New school construction speeds ahead

Facility remains on track to open for 2014-15 school year


Construction crews recently topped off the superstructure of the town of Elbert’s new $20.6 million school and the project remains on track to welcome students in the fall of 2014.

“It’s really going up quickly,” said Bev McGuire, the district’s business manager. “Architecturally, it’s going to be one of the most attractive and innovative schools around.”

The new Elbert school, which has been under construction for six months, will encompass about 73,000 square feet and also will include a separate 3,000-square-foot maintenance building and bus garage.

McGuire said the old school, which was built in the 1930s and added on to seven times over the years, will be torn down in late May or early June to make room for a larger school parking lot.

With 21 preschool through 12th-grade classrooms as well as a cafeteria, library, gymnasium and auxiliary gym, the new facility should provide more than enough room for the 200 students currently enrolled in the town of Elbert school district.

Construction of the new school was inanced, in part, by a $17.3 million state BEST grant.

In 2012, Elbert was one of 14 districts across the state to pass local funding mechanisms to qualify for a Building Excellent Schools Today, or BEST grant, which were offered through the Colorado Department of Education.

The school district qualified for the grant when voters approved a $2.8 million bond issue, which passed in 2012 by a 52 percent to 48 percent margin.

Two earlier attempts to pass a school bond in Elbert were unsuccessful.

Elbert’s new school will be the county’s second new public school to open in the past two years: the Big Sandy Schools, a new preschool-through-12th grade facility in Simla, opened at the beginning of the 2013 school year.


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Yep, the people of this school district are saddled with another 20 year debt! The total amount of money spent on this project comes to $22.3 million! The math on this comes out to $5,575 per student per year spent! I wonder how many parents of the children being sent to this school are willing to belly up and pay the bill for their child's education? That comes out to a cost of $66,900 for 12 years of public education for each child. Would the parents of these children be willing to take out a personal loan to cover this cost? Nope. It is easier to vote to take other people's money to educate your kids and it costs a whole lot less. This is what is known as the tyranny of the majority. Look at it another way. The state grant money could have paved over 35 miles of county roads! The $5 million spent on the bond could have paved another 10 miles of county road. If education is so important to the parents of the children going to the public school, why aren't they willing to be responsible for it instead of expecting everyone else to pay for their child's education? Shouldn't a bond be required to be taken out by those educating their children at the expense of others be required instead?

Friday, December 27, 2013 | Report this

It is even more expensive than this! From the CDE website you will notice that for FY 2010-2011 the State provided $6,336 per student! Add that to the bonded school debt and you get about $12,000 per student per year and that doesn't include the county contribution that comes out of our county taxes! Wow. Any of you folks out there willing to foot the bill for your kids to go to this school? Raise your hands high! Think of all the road that could have been paved.

Friday, December 27, 2013 | Report this