Options for South Whidbey High School now range from $25.8 million to $32.7 million

The committee charged with consolidating the Langley Middle School students and programs to the high school by 2012 will present two final cost options to the South Whidbey school board tonight.

The total project cost for option one is $32.7 million; the total for the second option is $25.8 million.

Wednesday afternoon, the committee went through a rigid cost-cutting exercise designed to pare down the original proposal for revamping South Whidbey High School into a facility that would share space with LMS once that school is closed. The cost of the original proposal ranged from $24 million to $43.3 million.

Committee members spent hours at today's meeting, scrutinizing details such as storage needs, bathrooms requirements and adding or subtracting square footage to the project.

Many cuts were made.

Option two provides no home economics classroom or remodels of the existing wood shop and video production studio. There is no middle school field house and four classrooms were cut in favor of a single computer lab.

A $1.82 million gym survived the cut because without it, middle school athletic programs would be severely impacted and the high school facilities are unable to handle the overflow, said high school athletic director John Patton.

Middle school teacher Erik Jokinen offered a spirited defense of the field house.

"We can't eliminate the very reasons that we want students to come here and not somewhere else," he said.

The school board will hear details on both options as well as the process and thinking by the committee at its workshop tonight at 6:30 p.m. in the community room at the elementary school.

Subcommittee reports will be made covering the proposed bell schedule, site visits to schools which have gone through the consolidation process, a recent parent survey, common spaces, sports facilities and science, technology, engineering and math classrooms.

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