Eugene Field School Update

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Tell us your thoughts about the future of Eugene Field School

If you would like to provide input into the future of Eugene Field School, please read this update carefully and share your feedback via mail, email or this survey page.

Andy Bellando, SuperintendentSuperintendent’s Introduction

Over the past several months, we’ve had the opportunity to hear from community members more openly than ever before. Through a series of 13 community focus groups and meetings, and a large collection of online community comments, we’ve learned a lot. First, we heard that you would like more opportunities to provide input into decisions about our schools. Second, we understand that we need to be clearer and more specific in our communications – especially when we’re talking about plans to build and maintain our schools. One of the main concerns shared by many was the future of Eugene Field School. We all agree that a decision must be made and that we need to take action soon.

Over the past several months, a diverse task force of community members representing multiple perspectives came together with District staff to identify options for the Eugene Field School building. The task force was able to agree and make recommendations to the school board, and we are now asking for your input into a final decision.

On behalf of the District team and school board members, I invite you to read the recommendations and information in this update and get back to us with your feedback by April 18. We’re grateful to live and work in communities that value education and we look forward to your help in providing the best learning experience we can offer to the children of Silver Falls School District.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me at (503) 873-5303 or bellando_andy@silverfalls.k12.or.us if you have questions about this or any other school-related matters.

Thank you for your ongoing support and participation.

Andy Bellando

To view the task force recommendations, click here: EF Task Force Recommendations.

Eugene Field Facility Task Force

In October 2013, a group of Silverton community members came together with District staff to identify alternative options for Eugene Field School students. This group has been working to understand issues related to the existing building and make recommendations to the school board. The task force members include: Bob Dedrick, Jonathan Edmonds, Dan Kaplan, Garth King, Dean Oster, Stacy Posegate, Barb Rivoli, Tom Schmidgall, Bob Schmidt, Joanne Stone, Bob Collins – Hill International, Jennifer Hannan – Eugene Field Principal, Pete Paradis – District Maintenance Supervisor, David Beeson – School Board Member, and Andy Bellando — Superintendent.

For more information on task force recommendations and facility evaluations, please visit this page.

Is replacing or remodeling the current school building a good option?

No. The Eugene Field Facility Task Force is recommending permanent closure of the existing school building by the2016-2017 school year. Here’s why:

  • Remodeling the building would cost nearly as much as constructing a new school.
  • The existing 3.5 acre site is not large enough to meet the needs of student populations.
  • The current building systems (electrical, technology, plumbing, fixtures and mechanical air exchange) are not meeting the needs of students and will become increasingly challenging over time.
  • There are serious safety concerns with continued use of the school beyond 2016-17. In addition, the location is too close to four busy highway lanes which is an additional safety issue for our students.
  • The overall building structure and site do not meet instructional needs (full day kindergarten, technology access, special programs, food service, physical education).

Is there other District property that could house Eugene Field School students?

Yes. There are other buildable sites for consideration. The task force has recommended the Schlador site (the old High School) as a safe and affordable alternative. The school board believes the single-story portions and gym of the old high school are viable structures for continued use but not the multi-story portion.

How would modifications of alternative sites be funded?

The task force has suggested a capital construction bond to obtain the bulk of funding. Other funding sources include:

  • Sale of existing District property
  • Grants
  • Limited use of General District fund revenue