Trustee Church’s Letter on the Middle School

April 13, 2023

Washoe County School Board Trustee, Jeff Church, requested the following be shared. Trust Church wrote the following, requesting it be shared with the community:

“Bearing in mind that I too was largely in the dark and no action items have come to the Board on this and that I, as one of seven Trustees, have almost no power or authority: Please pass this on.

Nothing official but CannonDesign may be hosting an April 24 meeting at Pine Middle School in Reno.

16. Reasons to be Concerned about the Closure of Incline Middle School (IMS- built 1981)

1. Many legal questions about ownership and restrictions on IMS. https://ourivcbvoice.com/wcsd-close-middle-school-and-sell-property/

2. If we close IMS, there is no going back! There is no Plan B.

3. IV pays much more in taxes than they get back.

4. Closing IVMS is “pulling the tiger’s tail” in many ways. IV Folks could seek legislative changes to create their own district. Donor contributions could dry up.

5. Mixing grade 7 with grade 12 invites bullying, assaults, sexual misconduct and other serious matters that would cost more than keeping IVMS open.

6. It seems clear that IVHS (built 1968) cannot physically accommodate the influx of grades 7-8.

7. Can we work with Placer County/Kings Beach and Douglas County on any joint efforts?

8. How many IV kids go to private schools? We would expect parents to pull kids from WCSD 7-8 if the Middle School closes?

9. However what happens if a major private school closed and those kids reverted back to K-12?

10. $1Million yearly to maintain the Middle School is not a lot overall.

11. Demographics seem to support that the student population could increase.

12. Incline folks were not adequately noticed or involved in the process to date.

13. The proposed Superintendent’s Regulation seems at odds with the letter and intent of the Board Policy- the way forward to close a school is 100% a Board decision.

14. We reject the “repurpose” word. That means sell. Repurpose would/ should be to re-use the WCSD property for WCSD purposes.

15. This ties into Affordable Housing that may be addressed as part of the solution to re-model IMS. We do have WC1 and other property tax Capitol Project funds and Incline deserves their fair share.

16. The speakers were not prepared with research to address concerns or answer questions.

Possible Solution:

  — A complete remodel of the Middle School to meet the new designs referenced at the meeting AND with staff (not community) housing to accommodate those WCSD K-12 staff that so opt and also emergency/ hotel style housing for snow events and those that stay for late events (sports-band etc) and again- For WCSD personnel- not community housing.

Sincerely,

Trustee Jeff Church”

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