New plans for Irving, Jefferson, Adams unveiled in D-11

May 5, 2010

A set of plans to use three Colorado Springs School District 11 buildings that were closed a year ago was presented Wednesday to the D-11 board.

It includes moving several alternative programs into the former Irving Middle School in August, and developing a career technology program the following years that also would be housed there.

The second part of the plan would allow the Colorado Springs Youth Symphony to lease the former Jefferson Elementary School for a year, giving it time to develop a fine arts consortium with the Children’s Chorale.

The long-range idea, Deputy Superintendent Mike Poore said, would be to eventually enter into a long range lease or sell Jefferson to the consortium. The consortium would deliver its proposal to the district by January, he said.

The final piece recommended is offering some space in the former Adams Elementary to a charter school and lease about half of the building to Junior Achievement.

The overall plan was much like a puzzle, because many of the moves cause dominoes that require other moves.

Here’s some of the pieces discussed:

• Adult Education and the Achieve K-12 online program, which were moved into Jefferson last year, would move to Irving.

• The Digital High School would move from The Citadel mall to Irving, saving about $50,000 in annual rent.

• A career technology program would be developed to fill a large portion of Irving the following year.

• The childcare classrooms that serve the Adult Education program would also benefit the other alternative programs.

• The alternative programs would have one administrative position and some support positions could be consolidated to create efficiencies.

• The alternative program moves would free up space at Jefferson for the Youth Symphony, which must move out of the former Pike Elementary because a charter school is moving into that building.

• Allowing Junior Achievement to develop a plan by January to use a portion of Adams for a mission-type program that would draw students from throughout southern Colorado. This could develop into a lease or profit-sharing arrangement between the district and JA.

• Offer the remaining portion of the building to a charter school.

No action was taken on the proposals, although the board could act next week on a request to transfer capital reserve funds to initiate some modifications at Irving.


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