A City Council Committee of the Whole will meet in the near future to begin a discussion on funding the proposed Clark Avenue Middle School project.
The project is currently in the final stages of the state School Building Authority (MSBA) process, but a final plan has been submitted. It calls for a brand new school on the same site at an estimated cost of about $60 million – with the City being responsible for as much as $18 million after state reimbursements.
To date, the discussion has been around designs and educational plans. Now, however, the discussion begins to turn to the more serious subject of paying for the project.
Councillor Brian Hatleberg said they have scheduled a meeting for the discussion, but it hasn’t happened yet.
“This has been going on for quite some time with the School Committee and the Building Committee, but now it’s time for the Council to come in and be part of the discussion,” he said. “It’s still new news in a lot of ways and we’re going to work on it and figure out what can be done. We need a new school. There’s not a lot of wiggle room on that. I think we have to take a closer look at it. In other words, we won’t sacrifice quality and we will figure out how to get this down as efficiently as possible.”
He said the Council’s involvement is still just at the beginning stages, but he expects the school funding issue to be a major point of discussion throughout the fall.