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Compassionately Connected, Joyfully Engaged, Always Learning

Capital Improvement Project

Photo of kids wearing hard hats.

Newly Proposed Capital Project Further Brings School District’s “One Webster” Concept to Life

When lifelong resident and Webster graduate Carmen Gumina introduced the One Webster vision in the spring of 2017, its core tenets included being Compassionately Connected, Joyfully Engaged, Always Learning. The concept has been embraced and embodied by nearly 8,400 students, 1,400 faculty members and the tight-knit community surrounding the Webster Central School District, according to Mr. Gumina, the schools’ superintendent.

The district has always promoted a strong partnership with the Town of Webster, and both Mr. Gumina and Town Supervisor Ronald Nesbitt have a shared interest in community wellness and safety and security for its constituents. That commitment is coming to life through aspects of a $69.5 million capital improvement project proposed by the board of education. Webster CSD voters will have the chance to vote on this initiative on Tuesday, December 11.

“Webster CSD made a commitment to an extensive, dynamic strategic planning process 10 years ago that continues to this day,” Mr. Gumina says. “Strategic planning is spearheaded by the Webster CSD Board of Education and includes representatives from WCSD's community, including residents, students, faculty and staff. Through regular community engagement surveys, valued feedback has resulted in a vibrant One Webster district culture that is focused on educating the whole child, preparing each student to learn and practice the skills and habits necessary to be Compassionately Connected, Joyfully Engaged and Always Learning.”

The project will touch all 11 of the district’s buildings in addition to its transportation department’s headquarters. Highlights include key structural and facilities repairs; state-of-the-art media centers across all elementary schools, Willink Middle School and Webster Schroeder High School; phase two of playground upgrades to the elementary schools; upgrades to the libraries; renovations to the Webster Thomas High School Technology Education wing; improvements to the playing fields at both high schools; and district wide parking and traffic-flow improvements. From a security standpoint, the project will include vestibule renovations at the elementary schools, district wide radio conversion and security film installed to all first-floor windows, offering advanced intrusion protection.

The estimated $69.5 million project will need to be approved by voters. It would be bonded over a 15-year timeframe with 70-75 percent of the cost delivered through state aid. The impact on the average homeowner ($191,700 in Webster) is expected to be $25 per year over the 15 years of the bond. In addition, the debt incurred by the district for this proposed project over the next 15 years will replace debt that is expiring from previously approved capital improvement projects. Further details will be updated and available on this page.

Additionally, Webster CSD plans to enter into a partnership with the Town of Webster by making a one-time payment of $325,000 to the town which is the value of the surrounding land at the Basket Road stadium. The district will take over operation of the stadium, which is already an asset to the Webster community. The town will apply the district’s one-time payment toward the development of an open-air classroom at Sandbar Park, the milelong stretch off Lake Road that separates the north end of Irondequoit Bay from Lake Ontario. The goal: to create an outdoor environmental teaching station where students can observe fish, turtles and other wildlife along the bay. The town is also looking to put in a boardwalk, noting that preliminary plans for Sandbar Park will come forth later this fall.

“The important point to note here is that we’re going to take the purchase price of the Basket Road facility and reinvest it into the citizens of Webster,” says Mr. Nesbitt. “It’s a great facility, but the town is not using it as much as we would like, and I know the district could make good use of it as its modified, JV and varsity teams continue to grow. The facility will still have a partnership with the town to use it for its programs, and we can hold more activities at nighttime under the lights. I think it’s a win-win for the community overall.”

Mr. Gumina agrees. “Three- and 4-year-olds will benefit as much 44-year-olds and 84-year-olds! The whole family will be able to use this facility, which goes back to the idea of what we do for our community around wellness — keeping people moving, giving them opportunities to stay healthy and exercise in places that are safe and well maintained.

This proposed capital project will focus on improvements that make a difference to our entire One Webster community, giving taxpayers consistent, steady and predictable costs. This initiative truly reflects the concept of One Webster — a theme that is woven throughout all we do at our district.”

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