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Guilford County Schools reveals $1.5 billion needed in building repairs

GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. -- After a year-long assessment of Guilford County’s 126 schools, the district has been told that it could take up to $1.5 billion to repair or replace the current campuses that are dilapidated.

The school board and several members from the community where presented with a 5,000-page report on Thursday. The report details suggestions on issues that the campus needed to address.

This is “more about education and not buildings,” is the description used by the consulates with MGT Consulting Group.

Since February 2018 they have walked through and assessed the elementary, middle, high school and magnet program campuses. The reports found that “a lot” of the schools were being 110 percent utilized. That means the buildings were over, or quickly nearing full capacity.

Also listed in the thousands of pages were findings of problem areas such as playground equipment falling apart, a lack of fencing and security around the perimeter of the campuses, lack of cameras in the buildings, shortage of storage and poorly-equipped bathrooms.

Listed in the thousands of pages, the district was also given an outline of ways to make improvements. They came in the form of four phases.

Among those phases were the proposal to add a new school in the northwestern corridor of the city. Data suggests it will continue to grow which would justify the addition.

Also proposed is the decision to move students to different schools within the district, depending on where they live in the county. This, however, was a highly controversial proposal. The fear expressed by Superintendent Sharon Contreras was that it would disrupt the balanced demographic, create a school based on social economic status.

This was the first time for the school district to hear the findings of the year-long inspection. They say they will come up with a “game plan” to address these issues in future school board meetings.

To find a copy of the inspection reports, visit the Guilford County school district website.

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