Roy J. Wasson Academic Campus

Roy J. Watson Academic Campus. (Source: Google Maps)

Five of the construction projects approved this week for funding under the Building Excellent Schools Today grant program are in El Paso County.

The Colorado State Board of Education agreed Thursday to allocate $401 million to 43 school construction projects under the program that is partially funded by marijuana state excise taxes.

Other money comes from the State Land Board, the Colorado Lottery and interest on the fund.

Colorado Springs School District 11 budget not as bad as initially thought

This cycle, the program received 58 applications, which a review board prioritizes and submits recommendations to the state board.

The grants are intended to improve health, safety, security and technology in public schools. Schools must provide matching funds.

Among this year’s recipients:

• The Ray Kilmer Elementary School boiler replacement in Lewis-Palmer School District 38, a $438,000 project, received $140,000, with the school contributing $298,000.

• The Prairie Winds Elementary School roof replacement, also in Lewis-Palmer D-38, is getting $357,000 in a cash grant, with the school supplying $759,000 of the $1.1 million cost.

• Colorado Springs School District 11’s Roy J. Wasson Academic Campus will receive $1.6 million toward $4.3 million in campus system upgrades. The district will provide $2.8 million.

• Widefield School District 3’s $775,000 fire alarm and cameras upgrades at elementary, middle and high schools will receive $318,000, and the district will supply $457,000.

• Safety upgrades totaling $3 million at Ellicott School District 22 schools will be funded with a cash grant of $2.2 million, with the district providing a matching contribution of $836,000.

Since 2008, BEST has funded 354 grants in 141 school districts for $2.1 billion.

Contact the writer: 719-476-1656.

Contact the writer: 719-476-1656.

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