On July 11, 2022, the Beresford School District Board of Education (BSD BOE) unanimously passed the following motion, "Approval of Resolution Declaring Necessity and Expediency for Issuance of General Obligation School Bonds, Calling an Election, Therefore, and Hiring Professionals in Connection Therewith." The bond election is scheduled for Tuesday, September 13, 2022, at the Beresford City Library from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. To add additional gymnasium space to the South Campus, the BSD BOE would need a bond from the general public for $3,500,000 and $3,500,000 in capital outlay certificates.
What work has the Beresford School District and Beresford School District Board of Education done to get to this point? During our September 2021 strategic planning session, the Beresford School District Board of Education discussed short-term and long-term needs. We identified the following action steps during our session: (1) Explore efforts to alleviate gym space congestion and usage, (2) Conduct a growth analysis regarding building capacity and future projects, and (3) Develop communication plans and talking points regarding future efforts based on current needs and growth patterns. The need for additional gymnasium space for our students and community has been a discussion point for the last five years. We utilize our gymnasiums for our fine arts, athletic, and physical education programming. Space becomes a premium during and after the school day when different groups and organizations request our space for their practices and events. During the 2021-2022 school year, we engaged with Architecture Incorporated to create preliminary designs and obtain a cost estimate for gymnasium space, we analyzed growth trends and crafted models regarding building capacity, we updated/reviewed our master facility plans, and we created discussion points regarding our work.
What does the project involve? The BSD serves over 700 students. Elementary, middle, and high school students are all directly affected by gymnasium space needs in the District. Adding a gymnasium would add three full-length cross-courts, a full-size competition court for HSAA-sanctioned events, an activity entrance, and renovations to the multi-purpose room (e.g., with the addition of restrooms and a concessions area). The addition would allow us to move away from our outdoor freezer to an indoor freezer with additional space for kitchen/custodial storage. The new gym would be able to seat 1,890 people and the project involves the addition of 25,140 square feet and a remodel of 3,900 square feet. We have positioned the project in a location that would allow for future expansion based on our needs and priorities.
Will the Beresford School District continue to need the opt-out? Yes. Based on current and future needs (projected), the Beresford School District will continue to need an opt-out. An opt-out provides dollars to our general fund. The general fund is the primary fund of the district. All expenses for elementary, middle school, high school, co-curricular, certified staff, administration, classified staff, and custodial are accounted for through the general fund. Approximately 80-85% of the general fund is used to support salaries and benefits to employees. The opt-out helps us provide programming and staffing for our kids. During the 2024-2025 school year, we will recommend that the board approve an opt-out resolution during our January 2025 school board meeting.
Current Opt-Out Details
Spring 2021 $200,000
Fall 2021 & Spring 2022 $400,000
Fall 2022 & Spring 2023 $400,000
Fall 2023 & Spring 2024 $400,000
Fall 2024 & Spring 2025 $400,000
Fall 2025 $200,000
What would you do with the additional space at the South Campus? The gymnasium addition allows us to improve the quality of our academic and athletic experiences at the Beresford School District. The additional court space would allow us to schedule practices immediately after school. During the winter, both basketball teams could be done by supper time, kids could be home at a decent hour, and the space would be available for community practices. More so, we would be able to honor more requests regarding community youth practice sessions. Instead of having our dance team practice in the high school lobby, our dance team could practice in an area similar to where they compete. When we have our elementary, middle, and high school concerts, we would still be able to be ready for our concerts without needing to set up and clean up multiple times. Play practices would be free of interruptions caused by athletic practices. During the spring, we would be able to have space for indoor track, golf, and softball practices without utilizing our high school hallways and lobby as training areas by necessity. During the school day, our middle school and high school physical education classes would not need to split court space while lunch preparations and clean up happens in the multi-purpose room. The gymnasium addition would allow youth tournaments to take place at one main location with five cross courts of action (e.g., three in the new space and two in our current gymnasium). More so, additional tournaments and experiences would bring more people into the community -people would spend their dollars at our local establishments during the day.
How will you pay for the project, and how will this affect my taxes? The Beresford School District would utilize $3.5 million in capital outlay certificates and $3.5 million in bond funds to finance the project. Issued capital outlay certificates would not affect a patron’s taxes. Instead, the District would make committed payments from our capital outlay budget for 15 years to help finance the gym addition. A bond issue would impact a patron’s taxes with a mill levy of $0.49 per $1,000.
If the Beresford School District has an opt-out (and will continue to need one), why does the Beresford School District need to go to the taxpayers for a bond? The opt-out goes to our General Fund (GF). The GF primarily pays for the services of the people who work with and for the children of our district. Building projects come from the District’s Capital Outlay (CO) fund. To finance the project, we need to utilize cash on hand, capital outlay certificates, and a capital outlay bond. Through the use of cash on hand and capital outlay certificates, we can budget District payments for 15 years for the project. We have 10-year and 15-year CO plans in place that allow us to make payments while addressing maintenance and building project needs.
