It's about our community,
and our money!
The future Philipsburg-Osceola Area Middle School is under construction after a lengthy process of research, study, input from the community and design. Click here to access reports, including the geotechnical study.
Project History: A 2008 Feasbility Study by Crabtree, Rohrbaugh & Associates found that Philipsburg-Osceola's schools are in dire need of repair, especially the junior high school (1937) and North Lincoln Hill Elementary (1969).
Major renovation to electrical, mechanical and HVAC systems is necessary to keep schools running and save money by upgrading to more efficient systems.
On April 13 2010, after much community input, the school board approved consolidating its 5 schools into 4. This includes closing the Junior High and converting North Lincoln Hill Elementary into a middle school.
There is no economy of scale within the district. To run the high school at the same efficiency as the Junior High, for example, the district would need to add multiple positions, costing an additional $1.5 million per year. Conducting a building project also allows the district to get reimbursed from the state, saving local taxpayers money. After calculating annual operational savings and using captial funds saved for the project, the impact of the project on local property taxes is zero, accounting to the published Act 34 Public Hearing booklet submitted to the state. Once complete, the middle school will increase value to student learning, as students in grades 5-8 will use science labs and technology and have access to green space, including a classroom courtyard.
After the board chose the option to consolidate to four buildings, Ingraham Dancu Associates developed Education Specifications for the middle school, with the input of teachers and staff and the help of a volunteer committee. The company also completed an elementary capacity study. It determined that if the middle school is grades 6-8, an addition would need to be built to Philipsburg Elementary. If the middle school is grades 5-8, no addition is necessary.
After public architect interviews were held on March 1, 2011, the school board hired Stantec architects (formerly Burt Hill) for the project. Reynolds Construction Management is the construction managment firm for the project.
Long before the school board approved the 4-building plan, a 23-member building committee, comprised of board members, parents, business leaders and other community members examined all options in the feasiblity study, as well as some additional plans. The study presented nine different renovation and consolidation options. In 2009 and 2010, the committee held two public forums, conducted a community survey, held open meetings and listened to public comments at board meetings.
In addition, P-O worked with Fourth Economy, an economic development firm, to study reuse options for the Junior High school. Multiple meetings with local community stakeholders and the public were held in winter 2011 and spring 2012. Fourth Economy developed a comprehensive report after those meetings.
This website will be continuously updated, so be sure to check back for updates.
Last Modified on September 20, 2012