December 22, 2014

Elyria
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Wish list for Elyria High

ELYRIA – Elyria school officials have etched out a list of proposed projects they hope community organizations, corporate donors and philanthropists might be willing to fund as a way to enhance the new Elyria High School.

Proposed enhancements

  • Computer labs
  • Interactive whiteboards
  • Distance-learning capabilities

Athletics and recreation

  • Indoor track
  • Indoor tennis court
  • Swimming pool
  • Weight room and wrestling room
  • Sports Hall of Fame
  • Enhance Ely Stadium entrance and facilities

Beautification

  • Upgrades to green spaces
  • Ornamental gating

Educational space

  • Outdoor science classrooms; learning centers with access to Black River
  • Outdoor art class areas
  • Atrium with plants for science classes
  • Breakfast program
  • Theater room
  • Large-screen movie room

Arts and culture

  • Outdoor pavilion for student and community performances
  • Public education/public forum/history area
  • Infuse sculptures and art on campus

The cost of the $68 million high school is being share by the state – about a 60-40 split on the co-funded portion of the project – but school officials and community members have been hoping to add a little pizzazz by drumming up support from private donors.

Board member Holly Brinda, who has taken the reins on the issue, on Tuesday presented a comprehensive list of possible enhancements to the new Elyria High, namely items that aren`t covered under the main project plan, to the school board.

Superintendent Paul Rigda has stressed that the proposed improvements are beyond what the district has ironed out.

They would simply be added bonuses – not “needs,” per se, but certainly nice to have if the money can be found.

As such, the proposals wouldn`t cost taxpayers a dime, and they`d be funded entirely by donors.

The proposed enhancements – about 20 total – are in the areas of technology, educational space, arts and culture, athletics and recreation and beautification.

Brinda said she created the list with staff and employees of Elyria High School, and she asked her fellow board members to rank the items by various criteria, such as overall importance and importance in their respective category.

Additionally, the items will be chosen based on such things as: where they fit in the school`s master plan, how they impact safety and security, their long-term implications and other issues.

Once the list is whittled down, the district will submit what`s left to the project architects to determine how much they might cost, and whether they`re feasible for the EHS project. The school district will also retain or scrap proposed enhancements based on the amount of interest they receive from possible funding sources.

Contact Shawn Foucher at 653-6255 or sfoucher@chroniclet.com.