Arco Iris Spanish Immersion School

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FAQ and Factoids

Some key information:
New building address: 8205 SW Creekside Place, Beaverton 97008
 
About the building: the new building is two stories, approximately 33,445 square feet, and built in 1984.
 
The purchase: We paid $5,050,000 for this building, or $151/square foot. The market average at the time of purchase was $180/square foot. 
 
The funding: We are paying for the purchase, remodel, permitting, and other associated project fees with a public bond. The process was incredibly complicated with many players involved, including the State of Oregon Treasury Department who oversaw and gave final approval to our funding. Much like a home purchase, we now have a 30 year mortgage. 
 
Features of the area: the sidewalk in front connects to the Fanno Creek Trail just a few feet to the northwest and to a Max train stop about 1/2 mile to the southeast. Fanno Creek borders our property on two sides, adding a natural beauty that helps make this feel less like an office building. Highway 217 is very close as are many restaurants, shops, and services.
The folks working on this project are:
Architect: Laurie Simpson of Connect Architecture. We are Laurie's fifth charter school project in the region and her experience has helped us navigate the special issues associated with building out a school. Laurie has been helping us vet potential buildings for four years now, giving valuable advice and insight, and often writing off her time. We wouldn't be enjoying a successful project without her continued guidance through everything from permitting questions to choices about finishes and details. 
 
Broker: Josh Bean of Ethos Commercial Advisors. The search for a new building took over four years and no broker stuck it out with us until we were introduced to Josh. Our project was probably the least profitable Josh has ever had when you factor in how many hours he put in exploring properties with us. But he was always dedicated and fantastic to work with, and even attended our most recent school auction where he donated $1000 during the paddle raise.
 
Financial Advisor: David Robertson with Lewis Young Robertson & Burningham. David poured through every detail of our prior years financial statements and created spreadsheets detailing our projected financials so that we could understand how much loan the school could afford. He then connected us with a couple different funding options and educated the team and the school board on our options. David had the challenging job of managing the bond process and coordinating the many players involved including running the weekly conference call meetings that had 28 invitees.
 
Contractor:  P&C Construction with the leadership team of Dave Dahl, Jared Steagall, and Doran Spenst. This team worked hard with the lender on the budget before closing and were ready to jump in to construction as soon as we closed. They are juggling overlapping projects at the job site, ensuring top quality work, and keeping us on schedule. This team is dedicated to our vision and have been great stewards of our future home. 
 
Owner's Representative: Dan Naughton with SOJ. Dan is looking out for the school's interests in all things related to this project and is managing weekly meetings at the job site, tracking the budget and schedule, and making sure all tasks are being followed through on and completed. Dan is also reporting back to the bond investors on the progress of this project and is coordinating the monthly pay requests. This project wouldn't be progressing as smoothly as it is without Dan's coordination. 
 
Structural Engineer: Wade Younie with DCI Engineers. Like Laurie, we have worked with Wade for several years, calling him in on buildings that we thought had definite potential to get his assessment on seismic retrofitting expense. Seismic retrofitting is very expensive and for some buildings was a financial deal breaker. Wade's expertise has been very important to our building search. 
 
Attorneys: Matthew Lowe and Adam Anderson of Jordan Ramis. Besides already serving as our school attorneys, Matt and Adam provided invaluable guidance and representation throughout the purchase and financing portion of this project. They helped us navigate countless tasks throughout the process and helped us deal with the speed bumps we often encountered.
 
School Site Search Team: There have been several hard working members of this parent volunteer team over the years. The current team members are: Christa Billings - School Board President, Rob Timmons - School Board Member and Finance Committee, Molly Held, and Becky Schiefelbein. We are fortunate that the varied skill and experience levels of these team members complemented each other very well which meant we could lean on each other to manage the variety of complicated tasks involved in this process. 
 
Interesting Things to Know About the Project:
 
New Items: We will have some new items at this building and they are all pretty exciting - 
     Roof: The original roof was failing in several areas and had been patched and overlayed too many times so a brand new roof is being installed.
     HVAC: The original units were still in place, two of which were beyond repair and had already been disconnected by the prior owner. They have been removed and 
     new, high efficiency modern units will be installed as soon as the roof is done. YES, this building will have air conditioning!
     Projectors: A/V and communications can be complicated but they will be simplified by the integrated system that is being installed. Each classroom will have a ceiling-
     mounted projector (no more carts!) and will be able to be integrated with a central system. This means the projectors will all be new. We aren't sure yet if the budget will 
     allow for new video-friendly white boards, but they are high on the wish list. 
     Seismic Stability: This is talked about a lot on the building page already, but it's important to know that schools must meet a higher seismic standard than homes or
     office buildings. Considering how much time our kids spend at school this mostly unseen element is reassuring! And the reason this will be mostly unseen rather than
     fully unseen as in most buildings is because of the micropiles that are detailed on the home page. Because they are retrofitted and not installed at time of construction
     they will protrude above the floor. Check out the micropile photo showing the bent rebar - that will all be covered in concrete to a height of 18" which is perfect height for
     a seating bench, and what it will be for the time being, but isn't really necessary. The plans call for display or trophy cabinets to be installed on those 18" slabs, which
     didn't make the cut in the current budget but will be kept on the new building 'wish list'. That wish list is long and will be posted on the building page soon.
 
