Outgoing Guam Department of Education Superintendent Jon Fernandez submitted the school facilities master plan for approval by the Guam Board of Education.
“We are pleased to announce the completion of this plan and seek GEB approval of the plan,” Fernandez said in his letter to board chairman Mark Mendiola. “In whole or in part, so that this plan can be used to justify and target federal and local investments in capital improvement projects. It was a pleasure to work with HHF Planners on this project.
Completed with funding and support from the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Island Affairs, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and HHF Planners, a Honolulu-based company, the submitted plan will serve as a guide to invest approximately $100 million dollars in the federal government. funds from the American Rescue Plan to maintain and upgrade infrastructure in Guam’s public school system.
The plan also gives the Department of Education the ability to leverage federal ARP funds to support facility improvement priorities across the school system, such as repairing roofs and awnings, renovation of restrooms, improvement of HVAC systems and other initiatives.
“Over the past ten years, we have worked hard to find ways to meet the needs of Guam’s school facilities, and as a result, this School Facilities Master Plan is going to be there to help us in our efforts for the next ten years. “, Fernandez said.
School board approval will ensure that the ministry uses the plan as its primary tool for prioritizing capital improvement projects. The plan will also help justify requests for local funding once federal funds run out.
As part of the planning process, Guam DOE and HHF Planners worked with the governor, lieutenant governor, key senators, executive agency representatives, mayors, school administrators, and other members of the public school community to gather feedback and share ideas.
The planning process considered future enrollment trends in Guam’s schools, as well as facility changes needed to maintain more modern modes of instruction, current capacity levels, and health and safety concerns. , Fernandez said.
“This was an open and inclusive process, and we appreciate the time and input of all of our partners in identifying the needs of our schools and recommending ways to prioritize our investments,” Fernandez said.
The school board will have the opportunity to review the plan and propose its approval at a subsequent regular meeting.