Date: October 3, 2013

Facility Efficiency Recommendation Made
Oldest Elementary Schools to Consolidate

As part of a comprehensive facility study to operate more efficiently and decommission older buildings, the Wichita Falls Independent School District Board of Trustees is recommending the following:

1. Consolidate two of the district’s oldest schools, Alamo Elementary and Sam Houston Elementary, into the Zundy Jr High facility, and

2. Consolidate Zundy Jr High, including its 6th grade program, with Barwise Jr High.
Over the past two months the Facility Utilization Committee, a subcommittee of the Board of Trustees, reviewed facility reports, past and projected maintenance data and physically visited five elementary campuses that fell below a building condition rating of 70 as determined by the MGT Educational Facilities Master Plan. Maintenance and operations staff from the district also accompanied the committee in their inspection of facilities. Based on these assessment reports and the visual inspection, the subcommittee made its recommendation to the full Board of Trustees on October 1, to do the following:

· Consolidate Alamo and Houston student and staff populations into the current Zundy Jr High facility. Both Alamo and Houston are 100 years old. The consolidation at the Zundy facility would continue a neighborhood school presence in the area for families while decommissioning two aging buildings, providing greater efficiency for the district. At a future date, construct a new elementary facility on site either with or without bond funding.

· Consolidate Zundy and Barwise students and staff at the current Barwise location to establish greater efficiency and achieve junior high alignment.

· Move Zundy’s successful academic programs to Barwise, the 6th grade Pre-AP program and the Leadership Academy program, affording students the opportunity to continue receiving the same outstanding educational opportunities currently offered.

The subcommittee emphasized that these recommendations reduce the number of buildings maintained by the district, not the number of teachers. All staff positions will be protected and any potential savings through reduced staffing will be accomplished over time solely through attrition.

The Board of Trustees agreed with the sub-committee’s recommendation. District administration will now follow procedures as outlined in district policy CT which includes internal meetings with staff and school administrators who will be affected, this press release notification sent to local media and posted on the district website, and a public hearing, date to be determined, for parents and the public.