Development and Impact on Schools
Under the proposed Patterson development plan and the approved Tupelo lot development, the children of 3000+ residents would further burden an overcrowded and underfunded school system. Our schools are already suffering from cuts to science, PE and computer teachers, counselors, and librarians. Class sizes already have increased and the school year shortened. Funding for Fremont schools is so poor that a parcel tax will be considered by Fremont residents.
Both Thornton Junior High
and American High School are over capacity1. "If the
number of students from the Patterson development cannot
be accommodated at these schools, or if the necessary
expansion is not feasible or recommended, the District
may be required to resort to more difficult
accommodations with wider-ranging effects such as
assigning students to other campuses, adjusting
attendance area boundaries, modifying District programs,
or changing school scheduling to year-round calendars to
increase usable capacity."2
Thus, families of students
already in these and other Fremont schools would suffer.
What happens to quality of education if steps described
above were implemented?
Regarding Fremont Unified
School District’s capacity, K-6 is at 99.34%, junior
high is at 97.05%, and senior high is at 97.05%.1
All it takes is overdevelopment, some normal wear and
tear breakdown in some of the facilities, and schools
will be over 100% capacity. Parents, teachers, and
students will then have to be concerned about the
consequences of overcrowding rather than education.
The Patterson development
proposal shows a shortfall of $10.4 million, which
assumes State funding being available for building an
elementary school. But in a "worst case" scenario, which
assumes payment of developer impact fees, no State
grants (since it is never certain that State funding
will be available for capital projects), and no
contribution of a school site, the Patterson proposal
results in a $16.6 million shortfall.2
Neither of these cases deal with the problem of ongoing
maintenance, or teacher salaries and benefits (80% of a
school's costs). Thus, for all Fremont residents, the
problem of educating the new students could be very
Unified School District (FUSD) 2006
Enrollment vs. Capacity (%)
Fremont Unified School District.
Area Economics. Northern Plain Planning Area Initiative
Fiscal Analysis. June 2006. Pages 56, 60.