Jenn Warren: Support new school
I am in full support of the proposal for a new high school on the west end of town in the proposed location. The proposal makes sense and makes good use of existing space.
Many people, including the opposition may, not realize how busy the high school is and how much it is used by the entire district and the community.
We all admit that a good education is top priority, and this shows in the achievements of our students and faculty. But what about all the other functions of a school?
In boys sports, the teams have 79 home games among them. The games bring spectators — hundreds of them, plus people from the other teams. The girl’s teams play 74 home games, which involve the supporters and the traffic from the competition. All these teams need daily practice to prepare for all these games, and they need facilities to do that. Oftentimes. these events are held simultaneously.
The high school’s facilities are also used by numerous extracurricular activities, such as dance showcase, cheerleading, high school band, high school choir, drama and theater, golf team conditioning, baseball team conditioning and open gym and strength training. In addition, there are several extracurricular clubs that use the school on a daily basis.
The middle school uses the high school facilities for band, football, volleyball and volleyball tournaments and boys basketball and tournaments. Each of these non-high school activities has to figure into the scheduling of space.
Non-school entities and community groups also use the high school. The city of Steamboat Springs recreation department uses the high school and middle school for indoor soccer, dodge ball, volleyball, basketball and punt pass and kick activities.
The STARS program uses high school facilities. Arts groups in the community such as Emerald City Opera, Steamboat Symphony, Steamboat Dance Theatre, Elevate Dance and Perry Mansfield Performing Arts School and Camp have used school facilities. Statewide organizations also appreciate the use of our schools including Ride the Rockies, Relay for Life and the Colorado Bike Tour. The Mountain Soccer Tournament of the Steamboat Soccer Club and the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club also use facilities.
Wow. What a lot of activity. If our community and school district are going to continue to use the high school as the hub for activities, then the need for facilities is huge, and it can’t be provided at the current high school setting, while accommodating traffic, parking and time scheduling for all the important programs.
The proposed use of space makes sense and would keep our non-driving-aged students safer by having less traffic near our elementary schools and middle school. It would provide the needed space and facilities to all students and faculty.
The opposition claims simply aren’t true. Our schools are bursting at the seams. This is a community need, as well as an educational need.
I look forward to the passing of 3A and 3B for the resolution of these problems. This should be a community-driven project to provide for the best possible educational setting for our children and educators and space for activities for the schools and community at the least possible long term cost to the taxpayers.
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