Glenburn residents will vote in November on whether to add four classrooms to their town’s school, a nearly million-dollar project that would give dozens of students permanent classroom space.
The four new classrooms would be added to what is referred to as the “92 wing” of Glenburn School, the only school in the town and in the Glenburn School Department. Voters will consider the measure in a local referendum on Nov. 2.
The addition would house three kindergarten classrooms and one pre-K classroom. About 57 such students were at the elementary school in the Maine Department of Education’s most recent count.
The change would bring students currently being taught in portable buildings across campus into classrooms in the main complex, Glenburn School Department Superintendent Richard Modery said Wednesday. The school began using such portable units over 20 years ago due to concerns about capacity in the current structure.
The new classrooms would be on the same heating, ventilation, air conditioning and security system as the rest of the school.
The four-classroom addition to the Glenburn School would cost a little over $916,000. About $766,000 of that would come from federal American Rescue Plan funds approved by Congress in March. The school would use up to $150,000 in capital reserve funds.
Facility improvements are among the spending items that school districts in the Bangor region are funding with American Rescue Plan money. Brewer High School underwent a handful of building upgrades over the summer, including a new HVAC system. Regional School Unit 22 was looking into an addition to Hampden Academy to add classroom space that would provide more space for social distancing.
The Glenburn project is still in its early stages, Modery said, with approval from residents being an essential step. A local contractor has performed a feasibility study for the school that found the project was achievable under its funding model, Modery said.
The Glenburn Town Council will hold a public hearing on the matter in a meeting at 7 p.m. on Thursday.
Glenburn was one of several communities outside of Bangor that saw population growth in the 2020 U.S. Census compared with the 2010 count, though the increase was less than in many other communities. The town saw 54 new residents from 2010 to 2020, a 1 percent increase.
About 400 students from prekindergarten through eighth grade were enrolled at Glenburn School last school year, according to Maine Department of Education data.