Jackson Park replacement tops bond project list

Head custodian Ron Goss, left, principal Shirley Kenmochi and maintenance tech Brian Hunt look at the uneven asphalt at Jackson Park Elementary. - Photo by Jesse Beals
Head custodian Ron Goss, left, principal Shirley Kenmochi and maintenance tech Brian Hunt look at the uneven asphalt at Jackson Park Elementary.
— image credit: Photo by Jesse Beals

Jackson Park Elementary, called a second home for faculty and students, needs help.

If voters approve the proposed bond it would be first on the list for replacement.

The tentative plan: Students would attend Jackson Park while the new $13.8 million building would be constructed in the field adjacent to the current building. Students would be moved to the new building and Seabeck students would be bused to the old building while the new Seabeck school was built said Richard Best, facilities director for the district.

If a site other than where the current Seabeck Elementary is chosen for the proposed new Seabeck School, Seabeck could go first and Jackson Park students would be bused the 11-mile stretch to the old Seabeck while the new Jackson Park is built.

“We love this school. We have some fond memories, we have some high needs,” said Shirley Kenmochi, principal for Jackson Park.

Kenmochi, a few teachers and staff listened to a presentation Tuesday, Aug. 19 by Central Kitsap School District officials regarding the proposed $60 million bond vote set for Sept. 16. The ballots will hit the mail system Aug. 28 and voters should get them no later than Sept. 5, election officials said.

The lunchtime presentation and tour that followed was part of a series of tours and open to the public.

In this case the majority of the audience of about a dozen were district employees.

Best gave an overview of the bond projects and the process used to determine which schools would be replaced.

As with Seabeck and Central Kitsap Junior High, Jackson Park has many of the same ailments: an outdated heating and ventilation system, need for seismic improvements, no space for utilities, and is unable to keep up with technology. It also does not meet current fire suppression requirements or comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The school was built in 1967 with additions in 1969 and 1979. It was rennovated in 1990 to update the computer lab and the library. The school, located at 2900 Austin Drive in Bremerton, serves about 560 students with a main building, two detached buildings and six portable buildings.

The school has 22 classrooms, a library, administration area, and a multipurpose room with a kitchen.

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