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Public comment sought on school plans

Trustees want residents to weigh in on Measure G-funded middle school projects

Officials with the Mountain View Whisman School District are seeking the community's comments before the board of trustees takes its final vote on the latest round of Measure G school bond plans.

On March 20, the district's board is scheduled to vote on the draft designs for the second phase of construction at Crittenden and Graham middle schools. The second phase of building at the district's middle schools will include the construction of a new library and classroom wing at Crittenden, the rebuilding of a library and the construction of new classrooms at Graham, and the revamping of restroom facilities at both schools, according to Terese McNamee, associate superintendent and chief business officer for the district.

In the run-up to the vote, district trustees and administrators will take community comments at a March 6 board meeting and a March 13 community meeting. At the board meeting, the plans will be reviewed as a discussion item -- meaning residents will be able to voice concerns and ask questions, and the trustees will discuss the proposal among themselves and with the district administration. At the community meeting, district administrators will conduct more of a "fluid, free-flowing" discussion with those in attendance, McNamee said. Before a vote is taken on March 20, the board will once more open the floor to questions, comments and concerns from the community.

"Our intention is to show our designs and get feedback from the community," McNamee said of the upcoming meetings. Those designs will be posted to the district's website on Feb. 28, McNamee said.

At Graham, what was once the school's administration building will become the library, McNamee said. Walls will be knocked down to open up the space and an outdoor patio is being considered.

The row of six portables currently located on the south end of the campus near the track will be removed and replaced with a cluster of six permanent classrooms -- all of which will be linked by a "shared learning space" where multiple classrooms will be able work together on larger group projects, McNamee explained.

"It's really a collaboration space, so that people can move in and out or divide it into different groups," she said. The space will have a large projection screen and monitors for showing education films and slide shows.

At Crittenden, the district is planning to rebuild the entire wing currently housing the library and several classrooms -- razing the existing structure and building a new, modern library and set of classrooms in the center of the campus, McNamee said. And, just like at Graham, the plan is to build a shared space with the new classrooms.

The classrooms and library will surround a central quad, McName said.

The first board meeting to discuss the Measure G projects is scheduled for March 6 at 7 p.m. in the MVWSD Board Room, at 705-A San Pierre Way -- the same time and place as the March 20 meeting when the board is scheduled to vote on the plans. The community meeting is scheduled for March 13, from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., in the Theuerkauf Elementary School Multi-Use Room, located at 1625 San Luis Ave.

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