Public schools, school facilities, funding
The Arkansas Statewide Education Facilities Assessment is the culmination of 18 months of work commissioned by the Arkansas General Assembly to assess the adequacy and equity of public school buildings across the state. In the ongoing effort to address the mandates of the Lake View III decision, made by the Arkansas Supreme Court in November 2002, the legislature’s Joint Committee on Educational Facilities commissioned a task force to conduct a comprehensive survey of facilities, equipment, and technology. The 60-member task force, including legislators, school officials, and state department officials, together with architects, engineers, business leaders, and interested citizens, contracted with the DeJong Group and its partners to complete the study which was delivered to the Joint Committee in November 2004. Having assessed every public school in the state, the task force members developed recommendations for renovating or replacing inadequate school facilities. Also, they estimated the cost of this work and suggested methods of funding it. Further, the task force evaluated the equipment and technology needs of each school and made recommendations concerning these needs as well. They found that Arkansas' public school buildings need almost $2.3 billion in repairs and improvements, including $86.7 million in immediate needs for repairs critical to health and safety. The addition of more classroom space in crowded schools, together with future repairs, brings the total estimated cost to $4.5 billion. W H Y D I D
McKenzie, Sarah C. and Ritter, Gary W., "Education Facilities Report" (2005). Policy Briefs. 118.