Jacksonville Independent School Board members approved a guaranteed maximum price of almost $30.5 million for construction of new East Side and Joe Wright elementary school campuses Monday night.
The price comes in at $500,000 to $600,000 less than the district initially estimated, said JISD Superintendent Dr. Joe Wardell.
“There are a couple of life skills rooms that we did not talk about when we talked about the bond election but that we need at the high school,” Wardell said “And there is the gym at Fred Douglass (Elementary School). And during the bond election, we did not make promises about furnishings, so this would be a good start for those.”
Jeff Kirk of Pogue Construction said the company received more than 700 bids from more than 400 subcontractors for the projects.
The approved guaranteed maximum price for Joe Wright is about $2.5 million more than for East Side, Kirk said.
“The biggest component in that difference is the site work,” he explained.
The new site for Joe Wright, on JISD-owned land on U.S. Highway 175, will have to be leveled and graded before the construction can begin, architect from Claycomb Associates Architects representatives explained to the Board at a previous meeting.
East Side will be built on its current site,.
The money for the two new campuses is part of a $49.865 million school bond passed by Jacksonville voters in November 2010.
Of that money, approximately 66 percent is funding the two new campuses. About 24 percent will pay for renovations and additions at Jacksonville High School and the remaining 9 percent will fund construction at Fred Douglass.
Construction at JHS will include eight new science labs, a new dining/kitchen area, hallways to connect the campus’s buildings and the conversion of the existing dining hall into a new band hall
Changes at Fred Douglass will include a new cafeteria, renovation of the existing cafeteria into classrooms and expansion of the existing library.
Board members also set a public hearing for 6:30 p.m. Aug. 29 to discuss the 2011-2012 JISD budget and the proposed tax rate of $1.32, up $0.19 from last year’s rate of $1.13.
The increase is because of the bond passage, said JISD Assistant Superintendent of Finances Lindy Finley.
“That is what we said the increase would be if the voters passed the bond,” she said. “It will be at this rate for two years, then there should be a slight decrease.”
The public hearing will be at the JISD Administration Building, 1547 Pine St. The board’s regular monthly meeting will be conducted at the same time.
In other business Monday night, the Board also approved:
• a change to the student expulsion policy, per state requirements, lowering a student or parent’s written response time from upon expulsion from 15 days to five days;
• adoption of supplemental science textbooks for grades 5 through 12; and
• the 2011-2012 professional development appraisal system calendar.
The JISD Board of Trustees meets at 6:30 p.m. the third Monday of each month at the JISD Administration Building. The meetings are open to the public.
East Side Elementary
Joe Wright Elementary