Carson City Montessori school interested in Snyder Avenue site
As the Carson City School Board prepares to vote on purchasing the property at 1600 Snyder Ave., on Oct. 22, Superintendent Richard Stokes announced at the Oct. 8 meeting a possible new interest from Carson Montessori School in leasing the former church facility.
The Carson City School District’s 90-day feasibility study, the period allotted for the board to determine its interest in buying the property for $5.67 million, is drawing to a close. In Stokes’ regular update to the board Oct. 8, he announced the appraisal process has not been completed, but the environmental study is nearly done.
Recently, however, Carson Montessori reached out to ask about the possibility of using some of the classroom building space at the former Capital Christian site.
Carson Montessori, a charter school with about 290 students, operates as an independent entity with its own governing board under CCSD’s sponsorship, Stokes said. The school offers its own curriculum and makes its own operational decisions.
“But because we are their sponsors, we have some opportunities for suggestions, and we enjoy a good working relationship with them,” Stokes said. “That’s never been an issue. Making decisions about where to hold school — that’s their decision.”
The school has been seeking a permanent facility for the past two years, and the district potentially could lease 1600 Snyder Ave., to Carson Montessori and generate funds through an agreement with the school for a certain time, Stokes said.
The board raised questions about potential access and uses for the property were it willing to consider an agreement with the charter school, and Stokes said he envisioned the school would offer some of the original multispace and classroom spaces but not daily access to the auditorium. That facility could continue to serve the district’s joint use program, he said, and be made available to other community organizations.
Discussions continue, though, and there would be other considerations especially if the board were to purchase the property. Trustees asked about ensuring the site would be ready to make the technological and physical preparations such as overseeing a working security system and repairing the grounds’ asphalt before it goes into further disrepair since the site was not equipped to handle many of the tasks other Carson City schools are capable of doing, Stokes said.
Stokes told the board the current facility Carson Montessori is using doesn’t have bells or intercoms, so such details would need to be determined before a lease is completed.
“If we make that choice, we want to be responsible because if we’re looking at making an investment for the district, down the road, it’s probably going to cost us more money to do those repairs,” Trustee Mike Walker said. “So if we’re going to do it, we need to do it responsibly.”
The trustees will hear a final presentation and vote on purchasing the property at 1600 Snyder Ave. at its next board meeting at 7 p.m. Oct. 22 in the Sierra Room of the Community Center at 851 E. William St.