Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions Questions
- How does one keep track of the LTDC’s progress? How do I contact the LTDC with questions and comments?
- Who are the potential partners?
- Why is Lincoln looking at public/private partnerships and other alternative funding measures?
- Is the Lincoln High School project a rebuild or a renovation?
- Is there already a recommendation?
- What conversations have already happened within the community?
- How is the project to be paid for?
- How are you going to maintain the essence of Lincoln High School?
- How long has the LTDC been working on this project and who makes up the LTDC?
- How does the LTDC Report/LHS vision fit with City strategies?
How does one keep track of the LTDC’s progress?
How do I contact the LTDC with questions and comments?
Keep track of the LTDC progress by logging onto the Lincoln High School Website at: http://www.pps.k12.or.us/schools/Lincoln/379. If you would like to contact the LTDC with questions and/or comments please write to: firstname.lastname@example.org . We will get back to you promptly.
Who are the potential partners?
At this stage of the process, the LTDC has not actively solicited any potential partners, so the potential partners are ideas, not anything that has come out of concrete discussions. Once the Portland School District determines the educational direction of high schools, the LTDC is committed to pursuing synergistic partners that can enhance the education of our students. Ideas include: PSU School of Education, OMSI, Portland Parks and Recreation, KGW, art galleries, laboratories, performing arts organizations, film institutes, a community law library, commercial language programs like Berlitz to share a language lab with, and the Oregon Culinary Institute.
Why is Lincoln looking at public/private partnerships and other alternative funding measures?
Before 1990, money from the state accounted for about 30 percent of school funding. After voters capped and limited growth of property taxes with Measures 5, 47, and 50, the primary source of education funding shifted from locally controlled property taxes to the state income tax. By 1997 the state’s share of school funding was about 70 percent. (City Club of Portland, Writing a New Chapter: A City Club Report on School Funding) Today, control and responsibility for school funding rests mostly with the Legislature. Measures 5 and 50 have created a ceiling on school funding that is difficult for local taxing districts to exceed. School districts have few funding options within their control and none of them provide long-term funding stability. Bond funds, which are the traditional source of funding for capital projects, cannot be used to pay teacher salaries or other operating expenses. The current situation of school funding forces a rethinking of how new schools or major renovations are financed.
Is the Lincoln High School project a rebuild or a renovation?
The preference is for a new school because the current school's physical plant is incredibly inefficient and the layout of the current building limits our ability to reconfigure classrooms to support technology, create flexible spaces, improve security, etc.
Is there already a recommendation?
No. The LTDC’s report is about possibilities and advocates no single recommendation. It is meant to inspire the reader and create dialogue. Until the funding picture becomes clearer and we have more feedback from the community, PPS, and the city, we are in no position to push a particular solution.
What conversations have already happened within the community?
Conversations thus far have centered on the schools that feed into Lincoln: Ainsworth, Bridlemile, Chapman, Forest Park, Skyline, West Sylvan and East Sylvan. We have met with the PTAs and/or Foundations at these schools.
We have met with the above feeder school parent groups, as well as Lincoln’s Booster Board, Local School Advisory Council (LSAC), Foundation and PTA. We have also spoken at school events such as Lincoln’s Back-to-School Night. Discussions have also included the Lincoln High School Alumni Association.
Previously, the LTDC conducted a visioning session at Lincoln with the Lincoln cluster, as well as representatives from Benson High School, Jefferson High School, members of the Goose Hollow Neighborhood Association, district and school board representatives and community members. This session was facilitated by Jason Franklin of the 21st Century School Fund.
There have been meetings with the Lincoln High School faculty and staff since March of 2007.
We have had on-going communications with the above groups by e-mail as well as postings on the Lincoln and cluster school listserves.
The LTDC has also included the following neighborhood associations in our conversations: Bridlemile Neighborhood Association, Forest Park Neighborhood Association, Goose Hollow Neighborhood Association, Pearl District Neighborhood Association, and Southwest Residential League (SWRL).
How is the project to be paid for?
Typically, the school district would get voter approval to issue bonds (and levy property taxes to pay for them) to fund capital improvement projects. PPS is considering going to the voters to fund facility improvement projects across the district. The LHS project may be funded with a portion of these bonds. However, PPS will be challenged to pay for all the needed facility improvement projects with bond proceeds. Consequently, the LTDC has identified alternative funding sources that can offset, or potentially eliminate, the need for bond funds. A bulk of the alternative funding would come from either Urban Renewal funds or leveraged tax revenue from the development of unused LHS property. Other sources could include New Market Tax Credits, land lease/sale proceeds, Floor-Area-Ratio transfer sale, grants, and other sources. See pages 26-31 of the LTDC Report.
How are you going to maintain the essence of Lincoln High School?
The Long Term Development Committee is charged with finding a long-term solution to the facilities issue at Lincoln. This isn’t about changing the soul of Lincoln. This is about changing the “shell”, the facility itself. By improving the environment, we improve the quality of education. A new Lincoln is ideally a facility that embodies the 21st Century Schools Vision: flexible spaces for different kinds of learning; classrooms that are rich in technology; classrooms designed for health and performance; maximizing indoor air quality and daylight; sustainability (think green, teach green), and synergistic partners within the community that enrich and complement the education provided. These are welcome and much needed changes. The traditions, the sense of history, the sense of community -- this would be celebrated in our halls and in our classrooms, where there is adequate wall and trophy space. This would be celebrated in an auditorium that can actually hold our student population. This would be celebrated in a variety of athletic facilities that adequately serve our student population. The high academic standards that have been a part of the Lincoln culture since the beginning can only be enhanced when the learning environment is improved. A new Lincoln means a better Lincoln.
How long has the LTDC been working on this project and who makes up the LTDC?
The Portland Public School District authorized the formation of the Lincoln High School Long Term Development Committee (LTDC) in November 2006. Since its inception, the committee has expanded to experts in public relations, non-profit work, future LHS parents, and LHS alumni. This strengthens the original committee of experts from such fields as architecture, construction, education, law, project management, public transportation, urban planning and educational facilities management. (See list of committee members).
How does the LTDC Report/LHS vision fit with City strategies?
Great schools make a great city. Portland strives to be a great city. Portland will not fulfill that vision until it has great schools. Great schools retain families in cities. A city without families is not vibrant. Portland has recognized this through its financial support through such grants as The Schools, Families, Housing Communities grant as well as the Portland’s City Vision grant. These grants along with the city’s push for an income tax to help our schools, exemplifies the city’s commitment to great schools.