by Myralexis Tijerina| staff writer
This summer the North East Board of Trustees presented a 499.95 million dollar bond after receiving input from NEISD principals, district staff, parents, students, and community members.
The 2015 bond focuses on five main categories, according to an article posted on the district’s website, including safety and security, technology, operations, extracurricular and facilities. Some of the proposals include replacing the 60 year old bleachers at Comalander Stadium, adding security check-in vestibules, and expanding or even replacing band halls and fine arts facilities at Churchill, Johnson, Reagan, MacArthur, and at several middle schools, including Nimitz, Bradley, Driscoll, White and Wood.
With early voting from October 19-30, and election day on November 3, Johnson’s future could include a modified fine arts hallway with more space if the bond is approved.
“We are specifically in line to get a couple of things. One of them is to enlarge the band fine art facility because we have so many more kids coming into band and to fine arts- which is orchestra and choir. We need more practice rooms,” principal John Mehlbrech said. “We need a bigger area. As you know, we have kids out in the hallway playing the horns all the time. They’re [looking] everywhere trying to find a spot to work.”
In addition to these changes, the technology used on campus may also be upgraded in the near future.
“Well, in order to continue to provide all of the facilities and all of the elements that go into education, I think it’s important for us to continue to grow to make ourselves better. And there are issues, and there are facilities, and there are areas where they need to be updated. They need to be modernized, you know, with technology in particular. It [technology] always changes, it always gets better, it gets faster; it gets more complicated. And if we don’t keep pace with it we’re just going to get further behind,” Mehlbrech said.
The football field at every NEISD high school may also face changes in regards to the material that is used on the field, with an eye on safety and current maintenance costs.
“One of the items that’s on the bond is [adding] our artificial turf at every high school for football, which would obviously reduce all of your watering and maintenance fees. But it would be a safer field to play on because it’s more consistent and it’s more of a level field, if you will. So those are the two items [athletic and fine arts] that would be specific for Johnson if the bond would pass,” Mehlbrech said.