Bond projects nearing end at Big Spring ISD

It's amazing what $60 million can buy.As Big Spring Independent School District nears the end of construction and renovation related to the $60 million bond approved by voters in 2010, officials say the district definitely got a bang for its bucks.BSISD trustees learned during their monthly meeting Thursday that not only has the district been able to finish all the construction projects it originally targeted in 2010, there's a bit of money left over for more work.Almost all of the original projects earmarked by officials are complete – only the repaving of the east parking lot at Big Spring High School, which will be completed over the summer, remains from the 2010 to-do list.With that $60 million, BSISD was able to construct four new elementary campuses and perform extensive renovations at both the junior high and high school. And the good news is that a little more than $1 million was left over after all the projects were accounted for.With that last bit of money, district officials will finance three more projects at the high school – remodeling of all the restrooms, installation of new student lockers and replacing the old wooden-back seats in the auditorium with cushioned seats.The restroom remodeling and locker installation is almost completed, while the new auditorium seating will be installed during the summer. By the time the new school year begins in August, officials plan to have officially closed the books on all the bond projects.Dr. Steven Saldivar, superintendent of the district, said the district got maximum results from the bond money.“When you look at the new elementary schools and everything else we were able to do, I think that speaks for itself,” Saldivar said. “It was definitely money well-spent.”In other business Thursday, trustees approved:• The calendar for the 2013-2014 school year.• A credit card agreement with Chase Bank.• Employment recommendations.