The board directed staff to move forward on drafting contract with architect for Aquatics Complex

PASO ROBLES — The Paso Robles Joint Unified School District met for a regular meeting on Tuesday, Mar. 22, where trustees received an update on the Measure M budget and projects. The presentation was followed by discussion lasting over two hours.

Assistant Superintendent Brad Pawlowski and Ricardo Reyes, manager of Facilities and Planning, presented updated cost estimates for current and future Measure M construction projects and recommendations to revise the priorities. Staff also proposed the district delete projects that may be funded from alternative sources. 

Included in the Measure M projects is the relocation and renovation of Georgia Brown and Glen Speck elementary schools. During the Feb. 8 PRJUSD meeting, trustees approved the elementary attendance boundaries and program location, which resulted in the following plan:

Glen Speck staff and students will move to the new Glen Speck campus on 17th Street as soon as completed next Fall. At that time, Georgia Brown staff and students will move to the temporary site on 36th Street, where they will stay while the 36th Street campus is renovated to accommodate about 400 students. 

This will become the new Glen Speck Elementary site when that construction is complete, and Georgia Brown will move to the 17th Street site. In the end, they will have two new schools on the west side. The attendance boundaries for Glen Speck will be all of the district west of 101, while Georgia Brown will be a magnet program district-wide with no boundaries.

The motion passed with a 4-3 vote with Trustees Chris Arend, Lance Gannon, Tim Gearhart, and Nathan Williams in favor and Dorian Baker, Chris Bausch, and Frank Triggs opposed.

Since that decision, the district has heard many comments from the public petitioning the decision, asking for it to be reconsidered. Baker proposed the district revisit the option of closing the 36th Street Georgia Brown school site completely and move the dual immersion program to an existing site on the east side.

Some argued in public comment that closing the Georgia Brown campus would be the best option financially for the district. Others opposed moving the Georgia Brown students twice, saying it would be too hard on students. 

Baker motioned to close the Georgia Brown site on 36th Street and direct staff to come back to the board with recommendations on where to relocate the dual immersion program. The motion failed with Williams, Gearhart, Gannon, and Arend voting no.

Board President Arend made a new motion to approve Option B, which retains the plan to rebuild the Georgia Brown campus on 36th Street and move Georgia Brown students to the 17th Street campus when it is completed. Glen Speck students would remain at the temporary campus until 36th Street campus is complete. That motion also failed with Williams, Baker, Gearhart, Gannon, Triggs, and Bausch voting no.

Arend made a new motion to approve Option A to keep the Feb. 8 decisions. The motion passed with Baker and Triggs voting no.

Next, Williams motioned to direct staff to draft a contract with an architect for the Aquatics Complex to bring back to board for approval. The motion passed unanimously.

The board then moved on to discuss Resolution no. 22-14: Assigning and Committing General Fund Reserves (to supersede Resolution No.22-07). The item was tabled to allow staff to look at alternate uses and add funds to employee retention and come back to the board. The board also approved 19six Architects Master Planning Support Services for Measure M projects. The 19six Architects firm will provide master planning support services, including site planning and estimating consulting. 

The meeting then adjourned at 10:30 p.m. with three action items and seven information items left on the agenda. All items not addressed will be carried over to the next school board meeting.

The next regular school board meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Apr. 12, at 6 p.m.