The Master Plan, a comprehensive six year facility improvement plan that school districts are required by law to complete and keep updated, is the foundation of the facilities program. (A.C.A. §6-21-806). The district’s plan includes enrollment projections, plans and time tables to correct school deficiencies, the status of corrections, how the district plans to deal with growth, custodial and maintenance programs, building systems replacement (life-cycle) and other critical information. Each plan is required to list proposed projects, funding sources, a detailed description of the project scope, whether the project is proposed, in progress, completed, etc. The Master Plan also indicates the school district’s estimate of cost and when the project is proposed to begin and end. The Division has developed a Master Plan Web Tool, which can be accessed through the Division’s web page to assist districts in preparing their Master Plans. It is suggested that you review several Master Plans located in the file cabinets in the Area Project Managers’ (Planning) offices in order to gain a better understanding of what is included and the format.
School districts are required to submit a Master Plan by February 1 of every even numbered year and a Preliminary Master Plan by February 1 of every odd numbered year. A district may submit a Master Plan amendment at any time, but only under extraordinary circumstances such as substantial unanticipated growth, catastrophe, or other unforeseen circumstances that drastically affect the district’s facility needs. Districts may also submit a Master Plan appendix at any time to include a self-funded project on their plan. No project can be approved for state funding unless it is on the Master Plan and the Master Plan has been approved. Area Project Managers (Planning) will deal extensively with Master Plans and will receive training on this process