School offers tour for residents to see current state of building

Grants Pass, Ore.- It’s been about two decades since Kyndale Rhoades was a student at North Middle School, and she says things haven’t change much.

“The one thing in the bathroom is the only thing that is different. There are updated sinks in the bathroom that’s the only change I’ve noticed,” Rhoades said.

After touring the school again on Monday, she says hallways are still crowded and classrooms are overheated.

“If you think about it that was 20 years ago I was here and these schools are 40 years older than that. If nothing changed in the last 20 years than when has it ever changed?” she said.

The school district says it’s not just about comfort, some standards aren’t being met. For instance, the ramps are too steep and the hallways are too narrow for kids to walk through during periods.

The proposed bond would cost homeowners $1.94 per thousand dollars of assessed value on their home over a 30 year period.

Superintendent Kirk Kolb is hoping the tours will help voters see the urgency to upgrade its schools.

“I think tours are full transparency, if we are going to ask the community to support our kids and our schools then they need to be able to come on and see what it looks like today and why we are making this ask,” Kolb said.

With just about 800 students Kolb says although the bond may be pricey, the need is there, not just for students today but for future generations to come.

“We have kids going to school for jobs that don’t even exist and we need to prepare them in ways to communicate, collaborate, work together in environments that are conducive to a modern education in today’s learner,” he said.

The school will be offering another tour at North Middle School Monday night at 7 p.m. Tours at South Middle School are scheduled to take place next Monday.

NBC5 News reporter Karen Tang graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in communications and a master’s in journalism.

Before coming to Medford, Karen was an intern at WUSA9 and NBC News Channel in Washington D.C.

During her time in Maryland, Karen was an NCAA Division I student-athlete on the Maryland gymnastics team. She competed against Big Ten universities and made the Big Ten All-Championship team.

When Karen isn’t reporting, she’s at the gym working out, taking pictures with her dog Boomer and searching for the best food in Southern Oregon.

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