Kirby: Scottsdale Schools to embark on overhaul this summer

This is going to be an exciting summer for Scottsdale Unified School District.

Pam Kirby

When our students depart for summer vacation, we begin construction on the first of our major bond projects. Those projects are possible due to the generosity and trust of Scottsdale taxpayers. We owe you a great debt of thanks.

We also owe you action and transparency.

In the last few weeks, we have approved contractors for the complete rebuild of Hopi and Hohokam elementary schools. We have also approved contractors for the science labs and gymnasium additions to Cheyenne Traditional, and for the new tracks and fields at Chaparral, Coronado, and Saguaro high schools.

Before the governing board breaks for the summer, we will be voting on the contractor for the rebuild of Pima Elementary, which will become a traditional school. We can’t wait to see shovels in the ground on these projects and are committed to our students not losing one day of instruction while work is being done to improve their learning environments.

Of course, those aren’t the only schools served by your tax dollars. Every single school will see improvements over the next two years, including:

  • New security measures at every school, ranging from cameras to classroom door hardware.
  • Roof replacements or repairs at: Anasazi, Cochise, Copper Ridge, Desert Canyon Elementary, Laguna, Mountainside, Redfield, Sequoya and Yavapai.
  • New flooring at: Anasazi, Cheyenne, Cochise, Copper Ridge, Desert Canyon Elementary, Laguna, Redfield, Sequoya and Tavan.
  • Fresh exterior paint at: Cochise, Desert Canyon Elementary, Desert Canyon Middle School, Laguna, Sequoya, Tavan and Tonalea.

• Basketball court replacements at Cochise and Cocopah.

Other improvements include fresh interior paint, new ceiling tiles, new intercom systems, fire alarm replacements, and asphalt removal.

We’re putting capital override dollars to work as well, with a sweeping overhaul of technology across the district. With the goal of having all the new technology in place over the next two years, this summer’s projects will bring:

  • New laptops for teachers at every school;
  • Wireless technology improvements, starting with the high schools;
  • Classroom audio improvements.

Capital override dollars will also be spent on instructional materials, athletics, fine arts and playground improvements. Assessments are underway to determine needs in these areas. We will also begin the process of equipping our classrooms with new computers for students.

In an effort to increase transparency and communication with our stakeholders, there is now a dedicated web page for bond and override updates. You can follow progress online at https://concrete.susd.org/susd-bond-projects/. On this page, you can sign up to have weekly progress emails delivered straight to your inbox, view design specs, and download documents presented to the board.

We expect to see most of our schools looking fresh this fall, and by this time next year, our rebuilds will be taking shape.

More schools are waiting for their turn to get an overhaul from the ground up, so stay connected as SUSD continues to put your tax dollars to work.

Editor’s note: Ms. Kirby is a member of the Scottsdale Unified School District Governing Board

Editor's Note: Ms. Kirby is a Scottsdale Unified School District Governing Board Member.

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