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School facilities recommendation made, decision yet to come

Board decides to review recommendations at a work session
Faced with crowded schools, on Monday the Crook County School Board heard the recommendations for new schools from the Citizens Facilities Review and Recommendations Committee, but has not yet set a worksession to consider the next steps before a bond.
   The board heard from Committee Chairman John Sundell, who said the group has been meeting for almost two years.
   "The final package, what we came up with, is $66 million," Sundell said.
   "The most expensive to replace is the Ochoco Elementary School," the chairman said. That consists of $24 million to replace the school with a new 600-student K-5 building, consisting of a building for students in grades kindergarten through second and another for third- through fifth-graders.
   The next highest cost in the bond is replacing Powell Butte Elementary, which would cost $22.5 million. That would be a new, 300-student school for K-8 that could be expanded to take in 600 students.
   "The next is $10 million for repairs," Sundell said. This consists of improvements to Crook County Middle School, $1.8 million at Cecil Sly Elementary, $2 million at Crooked River Elementary, $1.1 million at Crook County High School, $500,000 at Paulina School, and the rest to be divided among other district buildings.
   "And the final item is to expand the high school," Sundell said. That $5 million would build 12 classrooms and two science rooms as well as other support space.
   Although the committee made a number of recommendations to the board, it did not decide when the board should go to voters for a bond. This year, the board could go to voters in either May or November.
   "First of all, I want to say thank you for all the work you did," board member Steve Caraway said to the facility committee members. Referring to the 22-page recommendations report, he said, "I read this from cover to cover."
   Caraway asked where the committee obtained its price quotes for the new schools. Sundell said those figures came from the architectural firm, Dull Olson & Weekes, in a December 2006 report.
   At the end of the presentation, board members thanked Sundell and the others for their work and said the board should hold a work session on the bond, but did not set a date.
   School district considers making modular building available to COCC
   Crook County School District officials are in the process of negotiations with Central Oregon Community College for a modular that the college could use in Prineville.
   District Superintendent Steve Swisher said that before Christmas the vice-president of COCC and Carol Moorehead, also of the college, were among those "talking with us about the COCC component at our high school."
   Swisher said college personnel asked if they could have a modular they could use for college services that would be close to Crook County High School.
   He added that "the conversation continued with what other entities are close", such as the Crook County Fairgrounds.
   The discussions come several years after COCC pulled some of its services out of Prineville because of budgetary cuts. Even with the cuts, the college still shares resources with the Central Oregon Intergovernmental Council (COIC) office in Prineville to offer a computer lab and computer training in Crook County.
   "This is an ongoing process," Swisher told the Crook County School Board Monday night. He added that the focus will continue to be that either COCC would lease a modular or would work with the fairgrounds for space.