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Federal & State Supported School Construction Projects

school construction header

The Oak Harbor Public Schools applied and were approved to receive two grants through the Washington State Department of Defense Community Compatibility Grant and the Department of Defense to rebuild Crescent Harbor Elementary and HomeConnection/Hand-in-Hand Early Learning Center. 

Due to their locations on military installations, conditions and capacity limitations, these two schools were eligible to receive 80 percent of the funding from the Department of Defense to replace these two schools. The remaining 20 percent needed to be supported through local funding, such a school bond measure.  After failing to secure the supermajority needed in the State of Washington to approve a school bond measure for the remaining 20 percent of the funding, district leadership submitted a state grant in an attempt to not lose out on approximately $100 million in federal funding to replace the two schools. 

Through the strong advocacy and support of Senator Ron Muzzall, Legislative Representatives Dave Paul and Clyde Shavers, Lieutenant Governor Denny Heck and district leadership, Oak Harbor Public Schools was able to access more than $130 million in funding to support local students at no cost to local taxpayers. 

The state funding comes from a grant submitted by Oak Harbor Public Schools through the State of Washington for the Defense Community Compatibility Account (DCCA). With the two schools on military installations and the available matching dollars from the Department of Defense, the schools were eligible for the grant funding, which totaled close to $30 million. Crescent Harbor Elementary and Hand-in-Hand Early Learning Center/HomeConnection are the only two schools in Oak Harbor eligible for these unique grants because of their location on military installations.

Virtual Walk-Through of New Schools

An early imagining of the new school for Hand-in-Hand Early Learning and HomeConnection

Location: Off Regatta next to Olympic View Elementary School (Pending Environmental Approval)

An early imagining of new school for Crescent Harbor Elementary

Location: Current CHE location but the school will be built on the back of the property.

Renderings of Crescent Harbor Elementary

Renderings of Hand-in-Hand/HomeConnection

CHE Bid Information

Oak Harbor Public Schools is currently soliciting competitive bids from responsible general contractors for the construction of Crescent Harbor Elementary School. Please see the advertisement and list of important dates regarding the bidding process:

  • Bid Advertisement – April 17-24
  • Site Walk – April 29 at 3:30 PM
  • Big Opening – May 21
  • Board Approval – May 28


  • Activity Date
    Final OLDCC Grant Application & Award December 2023/January 2024
    Site Testing/Drilling December 2023/January 2024
    Finalize Design & Construction Docs March 2024
    Project Bidding & Award March-May 2024
    Logging at HIH Site * April 2024
    Begin Construction CHE & HIH June 2024
    CHE Construction (18.5 months) June 2024 – Nov. 2025
    CHE Estimated Move-In * December 2025
    HIH Construction (21.5 months) June 2024 – March 2026
    HIH Estimated Move-In * March 2026


    * It is important to note that construction planning and execution include many factors that may alter this schedule and all dates are subject to change. If and when that happens, we will update this schedule to the best of our ability.

    • OCTOBER 30, 2023, 6 p.m.: Construction Service Group (CSG), part of Educational Service District (ESD) 112, presented an update at the school board meeting.
    • JANUARY 24, 2024, 4:30 p.m.: Update during the State of the Schools event at Oak Harbor High School. Architects were also available during the showcase with information and to answer questions from the public.
    • JANUARY 29, 2024, 6 p.m. NAC Architects presentation at the school board meeting
    • MARCH 11, 2024: Superintendent Dr. Michelle Kuss-Cybula’s update at the school board meeting
  • A military logging contractor began to remove trees from Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island’s Seaplane Base in an area adjacent to Regatta Drive and just north of the Olympic View Elementary School. This tree removal effort, of about 7 acres, is in preparation for the building of a new Hand-In-Hand/Home Connection/Oak Harbor Virtual Academy facility for students within the Oak Harbor School District. 

    What to Expect:

    This work will take approximately 3 weeks and will include cutting, yarding, loading, and removal of timber from the site; therefore, nearby residents should expect to hear heavy equipment activity typically used in timber removal operations.

    logging at the new hand-in-hand homeconnection school site

    Drilling is occuring on the property of Crescent Harbor Elementary. The construction team is drilling a 350 ft. hole (Column) to measure temperature (Heat) at different points in the ground. The drilling is to determine the possibility of heating the new building using Geo-Thermal heat pumps. This daytime work involves a temporary access road along the South fence of the property. Safety measures will be in place to ensure the safety of students, staff, families, and community members.

    What to expect:

    • Dozers, gravel trucks, dump trucks, and a drill rig will be mobilized and active at the Crescent Harbor property.