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Fayetteville High School


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Every time you think something has been decided you see it hasn't. Several months ago it was decided that Fayetteville's high school would include the ninth grade without a set location. This was decided within the debate of where an expanded high school would be located. After the University of Arkansas seemed reluctant to buy the present high school property for the price wanted it was deemed that the school would remain in the present location and expand there. That is where we have been for several months now.

Now the local media reports that another effort led by the deposed head of Tyson Foods of Springdale, John Tyson, wants the University to reconsider now that John White, present but soon to retire chancellor of the University of Arkansas, will be gone. The arguement that 40 acres next to the campus at a very premium price is reasonable is not logical. For the University to pay $59 million for 40 acres is ridiculous, especially when the high school would be better served staying where it is and expanding there. If the University is in dire need of more space it can expand upwards at any number of locations on it's main campus instead of buying a overpriced piece of property that would require extensive rebuilding, A new multi-story building at the site of the building that KUAF is in now is a prime example of better use of UA funds. Any number of places on campus could be used at a cheaper price than what is being asked.

This just seems like a power play by the proponents of moving FHS at the expense of the UA, the students and the stateof Arkansas taxpayers.

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I'd heard enough that I was figuring that nothing was a done deal yet. Even though there does seem to be a number of people that like the idea of it staying at it's present location. It hasn't seemed that overwhelming. Even though people seem to favor the present location some of those people also haven't seemed to be strongly favoring that position. I admit I was surprised the university hasn't pushed for a move more strongly. It is a lot of money, but I also don't see the university ever having an opportunity to ever get that large of a property right next to the campus. I do think it's a good location for the high school. But I admit I'm also intrigued with what the university could also do with that land. Maybe I just feel that way because I didn't go to high school in Fayetteville. Either way if they do decide to keep the high school at it's present location I think they need to make some big renovations and changes to the campus.

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If the property was raw land it would be a no brainer for the University to buy. Buying a collection of buildings that will have to have many millions more spent on them or even be demolished in order for the University to be able to have space that it can use is a poor use of funds. When the UA has bought property in the past it has razed whatever was on it and built new. The primary value of the high school is in the buildings and the UA shouldn't be subsidizing the public school system.

I guess what bothers me is the timing- it seems like the propoents of moving the high school are saying" yeah- that John White character is gone - let's ramrod this through and get the UA to pay for FHS's move".

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