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Prescott Referendum Buzz: With appreciation and gratitude

By Roger Hulne

Prescott School Superintendent

PRESCOTT--We have spent so many months talking about space needs and proposed solutions for the Prescott School District.

I am grateful to start this column with a sincere appreciation to the community for supporting a much-needed solution for our students. The number of volunteer hours dedicated to researching and communicating the issues is amazing. A simple appreciation hardly covers the deep gratitude on behalf of our students.

Although the outcome is important, I am also inspired by the generally collaborative and respectful approach during the past few months. A referendum can be very emotional, but together we showed the children and future adults of this community it’s possible to work together for a solution in spite of differences. That is an important lesson to reinforce as we move forward.

You might be wondering, “What’s next?” The first step is to sell bonds this spring to get the lowest interest rate possible. Our goal is to make the best use of the funds the community has entrusted to this project. With a strong fiscal base, the bond market is likely to be very interested in investing in Prescott School District.

Once the financing is secured, we will gather input on building needs and begin to develop more detailed plans and drawings. There will certainly be a lot of discussion and many ideas about this. The input of staff and community, as well as the guidance of industry professionals, will channel those discussions into a positive outcome.

When the design process is complete, the district will solicit bids for construction to break ground this fall. The goal is to open the new high school and reconfigure grades in fall of 2016. This will be an important and significant change for our staff and students, and we are committed to making the transition as smooth as possible.

As a community, we have a lot of work ahead of us. I am confident there will continue to be a strong investment of time and energy during the next stages. With a continued focus on excellent education for our students and positive solutions for our community, we can all come together to provide a resource that Prescott will be proud for generations.

Once again, appreciation goes to the whole community for your investment in the future of Prescott students.