News

Construction projects continued over summer months

September 01, 2014 at 9:45 AM

Over the summer 2014 months, construction crews were busy on the campuses of Clovis High, Clovis West High, Clark Intermediate, Clovis Community Day, Sierra Outdoor School (in Sonora), and Dry Creek, Freedom, Fugman, Pinedale, Sierra Vista, Tarpey, Temperance-Kutner and Valley Oak elementary schools.

The crews worked on modernizations, upgrades, renovations and remodels made possible through the community’s passage of CUSD’s Measure A school bond in June 2012.

Upon the return to school, students at nine school sites found construction still underway on their campuses, while students of Clovis West and Clovis High might have noticed extensive concrete work and flooring completed over the summer. Meanwhile, students at Sierra Vista were looking forward to using their brand-new library.

Most remarkable, however, was the work done at Pinedale Elementary. Students came back to school to find a beautiful new multipurpose room and kindergarten classrooms.

“Our students’ faces were beaming as they walked into our new multipurpose room on the first day of school,” said Principal Debra Bolls. “One student remarked, ‘This looks like a palace!’ Many parents shared that they were proud that their students had a first-class facility.  Our new facilities really give our staff, students and community that sense of Pinedale Pride. We are so thankful to our district for supporting the modernization of our school.”

When Dr. Tom Lutton paid a visit to the school where he once served as principal, he said he felt like he was at a brand-new school.

Added Pinedale Elementary Student Relations Liaison Linda Amparano: “As a CUSD employee I am thankful about our new facilities; as a Pinedale resident I am forever grateful. Clovis Unified spoke volumes to the community of Pinedale by investing in our school!”

2014 annual report on bond Measure A as submitted by the Citizens’ Oversight Committee

May 01, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Clovis Unified School District
Bond Measure Annual Report
Submitted by the Citizens’ Oversight Committee

May 2014

Message from the Chairperson

I want to report to you on the status of the capital improvements approved under Measure A, the $298 million bond measure passed in 2012 and the final project completed under Measure A, the $168 million bond approved in 2004.

The final project of the 2004 bond measure, the Metropolitan Area Network or MAN III (elementary schools in the city of Fresno), was completed in May 2014. This project provides a fiber optic backbone to the district’s technology network to all the elementary schools in the city of Fresno. This completes all phases of the MAN project which ensures all of our schools and facilities have the latest updated network technology to support programs.

On June 5, 2012, the citizens of Clovis Unified School District passed Measure A. With the approval of Measure A, CUSD will be able to maintain the high facility standards established by our community. We are currently in the third year of a six year capital facility improvement plan, with local funds being used to modernize our schools by upgrading classrooms, science labs, vocational education opportunities, fire safety systems and libraries, fixing leaking roofs, deteriorating plumbing and bathrooms, handicapped accessibility and ensuring that all of our schools meet district facility standards. Additionally, the next elementary school is currently under design with construction scheduled to begin February 2015.  The new elementary school will be located at the southeast corner of Temperance and Clinton avenues and is scheduled to open for the 2016-17 school year.

I am proud to report that the district began completing projects immediately after the bond measure passed in June 2012, with 17 modernization projects completed at the following schools from 2012 to 2013:

  • Buchanan High School
  • Clovis High, Phase I
  • Clovis West High, Phase I
  • Cole Elementary
  • Copper Hills Elementary
  • Fancher Creek Elementary
  • Fort Washington Elementary
  • Garfield Elementary
  • Gettysburg Elementary
  • Jefferson Elementary
  • Liberty Elementary
  • Lincoln Elementary
  • Miramonte Elementary
  • Mountain View Elementary
  • Nelson Elementary
  • Pinedale Elementary School

Generally these projects consist of upgrades to HVAC systems, technology infrastructure, lighting, flooring, restrooms, landscaping and some additions to older schools.

Modernization projects for 2014 have been designed and are either under construction or will begin once the 2013-14 school year is complete. These projects are at the following schools:

  • Clark Intermediate
  • Clovis High, Phase II
  • Clovis West High, Phase II
  • Community Day School
  • Dry Creek Elementary
  • Freedom Elementary
  • Fugman Elementary
  • Sierra Outdoor School
  • Sierra Vista Elementary
  • Tarpey Elementary
  • Temperance-Kutner Elementary
  • Valley Oak Elementary

In addition, the 2012 bond measure funded a 5.86-megawatt solar production system, which includes solar parking lots and play area shade structures on 19 school sites around the district. This project was completed during the 2013-14 school year and will save the district more than $2.5 million per year in operational costs.

