Letter: Gresham referendum should have better options

To the editor:

Get real with the Gresham School proposal.

In reference to referendum 1, there are 13 proposed new rooms not counting band and Tech. I question why we would even consider adding a larger footprint to the school than what is really needed or even affordable. How can we prevent this? It is easy, we get an estimate to knock down the original section built in 1935 and rebuild it to the same size which will make it more efficient and modernized. If I am not mistaken, those three floors have 14 classrooms plus additional smaller rooms already located there. In addition to that, that original section has a “shoulder” on the east and west side. Why not add 4 more rooms there and make it 18 rooms on the original footprint?

Why waste that “new” corridor footprint on building costs that don’t offer the opportunity to educate the kids? Seriously? Get real!

Too bad my idea is not on the referendum but at least the public now can demand this as an option when the other options are voted down. Has anyone even thought of geothermal heating and cooling and/or solar power? Would this make more sense on a multi­level section vs. a spread out footprint? How many more custodians and wages and how much more custodial equipment will be needed for upkeep?

Why do we need an art room that is larger than the tandem math, science, social studies, and English classes? Is art more important than core subjects? Why a courtyard? It sure seems that the new lobby/corridor square footage adds up to more than the seven classrooms on the very right hand side of the proposal? Maybe those seven rooms can be eliminated along with the corridor and the new corridor can be where the proposed, and ridiculus, courtyard is located?

If the courtyard is grass, how do you plan on getting the lawnmowers there? Pushing them or running the engines in the school? Is it even legal? Tires do leave black marks and I don’t think the taxpayers would like this either as black shoe marks are not appreciated on gym floors.

The existing offices on the current proposal have no label on them, what is being hidden here?

I say we vote this down until we can get more building options, clarity on personnel needs over student needs, and truth about costs now and in the future. Go back to the drawing board, we’re not stupid!

Arthur Ward,