High school renovation plans moving forward

Architects tour campus to evaluate existing facilities

Measure G, a $ 42.5 million bond to fund renovations at San Benito High School, was approved by voters in June. Since then, many asked what will actually happen to the school and when.

On Nov.10, the architects that are designing the new renovations gave a tour of the school to approximately 20 administrators and teachers, evaluating the different types of classrooms examining what problems exist in each classroom, and how those problems can be addressed.

Joe Vela, one of the architects from Aedis Architect, led the tour which started at about 3:20 p.m. The administration, teachers and other guests, met in Davis Library to begin the meeting. The tour started on SBHS’s main campus then visited classrooms and other areas such as: the Migrant Ed office, the cafeteria, the newspaper/yearbook classroom, various science classrooms, a couple of English classrooms, the band and color guard rooms, and the special education classrooms.

After Vela finished talking about the main campus, the group moved on to the agricultural/ industrial technical area between the dance room and new campus. The group also walked through the metal, wood, auto, and art classrooms to voice assess conditions.

Many things were discussed in each classroom and ideas were discussed regarding possible ways to fix the classroom walls, paint jobs, the square footage, windows, lighting, and acoustics in the band room.

When asked about the dates for the renovations, Vela stated that once the plans go through the board of trustees, and the money is budgeted for specific work, then they could start improvements.

Renovations are planned in the near future. First, is the P.E. project, which is a large, state-of-the-art wrestling room and weight room expecxted to break ground before summer of 2015, said Superintendent John Perales. Geological survey work has already begun for this phase, which is being funded not by bond money but by the district's general fund.

Perales also stated that air conditioning, which is a high-priority renovation, should be installed in the 300 and 400 classrooms during this upcoming spring and summer. Within a year to 18 months, Perales said he wants to have the CTE (career technical education) building, which includes the auto, wood, metals and agricultural classrooms, constructed as well. Overall, within the next three to four years, Perales hopes to have a modernized school.

“Our kids deserve better than this; our kids deserve the best,” Perlaes said.

BenitoLink Staff