School Facilities Master Plan Meeting Wednesday 12/7 6 pm
School Facilities Master Plan Meeting Wednesday 12/7 6 pm at the new West Philly High (4901 Chestnut)
Drew Elementary is being proposed for closure with its students reassigned to Martha Washington, Powel, Locke and MYA. Wilson, Comegys and Harrington, all currently underutilized according to the district, are proposed to lose their 6th grade classes to the districts grade configuration standardization plan with their 6th graders sent to Shaw Middle School. What does that mean for the future of these schools?
ALL school catchments are on the table for being redrawn. Are there catchments that need to change? Are there catchments that should be left alone? How difficult and frustrating is it to try to give meaningful input without any idea of what changes might be under serious consideration?
The old West Philly High building is proposed for sale. What kind of reuse would the community like to see? Options are: education, community/non-profit or private with the PSD asking for more/less money depending on the type of use.
The ball field at 48th and Spruce is NOT proposed for sale. Who is currently using the space? Does the new WPHS campus not include athletic fields? Considering the Croydon's recent sale, should this property be left undeveloped?
$ from the sale of school buildings will be used for capital improvements on the remaining schools. The PSD is quoting an estimated cost of $343 per square foot to replace elementary schools. The per square foot cost of the PAS building (built by the PSD NOT Penn) was $228. Why the huge discrepancy? (Seriously, if PAS was built at $343 it would've cost $28 million instead of $19).
Lots of reasons to come out if you're interested in the future of the community, not only if you have kids in the PSD.
Last edited by annie; 12-05-2011 at 03:13 PM.
Facilities Master Plan Summary West has a lot of great info on where students attend and where students live.
If anyone could tell me how to embed the scribd directly into this post, I would be grateful.
Lea Elementary WILL BE a receiving school for Drew students who reside within the Drew neighborhood boundary. Martha Washington was dropped in favor of Lea. It was mentioned that it would be easier for some students to go up/down the Walnut/Chestnut corridors than travel across to Martha Washington. I am not sure if Lea would be absorbing some of Drew's catchment as Locke's would need be cut in order for the catchment to be contiguous. That makes it seem unlikely to me but I will try to get this confirmed.
District officials talked about doing work over the spring/summer to make sure that the transition is as smooth as possible for both former Drew students and the students at the receiving schools. It was also mentioned that the receiving schools will have an Open House for Drew parents to attend which I wonder if we could get opened up in Lea's case to the entire community.
The old West Philadelphia High building is proposed for sale and they would be collecting proposals for all types of reuse for the building and then having a meeting to ask for the community's input on the different proposals. Some they have already received included senior housing, condos, mixed-use retail etc. They are trying to balance getting the most money for the building with the wishes of the community. The ball field is not for sale but they were reminded that the Croydon developers are interested in the corner field house property.
For other school catchments, it sounded like schools not impacted by closures/consolidations would have their catchments reviewed in the 2012-2013 year with community meetings to go over the proposed changes.
Unfortunately, the Q&A was split between the schools impacted by Drew's closure and the other schools in the area so Wilson, Comegysand Harrington were discussed in the other room. If anyone was in there and could share what was talked about, please do.
As for the $343 per square foot versus the $228 for the PAS building, I asked about it again and the district person said she thought the $228 might not include some soft costs like design etc. Acting Superintendent Nunery also said he felt construction costs in Philadelphia increased significantly since PAS was built (by half?) and $343 was a reasonable estimate.
Flawed study mis-rates potential DC school closings
Really interesting article on the perils of school closings on improperly interpreted data.
I still haven't seen any new catchment drawings. I guess these are not trivial to draw.
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