D211 Post: Conant High School Gets Multiple Summer Improvements

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A wall of plywood blocks off a hallway at James B. Conant High School, which is undergoing a large amount of reconstruction to update the school’s bathrooms.

            James B. Conant High School has been closed during the 2018 summer break while the school is receiving multiple upgrades and improvements.

            The largest renovation to the 55-year-old building, is a complete overhaul of nine of the school’s restrooms.  Renovations include new fixtures, plumbing improvements, installation of hand dryers, and HVAC updates.

            Lauren Hummel, District 211 chief operating officer said the temporary closing of the school during the summer months marked the third year a school on the south side of the District has been closed for renovations.

            “Working this way will allow us to complete all of the necessary updates without impacting students,” she said.

A bathroom at James B. Conant High School which has been torn down in preparation for a complete overhaul.

            Hummel added that all renovations inside the school will be completed in early August and the school will re-open in time for the first day of the 2018-2019 school year, which is Monday, August 13.

            Outside, multiple sports fields are receiving multiple renovations.  Hummel said these renovations include improved drainage and leveling of the grounds.

            “We are also using this opportunity to design the fields in such a manner as to maximize all of the space,” Hummel added.

            Including seeding, all work on the fields, which includes both softball and baseball fields, is expected to take nearly a year to complete.

Temporary water lines span the ceilings of James B. Conant High School during construction on the school’s bathrooms.

            The final major update to Conant High School will be a roof replacement over the school’s cafeteria.  Hummel said the section being replaced is more than 30 years old and was due for replacement.

            Total cost for all renovations at the school will be approximately $8.4 million which was approved by the Board of Education as part of the District’s Fiscal Year 2019 budget.