Letter - What will $10 million pay for?


There’s has to be more to the $10 million school bond than just the science building. I wonder what the Walla Walla School Board has added to it?

Publish or make copies of the contractor’s bid sheet so the public will know what the bond money would be spent on.

John Whalen

Walla Walla


Iopine 1 year, 8 months ago

I'm not sure how to absorb this info? If calculations are correct this means that the cost would be $1,000,000.00 dollars per class room? Generally speaking.


dereksarley 1 year, 8 months ago

In public meetings over the last week, the District has shared some preliminary cost breakdowns as provided by the architects. Now that the Board has approved the bond, we'll see the finalized numbers in the public information the District will provide for the election.

On a personal note, I'd like to offer to buy you a beer or a cup of coffee for the privilege of talking to you about this issue. Since the last bond failed, I've taken in every piece of information I could find to understand where the District is and where it should go next with Wa-Hi, but I'd really appreciate the opportunity to better understand the position you're coming from.

Hit me up at sarley [at] gmail [dot] com if you're interested.


pdywgn 1 year, 8 months ago

You have to vote for it to see what's in it!


fatherof5 1 year, 8 months ago

The financial details will undoubtedly be laid out for the voters, as they were with the last bond. Remember, this bond is in response to critics like yourselves who said the previous bond was too large and too expensive and that the district should focus on its greatest needs, most notably the science classrooms.

So, that's what they did.

The 53% of voters who wanted the comprehensive bond, like me, are disappointed to have to make this compromise and to set aside our hopes for more progress sooner at Wa-Hi.

So, this compromise is for you, the 47%, and your first reactions are to wonder publicly about some secret plot? Very disappointing. I would suggest you raise your concerns with the district and get some answers first before you start spreading speculative rumors. This is first and foremost about kids, so it deserves more responsible dialogue from adults like yourselves.


barracuda 1 year, 8 months ago

Actually Father of 5....

Some of us didn't want ANY bond until we pay some bills (bonds) off first and see how CP student loss impacts us. We voted and I had hoped that they listened. Boy, was I wrong....

And here we are again...... While I am more understanding with this version (compared to last one), I am a more than a little disappointed in the board, by pushing any bond again so soon! They didn't hear us, I guess! They just think they need our money at all costs!

Also, how do you purpose we contact our board? We have voiced our concerns at meetings, we have wrote letters to the U-B, we voted accordingly and yet they don't seem to listen to us... (it sounds like they don't really want to listen to their own advisory task force, either), it is more than disappointing.

It seems it is going to take a couple of elections to get the board to slow down a little.


fatherof5 1 year, 8 months ago

First, barracuda, I do appreciate your earlier indication that you are at least open to possibly supporting this bond. When you say, "they didn't hear us, I guess," I'm not sure who the "us" is. 53% of us wanted the whole package last year. 81% indicated in surveys that they would support phased projects, just like this one. Almost everyone acknowledges the science rooms are inadequate.

So, when critics want the Board to listen to "us", does that mean the 19% who want to do nothing?

As for contacting the Board, I have attended most of the meetings, including the decisive one on Tuesday where many people spoke and the ONLY objection to this bond was that it was too small. So since EVERYONE who showed up at the meeting thought this bond was just right or not big enough, how could the Board justify waiting a few more years and claim they were listening to the public. This is a compromise in favor of folks who want to do less. The task force's objection was that this bond was too small. The Board overruled them in favor of you.


Iopine 1 year, 8 months ago

My first comment was like an inquiring minds type of statement but then the lecture came about the 47%.

Perspective: Hypothetically - The District wants to put up 10 - 30' x 50' classrooms at a million dollars a piece. The District will be losing 600 to 800 students from College Place. If the class size is at 10 students (extremely low end) for 2 hours a period per quarter you will have 40 students per day and 400 students per quarter. This gives each student a 10' x 15' education area. At the end of the year you have educated 1600 students from the science department.

I also understand that equipment and resources will be a part of this construction but do they equip every room with graduating resources or will some be equipped with entry level equipment? I guess as someone stated the bond has to pass to find out what's in it?

With the loss of students to College Place I didn't realize there was such an influx of students attending Wa-Hi? As I stated the above is a hypothetical but I don't understand the logic of this School District and if common sense comes around I hope its soon.


rider 1 year, 8 months ago

How soon will it be that another bond is proposed for a $10 million dollar track , followed by another $10 million bond for the parking lot/soccer field, then another bond for whatever else was asked for last time.....and so on?


fatherof5 1 year, 8 months ago

You raise good questions, mspinks. The district has been working to secure private money for the track. My understanding is that the track fundraising is nearing completion. My other understanding is that the next bond won't be run until after the Edison bond is retired, which, according to the district's website, amounts to $1.25 per $1,000 (which is a significant amount).


chicoli 1 year, 8 months ago

I'm all for a new science building for our High School. I wonder if there is an existing partnrship with the CC and with Whitman science department for HS students to do mini-interships in Science.

The new police building e.g. on second street has exellent forensic laboratories which are suitable for students to "shadow" officers for a few hours at a time under some sort of agreement. Just touring these facilities would give students scientific insight and curiosity from the exellent detectives we have there.

Like these institutions there are many others in town involved in scientific applications in which our students could tap into.

I'm sorry...I might be a bit off track here, but a bit of creativity could help others who might be substantially more capable than I am in operationalizing the ideas suggested above. Who knows, Wa Hi might not need that many one-million-dollar-each science rooms after all!


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