Four San Francisco schools face big bill for summertime move 

Four schools in the San Francisco Unified School District will be moved to new homes this summer, but the cost of transporting them has some officials worried about whether the district can afford the changes.

This month, Buena Vista Elementary School will move in with Horace Mann Middle School to create a K-8 school in the Mission district, and Bryant Elementary School will move to Buena Vista’s campus and San Francisco International High School will move to Bryant’s, according to district officials.

The goal is to get them in before the start of school Aug. 15.

The moves are estimated to cost $500,000 but were only budgeted for $320,000. The cost includes new furniture and some construction projects such as converting middle school bathrooms to ones that can accommodate kindergartners and replacing some roofs and floors.

“We’re rattling off dollar amounts and we’re not sure where we’re going to get the funding,” Board of Education President Hydra Mendoza said.

David Goldin, chief facilities officer, told school board members last week he had repeatedly said this would be an issue “from the day we introduced moving schools.”

“Currently, $500,000 is low,” Goldin said. “We don’t want to be stuck at the end of the summer with a bill we need to somehow pay.”

According to Yonko Radonov, director of facilities, design and construction, the move itself will cost around $230,000, but furniture also needs to be ordered.

“We have to put together parking, tables and P.E. equipment at many places,” he said. “$230,000 is for the move itself, but we also need another $93,000 in furniture for San Francisco International, $74,000 for furniture for Buena Vista to move to Horace Mann.”

Goldin said the moves would have to be supported by the general fund.

District spokeswoman Gentle Blythe said the remaining costs will have to be covered by a combination of capital funds and general funds. How the additional expenditures will affect other programs has yet to be determined. The district is still working on its 2011-12 budget, which is due to Sacramento by June 30.

San Francisco Unified is facing a $27 million deficit in the coming fiscal year. If the economy doesn’t improve, the district expects another $84 million will have to be cut from its $500 million operating budget in the following fiscal year.

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