EA785 School Plant Planning and Operation

School Plant Planning and Operation
• Existing school facilities and future facilities.
• Facilities should be: clean, attractive,
functional, meet the needs of the educational
requirements, enhance the learning
environment, and be safe.
• How do you determine the staffing needs to
meet these requirements?
Custodial/Maintenance Services
• Levels of perception of cleanliness: The level
of cleanliness maintained in a school
influences maintenance and operation (M&O).
• The underlying philosophy for M&O should be
that “the school can never be too clean, safe,
healthy, or secure.”
• Districts should have a well defined “chain of
command” for the house-keeping and
maintenance program.
Custodial/Maintenance Services Cont.
• Each district should have well defined job
descriptions for all staff members, including those
working in house-keeping and maintenance.
• High quality custodial services require planning
and scheduling workloads and an adequate
• There are a variety of variables that determine
how many staff are required to clean/service a
Custodial/Maintenance Cont.
• Factors include: Level of cleanliness desired, type
of facility (labs, shops, classrooms, restrooms,
locker rooms, etc.), types of surfaces to be
cleaned (carpet, tile, etc.), age of facility,
equipment available to staff, number of students
occupying the building, location of cleaning
items, etc.
• Baker and Peters (1957, pp. 77-78) outlined a six
step formula for developing a custodial workload.
Six Step Cont.
• Step 4: Given one custodian for every 15,000
square feet of usable area of building, find the
square footage factor (SF): Total Square
Footage/15,000=square footage factor (SF)
• Step 5: Given one custodian for each 2 acres
of ground that is maintained, find the grounds
factor (GF): Acres maintained/2= grounds
factor (G
Six Steps Cont.
• Step 6: Sum the five factors and divide by 5,
and add the CK factor to find the number of
cleaning custodians needed. Frohreich (1987)
suggested the CK factor for cafeteria (0.1) and
kitchen (0.2).
Custodial/Maintenance Cont.
• While this formula may not work for all
districts, it is a good guide.
• It is important to schedule custodial activities
in such a manner that they do not interfere
with the educational program. Major cleaning
should take place in the evening or at night.
• Keep in mind “outdoor” maintenance may
also be a distraction, such as mowing grass.
Maintenance Schedule
• It is extremely important to keep facilities and
equipment in good working order and well
maintained. This includes, playground
equipment, shop equipment, lab equipment, and
athletic equipment maintained.
• Develop a maintenance schedule checklist for all
facilities and equipment.
• Keep in mind that properly maintained
equipment is more efficient, and provides a safe
Facility Safety
• In addition to providing a clean environment,
it is important to provide a safe environment.
• You need to conduct routine visual inspections
of all facilities to ensure there are no safety
• DESE web site provides many safety check list.
• In addition to preventing injuries, this will also
prevent litigation.
Crowding and School Capacity
• Crowding and density are factors in safety and
• The crowding of too many students into
spaces designed for learning increases the
chances of structural abuse, furniture abuse,
mechanical overloads, increased behavior
problems, and lower achievement.
• Sufficiency of space is judged by many
variables, including curriculum functions.
Facility Construction
• When it is determined that additional space is
needed or when current facilities are deemed
unsafe, or outdated, most districts will
develop plans for new facilities.
• There are a variety of ways to fund new
facilities, however, bond issues or lease
purchase agreements are the most common.
Facility Construction Cont.
• There are many steps in the planning process.
• Planning for new school buildings or major
renovations to existing facilities requires
considerable effort on the part of many highly
skilled professional and technical personnel
both inside and outside of the school system.
• Earthman (2000) identified eleven steps in the
planning of new school facilities.
Facility Construction Cont.
• Those steps include: Organize the staff,
Determine the size of the student population,
Select and acquire a site, Select an architect,
Develop a funding plan, Develop a set of
educational specifications, Monitor the
design, Advertise/bid the project, Monitor
construction, Orient the staff to the building,
and Evaluate the building and planning
Facility Planning Process
• Planning, designing, and building schools is an
awesome responsibility, and should be a
shared responsibility.
• The first action is to assemble a school
planning team which may consist of
representatives of the administration, board
of education, teachers, non-professional
personnel, and out-side consultants.
Facility Planning Cont.
• This group should develop a short range and a
long range plan of action for facilities.
• Once this plan is developed, progress should
be reviewed on an annual basis.
• The plan should list a timeline, estimated cost,
and should be prioritized.
• A long range plan can be for a minimum of
three years to as many as ten or twelve years.
Facility Planning Cont.
• Once the plan has been developed, it will be
time to implement facility improvements,
and/or construct additions or new facilities.
