A One Schoolhouse Approach to Facilities

This spring, a Facilities Planning Task Force looked at our current facilities and made a recommendation to meet our greatest needs. The task force listened to presentations, had discussions and spent many weeks studying our schools and district buildings. They submitted this recommendation to me and I have accepted it. I’m particularly excited that this recommendation supports all of our schools while not increasing our overall school tax rate. What thoughts or questions do you have?

 

Comments (3)

  1. Dr. Andreas Hajos

    12 months ago

    Dr. Baker –

    I am not convinced that synthetic turf fields are safe. I am sad to say that I cannot recommend them to my child. The tire crumbs they are made of apparently contain large quantities of chemicals – 96 in one study – whose effects on humans range from negative to unknown. Here is a link to one recent article on the topic:

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/does-playing-on-artificial-turf-pose-a-health-risk-for-your-child/2017/03/17/0c61b7b4-0380-11e7-ad5b-d22680e18d10_story.html

    I would advise to err on the safe side.

    Sincerely,

    Dr. Andreas Hajos

    • Greg

      12 months ago

      Hi Andreas, thank you for your comment. Last year, we had a committee look at synthetic turf fields and alternative infills. Part of the committee’s process was to gather feedback during a public meeting and through surveys before finalizing their recommendation. The committee shared their extensive research regarding the type of turf and infill material for the new synthetic fields, which included engagement with the Whatcom County Health Department. During the public input process, there was excitement for the project, as well as some health concerns expressed related to the national conversations about crumb rubber. The group recommended crumb rubber, also known as Styrene Butadiene Rubber or SBR, which is used on all synthetic turf fields in Whatcom County (Civic Field, Joe Martin Stadium, WWU, WCC, Lummi Nation School, Bellingham Sportsplex) and in more than 300 fields in our state. They made this recommendation based on a number of factors including the studies they reviewed and the fact that those studies have not indicated a health risk.

  2. Dr. Andreas Hajos

    11 months ago

    Dr. Baker –

    let’s budget for some research, there’s still time apparently. What high school projects those would be.

    Yours,

    AH

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