WFISD Bond: What’s Next? - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

WFISD Bond: What’s Next?

It has only been three days since Texoma voters approved the WFISD bond proposal, but plans have been in the works for a very long time.

The Interim Superintendent Michael Kuhrt said the hardest part is executing the bond.

“As much as we can possibly give them, that our community wants and needs, we're going to try to do it,” he said.

He explained it could be a while before residents see any progress, but that is because there is a lot that has to be done behind the scenes first.  While there are many components to the bond, every piece is just as important and valuable.  The biggest component, of course, is the Career and Technical Education Center.

Kuhrt said, “The CTE center, we know that's going to take longer to build, but we have more to build, so we have to get started.”

However, it will take a lot of planning before crews can actually break ground.  He said they will have to figure out the timelines for each component, the construction methodology, how the facility will be built, which contractor they will high, and much more.  One big factor is finalizing a location for the Career and Technical Education Center.  A property off of Highway 287 and I-44 has already been approved by council members, but it still has to be purchased.

“The board is going through the environmental studies and so what we do is we have to check out the facility,” Kuhrt said, “In other words, the subsurface to make sure we can put the facility on it.”

He hopes to have those results by the end of the week, but it all depends.  If the tests come back positive the board will have to approve to purchase the land.  If the results aren't positive, they do not have to purchase the land.  He said they would look at other options in the city.

Next is the design.  After numerous public workshops and an online survey a concept was created.  However, it is just the exterior of the structure.  Until the district knows what programs they will offer, according to state requirements, they will not have an interior design.

The curriculum is another high priority for the district now that the bond has passed.  It is especially important at the high school level since state requirements have changed.  School officials have to decide what endorsements they will offer to the students.

“We already have stuff developed for freshman and sophomores next year,” he said.

However, when they become juniors and seniors, they don't have everything planned out.  Another time cruncher is the junior high expansions and renovations.  He said they want those complete by August 2016.

As for the CTE center, Kuhrt is optimistic.

“I've told everybody I'd like it to be open August of 2016, but that's asking a lot,” he said.

A more realistic goal is August 2017.  So, the pressure is on, but as Kuhrt said, it is a good pressure to have.

Alexandra McClung, Newschannel 6
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