Board Chair: Schools' Brick-And-Mortar Projects 'Woefully' Underfunded

Katherine Poythress/Civil Beat

One millennium. That's how long it would take at the current rate to rebuild, repair and remold all Hawaii's ailing public school facilities.

Ray L'Heureux, assistant superintendent for the Office of Facilities and Support Services, told the Board of Education last week that the district could spend its entire annual capital improvement projects budget on just one of the state's 15 complex areas and still fall far short.

The Department of Education in recent years has asked for some $300 million annually for its CIP budget and usually receives about $200 million, he said.

"There's 256 campuses, average age 65 years. You can do the math," L'Heureux said. "It'd be 1,000 years before we addressed every campus. You just can't sustain that."

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