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The Cedar Rapids Community School District is eager to deliver on its promise of Every Learner. Future Ready. and we are working hard to evolve our teaching practices, our workforce, and our facilities to most effectively meet the needs of our 21st century learners. The future-ready Facility Master Plan is one of several bold and game-changing efforts underway to achieve our goals.

The future-ready Facility Master Plan is an effort driven by community and CRCSD collaboration, along with an immense amount of data and analysis. The plan ensures that all elementary facilities optimize the learning and teaching experiences for our students and staff. A committee of community members and CRCSD employees met over the course of 15 months to design the plan which was presented to the Board of Education in 2017 and adopted in 2018.

The initial plan was kicked off just prior to the historical COVID-19 pandemic and derecho natural disaster recovery occurring in 2020 and throughout the first part of 2021. While CRCSD was focused on crisis initiatives during this time period, the first two components of the Facility Master Plan still proceeded. The elementary schools at the Coolidge and Jackson sites broke ground, with West Willow opening August 2021 and Jackson (Maple Grove) set to open in fall 2022.

Next Steps

Please be watching for updates to the original plan as CRCSD and the community regroup after the pandemic and derecho events. A committee will be formed to review the original plan and timeline and present any new data and initiatives as we stand committed to future-ready facility development.

Questions from the community and media

Click the teal arrows to show CRCSD’s answers to questions from the community and media.

CRCSD factual responses to media inaccuracies or misleading information

To keep the community taxpayers, families, students, staff and all media outlets accurately informed on the Future Ready Facilities initiative, CRCSD will be posting factual clarification responses to inaccuracies or misleading information cited in the media.

The following four entries relate to The Gazette’s October 8, 2021 article.

Statement per Superintendent Bush

For background, please see the original Facilities Master Plan overview. In the near future, overview board presentations and board discussions will take place (beginning with the October 25, 2021 board meeting) and weekly updates will be provided via the CRCSD eNewsletter, along with updated information posted on the new Future Ready Facilities website. Additionally, questions from the community and media will be added to the website, with CRCSD responses, for all community members and media to view.

When you consider the significant changes in the role of technology in education and how students learn, the age of our current facilities, the cost of maintaining and minimally upgrading our facilities versus the cost and efficiencies of new, and the cost of operating 21 underpopulated buildings, the educational value of our facilities plan becomes clearly evident.

Jim Craig, Attorney, Lederer Weston Craig, PLC

I have been an educator for almost 30 years and have worked in many different facilities. I strongly believe our children deserve the best that we can provide and our community needs to be forward thinking as we hope families will be attracted to our community and that as young adults make life decisions about where they will raise their families, they choose to stay here.

Candace Lynch, Retired Principal, Johnson STEAM Academy

Aspirational at the core, the future-ready facilities plan honors the committee’s shared beliefs, the data we examined, the consensus conclusions we reached, and an enduring commitment to focused and sustained community conversations.

Alan Rowe, Associate Vice President – Institutional Effectiveness, Kirkwood Community College

I am a pragmatic person by nature and what has kept me supportive of this plan is that we have a problem that must be addressed. The CRCSD simply cannot continue down the path that it is on. We had to develop a viable solution and this plan emerged from that shared understanding. Status quo is not an option.

Phil Wasta, Executive Director, MedQuarter