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PEAK to include Mercer Island district preschool

The Mercer Island Boys & Girls Club PEAK project, seen here from the Mercer Island High School tennis courts, is nearing completion. The building, located on 86th Avenue N.E., is scheduled to open this summer. Boys & Girls Club officials say that the countywide club financial issues will not affect the PEAK project. - Megan Managan/Mercer Island Reporter
The Mercer Island Boys & Girls Club PEAK project, seen here from the Mercer Island High School tennis courts, is nearing completion. The building, located on 86th Avenue N.E., is scheduled to open this summer. Boys & Girls Club officials say that the countywide club financial issues will not affect the PEAK project.
— image credit: Megan Managan/Mercer Island Reporter

When the new Mercer Island Boys & Girls Club opens this summer, there will be space for the Mercer Island School District's preschool program.

The district has recently been looking into options for the program, which is currently housed at West Mercer Elementary. Because of increasing enrollment, the district needs the two portables at the elementary school, but did not have another space available for the preschool. As part of the agreement with the Boys & Girls Club, a preschool was required to be included in the plans, and since the club was still searching for a preschool vendor, the district has worked out an agreement which will move the preschool into the PEAK facility.

In PEAK the preschool will have two dedicated classrooms, including an office and storage space. The district's lease with PEAK for this addition will be contracted for a six-year period for a total of $217,000 or about $36,000. But due to cost overruns that the Boys & Girls Club already owes the district from renovation of the maintenance and operations building, the district won't actually be spending money.

"We don't have to spend a penny," said Dean Mack, the district's executive director of business services. "We're not sacrificing anything."

The agreement was for six years, according to Superintendent Gary Plano, because the district is currently working on some long-range facilities planning and in six years may have a different set of spaces available for the preschool.

"I think it's a very good deal," said board member Pat Braman. "You can't get a portable for $36,000, and this way we're freeing up two."

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