TCU Schools give an update on issues identified by the Community Task Force Team

By: 
Jarrod Schoenecker

Jarrod Schoenecker photo
The auditorium at Tri-City United Elementary and Middle School in Le Center, which is part of the original building in question of whether or not it will be saved or torn down.

A Community Task Force Team, led by Tom Weber and Kat Pass of SiteLogIQ and made up of six students and 25 community members, that toured the school district and cited areas needing addressing in 2022 were given updates this fall on some of the key priorities they saw within the district.

TCU Schools Superintendent Kevin Babcock said to the task force in a letter, “Please know the time and effort you put into this has not gone unnoticed nor wasted…We have already begun to work on some of your recommendations and we are currently exploring more of them.  Let’s begin with a few of your recommendations that we have implemented and those that we will continue to work on”

Career exploration and exploratory career classes, TCU Branding, Le Center’s parking lot and water drainage issues, collaborative and flexible modern learning furniture, repurpose TCU Montgomery’s Middle and Elementary school’s auditorium, and the future of Le Center’s auditorium were all addressed.

Career exploration was addressed with the introduction of STEAM programming in the 7th and 8th grade curriculum. Staff fixed up unused areas of both Montgomery and Le Center’s  middle schools. The district is also addressing this in the high school with starting to foster relationships with local businesses to offer apprenticeships, internships, field trips, speaking engagements and other opportunities for students to explore different careers.

The branding of Tri-City United Schools has been addressed with the hiring of a dedicated marketing person to manage the districts image. Social media pages have been knocked down to a single location for all school activities. Implementation of one single logo district-wide was completed. Logos for the front of each building and color schemes throughout each building are being worked on or have been completed to match each other.

In order to allow students to collaborate better, updated furniture for group spaces has been purchased and some donated.

The plan for the water drainage issues for the Le Center parking lot are still being worked on, with hopes for the work to be completed in the summer of 2024. The school is looking at tying in a parking lot that also has issues at TCU Montgomery Elementary and Middle School.

 

Empty auditoriums

One of the largest items to be addressed is the unused auditorium and adjacent spaces in Le Center. Babcock says that they have extra classrooms in the main part of the newer part of the building and the part that houses the old auditorium and other space is in very poor shape. It is currently boarded up and there is no water, electricity and heat in that part of the building.

Babcock told me, “It does have historical and sentimental value but what is the needed purpose of it now?” He said he understands and...

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