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2016 capital bond and levy planning
Who has been involved?
Through community engagement events like the online Thoughtexchange
process and the in-person technology and fishbowl community conversations, the community has shared experiences, thoughts and advice about what students need in school today and what they need to be successful after high school.
To read more about the board's history of community engagement, visit the board webpage.
When were the last voter-approved capital levy and bond elections, and what projects were included?
In 2006, voters approved a $198.9 million bond. Major projects in that bond included:
- Building Forest View Elementary which opened in 2007
- Remodeling of Garfield, Jefferson, Monroe, Silver Lake, View Ridge, and Whittier elementary schools
- New auxiliary gymnasium at North Middle School
- Modernization of Everett High School gym
- Seismic, heating and ventilation systems, roof replacements, plumbing and electrical system upgrades at highest priority schools
For an extensive history of earlier construction projects made possible by other past bonds, see the information in the Winter 2016 edition of the district newsletter, Our Schools
When did the board hold public discussions about a bond or replacement capital levy in 2016?
In 2010, voters approved a $48 million capital levy. Major projects in that levy included:
- Replacement of worn out electrical, heating and ventilation systems to save energy costs
- New roofs and schools on roof replacement schedule
- Replacement computers to maintain district ratio at that time of 1 computer for each 5 students
- Technology and cameras for security systems
- April 28, May 5, May 19, 2015 – Community Fishbowl conversations about facilities & technology
- June 9, 2015 – Capital planning update
- Sept. 22, 2015 – Capital bond/levy update
- Sept. 24, 2015 – Community Conversation about Technology
- Oct. 13, 2015 – Technology & Facilities Community Engagement
- Oct. 27, 2015 – Capital bond/levy development update
- Nov. 3, 2015 – Capital bond/levy development update
- Nov. 17, 2015 – Capital bond/levy development update
- Jan. 12, 2016 – Review of draft proposed capital bond and levy
The 2016 bond and levy programs includes projects to meet the highest priority needs in four areas:
Capital bond and levy cycle
The Everett Public Schools has enjoyed tremendous community support, and successfully passed capital bonds and levies every 4 to 8 years since 1978. Looking into the future, in order to meet the needs for new students and upgrade aging schools, the district is planning on continuing a 4 year cycle for capital bonds and levies, as shown in this Potential bond and levy cycle spreadsheet
The Washington Growth Management Act (GMA) outlines thirteen broad goals including adequate provision of necessary public facilities and services, including public schools. The Everett Public Schools has developed a capital facilities plan to satisfy the requirements of RCW 36.70A.070, and to identify additional school facilities necessary to meet the educational needs of the growing student populations anticipated in the district.
The district’s Capital Facilities Plan (CFP) is intended to provide the Everett School District (District), Snohomish County, and other jurisdictions a description of facilities needed to accommodate projected student enrollment at acceptable levels of service through the year 2035, and a more detailed schedule and financing program for capital improvements over the six-year period, 2016-2021.
In accordance with GMA mandates, and Chapter 30.66C Snohomish County Code (SCC), this CFP contains the following required elements:
- Future enrollment forecasts for each grade span (elementary K-5, middle 6-8, and high 9-12).
- An inventory of existing capital facilities owned by the district, showing the locations, sizes and student capacities of the facilities.
- A forecast of the future needs for capital facilities and school sites, distinguishing between existing and projected deficiencies.
- The proposed capacities of expanded or new capital facilities.
- A 6-year plan for financing capital facilities within projected funding capacities, which clearly identifies sources of public money for such purposes. The financing plan separates projects and portions of projects which add capacity from those which do not, since the latter are generally not appropriate for impact fee funding. The financing plan and/or the impact fee calculation formula must also differentiate between projects or portions of projects which address existing deficiencies (ineligible for impact fees) and those which address future growth-related needs.
- A calculation of impact fees to be assessed and support data substantiating said fees.
- In developing this CFP, the guidelines of Appendix F of the General Policy Plan were used as follows:
- Information was obtained from recognized sources, such as the U.S. Census or the Puget Sound Regional Council.
- School districts may generate their own data if it is derived through statistically reliable methodologies.
- Information is to be consistent with the State Office of Financial Management (OFM) population forecasts and those of Snohomish County.
- Chapter 30.66C SCC requires that student generation rates be independently calculated by each school district. Rates were updated for this CFP.
- The CFP complies with RCW 36.70A (the Growth Management Act) and, where impact fees are to be assessed, RCW 82.02.
- The calculation methodology for impact fees meets the conditions and tests of RCW 82.02. Districts which propose the use of impact fees should identify in future plan updates alternative funding sources in the event that impact fees are not available due to action by the state, county or the cities within their district boundaries.
