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WPS Plans Include New School, Continued Academic Growth

Delivering her eighth State of The District report to the community, Superintendent Pamela Swanson said a portion of the revenues from the successful mill levy override in November will be used to build a new school on the site of Skyline Vista Elementary. The new school will be built on the ground adjacent to Skyline Vista and when students are moved into the new building in 2021, the old Skyline Vista will be demolished. ”Our analysis has determined that it makes no financial sense to spend millions of dollars for repairs and upgrades on a building that has outlived its usefulness,” said Swanson on Tuesday night during her report at the Board of Education meeting.

News of a new school building in Westminster Public Schools (WPS) was the highlight of Swanson’s annual address that details the status of the district. "It is a good, make that a great, story to share," she said at the beginning of her remarks.

After reminding leaders of the successes of 2018, including the passage of a mill levy override and getting off the state accountability clock, the superintendent cautioned against complacency.  "No doubt about it, 2018 was a heavy lift, and while it is tempting to look back and relive all those wonderful moments, we can’t afford to do that," said Swanson. "We still have a lot of work to do and things to accomplish."

In November, voters passed a $9.9 million mill levy override to provide money for, among other things, construction projects, expansion of Career Technical Education (CTE) programs, safety enhancements and money to attract and retain highly effective teachers and staff.  "We intend to keep those promises," added Swanson.

Next month, WPS will finalize a contract for $78 million worth of Certificates of Participation (“COPs”) that will finance major construction projects in the district. In addition to a new school, the COPs will pay for renovations and upgrades in buildings across the district. Click here to view the plan that was put before voters during the campaign. 

Money is also being allocated for an Arts Magnet School at Metz Elementary and an expansion of CTE programs to a second campus, in addition to Westminster High School.

Swanson added that attracting and retaining high-quality teachers and staff remains a high priority. She referenced the pending strike in Denver Public Schools and said when negotiations begin in WPS, the district is committed to a fair, transparent bargaining process. 

You can read Dr. Swanson’s remarks here.  

You can stream Dr. Swanson’s remarks at the Board meeting here.