RICHMOND -- West Contra Costa school district trustees approved the sale of $125 million in bonds Wednesday evening, including $85 million authorized under Measure E, the measure approved by voters last fall.
The sale is the first of five $125 million sales of general obligation bonds the district plans over the next eight years to replace or rebuild schools.
About $105 million from this year's sale, which the district hopes to complete at the end of October, will be used to finish the new De Anza High School in Richmond, which opened this school year, and the Gompers Continuation High School/Leadership Public Schools campus in Richmond.
The rest of the money will help the district get started on several projects, including a temporary home for 46-year-old Pinole Valley High School while a new campus is built.
It will also go to building the new Portola Middle School in El Cerrito and for preliminary work on new campuses for Coronado and Nystrom elementary schools in Richmond and Ohlone Elementary in Hercules, as well as other smaller projects.
"This (sale) won't finish these projects, but we are confident we can get the funding in 2015," said district bond adviser Dave Olson of KNN Public Finance in Oakland.
The bonds will be paid back over 30 years using receipts from property taxes authorized by Measure E and Measure D, passed by voters in 2010.
A smaller amount of the bond money will be used to finance new school technology, including wireless connections for schools, Olson said.
The board also heard a report on the district's community outreach programs, used in part to encourage more parent involvement and volunteering in schools.
The district has recruited about 3,000 on-campus volunteers over the past three years, bringing its total to 4,000, according to community outreach
Director Marin Trujillo.
Trustees recognized a team of about 30 paid community workers who connect with parents, work with students and coordinate volunteers.
Board members also listened to a recap of the district's summer school offerings on and off school campuses, including a summer legal fellowship program at UC Berkeley's Boalt Hall School of Law.
The legal fellowship program complements and completes the experience of mock trial teams representing Kennedy, Richmond, El Cerrito and De Anza high schools during the school year.
"Normally, summer school is for students who didn't make the grade," said school board member Randall Enos, a retired district teacher and administrator. "Our summer school concentrates on upward mobility."