The following was among actions taken at the Dec. 17 meeting of the Fairfax County School Board. For more information, call 691-2991.

CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM -- School Superintendent Robert Spillane presented the school system's updated five-year capital improvement program -- which projects $492 million in school construction through 1992, up from the $308 million projected last year.

The board also discussed the possibility of holding a school bond referendum next spring instead of in the fall, to pay for priority projects, a break with tradition that could mean voters would be asked to approve both road bond and school bond issues at the same time.

Spillane said much of the increase is necessary to pay for long-deferred maintenance of school properties and for new school construction in the fast-growing southern and western parts of the county.

The proposed five-year plan includes $166 million in new construction, $197 million in renovations and $128 million for other projects, such as replacing air conditioners and carpets, removing asbestos and repairing roofs.

The Board of Supervisors is now preparing plans for a transportation bond referendum, possibly in April. No amount has been set for either bond referendum, but officials have mentioned figures of roughly $135 to $150 million for each.

Since 1981, school bond referenda have been held in November elections, but Spillane said it is legal to hold them earlier.

"If the bond issue is six months earlier, the {new} schools will open six months earlier," he said. But he noted that the timing was a political decision the School Board and Board of Supervisors would have to work out.

Asking voters to approve two referenda at the same time might make it more difficult to get support for either. But Spillane said "I'm sure the voters will support education" whether the school bond referendum appears in the spring or fall.

School Board Chairman Mary Collier asked the school staff to study how quickly the board would have to act if it wanted to prepare for a spring referendum.