UPDATE: HMS selected for P3 funding, pending Thursday vote
By SOPHIE GORMAN ORIANI — This is a developing story.
Second update on September 19:
Dan Broder, the chair of Hyattsville’s Educational Facilities Task Force, announced in a Sept. 19 email to the HOPE email group that the PGCPS Board of Education voted to pass the resolution authorizing the rebuilding of HMS. Broder wrote: “It’s truly official now: we’re going to build our new middle school on the existing site! The money is now appropriated to do so.”
Update on September 19:
It is officially confirmed that the new Hyattsville Middle School will not be built in Magruder Park. In a Sept. 19 email, Monica Goldson, the CEO of Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS), wrote that “PGCPS has determined Hyattsville MS will not be relocated to any portion of the Magruder Park site.”
Magruder Park is in a 100-year floodplain, and Goldson cited the “time and potential cost of full-scale evaluation and mitigation” as being too costly.
The time that would have been needed to acquire Magruder Park was also an issue. Goldson wrote, “PGCPS does not own the park land and the requisite acquisition timeline proved too significant a delay in what PGCPS plans to be a record delivery schedule (opening as soon as SY2023) for the much-needed new Hyattsville Middle School.”
At the Sept. 16 city council meeting, council member Kevin Ward (Ward 1) announced that Hyattsville Middle School (HMS) has been named as one of the schools set to be rebuilt via public-private partnership funding. “It’s going to be P3 funded,” Ward said, “and it is to be considered on the current site that it is on.”
The board action summary (embeded below) names six middle schools which will be included in the request for proposal: Adelphi Area Middle School, Drew-Freeman Middle School, Hyattsville Middle School, Southern Area Middle School, Kenmoor Middle School and Walker Mill Middle School. While the summary does not explicitly state that HMS will be rebuilt on its current location, it says that the P3 model “utilizes land currently owned by PGCPS for the replacement schools,” which would rule out Magruder Park.
“I also want to thank everyone for their incredible support and activism to help our community accomplish this goal,” wrote Dan Broder, the chair of the Educational Facilities Task Force, in a message to the HOPE email group.
Although the specific details of the timeline for rebuilding have not yet been released, the board action summary says that “the expectation [is] that all schools will be commissioned and occupied for the 2023-2024 school year.”
The Board of Education will vote on the board action summary as part of their board meeting at 7pm on Sept. 19.