OSWEGO, NY – Dr. Dean Goewey, Oswego City School District Superintendent, dispelled several rumors at this week’s board of education meeting – including one claiming the Education Center had been purchased by a church.
“Yes, we did articulate the desire to close a school based on marketability. Then as soon as the budget was passed, we would get to work on marketing and selling a property and redistricting our district,” he said. “That would help generate funds against next (school) year’s $4 million gap.”
But, once they started looking at requirements from State Ed Department regarding selling a school, they discovered some regulations about school bonding.
“Because we have a recent capital project, when there is bonding against all of our elementary schools that exceeds the value of the building, selling a school is no longer an option for us,” the superintendent pointed out. “Hence the most recent announcement that we are in negations now, legal is going back and forth relative to drafting a contract with a brokerage firm to sell the Education Center.”
No decision has been reached, he added.
“Once we enter into an agreement to sell the education center, a committee would be formed to talk about how. We may repurpose one of the five (elementary) schools to house the Education Center. We know that we need to have students in all five of our elementary schools in order to raise state aid,” Dr. Goewey said. “We’re not closing an elementary school; so I don’t want people to get all nervous about that.”
The superintendent said he has heard rumors, too.
“I heard that we sold the Education Center to a church,” he said. “I can assure you that we wouldn’t do that. We want the building on the tax roles.”
The district will enter into a contract with the Pyramid Corporation to sell the property and they will help the district identify and repurpose a school.
There are some projects “brewing below the surface that would put great use of all of our fine elementary schools and the running of our district by moving our Education Center into one of them,” Dr. Goewey said. “We have not started those conversations yet.”