Summer work set for Hinsdale high schools
Updated: March 8, 2013 6:07AM
HINSDALE — The Hinsdale District 86 School Board approved Monday $1.1 million in construction projects to be done over the summer, including expanding the girls locker room in Hinsdale South and renovating hallways and painting lockers there and at Hinsdale Central.
When contingencies, a campus stormwater study and other repairs are included, the estimated cost reached $1.67 million.
Board members Richard Skoda and Dianne Barrett questioned the importance of some of the work, such as painting the lockers and halls. They said they walked through the schools to check out the areas selected for upgrading.
Painting the lockers and renovating the hallways is estimated to cost about $279,000 at Central and $250,000 at South.
“Any parent walking through (the schools) that is not something that jumps out,” Skoda said.
District 86 Superintendent Nicholas Wahl said, in addition to painting the lockers in each school’s colors, the ceiling and floor tiles and the lighting would be upgraded.
“The hallways in Hinsdale South are very dark,” Wahl said.
The improvements would not be strictly for aesthetics, Wahl said. They foster school spirit and follow the design guidelines the board approved last summer.
Skoda noted that list of summer work includes $170,800 to renovate and expand the girls locker room and $70,500 to relocate the trainer’s room in Hinsdale South, projects that are not part of the master facilities plan, he said.
Skoda argued the students’ bathrooms were more in need of renovating than the locker room.
“There are lots of ways kids can be helped more than painting the lockers,” Skoda said.
He and Barrett asked the board members to postpone the vote on approving the list until they could evaluate and prioritize the projects better. That request failed by a 4-2 vote.
Parent Sue Pircon said she thinks the improvements, including painting the lockers, should be done. When her five children attended District 86, they spent more time in school than at home.
“As a parent, I feel it is extremely important to keep facilities up to date,” Pircon said. “I keep my house well-painted, neat and tidy.”