• When it is time to begin implementing the
facility plan, it will be time to involve an
The Architect and Services Provided
• The primary role of the architect is to
translate, from the educational specifications,
the needs and wants of the school district into
a set of working documents from which the
contractor can construct the desired facility.
• The selection of an architect is the most
important part of any building project.
Selection of an Architect
• The district should invite proposals from
architects. A pre-qualification questionnaire
should be developed by the school asking the
architect questions that are of interest to the
district and valuable in the selection process.
Selection of Architect Cont.
• The district questionnaire should include:
1. Where is the firm located?
2. How many years has the firm been in business?
3. What experience does the firm have in school design?
4. How many staff members are in the firm?
5. Does your firm provide consultants?
6. Will you provide and energy cost analysis?
7. What is your fee?
8. What is timeline from preliminary drawings to final drawing specifications?
9. What services are provided for the fee?
10. How often will you visit the job site?
11. Has a school district ever brought legal action against your firm?
12. Have you ever brought legal action against a school?
13. How do you handle change orders?
14. What are your current projects?
Architect Cont.
• After the board has selected an architect, the
one major thing left is to develop a contract
with the architect.
• The standard AIA Contract is a good document
to begin with. Make sure all items are
addressed in detail in the agreement,
especially fees and supervision of the project.
• Districts should use adequate legal advise
when preparing the contract.
Architect Cont.
• A check list of features that should be covered in
contracting are as follows:
1. The length of contract.
2. The method of terminating contract.
3. Payment, fees, and/or services.
4. Payments to architect-schedule.
5. Supervision
6. Ownership of blueprints, documents
7. Board approval of plans required prior to advertising
for bids
8. Payments for major plan changes
Architect Cont.
• The district should always have a written
document agreement with the architect that
fully describes the project, the services to be
performed by the architect, the compensation
to be paid, and the owner’s obligation to the
architect. If a project is abandoned, or if for
other reasons the architects normal services
are not completed, the architect is normally
paid that portion of the normal fee calculated
on a percentage basis.
Architect Cont.
• Typically, the architect works closely with the
administration, school board, and others
chosen to be involved, to learn all they can
about the project, such as; Intended use,
anticipated educational programs, past and
estimated pupil population, teaching methods
to be used, needs and wants, type and quality
of construction, and budget.
Architectural Services
Preliminary design
Design development
Working drawings
• With this information the architect can
1. The necessary number of spaces
2. Proper size of spaces
3. Location and spatial relationships of rooms
4. Estimate of construction
This process is called “programming”.
Programming Cont.
• Programming is necessary prior to design to
assure that the project will fit the needs of the
district. It also provides the Board and
Administration, very early in the project, with
the best assurance that all necessary spaces
have been included, and to make sure the
project will be within the budget before
beginning a design.
Preliminary Design
• Translates educational specifications into
building spaces
• Cost analysis is performed
• Unit costs are calculated
• Decisions are made by the board as to what
needs to be deleted or added depending on
cost projections.
Design Development
• Drawings are made that reflect the size and
character of the project.
• Structural, mechanical, and electrical systems
are set forth.
• Building materials are selected.
• Presented to the Board for approval.
Working Drawings
• Provide contractor with construction
information about the project pertaining to:
1. Quality
2. Dimensions
3. Configurations
4. Locations
5. Relationships of proposed structure to
existing structures
Architectural Specifications
• Used to establish bidding and construction
information for competing contractors
• Establish expected quality of construction
• Outline types of fixtures, material, and
finishes to be used.
• Delineate codes and standards that must be
followed in construction.
Final Cost Estimates
• Based upon complete, detailed working
• Related directly to architectural specifications
agreed upon by the board.
• Include cost estimates for all components of
the project.
Architect’s Bidding Assistance
• Assist owner in advertising for bids. All school
districts should have district policy which outlines
bidding requirements.
• Assists owner in issuing construction documents
to bidders
• Assists in setting date for bid award
• Presides at bid opening
• Advises the board on legality of all bids
• Advises board on competence of the bidders and
their ability to perform.
• Critical to the success of any project
• The person who can assure the correct
completion of work.
• Must be competent, talented, trustworthy,
reputable, and detail oriented.
• Bonded
Facility Site Location
• The farsighted school board and
administration will project their school site
needs well into the future and acquire
adequate sites while land is still available and
relatively economical.
• In selecting a school site, the following basic
criteria should be considered:
Facility Site Cont.
1. Economic, social, and housing makeup of the
2. Integration with community planning and zoning.
3. Site location and usability of site for building,
recreation, as it pertains to water table, flood plain,
subsoil conditions.