In closing, the committee would like to thank Assistant Superintendent of Facility Services Don Ulrich, Senior Accountant Sue Rutledge and Facility Services Administrative Assistant Sasanna Mechekoff for their organized and forthcoming presentations at our meetings. With their assistance and guidance we have been able to fulfill our responsibilities of overseeing these many projects on behalf of you, the voters of our district.

Rick Snow

Chairperson

Citizens’ Oversight Committee Members

The Governing Board appointed the following members to serve on the Citizens’ Oversight Committee for the expenditure of Measure A Bond Funds:

Rick Snow, Chairperson

Mike Prandini, Co-Chairperson

Valerie Araki

Frank Oliver

Kyla Rose

Don Shroyer

Michael Stain

Solar projects completed

Work was ahead of schedule as the installation of CUSD’s 5.9-megawatt solar power system came to a finish in September 2013.

The system, the largest school solar project in the Central Valley, is expected to save the district as much as $2.7 million annually. These savings go into the district’s General Fund which is used to pay for classroom teachers, curriculum resources, educational programs, co-curricular programs and more.

By the end of September 2013, all four phases of the project were up and running, two months earlier than projected. The four phases included 19 school sites and two district facilities.

2013 annual report on bond Measure A as submitted by the Citizens’ Oversight Committee

Message from the Chairperson

I want to report to you on the status of the capital improvements you approved under Measure A, the $298 million bond in 2012 and the final project being completed under Measure A, the $168 million bond approved in 2004.

The final project of the 2004 bond measure, Metropolitan Area Network or MAN III (elementary schools in the city of Fresno), is in final design stages, and is expected to be completed in the summer of 2013. This project will provide a fiber optic backbone to the district’s technology network to all the elementary schools in the city of Fresno. This will complete all phases of the MAN project so all of our schools and facilities have the latest and updated network technology to support their programs.

I am also pleased to report that on June 5, 2012, the citizens of Clovis Unifies School District passed the new Measure A. The approval of Measure A means CUSD will be able to maintain the high facility standards established by our community over the past decades. Projects will be funded for every CUSD school over the next six years. During that time, local funds will be used to maintain and modernize our schools by upgrading classrooms, science labs, vocational education opportunities, fire safety systems and libraries, fixing leaking roofs, deteriorating plumbing and bathrooms and ensuring handicapped accessibility.

The measure will also enable the district to fund the purchase of new school sites needed and the completion of a new elementary school.

I am proud to report that the district began completing projects immediately after the bond measure passed, with eight modernization projects being completed at the following schools in the summer of 2012:

• Buchanan High

• Cole Elementary

• Fancher Creek Elementary

• Liberty Elementary

• Lincoln Elementary

• Mountain View Elementary

• Nelson Elementary

• Pinedale Elementary

These projects consisted of upgrades to HVAC systems, technology infrastructure, lighting, flooring, restrooms and landscaping.

Modernization projects for 2013 have been designed and are all either under construction or will begin once the 2012-13 school year is completed. These projects are at the following schools:

• Clovis High

• Clovis West High

• Copper Hills Elementary

• Fort Washington Elementary

• Garfield Elementary

• Gettysburg Elementary

• Jefferson Elementary

• Miramonte Elementary

• Pinedale Elementary

In addition, the 2012 bond measure is funding a 5.86-megawatt solar production system that will save the district more than $2.5 million per year in operational costs. This project started in Nov. 2012 and includes solar parking lot and play area shade structures on 19 school sites around the district. This project is expected to be completed by Dec. 2013.

In closing, the committee would like to thank Assistant Superintendent of Facility Services Don Ulrich, Senior Accountant Sue Rutledge, as well as Facility Services Administrative Assistant Sasanna Mechekoff for their organized and forthcoming presentations at our meetings. With their assistance and guidance we have been able to fulfill our responsibilities of overseeing these many projects on behalf of you, the voters of our district.

Rick Snow
Chairperson

 

Citizens’ Oversight Committee Members

The Governing Board appointed the following members to serve on the Citizens’ Oversight Committee for the expenditure of Measure A Bond Funds:

Rick Snow, Chairperson
Valerie Araki
Frank Oliver
Phil Owens
Mike Prandini
Don Shroyer
Michael Stain

Phases 1, 2 of solar project installations are ahead of schedule

Phase 2 of CUSD’s solar power generation system installation got underway the week of Feb. 18 at Clovis West High, the Professional Development Building (in the west parking lot), and Fancher Creek, Fort Washington, Pinedale and Weldon elementary schools.

Meanwhile, Phase 1 continues at Clovis, Fugman, Mountain View, Nelson and Riverview elementary schools.