Solar Panels: The size of our project has triggered a state requirement that we spend 1.5% of our budget on Green Energy Technology. After exploring a couple options it was determined that we would get the greatest bang for our buck by installing photovoltaic solar panels. We will be able to install quite a few panels with our $57,000 budget. This project is still being engineered, but more details will be posted as we progress. 
 
Weekly Meeting: Every Thursday the building team meets in person and over video with the P&C team, the owner's rep, and architect to cover every aspect of the project. The schedule is covered in detail, looking forward 4 weeks, to make sure we are on track, the budget is also covered, issues such as unforeseen problems (nothing big so far!), choices about flooring, outlets, administration layout, etc. are discussed, and much time is spent talking about what is coming up in the weeks to come to make sure there are no surprises. 
 
Income Potential: Now that we own our facility we can look at opportunities to raise revenue in ways that have not been possible before. The team has had this goal in mind during planning and potential revenue sources include rental of the gym, after school hours rentals, summer camp and the possibility of having the auction in our building. The gym floor will be suitable for recreational and competitive league play which will be appealing to local leagues and we will also reach out to local outfits that run summer camps and extracurricular activities. 
Will the school day hours change?
 
No - the school day will continue to run from 8:30 to 3:30, with middle schoolers on the same schedule once we're at the new building. The doors will open at 8:15 in the morning and pick up will conclude at 3:45 and students not picked up at that time will be sent to Buenas Tardes as they are now. However, the transition to the new school building will take time and these times will be adjusted if needed. 
Drop Off and Pick Up Procedure:
 

The move to our new building will allow us to grow to our full capacity, an important milestone we have been pursuing for some time. But managing our larger size will also require us to change some of our procedures, including afternoon pick up. Morning drop off by car will operate as it does now, and afternoon pick up will resemble the neighborhood schools procedure and will be familiar to those of you who have attended a neighborhood school or have a middle schooler at the Whitford campus now.


The biggest change you will see is that we no longer will park and walk into the school building for pick up and drop off.

 

Change can be a challenge so the administration will be participating in the drop off and pick up times, working with teachers and staff, and listening to parent feedback to make sure that this process is a safe and efficient as it can be, as quickly as possible. Please be patient as we all adjust to this change, and don't worry about doing it wrong!

Drop off and pick up circulation map:

Morning Drop Off:


  • Cars will enter the parking lot off of Creekside Place, coming from either direction.
  • Drive into the parking lot, past the entry, and into the circular turnaround that is marked with striping and yellow traffic buttons, and back along the front of the building until you reach the drop off area.
  • All cars pulling into the drop off area will let their kids out as soon as they stop. The drop off zone is the space between the two green boxes on the circulation plan. Having your child exit your car in any other area of the parking lot is not allowed at any time.
  • Students will enter the school through the main entry, indicated by the orange arrow.
  • When you leave you must turn right onto Creekside Place, as indicated by the red arrow.
  • Heading in this direction on Creekside Place you then turn left onto Stratus, which will dead end at Nimbus where you can turn left (toward the traffic signal at Hall Boulevard) or right.
  • When you pull into the drop off area it is expected that the student(s) in your car are ready to jump out. This means that you will need to take care of having them gather their items, share goodbye wishes and kisses, unbuckle, and be ready to go starting when you pull into our parking lot.

Afternoon Pick Up:

  • You will no longer park and walk into the school to pick up your child.
  • Pick up will follow the same circulation pattern as morning drop off.
  • Students will only be allowed to go to cars that are in the queue facing the building, AFTER passing through the circular turnaround. Students will not be allowed to walk through the parking lot to go to a car that hasn’t yet traveled through the turnaround.

Can I still park and walk my child into school in the morning or walk in to pick them up after school?

- Not in the same way you are accustomed to walking them in or out of school now.