To ensure that its school buildings are physically sound and meet educational program needs, the Everett Public Schools has implemented a systematic long-range modernization program. This means that every facility in the district will be completely modernized every 40 to 48 years, depending on voter support and funding availability. Here is the 48 year modernization cycle
A complete modernization means a complete remodel/upgrade of a school. It includes all major building systems, such as heating, lighting, electrical, windows and roofing. Code compliance and the building’s fit with the educational program are also addressed. Typically, a modernization program addresses only the school building itself, not fields or play equipment. A modernization may also result in a partial or full replace of an existing building if it is determined that upgrading the existing facility will be too expensive
When a replacement building option is chosen, school usually continues to take place in the old building while the new building is built on site. If a modernization building option is chosen, classes also continue to be held but access to playing fields and some areas of the site and building will be restricted during construction.
School enrollments and capacities
Long-range enrollment projections are essential in the planning process to identify and provide for the district's long-range facility needs. Every February, the school board is presented information on how enrollment projections are used by the district, how they are produced, and an update on short- and long-term enrollment projections based on the district's actual October 1 enrollment counts.
Here is the “Enrollment Outlook 2017-2026” presentation and William L ("Les") Kendrick Ph.D. "Enrollment Trends and Projections"
Enrollment projections from multiple sources are used by district staff to plan for future facilities and program needs. The methodologies used for these projections consider many factors to develop short- and long-range enrollment forecasts. These factors include grade progression (student cohort survival ratios), birth rates, population growth, construction of new housing, student generation rates for housing, private school enrollment, and other demographic trends to predict enrollment. These enrollment projections, in turn, provide foundational support for numerous processes in the district including budgeting, staffing, capital facilities planning updates, determination of school impact and mitigation fees, bond and levy planning, portable classroom relocations, approvals of variances, and program locations.
Educational specifications are basically a written description of the district’s requirements for a new or modernized facility, to be used by the architect and the rest of the design team to design the proposed project. The purpose of the educational specifications (per WAC 392-342-015) is to define and communicate to the architect/engineer the district’s goals and requirements for what a given facility should be to accommodate the program.
Educational specifications should describe the following:
The educational specification derives from the district’s educational goals, while taking into account educational trends. Current educational trends indicate a shift to greater hands-on, project-based experiences for learners, and will have implications for the design of facilities that will best support a changing educational program.
- Instructional subjects and methods.
- Instructional and non-instructional activities that will be in the proposed facility.
- Spatial relationship between the facility and the site.
- Interrelationship of instructional activities with each other and with non-instructional facilities.
- Major items of furniture and equipment to be used.
- Special environmental provisions which would improve the learning environment and promote staff efficiency.
- Future needs and flexibility requirements.
The educational specifications are developed by a committee which is typically comprised of educators and other interested parties who attend a series of meetings to discuss the needs of the school. The educational specification document provides a detailed description of the educational program, instructional activities, functional, spatial, aesthetic and environmental needs of the school. It is an important to understand that while the educational specification contains the design requirements, it is the responsibility of the project architect and the design team to come up with the actual building and site designs that are responsive to the requirements of the educational specifications.
Trends in educational programs
- Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) – Programs integrating science, technology, engineering, and mathematics; including career and technical education, manufacturing, and biomechanics
- Technology required for CTE / STEM / AP programs
- Integration of STEM into core curriculum
- Flexible space for multiple uses – “maker” spaces, robotics, project-based learning, etc.
- Extended learning opportunities – after-school/summer activities
- Expansion of high school credit class offerings at middle schools (science, languages, etc.)
- 1:1 technology for students
- Early learning programs - Birth to 3 years and 3-5 years
- Industry pathway partnerships
- Post high school support opportunities
- Technology accessibility for community
- Support for strategic partners whose work is aligned with the district’s student learning mission
- Centralized storage and staging facilities for assessment, curriculum and textbooks, and STEM materials
- Expanded music offerings such as orchestra (strings)
- Cost effective solutions for high-need students that are currently served by others, such as the NW Regional Learning Center and Denny Youth Center
Grades K-3 class size reductions
During the 2010 Legislative Session,
Substitute House Bill (SHB) 2776 was passed. Part of this bill is an enhancement
to reduce the average class size for grades K-3 to a 17:1 ratio of students per K-3 teacher by the 2017-18 school year. To date the legislature has made progress but has yet to fully fund the 17:1 ratio. The impact of fully implementing the K-3 class size reduction is estimated to require a minimum of 50 additional classroom spaces.
