Aquarian Charter School parents ask to be on the April bond
A leaky roof and a bad boiler are just some of the things that need to be replaced at Aquarian Charter School in Spenard.
Unlike most charter schools, Aquarian is housed in a building owned by the Anchorage School District and the Academic Policy Committee that governs the school thinks the district should pay for major repairs.
The district is well aware of the school’s condition. In 2015, it placed Aquarian at the top of the list for facilities needing critical repairs.
A report in 2018 concluded the school needed repairs totaling close to $9 million when taking renovations and new construction into consideration. But much to the dismay of parents and faculty, the money never came through.
“We truly believed that if we waited patiently we'd be included in the municipal bond cycle when it was our turn and it’s become very clear that that’s in fact not the track that we're on at this moment,” said Aquarian parent Heidi Wailand, who is also a member of the policy committee.
On Tuesday evening, parents, teachers and students planned to testify at the Anchorage School Board meeting to ask that Aquarian be put on the April 2020 school bond list. The district is proposing a bond of nearly $80 million to cover mostly earthquake repairs and right now Aquarian charter isn’t on it.
The school board has formed an ad hoc committee to consider how to best help the school. Committee Chair Alisha Hilde praised the charter school’s unique and successful program and said the committee was working with parents to find solutions.
Hilde said the bond package for 2020 has deadlines that are coming up shortly. She said the school board expected to vote on it in early November.
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