Should Bethel High School be replaced with a new building at a new location?
Bethel School District is circulating this one-question survey to students, parents, alumni and community members as it develops plans for the future of the 66-year-old school.
“We are getting the pulse of the community about this idea,” said Doug Boyles, district spokesman.
The results of the survey will be shared with the school board, which would need to make a decision on the idea by it’s July 20 meeting if it wants to add a bond to the November ballot.
The school district owns vacant property at 224th Street East and 70th Avenue East in Graham, about 2 miles east of Bethel High.
The school district asks community members if it likes the idea of building a new Bethel High on that location and using the old building for other student programs.
As of Thursday morning, 730 people had responded to the survey. “That’s pretty good for us,” Boyles said.
Boyles says he’s not sure how people would react to the idea. Many will like the idea of a modern school, he said, but one comment he read said, “You can’t relocate history.”
"It means a lot to a lot of people," Boyles said.
The survey will run for a couple of weeks before results are presented to the board.
In February, voters rejected a bond that called for renovating Bethel High, building three elementary schools, remodeling four schools and replacing HVAC systems at three schools.
Since 1980, voters have rejected 16 of 20 bond measures. Bethel hasn’t passed a bond since 2006.
“Our buildings are beat up,” Boyles said. “And we are experiencing a lot of growth in our community. And we are expecting more.”
Bethel High opened in 1952 near the corner of 224th and 38th Avenue East. It is the oldest of the district’s four high schools. A gym, library and cafeteria were added in 1971. A fine arts complex was built in ‘79. The school was last remodeled in 1989.
The survey is posted at surveymonkey.com/r/BethelHigh.