The West Covina Unified School District hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony for the reopening of the West Covina High School Thyberg Stadium Friday, Sept. 7 at 6:30 p.m.
The projects and proposed timelines within this plan may change over time based on District needs and funding. All facility/modernization projects, which include site specific location, will be brought before the West Covina Board of Education for approval.
PREPARING FOR THE FUTURE
West Covina Unified believes that students cannot excel at learning unless they feel safe and have a clean and healthy learning environment. Many of our campuses are showing their age and mere patch work and Band-Aids are no longer enough. Critical repairs and long-term improvements are now needed to sustain the aging infrastructure at our schools. The West Covina Unified School Board addressed these current challenges with Measure ES on the November 8, 2016 election ballot.
West Covina Unified School District is committed to providing a safe and positive setting for all students and staff. Over the past few years, we have studied our school facilities with increased emphasis—because all children deserve to learn in safe, high-quality school facilities. Measure ES is a General Obligation Bond authorizing up to $143 million for school facility upgrades, improvements, and new buildings in our district. Our goal with this effort is to help make teaching and learning in all West Covina Unified schools as effective and successful as possible.
THE DISTRICT’S CRITICAL NEEDS
- Repair or replace deteriorating roofs, old rusty plumbing, heating, HVAC, and outdated electrical systems where needed.
- Provide classrooms and labs for career technology education classes so students are prepared for college and good paying jobs.
- Improve access to school facilities for students with injuries or disabilities.
- Improve student safety and campus security systems: including; security lighting, fencing and video cameras, emergency communications systems, smoke detectors, fire alarms, and fire sprinklers.
- Provide modern labs in the key subjects of math, science, and technology.
- Why now?
- Will this effort improve instruction?
- Has there been a WCUSD school bond before?
- What about funding?
- What about ongoing school maintenance? Don’t you have a facilities budget?
- What about the Lottery or State Prop 30? Weren’t they supposed to fix our schools?
- How will Measure ES be funded?
District staff work hard to maintain our neighborhood schools and keep them in good working condition with limited resources. However, the types of upgrades that our internal assessments have identified go far beyond the scope and means of regular school maintenance budgets. Many of our schools are 50 to 60 years old and have never fully been renovated. An ongoing investment in infrastructure is critical to help ensure safety and academic success for every child attending our schools.
Yes. Our local schools strive for teaching and learning excellence in every educational setting. Our goal is to provide all students with access to the education they will need to be successful in college, jobs, and careers after they graduate from high school. Safe, modern school facilities and educational technology are essential to maintaining quality schools and giving our students a competitive edge. As school facilities are improved, teachers and students will benefit.
Voters in the West Covina School District have not voted on a school facility bond measure in 16 years. The last bond was for $40 million. It addressed safety concerns, such as replacing outdated electrical components and other items no longer in compliance with building codes. Basic technology needs were also addressed. We are now focused on the facility improvements most essential to student safety, protecting your investment in local schools, and enabling student success.
Our school district makes every effort to use resources wisely. However, with limited help from the state and minimal renovations to our campuses for 50 to 60 years, the burden is growing to adequately repair and upgrade our school facilities. We need to work together to protect the quality of our education system. To that end, WCUSD is exploring all options, by leveraging available maintenance and energy efficiency funds, to ensure quality school facilities for the future.
WCUSD maintenance and operations staff work hard to keep local schools safe and inadequate working condition. Historically, the District has kept pace with needed fire safety and critical, time-sensitive facility repairs. However, and particularly in the areas of school safety and security, the current scope of upgrades needed in WCUSD far exceeds our State-allocated budget for meeting such needs.
Unfortunately, the money WCUSD receives from the Lottery each year comprises less than 2% of our annual General Fund Budget. We use these funds to purchase textbooks and other instructional materials. Proposition 30 funds, approved by California voters in November 2012, restored earlier classroom cuts – but did not provide any new funding that our local schools need for repairs and modernization.
The West Covina Unified School District hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony for the Edgewood High School track and field Tuesday, January 23.