4. Relationship of schools to other buildings in the
5. Utility services as related to availability and cost.
6. Size of site.
Size of School Site
• The size of a school site should be determined
largely by the nature and scope of the
contemplated educational program.
Numerous state authorities have developed
recommendations for site size.
Size of School Site
• Recommendation of school sites are as follows:
• Elementary Schools-Suggested size is 10 Acres
plus one additional acre for each 100 students.
An elementary of 500 students should have 15
• Middle School-Suggested size is 20 acres plus one
addition acre for each 100 students.
• High School-Suggested size is 30 acres plus one
additional acre for each 100 students.
Recommend Instructional Space Size
• The Department of Elementary and Secondary
Education has recommended square footage
for all instructional areas in the school.
• The web address to access this information is:
Bond Issues
• The most common source of funding for
school buildings projects is the bond issue.
• Missouri Statute Section 164.121 identifies
the purposes for bond issues as follows:
1. Purchasing schoolhouse sites and other land
for school purposes.
2. Erecting schoolhouses or library buildings.
3. Furnishing schoolhouses or library buildings
Bonds Cont.
4. Building additions to or repairing old
5. Purchasing school buses and other
transportation equipment.
6. Paying off and discharging assessments made
by political subdivisions or public corporations
of the state against the district in connection
with construction. (ie sidewalks, sewers, etc.)
Bond Issue Procedures
• Determination of building needs using an
• Determination of bonding capacity (15% of
assessed valuation).
• Selection of bond council
• Election campaign, ballot language, election
Bond Procedure Cont.
Preparation of bond maturity schedule
Selection of paying agent.
Preparation for bond sale.
Bond ratings
Publication of the sale
Sale of bonds
Selection of Financial Consultant
• This is a very important decision as this
individual/firm will oversee most of the details
of the bond issue requirements from sample
ballot language through the sale of the bonds
and the development of the payment
• The firm usually charges a percent fee for
Sale of Bonds
• Negotiated sale requires no competition for
the sale of bonds. Generally the consultant
you employ will conduct the sale.
• Public sale is competitive bidding with an
advertised date and a specified time, place,
and date when the bidding will take place.
Rated vs. Non-Rated
• Rated by Moody’s of Standard and Poors
• Rating levels such as AAA, AA, A, BBB, BB, etc.
• The highest rated bonds are considered the
most safe investment and bring lower interest
Bond Elections
• In Missouri bond issues are approved with a
4/7 majority when the following elections are
held: municipal elections, primary elections,
general elections.
• Any other time, bond election is held requires
a 2/3 majority to pass.
Passing a Bond Issue
• Each district is unique and has a unique set of
challenges when it comes to passing bond
• There are several steps that should be taken
when promoting a bond issue.
• Organize a task force or committee to assist
with the promotion of the issue.
Passing a Bond Issue Cont.
• Develop small committees with committee
leaders to work on different areas of
promotion such as; phone campaign, door to
door literature campaign, media campaign,
club and organization speaker, etc.
• Raise funds for advertising. Remember, school
funds CANNOT be used to promote the bond
Passing a Bond Issue
• Identify number of voters that voted in last
• Identify school employees that live in the
district and voted in the last election and that
are registered voters.
• Concentrate on Yes votes.
• Once you have passed the issue, celebrate the
victory and remember to thank the patrons of
the district.
After the Bond Issue Passes
• The construction contract should; specify the
expected completion date, provide for penalty
clauses and liquidated damages if not
completed on time, insure builder has liability
and builder’s risk insurance.
Bidding Procedures
• Advertise for bids
• Furnish plans and specifications to bidders
• Provide adequate time to submit bids, usually
4 weeks.
• Public opening of bids on specified time and
date. Late bids will not be opened.
• Award contract.
Completion of Building Project
• Once bids have been “let”, the district and the
architect and or construction manager should
closely monitor progress.
• Generally, there will be weekly meetings
between the architect, contractor, and district
officials to review progress and note any issues.
• Once the facility is complete, the architect along
with the district should complete a “punch list”
prior to accepting the building.
Punch List
• A punch list is a listing of all items that do not
meet with the satisfaction of the owner. These
can be minor issues such as replacing a few
tiles, paint touch-up, etc. When the issues are
minor it is common to accept the building and
withhold a small amount of the final payment
until all issues are addressed.
Open House
• Once the building is complete it is important
to have an open house for the public and
thank them for the new facility.
• After the building is occupied, it is time to
begin to put together a maintenance schedule
to make sure the facility functions efficiently
and is attractive for years to come.
• Now it is time to begin the planning process
all over.

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