have not been updated since the building was opened in 1990, and are not adequate for optimal 21st century learning.
These improvements at the high school level will further support hands-on learning and demonstration of authentic experiences, aligned with how students learn in today's world as they prepare for college and the workforce.
Junior/Senior High Auditorium
The 31 year old auditorium was cited for safety and programmatic upgrades.
The project will address sound, lighting, technology, accessibility, and aesthetics to create a professional space for applied learning and performance to occur.
In addition to serving as a common meeting space for community events and grade-level meetings, the auditorium is the venue for students to showcase their work, particularly in the fine and applied arts.
A strategically developed early childhood playground enhances the facilitation of play-based activities in an outdoor "classroom: where educators can support both the social and academic growth of all students in a natural context.
Improvements will address ADA compliance and safety measures to ensure children are securely contained and adequately separated from public access points.
EWG Qualifies for a 61% reimbursement from the state and could receive up to 15% in additional reimbursements through incentives for addressing key areas.
The roofs at Wawaloam & Metcalf are leaking causing damage that will eventually lead to dangerous classroom conditions.
These incentives begin to expire if projects are not started by December of 2022. This additional state funding may not be available in the future.
The Wawaloam playground is not accessible to all children and limits children's ability to play safely. The Jr/Sr High parking lot is inaccessible and dangerous.
The HVAC system at the Jr/Sr High School is 10 years past its useful life, requires frequent repairs, and could fail at any time requiring an emergency replacement of the system.
State of the art STEAM spaces will enhance offerings at all levels including AP and CTE programs, helping to increase revenue for the District.
Total Project: $17,800,000
EWG's Cost Share: $6,052,000 ⬌ State Reimbursement: $11,748,000*
*Conservative calculation based on guaranteed 61% reimbursement + 5% bonus for addressing Health and Safety
Vote will be held April 12, 2021
Polls will be open from 7:00 am to 8:00 pm
Exeter Town Hall
675 Ten Rod Road
Exeter, RI 02822
West Greenwich Residents:
Community Center (behind the library)
274 Victory Highway
West Greenwich, RI 02817
While we hope you support the project, the most important thing is that you get out and vote!