Dear Central Families and Community Members,
It has been a whirlwind the last few months since the community generously passed the bond to update our buildings. I would like to provide you with an update on the work so far.
Shortly after November, the district began forming “user groups” for the various parts of the MS/HS renovation. For example, we have groups specializing in classroom and media center design and groups focusing on our outdoor and athletics facilities needs. Every aspect of the building is being discussed under the full attention of the architects. Very soon we will have rough floor plans to share with the community. In March, we will be inviting you to attend community open houses so you can see the progress firsthand and provide feedback on the plans. Look for open house invitations in an email from the school district, on our social media platforms, and posted on our website.
Students have also been a part of our design process. On Feb. 11, Chris Gibbs, the lead design architect, and I chaperoned 31 fifth through eleventh graders to Central Middle School in Eden Prairie, Jordan Middle School, and St. Peter High School. The purpose was to see different design ideas in newer school construction or remodels. Between stops, the students were led through a series of questions to provide specific feedback on what they saw. Mr. Gibbs listened intently to find ways to incorporate some of their ideas into our project. The group discussed open room concepts, “common spaces” in new design, ways they learn best and what classroom design could support that learning. The team tried out many types of new furniture and gave their feedback as to what they liked and didn’t. Their feedback will be critical in the design process of our school.
I am happy to report the financial aspects of the project are on target. All the bonds have been purchased for the renovation at or below our projected cost when we made projections to the community. This is great news for us! The first bid packet went out in the last two weeks for the athletic stadium. Other bid packages are anticipated to go out for public bid in the April/May timeframe.
Finally, last month the school board adopted a new calendar for the 2022-23 school year. It is very unique compared to past calendars. We are planning heavy construction in the summer of 2023. Please note that next school year begins on August 15, 2022 and ends on May 5, 2023. This will give our contractors maximum time and flexibility to fulfill our promises.
Thank you for your continued support. If you have any questions about the building work being done or our plans, please feel free to call or email me directly. We are privileged to carry out this exciting work on behalf of our students, our staff, and the Central community.
Tim Schochenmaier, Superintendent