The Eastern Local School District is excited to announce an upcoming project at Russellville Elementary. The ELSD is excited to share that these projects will be funded with federal grant dollars and no additional local tax dollars. The federal government has issued three rounds of relief funding to Ohio school districts in response to the coronavirus pandemic, which many school districts, including the ELSD, consider to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to address the health and safety of district students. The most recent round—created by the American Rescue Plan and referred to as ESSER III or ARP ESSER—is the largest round so far and made $4.5 billion available to Ohio school districts.
The ELSD selected DS2 architects for the project based on their statement of qualifications. Construction meetings have regularly taken place to develop the scope of the project and to recommend necessary changes throughout the process. The ELSD construction team consists of (2) ELSD Board of Education members, the ELSD administration (Superintendent/Treasurer/Principals/Technology director/facilities supervisor/ director of special programs), and the project architect (DS2).
In summary, ARP ESSER funds have provided school districts with a unique opportunity to address some of their existing facilities needs to enhance the health and safety of district students. The ELSD is excited to take advantage of the availability of federal grant dollars to fund this project.
Architect and Engineers- DS2
The ELSD BOE, administration, DS2 Architects, and Perkins Carmack construction signed construction contracts to move forward with the project. Another informational release to RES Parents and guardians is being prepared, which will include details of the project timeline and the district's goals to minimize school day disruptions.
The ELSD is pleased to announce that two bids were received for the Russellville Elementary project on 12/15/23. After careful consideration and evaluation, the ELSD Board of Education officially approved a resolution to accept the low bid at the December Board of Education meeting (12-18-23). We are delighted to be partnering with Perkins Carmack for the project. Big thanks to DS2 Architects for their continued support throughout this process.
The selected bid does fall within our allotted grant dollars; however, due to the escalating costs in the construction industry, the project will require a substantial portion of our remaining ESSER dollars and will be the only significant construction project in the district. Again, the ELSD is excited to share that these projects will be funded with federal grant dollars and no additional local tax dollars.
The ELSD BOE Approved Revised Specifications and Cost Estimate for Russellville Elementary Additions and Renovations and Authorizing Solicitation of Bids, Res. No. 124-23. Bids are due on December 15th at 9am.
Bids were due for the construction project at Russellville Elementary on September 20, 2023. No bids for the project were received. There were bidders interested in bidding but they did not have a bid that fell within 10% of the cost estimate. The Construction team will meet again to determine the next steps.
The ELSD authorized the revision to bid specifications and estimate for rebidding addition and alterations to Russellville Elementary
At this point there has unfortunately been a lack of bidders for our project. The district did receive one bid, which was rejected by the ELSD BOE at the July meeting, as it did not fall within 10% of the project estimate, which is a requirement. At this point the district plans to rebid the project with hopes to secure an acceptable bid that falls within the 10% threshold. This allows us to remain fiscally responsible with the amount of federal grant dollars the district has available for the project.
ELSD Project Goals
The main focus for the Russellville Elementary project is opening up additional space for special services, counseling, and related activities. Fortunately, this will create a more secure entrance to the school building and create a safer environment for students and staff, providing a new front office, and implementing a secured double entrance that mirrors the layout of other buildings within our district.
To ensure the project aligns with our budget constraints, there have been some adjustments to the initial design throughout the process. Please find the most recent design below for your reference.
More information will be shared with parents and community members in the coming weeks. We will continue to keep stakeholders informed with updates on the project's timeline and pertinent details. As construction will likely take place during the school year, the leadership team has developed comprehensive plans for ingress/egress, bus routes, safety protocols, etc. Safety remains our top priority, and we have confidence in our ability to minimize disruptions to our everyday operations.
Federal grant guidelines require that ESSER funds must be expended by September 2024.
Why is the district doing a building project?
ESSER ARP funds have provided school districts with a unique opportunity to address some of their existing facilities needs while promoting the health and safety of district students. The federal government has issued three rounds of relief funding to Ohio school districts in response to the coronavirus pandemic, which many school district leaders consider a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to address some of their facilities needs as identified by the ELSD Construction Team.
Will the RES project take place during the 23-23 school year?
The ELSD has made plans to accommodate construction during the school day/year, while maintaining the safety of students and staff. This project will almost certainly take place during this school year and potentially carry over into the beginning of next school year. More information will be shared with parents and community members in the coming weeks. We will continue to keep stakeholders informed with updates on the project's timeline and pertinent details. As construction will likely take place during the school year, the leadership team has developed comprehensive plans for ingress/egress, bus routes, safety protocols, etc. Safety remains our top priority, and we have confidence in our ability to minimize disruptions to our everyday operations.
Will my taxes go up from this building project?
The ELSD is excited to share that these projects will be funded with federal grant dollars and no additional local tax dollars.
How are project decisions being made?
Project decisions are made by the ELSD construction team. This is a collaborative effort between the ELSD Board of Education, Administration, staff, community members, and the project architect (DS2).
How will parents and community members receive project updates?
Parents and community members can visit https://www.elsd.us/BuildingProject.aspx for project updates and any new information. This district will utilize email via final forms to communicate when necessary as well.
What is ESSER?
Under the ESSER Fund, established as part of the Education Stabilization Fund in the CARES Act, State educational agencies (SEAs) will award subgrants to local educational agencies (LEAs) to address the impact that the Novel Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) has had, and continues to have, on elementary and secondary schools across the Nation
How is the ELSD spending their ESSER funds in comparison to other school districts?