PN-GISD to form bond committee, may eliminate two elementaries

Published 10:33 am Monday, October 19, 2015

GROVES — Trustees with Port Neches-Groves Independent School District will soon be submitting names to be included in a bond committee.

Trustees recently approved giving Superintendent Rodney Cavness permission to form a bond committee.

“We are going to try and turn the recommendations of the facility into a plan,” Cavness said during a phone interview.

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Last month facility committee members Scott Bartlett and Matt Marchak presented the committee’s findings to trustees and recommended going from six elementary schools to four — two in Groves and two in Port Neches. A conservative ballpark figure of $130 million was mentioned.

Cavness hopes to see all of the facility committee members serving on the bond committee, and board members will also make recommendations.

“I would like to see a mix of demographics represented in the bond committee,” Lana Parker, who is serving until November as president after the resignation of Jim Walters, said.

Parker wants to make sure senior citizens understand that if a bond is presented, those 65 and over will not see an increase in their taxes.

Facility committee members based their recommendations on looking at last year’s demographic study and facility study, tax rate analysis and tours of the facilities.

The tours, they said, showed aging facilities with the oldest built in 1948 and the youngest in 1965. They and Cavness praised the district’s maintenance personnel for their work to keep the schools running but added that new schools are needed.

Problems with the schools included failing infrastructure such as leaky roofs, old heating ventilation and air-conditioning systems, mostly original plumbing and electrical issues.

A cost analysis showed it is not cost efficient to simply repair the problems, they said.

The district currently has six elementary schools divided in the Port Neches and Groves communities. West Groves Early Learning Center houses Preschool Programs for Children with Disabilities and pre-kindergarten; Ridgewood, Taft, Van Buren and Woodcrest house kindergarten through third grades and Groves and Port Neches elementary schools house fourth and fifth grades.


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