Education column: Schools painted, trimmed and cleaned

As our Clovis Municipal School’s operations department continues with summer projects, below is an update on maintenance activities at the remaining elementary schools.

At Lincoln-Jackson Family Center, the eaves have been painted, and the basketball court redone. The court area had settled considerably over the years, leaving a depression that collected water and had become a drainage problem. It is now ready for the little ones as well neighborhood kids. New playground equipment was also installed, along with a shade structure.

Cameo Elementary had already had the eaves and trim painted and two shade structures installed, so when summer school, held at Cameo this year, was finished at the end of June, carpet shampooing was next on the list. Sandia Elementary also had the major jobs completed, so this summer’s list contained standard cleaning and maintenance tasks. At Mesa Elementary, the needed recarpeting of classrooms — about 10 altogether — was completed. Not long before school was over, Mesa’s office area had been enclosed behind an added framework and glass, similar to Parkview’s. This will greatly contribute to improved security and energy efficiency. Gradual xeriscaping will continue at Mesa, contributing to increased manageability while maintaining aesthetic appeal.

Several of our upcoming major school projects are progressing through the evaluation and planning stages. James Bickley Elementary will be rebuilt/replaced, since this is a more economically-feasible solution than remodeling and repairing. The plan for the new school, however, will be to preserve the historical architectural style as much as possible.

The final stages of design are underway for the new Lockwood Elementary school building, which will be adjacent to the current location. Many may remember that when the current school building was built, it was designed to be a temporary structure that would be replaced within a relatively short timeframe. Only now are we able to achieve that goal. Construction on the new Lockwood Elementary building should begin in October. We’re fortunate to have the land adjacent to the current school location so that our students can attend school undisturbed while construction is underway this fall.

Ranchvale Elementary’s connecting breezeway has been renovated to eliminate water and wind leakage, which will definitely improve energy efficiency. Zia Elementary’s roof was finished and the heating and air conditioning units replaced. The gym was completely painted, and lighting and tile floors redone where needed.

We are fortunate in partnering with the New Mexico Public Schools Facilities Authority and grateful for their support. Without them and their financial (and other) assistance, we would not be able to achieve our goals. The PSFA has been increasingly active in the state of New Mexico since their inception. For those interested, have a look at their website, which includes status and activities involving school districts throughout the state, as well as their annual reports, checklists and reference manuals. They can be found at www.nmpsfa.org.

Franklin D. Roosevelt once remarked, “The school is the last expenditure upon which America should be willing to economize.”

Cindy Kleyn-Kennedy is the Instructional Technology Coordinator for the Clovis Municipal Schools and can be reached at cindy.kleyn-kennedy@clovis-schools.org