By Starla Pointer • Staff Writer • 

Where the money's coming from

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They should have built a new high school. The one we have now is a severely overcrowded, sprawling monstrosity that is not conducive to student success. How many more years before they come out of their denial and build a new one?


Joel: all the upgrades and improvements Starla so meticulously laid out came at NO additional taxpayer cost. It's a remarkable achievement, really.
I am among many (including you, it seems) who also thought a new high school was the better alternative. HOWEVER, it would have been contingent upon a substantial tax rate increase to district voters; there was just no other way. And it was clear from numerous polls and inquiries that the voters would not favor the added tax costs. Additionally, projected growth has been very low, with the current facilities (with upgrades) not reaching capacity for a decade or more.
I think the CTC and the expansion of sports onto the improved Baker Field, AND the upcoming improvements will go a long way towards making very decent, and in many areas exceptional, learning environments for students.
But I agree with you, if we could move the high school out of the middle of suburban neighborhoods, that would be better.
I think the moment we have the district voter political will (including accepting the costs) to build a new school, the district is ready to move forward with that planning.


Joel you are exactly right in your statement . GrizzlyWildcat the attitude of "there was no other way" is wrong. I offered to help to try to convince the community to build a new high school and was turned down in a minute or less. Polls as we know aren't all they are cracked up to be. Ask President Trump. There was little effort in trying to raise awareness that we really needed a new school. Yes are taxes didn't go up but they didn't go down either. I agree with Joel we still have a bad excuse for a high school now.

Lots of moneys spent to make our town a safer & better town to live,noting also corner side walks access for wheel chairs for safer access for disabled, noting side walks in front several business's , Izzies , Staples, these side walks face major streets, highways (99)
These side walks need attention as they are very unsafe. I myself had serous fall resulting in aprox20 secession's medical recovery.( make our side walks safe especially faceing buisness fronts.

Don Dix

Most of the schools in Mac originally were located at the edges of the city, including Cook and the old Columbus. The 'neighborhoods' occurred afterwards, which has to do with the convenience and proximity.

The high school was built as a jr. high (7th and 8th grades)). Somehow, it became the high school and jr. high was moved to the old Lincoln High for 7, 8, and 9th grades after only two years.

With all the additions and fill-ins, Mac High doesn't resemble the original footprint at all. For instance, the gym was the eastern-most structure until Wortman Stadium was built.

At this point, it doesn't appear there will be a second high school until the high school student population reaches 2400+. That number would allow both schools to be 6A classification for sports and activities. It isn't clear if that is the underlying plan, but it is a possibility, in my opinion.


Don I hope the plan isn't to build two high schools. It splits community's. I've seen it happen in far to many places. We could have built a large high school to accommodate 3,000 students on a 60 acre plot. The old high school could be used for another Jr. High when they build a new high school.This community is becoming fractured enough with out two high schools.


GrizzlyWildcat you are all about numbers so I'll ask you a question. With the new CTC building I would like the number of students you project to be ready to go into a apprentice program in the trades. How many electricians,plumbers,carpenters,equipement operators,concrete finishers,diesel mechanics,auto mechanic's,truck drivers,roofers, and so on will you produce because these are the jobs that Oregon is sorely short of people for?


Jim: There is no way in the world the district is going to build a single mammoth high school to replace the existing one. That would be a collossal waste of taxpayer dollars, and would never fly.
All growing cities eventually reach the size where they need two high schools, then three, four or whatever, as time passes. Salem has five or six, Bend three, Medford two, Redmond two and so forth. Mac is nearing the point where it will need two. At that point, a second one will be built.
Building a new high school from scratch will run somewhere in the $150 million to $200 million range for a capacity of 1,500 or so. Double that and you will be looking at $300 million plus. And you will end up utterly destroying the value of the massive existing complex, where we have a huge investment in specialized gym, stadium, music, shop and lab facilities that cannot realistically be repurposed.
I am amazed that you think the community would conceivably support that kind of wanton waste. That will never happen. No other growing city anywhere closed one high school and built a new one across town as a replacement.
Bend retained Bend High when it built Mountain View. It retained Bend and Mountain View when it built Summit. Ditto with every city I am familiar with anywhere, in this state or others.
I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona, which now has at least 25 high schools, if not more. I went to the second one ever built, and it's still in use.
I don't know that Phoenix has ever closed one, though it certainly has rebuilt or at least substantially renovated some of the older ones on the existing site.
I once worked in Boise, where the original Boise High remains in full use, even though it way pre-dates Mac High and has been augmented over the years by a whole array of new high schools.
The existing Mac High campus isn't going anywhere anytime soon. You can be sure of that. Not a chance.


Oregon cities with more than one high school include Beaverton, Bend, Corvallis, Grants Pass, Gresham, Hillsboro, Klamath Falls, Lake Oswego, Milwaukie, Redmond and Springfield. In every one of them, the original namesake high school remains in full operation. If this created divisions, I guess they all found ways to manage somehow.


You are right Steve with negative people like you we will never accomplish something like this. I will guarantee you if you talk to folks in Albany,Remond,Medford and several other split school towns all is far from perfect.


I can't imagine if it was done right we as a community couldn't have built a new high school. You can drive around town and see a new fire station,new police station,new city hall,bonds passed for street repairs and my favorite the money being spent on the Alpine Gateway project. I can't imagine with the right people and time we couldn't have built a new school instead of perfuming the pig we've had for 50 plus years.


Driving around town, you can see a new fire station, police station and city hall because voters were willing to invest their full faith and trust in the city to prove a wise steward of their tax dollars. You can also see overhals and upgrades being completed at virtually every school in town, because they were willing to invest the same faith and trust in the school district.
If you live long enough to ever see a second high school build here, it will be for the same reason. But you seem to be doing everything you can to undermine the district's reputation in this community. To the extent you succeed, you will destroy its chances to ever obtain the necessary money.
It's ironic to be labeled "negative" by Mr. Negative himself, who then proceeds to take yet another negative shot at the district immediately thereafter, this time for allegedly "perfuming the pig we've had for 50 plus years."
If the district has to overcome attitudes like that, it will never win approval for a second high school. We'll be stuck with this one forever.
Where's your can-do "we as a community" spirit? Are you traying to tally the electorate to a cause, or permanently poison that cause instead?
I must say, it sure seems like the latter. It seems like all we ever get from you is a steaming pile of negativity.


Steve if I saw what I believed to be fair and equal treatment to every student in this district I might back off. There's a lot of things that need to change to make that happen. That's why we have freedom of speech in this country. You see one side and I see another. When you see what happens from the inside out you might change your mind. I've volunteered my time on numerous occasions and tried to help make some changes but when the people running the district are to important and to busy to talk to a taxpayer and a Grandparent then it's time for a change.


Steve you better check with the city of Sherwood on how they went with there new High School. They are building a large inclusive high school from what I have read and turning their old high school into a middle school. Maybe I'm not so negative and out of line.

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