Parker Elementary plan approved by State Department of Education

The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) has approved a request from the Elk River Area School District for $5.9 million in facility improvements to Parker Elementary School in Elk River. The School Board approved the project this summer, but by statute the MDE had to approve the request before it can move forward.

Parker Elementary School was built in 1973 with an addition in 2002.  The 69,023-square-foot building has not had any significant facility improvements, with the exception of the addition, in its 38 years, according to a news release from the District Office.

Parker Elementary Principal Mike Malmberg in the school’s 38-year-old boiler room. The state recently signed off on a renovation plan for the school.

Plans are for the improvements, funded through the 2012-2013 budget, to be completed by end of summer in 2012.  The plan identifies the improvements in the categories of site, exterior, interior, mechanical and electrical.  The project does not include additions or improving of the entire facility.

The initiative is part of the school district’s 10-year deferred maintenance plan.

The specific funding sources for the $5.9 million project are $5.4 million from an Alternative Facilities Levy and $500,000 from the district’s capital fund.   Minnesota state law authorizes School Boards to approve levies for these types of projects.