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Duval County Public Schools outlines a solution for aging schools

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Duval County Public Schools rolled out part of its proposed plan to improve aging schools in the district.

Monday, DCPS recommended solutions for schools in Districts 1 and 2, which account for only 15% of the total allocation.

The plan for District 1 calls for two new replacement schools and major repairs to all school facilities.

The school district said it would remove $72 million in backlog repairs and reduce the building age of schools from 37 to 31.

DCPS said District 2 would construct one new replacement school and one consolidation into renovated schools. According to the school district, the building age of schools would be reduced from 34 to 31.

The school district said district-level highlights include construction of 30 new schools as either replacements on-site or on new site. It also includes 17 consolidations impacting 42 schools with children from those schools attending new or renovated school buildings.

The projected cost of the plan is $1.95 billion, including $1.03 billion in new construction expenditures and $922 million of expenditures in improvements, renovations and additions.

DCPS said it’s not at the stage to determine where the funding would come from.

Some parents like Sharmin Smith said they would support a half-cent sales tax.

“I don’t mind paying another half cent to ensure that our kids get the best education possible,” Smith said.

The entire plan will be outlined in the coming weeks.

The next round of meetings will be held March 21 at 6 p.m. at Englewood High School and Ed White School where plans for Districts 3 and 6 will be introduced.

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