The Waterford Union High School Board listened diligently to the Community Advisory Committee – comprised of parents, students, community members, business owners, and staff – to address facilities for high school education in the Waterford Union community.

After careful consideration and collaborative efforts, the School Board unanimously voted to include two questions on the February 20, 2024 primary ballot. This two-question referendum aims to replace mechanicals beyond the end of life, modernize educational spaces, and provide essential infrastructure to prepare students for careers and technical education.

“This decision was not made lightly, and we took a different approach by gathering a group of Waterford Area Residents to ultimately come up with what they believe is important to the future of education in Waterford,” says school board president Michael Schoenfeld.

After months of learning about the history of referendums, consolidation efforts, school funding, budget management, past communication efforts, and community surveys, the committee considered several options. Ultimately, the committee concluded that Waterford Union needed significant renovation to meet the needs of our students – now and in the future.

The first question has a project total of $77.8 million, and the second has a total of $14.8 million. If both questions are approved, conservatively, the per-month cost (not to exceed) is $25 per month on a $300,000 home, $33 per month on a $400,000 home, and $41 per month on a $500K home. Notably, the Federal Chairman, Jerome Powell, suggested there may be as many as three rate cuts next year (https://www.pbs.org/video/state-of-the-economy), reducing the per-month cost further.

With this plan, the District will be able to:

Reimagine Programming

–  Expand CTE spaces to support better courses in construction, robotics, welding, and automotive.

– Incorporate an in-house alternative education program.

– Enhance spaces for fine arts, drama, band, and choir.

– Create large group instruction spaces.

Repair Facilities

–  Replace end-of-life mechanical, electrical, and plumbing

– Repair and replace HVAC systems and related controls.

–  Create a safe environment by adding fire suppression, a loading dock, and a related secure entrance, as well as addressing ADA accessibility.

– Upgrade the stadium and soccer field; the construction of softball fields and a restroom facility; parking, ADA accessibility; and site improvements.

Restore Trust

–  Deliver the approved projects on time and on budget and provide continuous and transparent updates as the project unfolds.

– Implement fiscally responsible improvements to extend the life of the school building and reduce expenditure through efficiencies.

– Make a once-in-a-decade investment to eliminate the need for additional bond referendums.

Should both questions pass, the Board of Education is poised to take action during their regular meeting on Monday, December 18, to place a moratorium on bond referendums for a predetermined time. In the coming weeks, Waterford Union will provide detailed information through a dedicated website, social media updates, mailings, information meetings, and school tours. Watch for details and learn more to make an informed decision on this vital investment. Visit the website at: wuhs.referendumfacts.org