“Phase 1 is coming along great,” said Assistant Superintendent for Facility Services Don Ulrich. “The project is ahead of schedule with completion expected in late April. Communities have been very flexible in working around limited parking.”

Thanks to favorable weather since construction began Dec. 17, Phase 1 is finishing earlier than expected, allowing the contractor to start Phase 2 early, Ulrich added.

Installation across the district is being done in four phases through 2013 on a total of 19 schools and two district facilities (including the Professional Development Building, which is part of Phase 2).

The solar project, made possible through voters’ passage of school bond Measure A in June, is anticipated to provide an annual savings to the district’s current $7.5 million energy expenses of more than $2 million. Solar paneling is being installed as carport shade structures and play area shade structures. In addition, the shade structures will have LED lighting installed to the underside of the structures.

Because energy meters with lower annual usage have a higher per kilowatt cost, staff has worked to determine the sites that would most benefit from replacing traditional metered electric service with renewable energy resources.

Several factors were considered in determining where the installation of solar would provide the optimum cost savings. First, the system size required at each meter to yield the highest possible amount of savings was calculated. Next, the “avoided cost” at each meter is calculated. Avoided cost is the savings per kilowatt hour of solar production. Based on the calculations, all district meters were ranked according to highest value of avoided cost. Finally, the optimal combination of meters yielding the highest possible 25-year net savings was identified. Installation and operating costs at each site were also taken into consideration as well.

Cupertino Electric, Inc. is overseeing all installations. For more information, contact Facility Services at 327-9260.

Solar project installations underway at five primary schools

On Dec. 17, Phase 1 of CUSD’s new solar power generation system installation got underway at Clovis, Fugman, Mountain View, Nelson and Riverview elementary schools.

Installation across the district will be done in four phases over the next year on a total of 19 schools and two district facilities.

The solar project, made possible through voters’ passage of school bond Measure A in June, is anticipated to provide an annual savings to the district’s current $7.5 million energy expenses of more than $2 million.

The installation on the five schools is expected to take six to eight weeks. Once completed, the five schools will have solar paneling on carport shade structures and play area shade structures. In addition, the shade structures will have LED lighting installed to the underside of the structures.

Because energy meters with lower annual usage have a higher per kilowatt cost, staff has worked to determine the sites that would most benefit from replacing traditional metered electric service with renewable energy resources.

Several factors were considered in determining where the installation of solar would provide the optimum cost savings. First, the system size required at each meter to yield the highest possible amount of savings was calculated. Next, the “avoided cost” at each meter is calculated. Avoided cost is the savings per kilowatt hour of solar production. Based on the calculations, all district meters were ranked according to highest value of avoided cost. Finally, the optimal combination of meters yielding the highest possible 25-year net savings was identified. Installation and operating costs at each site were also taken into consideration as well.

Cupertino Electric, Inc. will oversee all installations. For more information, contact Facility Services at 327-9260.

Meetings being held this month to discuss solar projects at district schools

October 01, 2012 at 12:23 PM

With the passage of Measure A in June, Clovis Unified is moving forward with the installation of a 5-megawatt solar power generation system to be located at approximately two dozen schools around the district. This investment in solar energy is anticipated to provide an annual savings to the district’s current $7.5 million energy expenses of more than $2 million.

“Measure A included several projects designed to reduce the ongoing costs of heating, cooling and lighting the district’s schools,” said Assistant Superintendent of Facility Services Don Ulrich.

“In addition to installing energy-efficient lighting and updating heating, ventilation and air conditioning units (HVAC), this solar project provides a wonderful opportunity to redirect general fund dollars back to classrooms,” Ulrich added.

Because energy meters with lower annual usage have a higher per kilowatt cost, staff has worked to determine the sites that would most benefit from replacing traditional metered electric service with renewable energy resources.

Several factors were considered in determining where the installation of solar would provide the optimum cost savings.

First, the system size required at each meter to yield the highest possible amount of savings was calculated. “Meters with lower annual usage have the highest cost per kilowatt hour, and so offer the best savings opportunities,” said Ulrich.

Next, the “avoided cost” at each meter is calculated. Avoided cost is the savings per kilowatt hour of solar production. Based on the calculations, all district meters were ranked according to highest value of avoided cost.

Finally, the optimal combination of meters yielding the highest possible 25-year net savings was identified.  Installation and operating costs at each site were also taken into consideration as well as such factors as:

• Fire lane access and fire safety codes,

• Shade assessment,

• Proximity to the energy meter, and

• Construction costs.

Final decisions on school sites that will allow the district to achieve the greatest savings were made in late September. Now, over the next 18 months, solar projects will be scheduled and completed at the selected sites.

