June 2, 2020 School Bond Issue

Proposed Band RoomProposed Band Room

School Bond Issue for April 7, 2020 June 2, 2020
Grain Valley High School Performing Arts Addition

Our district continues to grow. This year we have 4,547 students in pre-Kindergarten through 12th grades, including 1,352 students in our high school. This is up from 3,679 students in our district in 2010-2011 and up from 935 students in the high school at that time.

In 2012, our high school building had a capacity of 850 students, but enrollment was at 935 and growing. The school district hosted public forums at that time to address the needs of a much-overcrowded Grain Valley High School. Based on the input from stakeholders in these sessions, the School Board approved a long-range masterplan to double the square footage of the high school building and renovate the existing structure to provide the infrastructure, instructional space, and activity space needed to accommodate as many as 1,600 high school students. 

This long-range masterplan has led to the passage of school bond issues in 2013, 2014, 2016, and 2018 resulting in the completion of Phases 1-4. Additions to the southeast and northeast corners of the school, and renovation to the existing area between these additions, are completed. Improvements have also been made to the stadium and to the softball/baseball complex. New tennis courts and a student athletic practice facility have been added behind the school. Parking has been added to improve capacity during school and for after-school activities. 

The Grain Valley School Board has placed a $14.5 million school bond issue on the ballot for the April 7, 2020 June 2, 2020 election for the purpose of providing funds for the site development, construction, renovation, equipping, and furnishing of a high school addition; to the extent funds are available, complete other repairs and improvements to, or replacement of, existing district facilities.

The completion of Phase 5 and relocation of the band and choir instructional spaces will make room for a larger second competition gymnasium in a later phase of the long-range masterplan. The new gymnasium is not included in Phase 5, but Phase 5 makes room for it in a later addition.

Phase 5 includes:

  • Band Room
  • Percussion Room
  • Choir Room
  • Stagecraft Room
  • Drama Classroom
  • Black Box Theater
  • Additional Parking
  • Renovations to the Jerry Mueller Performing Arts Center

Dedicated band, percussion and choir rooms will reduce the shuffling of programs throughout the day and will free the performing arts center for more theater-based performances and district use. The large band room allows the marching band to practice as a whole and provides rehearsal space for color guard and winter guard. These spaces will be equipped with technology and audiovisual components tuned for interactive learning and recording.  The Black Box Theater is a versatile, reconfigurable, multipurpose performance space. The acoustics and systems are tuned for small, intimate performances (audiences of 125 or less) like one act plays or musical quartet concerts. The open floor plan and high volume affords many uses such as dance practice, art shows, or a team banquet.

Drawing of proposed Black Box Theatre
Proposed Black Box Theater

The overall plan represents the great things to come at Grain Valley High School. The end result of this master planning effort will be something the entire community will be proud of for many years to come.

2020 Bond Issue High School floor plan              2020 Bond Issue  Phase 5 site plan
2020 Bond Issue Map color chart
Two major design elements were introduced with the completion of the last phase - the beginning to Eagle Way and The Valley. Eagle Way is marked by a blue wall the forms the beginning of a crescent that extends outside the new main entrance on the north end of the school. Upon completion of the masterplan, Eagle Way will connect the main entry on the north side of the building to the activities/student entry at the west end of the facility. While the proposed phase 5 does not add to Eagle Way, this addition plans makes way for the future completion of Eagle Way by relocating and improving band and choir facilities.

The Valley is a large and enclosed outdoor courtyard space for use by students and classes. This new finished space can accommodate a full grade level of students. In a future phase, a new commons area will be added to the south end of the courtyard allowing easy lunchtime access to the courtyard for students.

2020 Bond Issue High School proposed Galleria area
Galleria rendering

Previous master plans had shown a second exterior courtyard. Through the planning process, the second courtyard has transformed into the Galleria- a sun filled, transitional space that allows for display and gathering, while providing a main circulation path from the commons to the corridor adjacent to the main administration office. While only the start of the Galleria is to be constructed in this phase, the new Black Box Theater becomes its anchor.

Renovations to the existing Jerry Mueller Performing Arts Center are planned for Phase 5 and include new sound and lighting systems, as well as new seats and wall treatments to help with acoustics. A new drama classroom, stagecraft and storage area will be constructed to the west of the performing arts center allowing for the reconfiguration of the back stage area to improve flow during a performance. Large theater sets and props can be constructed and stored in the new stagecraft and storage area, keeping the stage open for use.


2020 Bond Issue High School Percussion, Drama and Stage Craft exterior

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How will the passing of this bond issue affect the school district’s tax rate?

A. The $14,500,000 general obligation bond issue on the April 7, 2020 June 2, 2020 ballot is structured in a manner that does not require any increase to the existing debt service tax levy of $1.70 per one hundred dollars of assessed valuation based upon very conservative projections for future growth in assessed valuation.
The bond issue extends the current levy, but does not increase it.

Q. What is the difference between bond issues and operating levies?

A. Bond issues build “brick and mortar” buildings and facilities, while operating levies provide funding for almost all other aspects of the school district such as salaries, benefits, supplies, materials, bus fuel, utilities, etc. Bond monies can ONLY be used for the construction, improving and site preparation, equipping of school buildings and facilities as stated on the ballot.

Q. What future building plans does the District have in addition to the proposed bond issue?

A. The district is committed to completing our long range plan for Grain Valley High School that began in 2012. We estimate two to three more new construction phases, plus renovation to the original section of the building, over the next few years. We also foresee the need for district office space in the future.

Q. What is the time line for the completion of the projects?

A. If the bond issue passes June 2, construction would begin in the early summer 2020. The goal is to
have this project completed by fall of 2021.

Paid for by Grain Valley School District

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