Trustees approve leaseback agreement with Harris Constriction for Aquatics Complex build

PASO ROBLES — Swimmers at Paso Robles High School are significantly closer to getting their very own pool after the Paso Robles Joint Unified School District Board of Trustees approved the construction budget last Tuesday, Feb. 13. Construction for the long-awaited Aquatics Center is expected to begin this spring. 

PRHS Athletic Director, and former PRHS swim coach and swimmer, Michael Sauret said of the news, “Paso Robles High School Athletics is incredibly excited to be adding the new aquatics complex at Paso Robles High School. This will provide our district with a safe place to teach our elementary students to swim, expand the available aquatic sports offered to all students K-8, and ensure our high school athletes are training and competing in a CIF-level facility.”

A large group of pool supporters gathered at the meeting last Tuesday. Over the last week, the Bearcat Boosters circulated a petition to urge trustees to move forward with the pool. Through an online petition campaign, the Boosters received over 1,500 signatures — plus an additional 314 collected in person. The Boosters also reached out to PRHS students, with 131 students participating and 105 of those supporting the aquatics complex. 


The aquatics complex has been in the works and facing many obstacles since 2018, but parents and students in the district have been pleading for a school pool for decades. The community has worked to raise money to build the pool along with promised Measure M funds. 

After hearing pleas from the public to approve the aquatics complex, trustee Joel Peterson said, “It seems like the only logical choice is to pass the pool.”

Paso Robles Joint Unified School District (PRJUSD) trustees approved the pool but not without concerns. Trustee Dorian Baker had concerns approving the pool with other district projects still in limbo.

“I will be happy to vote for the pool once we have hard bids for the construction projects that are needed for our schools,” explained Baker, who then introduced a motion to table the approval of the pool. 

Trustee Kenney Enney followed up by seconding the motion, which then failed with a 2-5 vote, only Baker and Enney voting to table the approval.

A new motion entered the floor to approve the lease contract. Trustees approved the leaseback contract with Harris Construction for the Aquatics Complex project. 

Sauret told Paso Robles Press, “We thank the school board for approving the construction of this pool and the community for all of its support over many decades to get this project constructed.”

2024 PRHS Pool.jpg

Shown here is an artist rendering of the proposed Aquatics Center at Paso Robles High School. The Paso Robles Joint Unified School District Board of Trustees approved the contract for construction of the pool at its Tuesday, Feb. 13, meeting. Contributed Graphic