To share more information about the selection process, the construction timeline and impact on selected schools, examples of where solar panels will be installed, and to answer questions the community might have related to the district’s solar project, meetings have been scheduled in each of the five high school areas during October.

More information about these meetings will be shared directly with communities of the selected installation sites.

Community meetings are scheduled for:

Thursday, Oct. 11:

• Clovis High, multipurpose room at 5:30 p.m.

• Clovis East High, lecture hall at 7 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 18:

• Buchanan High, lecture hall at 5:30 p.m.

Monday, Oct. 22:

• Clovis West High, lecture hall at 5:30 p.m.

• Clovis North High, lecture hall at 7 p.m.

Extreme makeovers: Measure A-funded construction projects spring to life over summer

August 01, 2012 at 12:26 PM

No time was wasted in starting makeovers – some of them extreme – on various Clovis Unified schools using funding from Measure A, a $298 million school bond the community approved just two months ago in the June 5 election.

On June 11, two days following schools’ closure for summer break, work officially began on projects at eight schools: Cole, Fancher Creek, Liberty, Lincoln, Mountain View, Nelson and Pinedale elementary schools, and Buchanan High. “Each project has some things that were different than the others, but HVAC, electrical, data, fire alarm and site work were the major scopes of work,” said CUSD Director of Construction and Engineering Rick Lawson.

Pinedale Elementary, for example, is undergoing some of the most significant remodeling, renovation and modernization of all the summer projects including all new doors, new walks along each classroom wing, new T-bar ceilings in the classrooms, new flooring, improved storage and shelving, upgrades to the HVAC system, repairs to door hardware, casework and wall finishes, and efficiency improvements in lighting.

The long overdue modernization at Pinedale is very welcome to the school’s staff, students and community, said Principal Allison Hernandez. “Very little has been done inside the classrooms since the 1950s when the school was built,” she said. “The classroom interiors will look brand new after this project is completed. I can’t wait to see the expressions on our students’ faces when they walk in on the first day of school. Pure joy and excitement I am sure.”

All current Measure A-funded projects are on track to be completed Aug. 13. “There will be some punch list items to complete after that date,” said Lawson. “We call this ‘beneficial occupancy,’ meaning we can still have school.”

In addition to moving quickly to improve schools, it is anticipated that the sale of the first series of bonds will take place this week.

The sale comes on the heels of Standard and Poor’s announcement that it would maintain CUSD’s credit rating of AA with a stable outlook. Several days later, on July 26, Moody’s, which had never rated Clovis Unified before, assigned the district an Aa2 rating, a comparably high rating to Standard and Poor’s assessment.

These favorable ratings translate to savings of millions of dollars for local taxpayers realized from lower interest rates.

Measure A will fund projects at every CUSD school over the next six years. During that time, local funds will be used to maintain good neighborhood schools and retain/attract quality teachers by upgrading classrooms, science labs, vocational education opportunities, fire safety systems and libraries; fixing leaking roofs, deteriorating plumbing and bathrooms; ensuring handicapped accessibility; and acquiring sites, constructing and equipping school facilities.

CUSD’s Facilities Services office has worked diligently to develop a timeline for projects that will be done between 2013 and 2018, making sure to capitalize on any additional funding available from the state as schools reach certain ages.

Projects are scheduled based on the following criteria:

  • When the school is eligible for state matching funds;
  • The availability of funds for facility projects based on the schedule of bond sales;
  • Balancing projects across the district’s five high school attendance areas; and
  • Addressing access compliance and/or safety issues.

Lawson noted that the design process is nearly complete on scheduled 2013 projects taking place at Clovis and Clovis West high schools and Copper Hills, Fort Washington, Garfield, Gettysburg, Jefferson, Miramonte and Pinedale elementary schools.

“We hope to start construction on these projects before summer next year,” he said. “Four of the sites will continue into the 2014 school year because of major renovations and/or additions.”

Hernandez said she is looking forward to the 2013 Measure A-funded projects planned for Pinedale. “I am really excited about the next phase of this project when our new MPR and kindergarten classrooms will be built,” she said. “Pinedale will look like a new school.”

Funds made possible through Measure A were needed due to Clovis Unified’s steady increase in student enrollment and the aging of its schools. With 60 percent of CUSD schools over 20 years old, and an average exceeding 28 years, the school bond measure will be used in large part to address major maintenance, renovation and repair needs of aging buildings and to create equitable learning environments at new and old schools alike.

It is estimated that all the projects made possible through Measure A could result in as many 5,800 new jobs for the local economy.