Superintendent Kyle Repucci is pleased to announce that the City Council has authorized the Rochester School Department to purchase land to build a new K-5 elementary school.
City and school officials performed a comprehensive facilities needs review of school options and are moving forward with the following plan:
- Closing the Nancy Loud School and School Street School, two of eight elementary schools in the City. These schools are more than 100 years old, and are considered poor options for renovation.
- Eliminating modular classroom at William Allen School and Chamberlain Street School.
- Constructing a new 68,000-square-foot building on 12.5 acres of a 41-acre parcel on Salmon Falls Road, which will house about 300 students.
The project goals are to ease overcrowding at elementary schools throughout the City, and offer a more equitable education to as many students as possible.
The school is estimated to cost $33.6 million. The State Department of Education ranks the Rochester project at the top of the funding list in the 2024 cycle, and is expected to provide $20.1 million in support. The Rochester project is ranked number one on the state priority list, meaning it is almost certain the new school will be state-funded.
The City and School Department will form a joint building committee to oversee all aspects of the project.
The district is required to send its final proposal for the new school to the state by May 1, and has issued a Request for Proposals for a construction manager.
“We have put out (requests for proposals) for a construction manager,” Superintendent Repucci said. “With that, we start to look at the design work and work with the public on what they would like to see the new elementary school look like.”
“The Nancy Loud School and School Street School are wonderful buildings, but they were built for a different time in education,” Superintendent Repucci said. “Today the schools are too crowded and too expensive to maintain. Thank you to Mayor Paul Callaghan for supporting this new school, and for the City’s partnership throughout this process.”
The City and School District will offer multiple venues in which to solicit feedback about the project, so that the final project reflects the values and wishes of the community.