Tonight the School Board is going to have a very special meeting to talk about what to do about the Master Facilities Plan. Because you all know that seven plus months just isn’t enough time to make decision on the Master Facilities Plan, we need more discussion! Yea!
Because the explanation of seven months ago wasn’t enough to sufficiently describe what a Master Facilities Plan is, essentially tonight’s meeting will be held (6:30 p.m. people at the Alameda High Cafeteria because there is a City Council meeting happening tonight)
Yesterday Mike McMahon sent out a link to his massive email list with this example of what Master Facilities Plan looks like (psst…AUSD doesn’t have something like this, pass it on) That one is from Oakland, yes that Oakland. It looks like they have a School Board of like a million people yet they managed to get their act together to decide to commission a Master Facilities Plan. Essentially what this Plan does is lay out all the assets of the school district, gives all the information and provides an amazing tool for the community, not the consultants, to decide the next steps for the School District when it comes to the facilities.
I know we don’t like to take a lot of lessons from outside the Island, but here’s a great visual on how Oakland went about this process:
I hope our School Board members (and the public who will come out to speak) will take a minute to glance through the information provided at the link to see how thorough the process of creating these Master Facilities Plans are. One really interesting slide in the Oakland Facilities Master Plan is the one of demographic data and the dramatic growth of Oakland students in charter schools although there are still over 35,000 kids in Oakland schools.
Another thing I found interesting about the Oakland Facilities Master Plan is that they actually prioritized removing portable buildings from some of their sites and adding permanent buildings. Alameda has also relied on portables for quick space, but in the long run they tend to have lots of problems. As I mentioned in some of my reviews of the old facilities plans, a lot of the fixes were for the portables. If Alameda were to prioritize removal of these portables and replacement with permanent building some of those costs in the $92 million that was identified in the old facilities analysis would be eliminated. But again, we don’t know the information for these because we haven’t even start gathering information to have a community discussion let alone make any decisions about these ideas.