Why are we engaging in this Facility Master Planning process?New Philadelphia Schools face critical decisions about our facilities and our future. Our enrollment has grown significantly over the last four years and we believe that trend will continue. Our facilities are overcrowded; some students are learning in modular structures or in space meant for non-educational purposes. We are doing what we can with what we have but it is not a strong long-term solution. Further, the current designs of our buildings are not optimal for the safety and security of our students, although we have made strides toward improvements. A recent facility review identified $14.5 million dollars in maintenance needs - just to keep our buildings open - so doing nothing is not an option.
Importantly, if we act now the State of Ohio will contribute 55% of the cost of renovating or replacing our buildings – this means that over half of a project will be funded by the state. The time to act is now and we want to do this right. We have designed a Facilities Master Planning Process to engage staff, experts, parents and our community to determine our best course of action moving forward. So far, we have heard from over 1,000 people and we will continue engaging and seeking input until the Board of Education votes on a final recommendation.
Does the Board and/or Administration already have a plan?
No. The only decision that we have made is to engage all stakeholders and collaboratively develop a plan for our future.
What options are available?
All. Our community engagement process will narrow options based on the factors important to our community – safety and security, educational excellence, cost and locations. Our community committee will make recommendations at the end May.
Does this mean we are going on the ballot?
Not necessarily. This means that we are working together to develop the best solution for New Philadelphia City Schools. However, the solution may include a ballot issue because the State of Ohio contribution will require a local match.
Is the state of Ohio helping us at all?
The State of Ohio will contribute about 55% for a capital facility project that meets their guidelines. Therefore, we need to ensure that we engage all stakeholders and decide collectively what is best for New Philadelphia, for both today and for our future.
What do safety & security experts say is best?
The safety and security of all students and staff are a primary focus. Policies and procedures are important to this process. However, facilities and their design are critical to ensuring everyone's safety. The Ohio Facilities Construction Commission helps design schools to meet all safety and security recommendations and guidelines. Learn more here. The New Philadelphia City School District partners with local experts to help design and practice their safety plans, policies, and procedures. Below is a video from Tuscarawas County Sheriff and New Philadelphia community member, Orvis Campbell.
What are the benefits of unifying grade levels within the district?
Many people have asked great questions about the benefits of unifying grade levels versus our current system. We are all knowledgeable about the benefits and negatives of our current model of multiple neighborhood elementary schools. Therefore we have the following information regarding the benefits of unifying grade levels.
Social Emotional Benefits
How large is the District and where do the majority of students live?
The New Philadelphia City School District is 71 square miles and includes the City of New Philadelphia, and the townships of Goshen, Stone Creek, and York. Below are the GIS Maps of the district with dots representing homes of students. The circles represent a 1.5 mile radius around each school.
How much would it cost to keep our current facilities functional - maintain & repair our current facilities?
There are nearly $14.5 million in known facilities repair costs over the next ten years. Below shows the cost to the New Philadelphia City School District to if we did nothing but maintain and repair our current facilities. This cost does not address overcrowding, educational needs, or the safety and security concerns with our current facilities.
How many buildings does the district currently operate, when were they built, and how much land does the school district own?
We currently operate eight school buildings: one preschool, five elementary schools, Welty Middle School and New Philadelphia High School. We also operate our Administrative Offices, Warehouse, Bus Garage, Quaker Stadium and the Quaker Dome. The Ohio Facilities Construction Commission and the GPD Group have both evaluated our current facilities and concluded that our current facilities are overcrowded, lack up-to-date security entrances, and have aging/failing infrastructure that cost more and more every year to maintain.
What percent of funds are spent on classroom instruction and how does that compare?The New Philadelphia City Schools puts a high priority in allocating funds to have the greatest impact on each child. 71.4% of all funds are spent directly on classroom instruction. The state average is only 67.6%. This puts the district in the top 15% in the state!
Central Elementary School
Original Construction: 1941
36,708 square feet school building
Building Site Size: 2.42 acres
East Elementary School
Original Construction: 1952
25,512 square feet school building
Building Site Size: 2.67 acres
South Elementary School
Original Construction: 1974
34,017 square feet school building
Building Site Size: 13.13 acres
West Elementary School
Original Construction: 1957
27,701 square feet school building
Building Site Size: 3.75 acres
|York Elementary School|
Original Construction: 1941
18,016 square feet school building
Building Site Size: 3.75 acres
|WMS & NPHS|
Original Construction: 1913
225,648 square feet school building
Building Site Size: 5.63 acres
Original Construction: 1977
57,405 Square feet building
Building Site Size: 4.9 acres
|Front Avenue Administration Building|
Original Construction: 1906
20,700 square feet building
Building Site Size: 1.13 acres
What is our cost per pupil and how does that compare?The district works to be good stewards of the community’s tax dollars. Therefore, we operate as effectively and efficiently as possible to ensure each child is provided an excellent and personalized educational experience. The New Philadelphia CSD’s cost per pupil in 2018 was $8,044 while the state average was $9,353. This puts the district in the lowest 20% in the state.
How many students do not attend the elementary school in their neighborhood?
213 elementary students who live in the New Philadelphia School District attend an elementary school other than their neighborhood school. There are a total of 1,450 current K-5th graders attending NPCSD. Therefore, about 14.7% of our elementary students attend a school other than their neighborhood school. Additional requests are made each year that cannot be granted due to space, staffing, and/or class size.
If we eliminated Open Enrollment and/or Building Transfers would that take care of our overcrowding issues at our elementary schools?The short answer is no. Currently there are 55 open enrolled students attending one of our five elementary schools. Open enrollment and building transfers requests are closely monitored. This is done annually to ensure no additional staffing or space is required. It is also reviewed to more evenly distribute students to help with class sizes. Do we have existing space to add more classrooms?The short answer is no. We do not have empty rooms. Our elementary schools do an amazing job of fully utilizing the space they have. In fact, each elementary school has transformed multiple spaces that were originally designed as non-educational spaces and are now used as educational spaces in our elementary schools (e.g. storage areas, end of hallways, stages, locker rooms). We also have 9 modular units at our elementary schools used for instruction. We have added storage sheds since many of the storage areas have been converted to educational spaces. A Preliminary Space Analysis by OHM shows we are at least 10% under the recommended square footage for our student population. This is less than optimal for our students learning environments. Where can I learn more about other Ohio Facilities Construction Commission projects and the OFCC in general?Here is a link to the current schools co-funded by the OFCC during the period 2012 – 2018. It gives you an idea of what is out there and the many options we have to best suit our community. https://ofcc.ohio.gov/K-12-PortfolioThe map is searchable by type of school building, student population, future ready school examples (21C), or by LEED certifications. Once you click on an icon, you will find a summary description of the project, fact sheet, and photo gallery.