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Board Modifies Timetable for Horner Middle School Conversion

(Fremont, CA, Dec. 14, 2018) – The timetable for the conversion of Horner Middle School was proactively extended one year to the fall of 2020 by the Board of Trustees at last night’s meeting. The remaining schedule for the conversion of the other four Fremont Unified School District (FUSD) junior high schools to middle schools remains unchanged.


“We believe this proactive decision by the Board at this time is in the best interest of students and their families as they can adequately plan for the schools they will attend next year,” said Dr. Kim Wallace, Superintendent. “It also benefits teachers and staff as we plan for the shifts in personnel necessary to support the middle school conversion.”


At its Dec. 12 meeting, the Board received a presentation on the status of the new construction and modernization project at Horner Middle School. Despite a sixth-month setback in starting the project due to delayed approval from the Division of the State Architect, Phase 1 of construction is on track to be completed by next fall but the compressed schedule meant that any unforeseen delays could have caused disruptions to the opening of Horner.


The district has mitigation strategies in place to deal with common delays, such as a set number of rain days. However, the unpredictable delays resulting from extended bad weather, shortages of raw materials and labor from natural disasters, delays in utility connections and a highly competitive construction market increase that risk. Board members cited optimized student safety, the number of other construction projects, and ample time remaining to inform parents and adjust staffing needs accordingly as reasons to modify the Horner conversion timetable now.


Construction is continuing but with a less aggressive schedule. The alternate plan will allow for some project costs to be credited back to the District, the substantial completion of all core facilities and a safer transition because construction will be minimized around the student population.


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