Central School

Posted on January 28, 2015

Preservationists suggest alternate funds to restore Central School

Possible uses for historic Central School and costs for its renovation have served as roadblocks to Helena school facility solutions for years.

Central School has sat empty since March 2013, when it was closed suddenly after a report showed seismic inadequacies in the event of an earthquake.

Proponents of historical renovation have approached school officials and suggested alternative options for funding a seismic retrofit, such as state loan and grant programs that would not require voter approval.


Read more here at the Helena IR.

Posted on January 21, 2015

‘Exhausted our deliberations’: Facility Committee proposals headed to full board of trustees

The Helena Public Schools Facility Committee agreed at its meeting Tuesday night to send multiple proposals to the full Board of Trustees.… 

Read more at the Helena IR.

Posted on December 22, 2014

Parent starts petition to reopen Central School

A parent of a Central-Linc Elementary School student launched an online petition Monday to gather signatures in support of fixing and reopening Central School.

Christine Brown said she started the petition after receiving about 100 responses from distributing a letter calling for the reopening of Central. She planned to submit it to the Helena Public Schools Board of Trustees and the Independent Record but said the responses led her to change tactics to a petition.

Brown is the outreach and education director at the Montana Preservation Alliance but said she is spearheading the petition as a parent, and the movement has no affiliation with the alliance.

Read more at the Helena IR here

Posted on August 18, 2014

Tuesday meeting will outline requirements to demolish Central School

The Historic Preservation Commission of the Lewis and Clark County Heritage and Tourism Council will be discussing the application for demolishing Central School and Seventh Avenue Gym with representatives from the Helena school district during its meeting Tuesday evening at 6:30.

Read more at the Helena IR

Posted on July 24, 2014

School bond under time crunch if city votes no


After the Helena School Board of Trustees voted to cancel the proposed bond election on July 15, it must now decide what to do if the city commission does not approve the demolition of Central School, upon which the proposal hinges.

The cancellation of the bond was meant to allow the commission time to make a decision regarding the demolition of Central School and Seventh Avenue Gym, which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The board canceled the bond because it legally cannot “postpone” an election, but trustees have stated that they will put forward the same bond language for an election if the city approves demolition.

Read more at the IR 

Posted on July 13, 2014

City approval is needed to knock down Seventh Avenue Gym, Central School

Helena School District trustees on Tuesday will consider whether to move forward with a bond election planned for Oct. 7 or delay it until an important piece of their plan for Central School is resolved.

The proposal to build a new school on the Central School site is part of a broader plan that includes consolidating it with Bryant Elementary School, renovating Warren Elementary School and providing a technology center at each of these schools. Significant improvements for middle schools would be delayed until a later planning phase, according to a 65-page handout provided by Superintendent Kent Kultgen.

Because Central School and the Seventh Avenue Gymnasium are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, their demolition would require Helena City Commission approval.


Read more at the Helena IR

Posted on July 12, 2014

Activists both for and against school bond are organizing

It’s clear many Helenans believe something needs to be done to fix the state of their public schools. But the process and the bond the school district’s board of trustees approved has polarized some segments of the community. Community members on both sides of the issue are organizing, preparing to fight for or against the bond.

 Read more at the Helena IR