Three schools in critical need of renovation or replacement got the go-ahead to build new facilities or renovate existing ones last week from the State Board of Education, which approved a proposal from Maine Education Commissioner Pender Makin. The three projects were considered because their total estimated costs, when added to existing debt, will be within the current debt service limit of $126,000,000.
The Board approved the Maine Department of Education’s “Approved Projects List,” a key step in a school construction process that includes: evaluating needs, determining solutions, designing, and building. The schools were at the top of the Final Priority List of 74 schools that applied for renovation or replacement, which was approved by the State Board in August of 2018.
The three schools on the approved list are: Fairfield Primary School (RSU 49/MSAD 49); Skowhegan’s North Elementary School (RSU 54/MSAD 54); and Rumford Elementary School (RSU 10).
The Department would like to stress that the decision to begin work on the first three projects does not preclude additional projects from being approved later. As the nature and anticipated costs of the first three projects becomes clearer over the ensuing months, the Department intends to then assess when, and if, additional projects on the Final Priority List can be approved to move forward.
Information about the Department’s school construction program can be found at: http//www.maine.gov/doe/schools/facilities/mcscp.