The Seattle school district plans to reopen three shuttered elementary schools if it wins approval of a $475 million capital levy next week.
Voters will decide on Feb. 9 on the six-year Buildings, Technology and Academics IV (BTA IV) Capital Levy. It would replace an expiring levy (BTA III) that voters approved in 2010. It would provide $335.4 million for building improvements; $104.7 million for technology upgrades; and $35.2 million for academic and athletic enhancements.
The money generated by the levy would enable Seattle to reopen three shuttered campuses as elementary schools--E.C. Hughes, Magnolia and Webster--and provide an additional 1,500 seats to accommodate projected growth in student enrollment.
In addition, the district would use levy funds to construct a 500-student addition at Ingraham High School.
Seattle experienced enrollment declines in the early 2000s, but since its numbers bottomed out in 2007, the district has added more than 7,000 students--its enrollment in October 2015 was 52,324. As the city continues to grow steadily, school officials expect students numbers to increase for the next decade.
Other improvements that the levy would cover:
- Earthquake safety improvements
- Fire suppression and alarm upgrades
- Security enhancements
- Roof replacements
- Exterior renovations
- HVAC, plumbing and electrical upgrades
- Preventive maintenance improvements
- Property acquisition.
- Technology upgrades
- Special education improvements
- Athletic facility upgrades