Agassiz Elementary Secondary School and Harrison Hot Springs Elementary will finally be on municipal water for this coming school year.
In total, AESS has received about $800,000 in upgrades this year. In addition to being connected to the municipal water service, the high school also received a partial mechanical upgrade on their boiler unit, and all rooftop units were replaced. The school has also recently had a complete LED lighting upgrade, Doug Templeton, the Fraser Cascade School District’s director of facilities and transportation, said.
Harrison Hot Springs elementary will also be removed from its well-water source within the next month and connecting to that municipal’s water service.
Although the move to municipal water is a big deal for the two local schools, they aren’t the ones that have been taking up most of the school district’s time this summer.
Hope Secondary has been the recipient of around $1 million in renovations, giving the high school a facelift for fall.
“Hope Secondary is the school that we focused on this year,” Templeton says. “So at that particular site, we’ve done a complete paint of the exterior and we’re in the process of doing asbestos abatement in all the flooring.”
A palette of blues and greys have replaced the old red paint outside, and the face lift extends to the interior as well. The school was the main focus of summer maintenance upgrades, Templeton said.
All of the main hallways have already had the asbestos removed, as well as some of the classrooms. He says that the rest of the classrooms will be taken care of by Christmas.
“At that site we’ve replaced all the rooftop units on the school, replaced the dust collector from the shops,” Templeton says. “In totality we probably are spending $1 million on Hope secondary.”
That includes paving upgrades and renovations inside, including both the staff room and art room.
And if that doesn’t excite students as they head back to class, what’s outside just might. A new basketball and ball hockey court has been added to the grounds, increasing the opportunity for activities outside.
Up in Boston Bar, the elementary school has had new playground equipment installed and a renovated basketball court.
Karen Nelson, superintendent of schools for Fraser Cascade, says the hard work being done at Hope Secondary and other sites this summer has been incredible.
“Maintenance staff, under the direction of Doug Templeton, Director of Facilities and Transportation, have worked tirelessly over the summer to provide the necessary facility upgrades and to ensure that all school district sites are clean and safe for the return of students and staff on the first day of school,” she said.
“We truly appreciate all of the hard work that is completed by our maintenance staff, not only during the summer, but each and every day of the year.”
The funding for the upgrades each year comes from the annual facilities grant that each district receives.
The district is divided into five sections, and planned work rotates through those sections so that work is done on each site every five years to avoid disrupting too many sites at once.