Frequently Asked Questions

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Hampton Academy Project Advisory Committee Public Forum

 

FAQ’s

What is the scope of the project and how much will the building be affected?

What is the current status of the project and the next steps?

Due to the extensive level of renovations, is it cheaper to build new?

Where will we educate students while the building under goes renovation?

What is the timeline; start / end of construction?

When will the project be decided via ballot?

What if I am away in March for the vote?

How can voters stay informed about the project?

How much extra space will be added to the building?

If we don’t do the renovations, what are the consequences? 

What advantages do the residents gain from the project?

Will there be new computer labs, science labs and updated technology and media rooms? 

What will be the impact on the neighborhood and traffic during construction?

What is the tax impact of the Hampton Academy project?

Why do we need to demolish the sixth grade wing?

Why do we need a gymnasium? Is this necessary for a Middle School (grades 6-8)?

Why do we need an Auditorium? ​Is this necessary for a Middle School?

I don’t have any children or grandchildren in the schools. It is an expense I would rather not incur. Why should I support this project?

 

The scope of the project is driven by program needs and infrastructure improvements.  The renovation seeks to improve all sections of the building in terms of accessibility, safety, and environmental (air quality) while maintaining the historic character of the building. 

 

We are currently in the conceptual design phase.  The entire team is now complete and is composed of architects and engineers, project managers and construction managers.  Initial plans have been drawn to show proposed size, shape and adjacencies within the building.

 

The Hampton School Board voted to support a renovation project rather than a new school. There was a strong voice to maintain the historic nature of the building and to support the idea of the three schools in close proximity to each other.  Also, from completed studies, renovating the existing building would be more cost efficient than building new on a different site. 

 

When the passage of the Hampton Academy renovation occurs on March 14th the district will need to be prepared to deal with the new construction that will be underway during the summer of 2017 and during the 2017-18 school year. As you know the current sixth grade wing will be removed and replaced with a gymnasium. To do this the current grade five students will need proper housing. 

The following recommendation is the most cost effective and will have the least impact on the students; 

Grade 5 students remain at Marston School as 6th graders for their core subjects; English, Mathematics, Science and Social Studies. 
Students will be bused to and from school on the Middle School Bus runs and start school on the same schedule as students in grade 7 & 8 (7:30 am) 
Students will then be bused at 11:30 am to HA for their Shark Block (tutorial & enrichment), lunch and Unified Arts (PE, Music, ART etc.) 
Students will board the Middle School buses at the end of the day or like many of the 7th & 8th graders, they will stay after school to participate in the numerous activities available after school. 

In addition to the schedule and the assurance that the entire curriculum will be delivered, a number of supports will be in place. Principal O’Connor or Assistant Principal DeVylder will be on site at Marston to support the transition of students and the teacher needs. 
The school counselor assigned to grade six will also be on site at Marston. 
The grade six teachers support this proposal and will transition along with the students. 
In order to accommodate the sixth graders at Marston, learning spaces were evaluated to determine if they would meet the needs of the 8 sixth grade classrooms. The East and West wings at Marston School will be utilized for the grade 6 classrooms. In order to provide the space at Marston, the SAU 90 office will move to a new location during the construction of new learning spaces at Hampton Academy 

This recommendation was vetted by the Hampton Academy staff, Marston School staff, students and parents.  

The first phase of the construction could start in the summer of 2017 with the final and third phase completed by August of 2019.

 

The Community vote will take place on March 14, 2017 at Winnacunnet High School.  If 60% of the residents approve the warrant, the project can proceed towards construction.

 

Applications for an Absentee Ballot are available through the town clerk, Jane Cypher, at Town Hall. Additional information and a link to download the ballot can be found here.

 

We are striving to keep voters involved throughout the entire process.  There have been two public forums and hearings, tours through the school, our website www.sau90.org, Our Facebook page and Twittier page, channel 13, “Friends of Hampton Academy's” Facebook page, and our dedicated committee of volunteers who are available to answer questions and spread the word to the public. 

 

The current building is approximately 84,000 sf.  To accommodate program needs and improved circulation space, the estimated addition is planned for approximately 32,000 sf. This would include a full size gymnasium and an auditorium. 

 

The district must address major infrastructure issues including roof replacement, electrical upgrades, air quality, fire suppression, plumbing (complete restroom renovation) and ADA (Americans with Disabilities) code compliance regardless.  If we do not move forward with the renovation at this time, we will see rising construction costs and higher bond rates therefore making future repairs to the building more expensive.

 

Improved property values on homes and businesses and the opportunity to have access to facilities that support recreation and town sponsored events such as an auditorium space, gymnasium, updated media labs and a community room.

 

Yes, the primary focus is establishing program needs for careers of the 21st century. Five of the seven Science STEM labs will be reconfigured to meet state standards and classroom technology will be updated.

 

There will be limited to no impact on the neighborhood access or traffic patterns.  The redesign will actually create a safer thoroughfare by bringing the traffic off of Academy Ave and on to the school site.

 

Tax Rate for:

New $$

New Tax per $1,000 Value

On an Average Home ($330k)

Tax Impact per month

Or on a $500k Home

Tax Impact per month

Fall 2016

$ 460k

$ 0.17

$   55.77

$  4.65

$   84.50

$  7.04

Fall 2017

$ 875k

0.32

 106.26

 8.85

 177.10

 14.76

Totals for future years:

 

$ 0.49

$ 162.03

$ 13.50

$ 261.60

$ 21.80

 

The nine classrooms, resource room and restrooms have presented the most challenging building issues.

  1. Hallways are far too narrow for safe student passage
  2. Roof issues have caused significant leaks and water damage
  3. Heating and ventilation is poor resulting in classrooms that are either too hot or too cold
  4. Restrooms do not meet ADA compliance

Most, if not all, new construction of a school includes a gymnasium for use by the students and the community. The current gymnasium at Hampton Academy does not have the capacity to hold all of the students safely nor does it meet State Standards.

  1. The administration is renting space at a local facility in order to comply with athletic regulations.
  2. Physical Education activities are limited given the space currently available at the school.

The Hampton School District does not have an auditorium to hold and stage events related to student performances and student assemblies.

In addition, the town does not have access to an auditorium to hold public events.

Currently, the district pays for the use of the facility at Winnacunnet High School. This includes fees and custodian wages. Given all of the activities at WHS acquiring time is often difficult.

This question arises as we have all faced the expenses of educating our own children and grandchildren. We ask ourselves, where did this idea of individuals supporting education for all.

The New Hampshire Constitution established in 1784, Article 83 which states” knowledge and learning, generally diffused through a community being essential to the preservation of a free government. It further states that it shall be the duty of the legislators to cherish the interest of literature and the sciences, commerce, trades, manufactures, natural history etc.

In other words we have an obligation to educate the citizens and through taxation, pay for the costs associate with the education.

Education speaks to common public good, an opportunity for all to access free public education.

Without education of our citizens, we do not have the capacity to protect ourselves and support the rights that have been given to us. We need police, military, lawyers, and representatives to aid us in these rights. Schools educate the future.

The students we educate now, long after our own, are there as part of a larger group ensuring that all segments of the community are protected including seniors, children disabled and those fragile populations that need our support.

Schools are changing and challenging us to ensure that our children are ready to take on the responsibilities of the new world.

Additionally, residents’ real estate values will rise with a renovated school.  And, residents will benefit from the access to the auditorium, gymnasium, and community room, all spaces that the project committee is committed to include for the community.