Friday, March 06, 2009

Don't Bother CCSD Planners with the Facts

Parent Mel Goodwin of the Academic Magnet High School has plenty to comment in Friday's P & C as he expresses the frustrations of parents and teachers alike concerning the combination of AMHS and the School of the Arts on the same campus. [See District Plan to Move Academic Magnet HighIs a Bad Idea.] Who can blame AMHS parents for worrying about the direction CCSD plans at the new campus? I've even heard people planning a move into the district wonder if getting their child into the School of the Arts could be a way into the Academic Magnet, since "maybe the students will be combined."

However, it is Goodwin's comments about conservation of resources that CCSD really intends to ignore. Goodwin (shock and awe!) believes it makes more sense to update the AMHS campus on the old Navy Base instead:

"We have learned that the most serious mold, heating and air problems can be corrected for less than $50,000, and have verbal pledges to cover this expense. Moreover, all of the problems cited in Thursday's op-ed can be corrected for a small fraction of the cost of a new building. If the roof leaks, most people fix the roof; they don't build new houses.

"The same economies apply to bringing state-of-the-art technology and instructional resources to the existing building, as is evidenced by others schools that have achieved similar improvements through the efforts of dedicated parents.

"Reuse and recycling are key principles of environmental design, and there are many examples of exemplary green building based on renovation of existing facilities. A green rehab of the existing AMHS building would provide many of the amenities of a new building, cost less than new construction, and provide a shining example of environmental stewardship as well as economic prudence.

But, Mel, when did CCSD ever navigate using common sense? Why, Bill Lewis is shaking his head because you aren't engineering for the effects of the next major earthquake!


Robert Russell said...

Several years ago I was on the AMHS SIC when this joint school discussion first started. There was furious opposition to the move then too -- for what turned out to be largely (and largely undisguised) racial reasons. Some AMHS parents didn't want the school moving to Liberty Hill. I remember one mother saying 'we feel safe here behind these fences.' Back then, Mayor Summey was making all sorts of wild offers to CCSD about a land swap, putting AMHS on Noisette creek. He badly wanted that 44 acres where Bonds Wilson used to be.

Face it, AMHS has a crappy facility. It looks and feels like a prison. you could do all sorts of things to green it up, like Mel said in the P&C, and then you'd have a green prison, only prisons have better grounds. All AMHS has is a parking lot so that the kids learn immediately that your MUST have a car to get anywhere at all in this world.

I'm sorry, but until I get some pretty definite reasons, and convincing reasons, why AMHS should stay incarcerated on the old Navy Base I'm going to have to keep thinking it has more to do with fear of Liberty Hill than anything else.

Anonymous said...

I'm wondering what sense it makes, as well, to rehab a building that belongs to someone else. It's not even CCSD's facility. They rent it! I think Mr.s Russell just called a spade.

Anonymous said...

march 9, 2009
1/2 a billion arrives in sc for education
Why is it charleston teachers are still being furloughed?
Why are they asking for cutbacks or closing buildings!