Safety is the main focus of a $10.93M bond proposed to Union Gap School District voters | Education | #schoolsaftey

As superintendent of the Union Gap School District, Lisa Gredvig sees the impact of the Union Gap School’s space challenges every day. The school has outgrown its gym and athletic equipment is stored wherever portions of it can fit.

Cafeteria workers must go outside to get items from a cooler behind the building and the female athletic director works in an office inside the girls’ locker room, limiting students’ access.

Addressing those issues along with others is a priority for Gredvig and other school district officials. But the most important aspect of a school bond vote coming before the community on Nov. 7 is improving and ensuring the safety of everyone at the Union Gap School, which houses preschool through eighth grades.

“The big thing is security. We don’t have a buzz-in system,” Gredvig said. “That’s our biggest issue.”

Union Gap School District Proposition No. 1 asks voters to approve a construction bond for Union Gap School. The school needs $10.93 million to make district-wide safety and security improvements, including entry point access controls and security systems; expand the kitchen and construct an auxiliary gym with restrooms, concessions and other support areas.

“We take pride in our facility, but we’ve outgrown it as it relates to storage and physical safety,” Gredvig said.

The bond would also fund upgrades to the existing gym, expanded parking and additional playground equipment, along with a new hard top area for play.

The school district’s existing bond for the original construction of its school expires (matures) on Dec. 1. If approved, this bond would replace it. The overall school district tax rate is projected to be equal to or less than the tax rate in 2022,  according to school district and financial authorities.

The tax rate would be $1.43 per $1,000 of assessed property value. For a $200,000 home or property, that would be $24 a month. Taxes will be collected over a period of no more than 17 years.

“We’re trying to keep our taxes the same for our area,” Gredvig said.

A bond requires 60% approval to pass. This is the third time the district will ask the community to pass this bond; the required percentage of approval votes wasn’t reached in February 2022 or November 2022.

If the bond passes, the work would be completed in the summer of 2026.

The proposed auxiliary gym could serve a wide range of school and community activities. The existing gym already sees a lot of AAU games and after-school practices, for example, among other activities. And school-related sports are growing; the school is launching its first wrestling program solely for girls and young women.

Sports and more events, such as senior citizen groups and other community activities, would be in a self-contained space at the proposed gym. It will have its own entrances, bathrooms and more, so there would be no need to open up any part of the main Union Gap School or the school district offices that are also part of the overall structure.

“We want to be that community hub,” said Tony Silver, director of operations for the school district.

School leaders work to maximize their instructional space and recently updated all the security cameras. But as Silver said, “We have two office ladies who aren’t secure.” The bond project would involve building a wall in the main office near the entrance, which would prevent access by an intruder to adjacent hallways filled with offices and beyond that, the entire building.

Gredvig and Silver are on the school district’s design advisory committee along with school Principal Patrick Vincent; physical education and health instructor Katie Pottenger; head cook Misty Reddick; community member and school parent Marisela Solis. The committee also includes Brent Harding and Kelly Hendrickson of NAC Architecture and Melissa Butler, who is a physical education instructor along with serving as the school’s athletic director and ASB and leadership advisor.

Those with questions or seeking more information about the construction bond should email [email protected] or visit

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