College and Career Center downsizing to accommodate new offices

Armaan Rashid, Editor-in-Chief

Extensive reduction of the College and Career Center is underway to make room for new counseling offices which, in turn, are necessitated by Dougherty’s ever-growing student body.

The College and Career Center’s official coordinator, Kristin Cranmer, is currently stationed in the library while construction takes place. Though it is a change of pace, she frequently needs to rent out bigger locations like the commons to advise larger groups of kids in any case, and it is frequently easier for students to find her in the oft-visited library.

Ms. Cranmer is very positive about the renovations herself, stating that, “It makes for a more personal environment to counsel students in.”

She acknowledges that more flexibility will be required, but it seems that the changes will not have a major impact on the functionality of the Center itself.

Principal Daniel Hillman confirms that its downsizing is demanded by the lack of space for Dougherty’s new staff members, most notably the two new counselors who have arrived this year to help the counseling department tend to over 2,700 students. Currently, the counselors are spread haphazardly throughout the administration building, but the new offices should centralize staff and make for easier student access.

Perhaps the lingering question is that of duration: what’s taking so long? Living in San Ramon, a city which is developed with unfathomable speed, students are perhaps accustomed to rapid, quality construction. Some small offices surely cannot take longer to build than a neighborhood of houses? Mr. Hillman quickly myth-busts.

“There are no less than three agencies involved,” says Mr. Hillman. “Any public school construction generally takes a minimum of two years.”

He goes on to describe the incredibly complex bureaucracy by which additions to public schools are made. Any proposals for construction must be approved several times by various bottlenecks, including the famously slow Division of the State Architect, in order for construction to simply get started. Then, since the construction is funded by taxes and other public money, there must be a public bid which is approved, along with a construction company that is found to be responsible and trustworthy.

In perspective, things have actually been progressing rapidly for Dougherty. The construction company has been working continuously on both the new College and Career Center and the supplement to the 1000 building since the spring. Both are due for completion by the 2016-17 school year.