The implementation of K-3 class size reduction is dependent upon adequate funding for the ongoing costs of providing additional teachers and staff, as well as funding to support the costs of constructing new classroom facilities. As of April 2016, the state has not funded all of these costs. Therefore, the full implementation of K-3 class size reduction has not been identified or provided for
Capital Facilities Advisory Council (CFAC)
The Capital Facilities Advisory Council (CFAC) is made up of representatives of the community, students, parents, and
staff of the Everett Public Schools, with the tasks of providing guidance and assistance in aligning facilities planning to long-term, broad, district needs and goals. Areas of focus include capital bond and levy planning, property management, growth management, school enrollment boundary adjustments, portable classrooms, and hazard mitigation planning.
Property management planning is the process used to plan and manage the development, use, and disposition of real estate owned by the district. The implications of property management are evident in the district's strategic plan priorities to utilize and generate resources in support of student learning, and to support strategic partners whose work is aligned with our mission.
Short- and long-term options for individual property use is detailed in the school board-approved Property Use Matrix
The philosophy behind how all district-owned properties are managed and used is outlined in the school board-approved Property Use Framework.
School attendance boundaries
The Everett School District recognizes that school boundaries need to be modified occasionally to respond to changes in student enrollment or educational programs. Boundary changes can be an effective method of reducing the need for new school construction, and are also necessary when new schools or classroom additions are built. A good example of changing school boundaries to reduce the need for new schools occurred in the fall of 2015 when the district instituted a limited re-configuration of elementary school boundaries in response to significant enrollment growth at Woodside Elementary School in the southern end of the district. Boundary changes, can be received as disruptive to the educational program and to the lives of students and their parents. Therefore, careful consideration of the
following should be given before implementing any boundary change:
- The potential impacts, both positive and negative, of any proposed boundary changes should be carefully evaluated.
- Boundary changes should only be implemented after appropriate input and discussions with affected parties and careful consideration of alternative solutions.
- Boundary changes should be made in the context of long term solutions. Short term solutions not addressing long term issues should be avoided.
- Natural or manmade barriers to safe and efficient routes should be taken into consideration. This applies to pedestrian walkways as well as vehicular transportation.
- It is important, especially at the elementary school level, to ensure students are able to attend schools located within close proximity to their own neighborhood, and, if possible, all students living in a neighborhood should attend the same schools.
- Large-scale boundary change processes should be concluded with enough lead time to allow families and school systems to plan and prepare.
School Construction Assistance Program (SCAP)
The School Construction Assistance Program (SCAP) provides funding assistance to school districts that are undertaking a major new construction or modernization project. Projects must meet eligibility requirements based on age and condition for modernization and a need for more space for new construction. School districts are responsible to secure local funding for construction projects. If eligible, the State may provide partial funding based on formulas, allowances, and costs related to certain aspects of a construction project called recognized project costs.
The Everett Public Schools is currently “overhoused” at all grade levels, and therefore is not eligible for SCAP funds for new schools or additions. EPS is currently eligible for SCAP funding for modernizations or “new-in-lieu” replacements, and the Funding Assistance Percentage (see info on SCAP link for a definition of what this is) for this is 55.82%.
School mitigation & impact fees
School mitigation and impact fees are collected from developers of new housing units within the school district, and used by the district to provide school facilities to house new students. While these fees are both authorized by the state of Washington and are very similar, they do have some differences.
School mitigation fees: These are fees collected by the district from owners of housing units in the City of Mill Creek. The amounts of these fees are negotiated between the housing developer and the school district and formalized a voluntary mitigation agreement between the parties, as required by State Environmental Protection Act (SEPA). Basically, the fees are determined by whether the specific schools attended by the students from those housing units are over capacity, how many students would live there, and the cost to provide portable classrooms to house those students. The fees currently range from a high of $3,231 per unit to a low of $0 per unit, depending on those variables, and these fees are typically adjusted on an annual basis. These funds have to be spent on capital projects adding capacity to those schools serving those housing units.
School impact fees: These are fees collected by Snohomish County and the City of Everett, for housing projects in those jurisdictions, which are then turned over to the school district. These fees are determined by the formula contained in the district’s Capital Facilities Plan (insert link here), which is updated every two years and approved by the school board and adopted by the county/city councils into their comprehensive plans. These formulae are established in the state Growth Management Act (GMA), which also requires the funds be spent on capital projects providing additional capacity on a system-wide basis. The current amounts are set at $4,988 per single family home and $1,092 per multi-family housing unit with 2 or more bedrooms, and these fee amounts will be adjusted on January 1, 2017 and every two years thereafter.