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Hudson district considers upgrading schools, including possible new middle school

Possible new middle school among options presented by superintendent to board of education

by Mike lesko | reporter Published: September 18, 2016 12:20 AM
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Hudson -- School officials are considering a massive plan to upgrade Hudson City Schools that could include constructing a new middle school.

Three options are on the table, and Superintendent Phil Herman said the Board of Education will vote on how to proceed in November/December. No action was taken at the Sept. 12 meeting.

If one of the three options is OK'd, voters would be asked to approve a bond issue.

"Ultimately, we will ask for community approval of the plan," Herman said. "There is not a single right answer. There are many moving parts.

"Typically, school districts use a bond issue when seeking funds for large capital improvement projects," he added.

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No specific dollar amount for a bond issue has been discussed. Herman said mostly likely, no state money will be available for the project.

The upgrade plan is nearly in motion. Focus groups will be formed, followed by an online community survey in October, then the selection of one of the three options will be considered.

The master plan, which includes the three options, will be posted online following Board of Education approval of the master plan, which is anticipated at the Sept. 26 meeting, Herman said.

"The master plan is a strategic plan to address the long range needs and vision for the district," Herman said.

School officials said even if the plan to upgrade the schools was fully supported now, it will take 4 to 5 years to address all of the facility needs.

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Hudson's oldest school building, which is "a significant part" of Hudson Middle School, was built in 1927.

If approved, a new middle school would be constructed east of the existing middle school on the athletic practice fields, then the existing middle school would be torn down and the vacant site would become a parking area in front of the new middle school.

"The orientation of the fields would need to be reconfigured, but the goal would be to try to provide as many practice fields as currently exist," Herman said.

School officials said while the current middle school is about 190,500 square feet, the new middle school would be about 176,000 square feet.

School officials said the elementary schools on North Hayden Parkway were opened in the 1950s and 1960s: Evamere (1958), East Woods (1964) and McDowell (1967). That is in addition to Hudson High School, which opened in 1992, and Ellsworth Hill (2007).

While several of these buildings still have significant usable life, they will require renovation to enable them to serve Hudson students well for the next 25-30 years, school officials said.

Email: mlesko@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9436

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