From the Superintendent's Desk

January 2021

Dear C-R families -

On Feb. 3, residents will have the opportunity to vote “yes” or “no” on a proposal to begin a modernization of our facilities.

“Learn Forward: A Multiphase Modernization Plan,” is C-R’s first major capital project in nearly two decades. We’re putting before voters a plan to:

- Replace and/or upgrade obsolete infrastructure    

- Create learning spaces for science and technology

- Enhance security

- Make exterior improvements to sidewalks and pick-up/drop-off loops

And we’re structuring our proposal in such a way that voter approval will not raise the local property tax levy.

But before I fully explain how we intend to finance this project without further burdening our taxpayers, I’d like to provide some context to this proposal. We have been planning capital improvements for more than five years now. Quite simply, a number of key pieces of infrastructure, including some heating and cooling systems, already have exceeded their useful life expectancies. The average age of our buildings is 66-years-old, and one only needs to walk around any of our campuses to notice the deteriorated concrete and evidence of leaking roofs. 

I often note that our buildings belong to the taxpayers -- those of us who work at C-R are merely the stewards. As part of our responsibility as stewards, we believe it is necessary to present the public with a plan to address critical maintenance issues.

Originally, we had intended a much larger project to address all of our needs at once. But given the economic uncertainty caused by the pandemic, we have instead divided this project into three smaller phases over a five-year period. This more piecemeal approach allows us to spread out our costs -- that’s one reason approval will not raise the tax levy. There’s another reason, too: 82 percent of our costs are reimbursed by the state. So, for example, although our projected cost of Phase 1 is $14.1 million, the actual local share is more like $2.5 million.

You can learn much more about our proposed project, the work, and how to vote by visiting a dedicated page on our website: “Learn Forward: A Campus Modernization Plan.”

But allow me to conclude by emphasizing a few key points:

- On Feb. 3, residents will be voting on Phase 1 only. Votes on Phases 2 and 3 will follow in 2022 and 2024, respectively. 

- The upgrades planned for Phase 1 will impact each of our four schools. In fact, the costs are distributed very evenly among our schools, with each school’s projected costs between $3.4 and $3.8 million.

- You are welcome to email us anytime at information@crcsd.org if you have any questions about the project or voting process.

Thank you for your interest “Learn Forward” and continued support of C-R schools.

Sincerely,

Carl J. Mummenthey
Superintendent of Schools