Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) - The Rochester School Board will be presented this evening with the recommendations developed by a committee formed to study and come up with plans for addressing the Rochester School District’s space needs. After months of meetings and public input sessions, the Facilities Taskforce has finalized three options to be considered by the school board that have price tags that range from just under $128-million to almost $189-million.

The most expensive, Option 1, calls for constructing a new elementary school in northwest Rochester and building new and larger elementary schools to replace the existing Bishop, Churchill and Longfellow schools. It also calls for selling Friedell Middle School to help fund a new Middle School in southwest Rochester, along with shifting the Montessori Choice School from Franklin to Hoover and the 45-15 program from Longfellow to Pinewood Elementary School.

Option 2, which has an estimated price tag of $162-million, is almost identical to Option 1, but only calls for the reconstruction of Bishop and Longfellow Elementary Schools and leaves the existing Churchill building in place. The least expensive option includes a new elementary school in Rochester and would only reconstruct one existing elementary school, Bishop, to expand capacity. Option 3 would also leave the 45-15 program at Longfellow but would make changes at the Washington choice school to boost capacity.

In addition, the school board is being asked to consider a list of upgrades to other school buildings that totals around $26-million.

The School Board is expected to spend the next few months gathering public input on the proposals, including a district-wide survey early next year, before deciding who large of a bond issue request to bring to school district voters next fall.

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