Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

5-Year Plan for Clay Schools: $72 Million for 18 Projects

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

5-Year Plan for Clay Schools: $72 Million for 18 Projects

Article excerpt

Clay County school administrators have unveiled a $72 million

spending program for major projects for the next five years or so.

Two of the 18 projects in the spending proposal have been on

the drawing boards for more than five years, said Mike Elliott,

assistant superintendent for support services.

Projects include a $2.5 million cafetorium for Green Cove

Springs Middle School for 1997 and a new gymnasium for Keystone

Heights High budgeted at $5 million.

"A lot of the things I want to see happening are now coming

about," board member Lisa Graham said.

The annual capital improvement plan outlines everything from

new media centers to band rooms.

The plans, however, do not contain money for technology

improvements, which troubles both Graham and board member

Richard Fain.

"My only concern is the technology area," Fain said after

Elliott presented the proposal Tuesday. "We're really not

allocating money to technology."

"Technology unfortunately gets put behind," Graham said.

Elliott said the district plans to research state grants it can

acquire to help pay for technology and related expenses. For

example, a new lab that cost $785,000 was completed at Green

Cove Middle School a year ago. It was paid for with a state

grant, educators said.

Residents of Keystone Heights have been lobbying for a new gym

for the small, out-of-date facility for some time, educators said.

"It's been on the list ever since this [capital spending] list

existed," Elliott said of the gym. "Maybe five years . . ."

And this is the third major project at Green Cove Springs

Middle School, which parents and educators applaud. This fall,

its new $1.3 million media center opens. Last year, it got a

$785,000 technology lab.

There was virtually no debate and the board tentatively approved

the plan 5-0. A final vote is expected in September.

Highlights of the $72 million in major spending projects, which

targets $12 million for 1996/97, include:

$17 million for a junior high school by 1998 in the Lake Asbury


$8.2 million for an elementary school by 2000 at a site to be

determined. …

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