Wellesley Select Board, School Committee, Permanent Building Committee to discuss Hardy school construction funding

The Wellesley Select Board, School Committee, and Permanent Building Committee (PBC) are scheduled to hold a joint meeting on Thursday, Jan. 12 to discuss project funding for Hardy Elementary School construction (the meeting originally was slated for Dec. 13 and was moved). The plan is for the new school, being built at the same site on Weston Road, to open in fall of 2024.

“It really is just a discussion to go through where the status of the construction stands at this point and to reassure people that the financing is in place, that school is going to be built and opened and welcoming students as planned,” Select Board member Tom Ulfelder said during the Dec. 6 Select Board meeting.

There is time for members of the public to speak at the start of the meeting.

As we recently reported, inflation and supply chain challenges are jacking up costs for the project, as discussed at recent School Committee and PBC meetings. There has been discussion by those groups of whether some planned components of the project might need to be changed as a result of rising costs, as well as whether School Committee might need to hit up Town Meeting for more money.

Both the School Committee and PBC give regular updates on the project at their meetings.

Ulfelder said during a mid-November Select Board meeting that he had reached out to School Committee Chair Leda Eizenberg to request a joint public meeting to discuss the Hardy project. He cited a need to address unease, particularly among Hardy families, about the town’s commitment to completing the project as proposed and on par with the Hunnewell Elementary School. He also pointed to comments from Town Executive Director Meghan Jop during Special Town Meeting (see Wellesley Media recording about 1-hour, 34-minutes in) addressing public concerns about Hardy project costs.

Wellesley's Wonderful Weekend, Hardy School
Wellesley’s Wonderful Weekend, Hardy School