On Oct. 2, 2018 voters of the Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School district approved a $12.59 million bond referendum that would renovate and reconfigure space. The project was designed to better serve the educational, technological, and safety needs of RFH students. Projects focus primarily on renovation rather than new construction. Reconfiguring existing space will enable greater efficiency and flexibility in classroom space and technology use.
The proposal included upgraded science labs, an updated media center, and renovated classrooms – modernizations that recognize the way education relies on a collaborative approach and blends instruction with hands-on practice.
The Board of Education’s goal was a tax-neutral proposal that seeks important educational improvements without contributing to a higher tax rate. Tax neutrality is possible because RFH was only a few months away from paying off a bond that funded previous projects. This created an opportunity to meet the current and future needs of RFH students in a fiscally responsible manner. Tax-neutrality is only one reason to consider a bond referendum. The other is the state’s offer of Debt Service Aid to cover 32% of the costs. This state aid is only available when a district’s voters approve bond funding through a referendum.
Phase 2: June 2020-December 2020
Phase 2 - budgeted at $ 3,404,000
- Renovate Science Classrooms & Prep areas (600 Wing) $1,852,000
- Build a new WoodShop $1,200,000
- Auditorium Upgrades $ 352,000
Phase 2 - Actual Costs $3,401,792
Phase 2 Construction began in the late spring of 2020. With the input of science teachers and school administrators, the 600 wing was renovated into state of the art science classrooms. New casework and lab tables, along with upgrades plumbing and safety equipment have transformed the classrooms into exciting learning environments which allow for inquiry based collaboration. A 1600 square foot structure was added to the footprint of RFH with the construction of a new Wood Shop. The space will allow students to continue to learn how to use tools appropriately and work together and independently to build their creativity. Additionally, the space connects to the stage, allowing students who participate in stage crew to have greater flexibility in their design of sets for the Tower Players’ annual theatrical productions.
Phase 1 - Summer, 2019
Phase 1 - budgeted at $ 1,200,000
- Renovate Special Education Classroom renovation and creation of an Activities for Daily Living Room $ 100,000
- Renovate third floor classrooms and create additional spaces $ 722,500
- Create a state-of-the-art World Language Lab $ 212,500
- Furniture $ 165,000
Phase 1 Actual Costs: $1,151,792
Phase 1 Construction was completed during the summer of 2019. The Activities for Daily Living Room in the Special Education Suite includes a washer, dryer, stove and refrigerator. In this room, students learn life skills and vocational skills in preparation for independent living. The Dr. Peter Righi World Language Lab was dedicated in 2019 in recognition of Dr. Righi’s commitment to RFH from 2000-2019 as Principal and Superintendent. The World Language Lab was recognized by the American School & University Educational Interiors for its outstanding design in their August, 2020 issue.