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updated: 11/29/2013 6:49 PM

Stevenson classrooms, labs could get facelift in 2014

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  • The band room in Stevenson High School's west building could be renovated as part of a $9.7 million project being considered for summer 2014. Here, Emmy Award-winning Chicago composer Gary Fry works with students during a recent visit.

       The band room in Stevenson High School's west building could be renovated as part of a $9.7 million project being considered for summer 2014. Here, Emmy Award-winning Chicago composer Gary Fry works with students during a recent visit.
    Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

  • Jim Conrey

      Jim Conrey

 
 

Stevenson High School officials are developing a $9.7 million renovation plan for summer 2014.

The project wouldn't add any new buildings to the already sprawling Lincolnshire campus. Instead, existing educational space and amenities would be modernized or repaired.

Some classrooms would be expanded. Others would be overhauled to meet current standards.

The financing for the plan, which could be approved Dec. 16, hasn't been determined.

"The board has been looking at a number of options, including pay for it all as part of the 2014-15 budget, dipping into cash reserves, issuing bonds or doing some combination of the three," Stevenson spokesman Jim Conrey told the Daily Herald in an email.

Of the 13 projects being considered, the costliest is a $2.3 million modernization of the east building's science labs.

The new, larger rooms would feature discussion space and areas for laboratory work, board member Terry Moons said.

"The staff really had to think about how we teach science in the 21st century," Moons said. "It's very exciting, it's very hands-on, it's very engaging for our students."

A similar overhaul of the west building's science labs began in 2012.

In the west building, the fine arts classrooms are slated for a $1.1 million renovation, among other projects.

Additionally, an estimated $1.4 million worth of maintenance projects are on the school board's to-do list. They include roof repairs, a renovation of the west building's band room and repairs at the Vernon Hills Athletic Complex's tennis courts, which Stevenson helps maintain.

Plans also call for about $1.1 million in safety and security improvements.

The biggest element is the continued effort to convert the school's doors to a keyless entry system. The second phase of the project will cost about $1 million.

Additionally, officials are considering building a lightning shelter for spectators at the Vernon Hills Athletic Complex. That would cost about $120,000.

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