Review of Carson City School District master plan set to begin

A committee of professionals, school staff, city and state officials, and community members will begin a review of the Carson City School District's master plan in the next couple months to adjust for changes in student enrollment and decide whether a bond request is needed.

The first meeting, scheduled for noon Oct. 19 at the school district office, 1402 W. King St., will feature a presentation by Carson City employees on the city's master-plan update, called Envision.

"As you know, they are updating and developing their land-use plan and that will be good for the committee to see," said Mike Mitchell, director of operations for the school district.

While student enrollment in the district has dropped over the past three years, the city is predicting an increase in its population within the next 20 years - a challenge that could make planning difficult for the school district.

Carson City was just listed by Consumer Reports as one of six "perfect" retirement havens in the United States because of its location, climate, tax structure and access to higher education - a possible indicator that little growth in upcoming years will be in the number of school-age children.

"The whole issue is what type of community we're going to become in the next 10 or 20 years," said Mitchell.

At the first meeting, he will review conditions and ages of buildings within the school district and address the decline in enrollment. If the committee agrees to any of Mitchell's recommendations - new roofing for some buildings, a new furnace at Carson High School, conversion of portables buildings to permanent buildings - a bond request may be in order.

The meetings are open to the public. But the steering committee is already formed and includes 10 adults from parent-teacher associations; three school board members; 10 district staff; five city staff; two state staff; one to two professionals each from the chamber of commerce, builders association, Realtors association and business and industry; and 12 to 15 members from the community at large.

Subsequent meetings are scheduled at noon at the district office on Nov. 2, 16 and 30, and Dec. 14.

"I'm hopeful we'll be able to conclude the effort in five meetings," Mitchell said.

Mitchell will update the school board midway through the process on progress. A rough draft should be ready for presentation to the board by the end of the year and a final plan presented by February. For information, Mitchell can be reached at 283-2010.


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