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Many pieces fit in bond puzzle
"Multiple factors add up to school board's plan. POULSBO - The North Kitsap School District is aiming to do everything urgent that needs to be done. After months of discussing, studying, and thinking about the possibility of a bond, they have decided to ask the voters not just for part of what they want, but all of it. A new secondary school, continued maintenance of the pool, and renovations; all will be included in the bond. The largest question remaining is when will they run the bond, March or May? In coming to the decision about what to include in a bond request, the school board, as well as the capital facilities task force, has considered many factors and ideas as to what they should ask for, and why. Here are some of them: OVERCROWDING Anyone who has seen students squeeze through the halls of North Kitsap High School knows that there are too many students for the building. But will the trend continue? That was the question underlying a demographic study the district had the Washington Association of School Administrators do in December of 1999. The study not only looked at enrollment in the district, but projected what that enrollment could be. According to WASA, the student population may dip slightly, but in general will remain at its current rate. And, the study hinted at factors that may bring even more students to the area: a high-speed passenger ferry could bring more families to Kingston and several planned housing developments may increase the population more. As many schools and classrooms in the district are already bursting with students, concerns about overcrowding was an important force behind the idea for a second high school. THE POOL The North Kitsap Community pool has a host of problems. The HVAC system, which circulates air throughout the building, died in the early 1990s, and the envelope of the building has allowed moisture to collect inside, causing ceilings to leak and walls to warp. The HVAC system must be repaired, and other improvements must be made to the pool. Recently the school district has looked for partnership on the pool, seeking other agencies to help pay for the pool which, the district says, everyone in the community uses, not just students. And there have been some positive signs, with the county pledging money, and the county and city both agreeing to have more talks in the future. Some school board members contemplated running the pool as a separate bond, letting it sink or swim on its own. But the district decided to go for everything - pool included. RENOVATIONS The most basic need, the one that drove the capital facilities task force, was the need for renovations at several sites around the district. Several schools have needs as basic as being brought up to the state's earthquake code. Under the school board's plan, Pearson, Poulsbo, and Suquamish Elementary, as well as Poulsbo Junior High and North Kitsap High School, will all get facelifts over the next decade. SPECTRUM When Spectrum Community School holds a school-wide meeting, some of the kids are left on the outside looking in - literally. The space at Spectrum is so small there is no place large enough in the building for students to meet as a single body. The bond would fund a new multipurpose room for students to gather in for assemblies and other events. "