How does the cost of this project compare to the cost of the Legacy Project from 2018? The Legacy Project (performing arts center, auxiliary gymnasium, student lobby/commons, and community access fitness center) was a potential $14.8 million dollar project in 2018. The project encompassed roughly 51,000 square feet of new construction and remodeled area. The Beresford School District intended to fund the project with $2-3 million in Capital Outlay Certificates, $1-2 million in a Community Capital Campaign, and with an $11 million bond. The $11 million bond had a mill levy of $1.60/$1,000. The South Campus gymnasium addition project has a project cost of $7 million dollars for 25,140 square feet of new construction and a remodel of 3,900 square feet. To fund the project, the Beresford School District would utilize $3.5 million in capital outlay certificates and $3.5 million in bond funds. Issued capital outlay certificates would not affect a patron’s taxes. Instead, the District would make committed payments from our capital outlay budget for 15 years to help finance the gym addition. A bond issue would impact a patron’s taxes with a mill levy of $0.49 per $1,000.
What if the Beresford School District does not need all $3.5 million for the bond issue? If the Beresford School District does not need all $3.5 million from bonds to complete the project, the Beresford School District will not utilize the requested dollars. As a result, taxpayers would have a smaller bond to finance.
How can we learn more or ask questions about the project? Stakeholders are welcome to contact us to discuss the project. Superintendent Degen can be reached by phone at 1-605-763-4292 or by email at Dustin.Degen@k12.sd.us. Business Manager Olson can be reached by phone at 1-605-763-4293 or by email at Jared.Olson@k12.sd.us. Please call ahead before dropping by so we do not miss you.
If you are interested in joining us in a more formal setting, please consider attending a community session (details below).
August 8, 2022, @ 7:00 p.m. (Beresford Middle/High School -School Board Meeting)
August 22, 2022, 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. (Beresford Elementary School)
August 22, 2022, 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. (Beresford Middle/High School)
September 12, 2022, @ 6:00 p.m. (Beresford Middle/High School -School Board Meeting)
Does the Beresford School District have a master facility plan and can the District afford capital outlay certificate payments? The Beresford School District maintains 10-year and 15-year facility plans. Within our plans, we consider our yearly needs and building maintenance needs. Based on a projected bond of $3.5 million and capital outlay certificates of $3.5 million, we would need to set aside roughly $330,000 yearly (for 15 years) to make our capital outlay certificate payments. Our bus barn payments will end in the fiscal year 2026. Our HVAC payments will end in the fiscal year 2025. As a result, the Beresford School District would still be able to address yearly needs and future projects based on the remaining dollars budgeted for each fiscal year.
Why do you need to renovate the multi-purpose room? We will need additional restrooms by adding gymnasium space to our existing infrastructure. Based on the building’s projected footprint and cost-effectiveness, remodeling the multipurpose room allows us to create an activity entrance area with updated and fully ADA-compliant restrooms, and an updated concessions stand. More so, we would be able to use the activity entrance, restrooms, and concession stands area for events in the new gym space and our existing gym space. Students would be able to dine in the renovated area during the school day. We would use our existing kitchen and lobby area to provide lunch service (e.g., dining would also happen in the renovated multipurpose room and lobby area). More so, we could utilize the renovated multipurpose room space for class meetings and other events that would allow an audience of 150-175 students. While we would lose the multipurpose room as a court, we would gain additional court space with the three cross-court layout of the gym addition. We mainly use the multi-purpose room for physical education courses, dining, practices (district and community), and sub-varsity competitions. During the day, we relocate high school or middle school physical education courses for dining setup and cleanup.
How often is our gymnasium space utilized by our school and community beyond games and performances? School and community organizations utilize Beresford School District gymnasium space throughout the school year. Depending upon games, matches, events, concerts, etc., student-athletes may practice before school starts or after school. School practices can start as early as 6:00 a.m. and end at/around 7:30 p.m./8:00 p.m. Community facility use varies depending upon available times (e.g., during November, December, or January, community groups working with elementary-aged children may be done at/around 9:00 p.m.). From August 2021 through May 2022, there have been 755-scheduled gym requests for school practices, community practices, open gyms, craft fairs, etc. The total does not include scheduled game nights for basketball, volleyball, play performances, or denied requests.
How will this help our fine arts programming? When fine art events would take place in our current gymnasium or at Beresford Elementary School, we would not schedule practices and events up to the date the space is needed for a performance. This would allow for play practices to take place at Beresford Elementary School -rehearsals that could be free of bouncing basketballs and other events taking place in the background. During concert seasons, we would eliminate the need for multiple set-ups for similar types of events. We have made sound and lighting upgrades to our current gymnasiums. We plan to utilize these spaces for fine arts performances, prom, dances, and concerts.
Do you need to build classrooms first? To address the potential need for classroom space, we have studied our growth rate, our potential building capacity, and created a model to determine when adding classroom space becomes a priority. Based on our growth rate, current building capacities, and our predictor model, we do not need to add classrooms to the Beresford School District. Enrollment data will be continuously reviewed to ensure that we have the classroom space we need.
How could the gymnasium project help our enrollment? The Beresford School District needs to attract open enrollment students/families to our district. Open enrolled students choose to attend our school because of academic opportunities, and families make decisions to attend our school based on fine arts and athletics. Updated and functional facilities factor into a family’s decision. The additional space from the project will help us provide quality experiences for all students/patrons. Because of student and family mobility, we are in a competitive environment to attract students to our schools.
Where can I find the website version of this information? To see this information on the District's website, go to: https://www.beresford.k12.sd.u...