Addressing the District’s critical capital improvement needs, the Yonkers Board of Education provided a special presentation of its Educational Facilities Plan to local and state officials during the Board’s Facilities Committee Meeting on December 6th.
Yonkers’ schools are the oldest in New York State, and ninety-five percent are rated “Unsatisfactory” under state-mandated guidelines. The majority of schools were built to educational standards of a previous era – they are dark, poorly ventilated and uniformly too small.
Exacerbating the problem is the District’s growing student population. In 2010, schools were overcrowded by 20 percent. A recent demographic study projects a 12 percent enrollment growth over the next ten years, meaning nearly 3,000 additional students will enter buildings already taxed beyond their limits.
“The urgency of this situation demands immediate action,” explained Superintendent of Schools Bernard P. Pierorazio. “Ignoring our failing infrastructure today means compromising the health and welfare of our students tomorrow.”
During the Committee meeting, KG&D Architects outlined the three-phase, 15-year program designed to rebuild and refurbish the schools, and District officials discussed the Plan’s potential funding sources. Trustees will vote on the Plan at the Board’s December 16th Stated Meeting.