The security and safety of over 6,000 school students falls on the shoulders of Roseburg Public Schools. Security was the focus of our first video on security and safety, and now we will focus our second video on the safety of those children and adults who teach and support them.
With the passage of this bond, Roseburg Schools will be updated with new security systems including the building of secure vestibules at each school, the addition of new camera systems inside and out, building access systems on every door, the ability to lock down any building in a matter of seconds, perimeter fencing, and emergency management systems on every campus. In addition, there will be new intercom systems that allow two-way communications with classrooms, secure classroom checks during lockdown, and has emergency notification messages.
And just as importantly, these systems will be require the establishment of a robust data network and technological infrastructure to support the security system.
In addition the upgraded technological infrastructure will be accompanied by substantial changes to assure modern and reliable access to digital curriculum, electronic resources, online assessments and other tools for students and staff.
Every item listed above is vitally essential for keeping our kids secure while providing a quality education.
Secure schools are often thought of as keeping kids and staff safe from physical threat of harm by others. However, safer schools also refers to providing a healthier teaching and learning environment for students and staffs.
The District has prioritized maintaining our community’s investments in our buildings. The overall age of the buildings is 60 plus years old. In order for these buildings to continue to provide the quality of education this community and its children deserve, we must invest in improving learning environments.
Security that keeps student free from unwanted intrusion will not keep students free from unhealthy learning environments that often accompany buildings as old as most of our District buildings. Safer learning environments will vastly change the hour to hour, day to day, and week to week lives of students and staff.
The history of wear and tear becomes apparent when we look closely at any building on any campus built before 2000, revealing a lack of attention to areas of safety only a Bond levy can address because of the cost.
Almost all of our school buildings have heating systems that are over 50 years old. Given the age of these systems, and the controls technology used to operate them, they are inefficient and difficult to keep operating on a consistent basis. This makes it very challenging to keep classrooms at a temperature that facilitates learning.
Studies show that classrooms outside of the optimum temperature range will have an adverse effect on student test scores. Maintaining our equipment is becoming difficult as most parts have become obsolete and, in some cases, retrofit kits are not available.
An example of this problem is Eastwood School that has two boiler systems, the newest one was installed in the 1960s. This boiler system provides heat to 75% of the campus, and the last time the boilers quit working, it cost the District $7502.00 to repair. At some point repairs will no longer be an option and this system will need replaced.
Most elementary and middle school buildings and several high school buildings are in the same situation. High levels of maintenance, inconsistent heating, and a constant fear the systems will fail and cannot be patched or repaired, haunt the Maintenance Department and those responsible. If the failures were to happen during the winter months, it could result in a major disruption of student learning and an extended school year for a building.
Air quality in most buildings constructed between 1940 and 1980 is inadequate or non-existent. Air circulation equipment is absent in many buildings which results in poor air exchange rates. This , in return, causes a poor learning environment due to elevated CO2 levels, as well as stale, stagnant and musty air.
It is safe to say that our buildings do not meet current building codes when it comes to air quality. Air quality factors have a major impact on student learning, and especially impact students who have asthma and other respiratory ailments.
A tour of the 12 campuses would also raise eyebrows when discovering how antiquated the electrical lighting, and plumbing systems are. These necessities, we all take for granted in our homes and our offices, are in some cases less than adequate and in others barely cover the needs of the occupants.
Because the majority of our schools were constructed between 1940and 1980, the vast majority do not have adequate circuitry, outlets, technological infrastructure to properly support modern day teaching and learning devices.
Plumbing for sinks, drinking fountains, and restrooms have seen more than a useful life in the over 40 years they have been accessed. Some schools have water that must be run for an extended period for the rusty color to go away. Others are lacking proper restroom facilities, requiring students to go to another floor, or another building, to relieve themselves.
In the electrical rooms, mechanical rooms, and boiler rooms in almost all of the buildings, one can see abandoned exposed wires, rusty used pipes, leaky pipes, and sinks that are beyond cleaning because of their age. There are remnants of abandoned water systems, cracking of concrete, and failing floor supports.
Walls that indicate a building structure is beginning to fail are apparent in the Heritage building, as in other buildings throughout the District. In addition, there are signs of water that runs out onto the floors and out of conduits during hard rainstorms.
If you were to continue a tour, you would find classroom after classroom, building after building that needs paint and repairs. You would notice siding that needs to be replaced, roofs that need replaced or repaired. This Bond will go a long way towards making the repairs necessary to assure the District’s assets are protected and provide buildings that are conducive to student learning.
This Bond is more than just a facelift, it will offer structural and system changes, and will ensure safety and security changes are made on every campus in the District.
Yes, our buildings have been grand investments that have been maintained beautifully for many decades.
However, the time has come to reinvest in the kids that make up this great community and provide them with the learning environments they deserve.
When kids are safe, secure, and healthy, learning happens.
Let’s vote to keep our kids safe.
Vote Yes for Roseburg Public Schools Bond Levy!