Trustees assess JISD facilities

From Staff Reports

Jefferson ISD trustees toured district campuses Feb. 8 prior to setting improvement priorities.

The Board first visited the high school campus where discussions centered on possible renovations to the front bathrooms (near the commons area), the front entrance to the school, including lighting, parking areas, a lighted “high school” sign in front of the flag poles (perhaps made from brick), landscaping upgrades, and the possible addition of an awning along the sidewalk near the parent pickup area.

It was mentioned that the parking lots needed restriping and the fence near the student parking lot served no purpose, so, removing it should be considered. Additionally, the old trailer near the field house is currently being utilized as a storage area for athletics. Principal Michael Walker suggested we discard the trailer and get a storage building to be placed on the west side of the field house. Someone mentioned that the sound system in the gymnasium needs to be upgraded.

The Board next visited the Elementary campus. The main point brought up by Ms. Whitaker was buildings and classrooms are at capacity, and the portable buildings being utilized currently, although functional, are not opportune.

It was suggested by several board members that those buildings be discarded, keeping the best one for storage, and to build new classrooms to accommodate the academic needs of the elementary campus. Ms. Whitaker also pointed out some drainage issues near the exit that leads to the parent pickup area. She also discussed whether or not the fence was needed on the east side of the campus. The Board also visited the newly renovated cafeteria and commented on how much better that facility is now.

Then the Board travelled to the Primary campus. Areas looked at included the drainage issues around the gym area leading to the playground and leading to the butterfly garden. The need for awnings from the parent drop-off area to the cafeteria and gym buildings was discussed.

Whitaker suggested the sand box area of the playground be discarded and the chain link fencing that goes along the west side of the playground be altered/with parts of it being discarded and other parts changed to make for a more workable situation. Painting of the inside of the primary campus gymnasium was also discussed.

Trustees next visited the Junior High campus. Mr. Coyne led everyone on a tour of the cafeteria. Coyne then led everyone to the auditorium to discuss possible “sprucing up” in that building. He also showed everyone how badly lighting was needed on the south side of the campus (where many folks park and enter the building for events such as graduations and awards ceremonies.

More parking should be added in that area also. All parking and drive areas need to be seal coated in hopes to preserve them. Coyne also mentioned the walking track that has deteriorated over time to the point it is really not usable anymore and we should consider repaving that at the same time any other paving projects might take place. Everyone visited the front entrance again, and discussed extra lighting there, upgrades to landscaping, a school sign, and other possible ways to improve the front entrance to make the entire campus more appealing, aesthetically.

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