SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Even with students out for the summer, many campuses in Santa Barbara are very busy.
Construction crews have moved in to take on a long list of projects. Some are on a tight timeline. Some will extend into the coming year.
"It used to be summer was three months, now it's closer to two months, and a couple weeks. We try to get as much done as we can when students are off campus," said Santa Barbara School District Facilities Director David Hetyonk.
Some of the improvements are designed with ideas from students and teachers before drawings are made.
"It's amazing how many great suggestions we get from the kids and they say why don't you do it this way, and it filters up," said School District Project Manager Carl Mayrose.
Two bond measures, R and Q were approved by voters in November of 2010 and fund these projects. The voters saw a specific list of improvement before they cast their ballots.
Some projects funded by tax dollars are also getting help from local fundraising and foundations. At Peabody Stadium on the Santa Barbara High School campus, the next project will be an upgrade of the bleachers, funded by the bond money. At the same time, donations are expected to pay for a 400-meter all weather track and a new synthetic field. That is expected to come with a $5-million contribution from local supporters who are actively looking for donors.
The theater at La Cumbre Junior High is going through a sweeping renovation with upgraded seats, lighting, sound proofing, paint, and carpet. It's one of the larger school theaters with over 1000 seats.
At Adams Elementary School, portable buildings are being spruced up and relocated to make room for a site where a new library building will go up. It will have several state of the art improvements, especially in the area of technology, wireless features, and instructional space. The current library is extremely small and outdated.
"Since I have been hear I have been amazed at the amount fundraising from foundations. I have been amazed the community has supported bond issues to support their schools. It's not that way in every community," said Hetyonk . "This community likes their schools to be up to date and values education, unfortunately not every place is like that. "
For more information on the school district projects go to: http://sbefoundation.org/measures-q-r/