By Julie Clements, Butler County Times Gazette - February 8, 2014
Several Oil Hill students started the new semester in new classes as the first phase of the school’s remodel project was completed.
PHOTO/ JULIE CLEMENTS
Students in one of the new classrooms at Oil Hill Elementary. Several
classes moved into the new room at the start of the semester.
That included the classes that were in the modular classrooms, which they called “the camper.”
“The kids came back the first of January to new classrooms,” Gawith said.
She said the teachers gave a lot of their time over the break preparing the classrooms so they were completely moved and decorated on the first day back to school.
In all, the project will add eight new classrooms, and the removal of the modular rooms. The new wing of classrooms also includes a flex learning area in the hallway.
Phase one included some of the new classrooms, as well as air conditioning in the gym.
Phase two now includes a new office, library and nurses area, which will extend the front of that part of the building nearly out to the north end of the gym.
There also will be a new lunchroom/safe room for the school, as well as a new computer lab. The old library will be turned into a classroom and office areas once the library is moved to the front of the building.
The construction included not only additions and remodeling, but tearing down part of the old school to make room for the new rooms.
Gawith said one class that had already moved actually could watch their old classroom being torn down out the windows of their new room, which she said they enjoyed.
To complete the project, they will remodel the old rooms with paint and carpeting to match the new areas.
“When we come back it will be an all new school,” Gawith said. “One big thing was really trying to merge the old and new so you don’t notice the old parts. We’re very excited.”
Gawith also said how easily the students have adapted to the ongoing construction around them. While at first it was a distraction, now it is just part of the normal day for them. The construction company also has been helpful in doing some of the more noisy work after school, on weekends and when teachers are out of their classrooms.
This is part of a $37 million bond project for Circle School District and includes a new Circle High School. Simpson Construction Services was selected to serve as construction manager on the project, along with architects, DLR Group and PKHLS.
The project will be completed by the time the students return in the fall.
Julie Clements can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.