  • Parking and escorting your child into the school in the morning is still allowed, but will require you to plan ahead to work around the morning circulation. Once cars are filling the drop off queue it will not be possible to pull into or out of a parking space.
    • You will need to arrive before 8:00 am for your best chances to pull into a parking space.
    • Haphazard parking will not be allowed if you arrive too late to safely pull straight into a parking space.
    • Parking spaces available to parents for drop off and pick up are indicated by blue lines on the circulation plan.
    • All other parking spaces are staff parking, handicap parking, or restricted during the school day.
    • After escorting your child into school you will need to wait until both rows of cars in the circulation queue have cleared out to safely pull out of your parking space. It is unlikely that both rows of the queue will clear before 8:30
    • Pulling into or out of the circulation queue in a way that requires other cars to stop to let you in or out will not be permitted. The drop off and pick up circulation can only move quickly and safely if cars continue moving.
    • Keeping these things in mind you need to plan to be parked at the school from about 8:00 to 8:30 or so if you decide to walk your child into school.
  • Street parking is not allowed on Creekside Place, but is allowed on Stratus, about 500 feet away. This makes street parking and then walking your child to school an option. Stratus and Creekside Place have nice wide sidewalks.
  • At the end of the school day teachers will release students heading to after care or an after school program and then leave the classroom with the remaining students and escort them to their outside pickup area. You will no longer have the option to walk to your child’s classroom to pick up your child. You do have the option to park and walk to the front of the school to pick up your child without driving through the pickup queue but will need to observe the same guidelines described for morning drop off. Remember that means you will likely need to arrive by 3:00 pm to safely access a parking spot, and will need to wait until 3:45-4:00 before the parking lot will likely clear enough for you to safely pull out. Also keep in mind that your child’s teacher may not be a pick up supervisor that day.

Afternoon Pick Up ID Procedure

 

The new method of afternoon pick up, on such a large scale, is a new procedure for our school and we expect the process to take some time for everyone to become accustomed to the change. We ask that you arrive to pick up ready to be patient and positive while we navigate the process of adjusting to this change.

 

- Pick up will follow the same circulation pattern as morning drop off. DO NOT ARRIVE BEFORE 3:15 PM OR YOU WILL BE ASKED TO MOVE.

- Pick up will be managed using a family automobile identification system.

- Each family will be assigned their own family ID number.

- Two laminated ID cards, with your family ID number, and a backpack tag with a zip tie, will be sent home with your child on April 2nd.

- This card needs to be taped to the inside lower right corner of your family cars so that they are easily visible

- The backpack tag needs to be immediately zip tied to your child’s backpack

- As drivers enter the parking lot the attendants will call the ID numbers ahead so those children will be able to move toward the front of the pickup staging area. *On April 2nd the attendants will ask drivers for student names since ID cards will not be taped in windows.

- Cars will pull into the pickup zone, which is the same as the morning drop off zone, where their kids will get into their cars. These cars will then all pull forward and out of the parking lot, and the next group of cars will pull into the pickup zone.

 

Important:

 

- Families who have an additional driver who routinely picks up in the afternoons need to email the office to request an additional family ID card.

- Families need to instruct older siblings to locate younger siblings when they reach the pickup staging area at the end of the day.

- Families who participate in carpooling need to coordinate with each other to share family automobile ID numbers. Children in carpools should gather together with older children locating younger children in the pickup staging area. Please write carpool ID numbers on your child’s laminated hang tag in permanent marker.

- While in the parking lot, please pull up close to the car in front of you, allowing the most cars possible to fit in the queue.

- Students will only be allowed to go to cars that are in the pickup zone facing the building, after passing through the circular turnaround. Students will not be allowed to walk through the parking lot to go to a car that hasn’t yet traveled through the turnaround.

- If a student is delayed for any reason the office will communicate this information with the parking lot attendants, who will then instruct any driver who has made it to the front of the pickup zone to circle back around through the queue.

- We ask that every family prepares for this change with the understanding that it will take some time to get used to this new pick up procedure. As we all get accustomed to this new process the school will not send your children to Buenas Tardes until all cars in the pickup queue have made it through the parking lot, even if this time is after 3:45.

- Cars must only turn right when exiting the parking lot, just like morning drop off. Cutting through the neighboring building parking lot is not permitted.

- Street parking is not allowed on Creekside Place but is allowed on Stratus, about 500 feet away.

- Families will no longer have the option to walk to their child’s classroom to pick them up. Families do have the option to park and walk to the front of the school to pick up your child without driving through the pickup queue but will need to plan ahead and arrive early. Remember that means you will likely need to arrive by 3:00 pm to safely access a parking spot and will need to wait until 3:45-4:00 before the parking lot will likely clear enough for you to safely pull out.

- We are accustomed to being able to touch base with our child’s teacher at pickup when we have something we want to talk about. This will now change because of the new pick up procedure and the preferred method of communication for teacher questions will be through email.