Facility Master Plan - Educational Improvements
This section contains information from the Facility Master Plan report from Perkins + Will. This is not a list of work the Board has decided to complete. This information can be found in the Executive Summary (below) of the full report.
Common Observations - Educational Improvements
The following charts outline observations made regarding common educational elements throughout the District. These elements were taken from the educational assessments performed on each facility. These include: Early Childhood Facilities, Science Laboratory Facilities, Library Learning Centers, Collaboration Space, Furniture, Technology Infrastructure and Building Security.
Generally, across the District facilities, there was room for substantive improvement in several categories.
Early Childhood Spaces
While the majority of the program is housed at the Jefferson campus, there are portions housed at Johnson, Madison and Whittier. This decreases the effectiveness of the entire program, forcing itinerant services to travel between campuses, losing the synergies that would come with having the program housed in one location. Additionally, the facilities at Jefferson are sub-par. Classrooms are undersized, toilet rooms are not accessible, shared facilities are undersized and out of date. Significant improvement is required at these facilities.
Refer to the Appendix for an evaluation of the Jefferson campus prepared by Early Childhood education expert Dr. Judy Harris Helm.
Science Laboratory Classrooms
At the Middle School and High School level, generally, science classroom facilities are undersized and use fixed furniture and equipment. Right-sizing those facilities and providing flexible working spaces will allow for greater flexibility in instruction and help meet the needs of Next Generation Science Standards.
Library Learning Centers
While each school is equipped with a functional and well outfitted Library Learning Center, most of those were rooted in out dated educational delivery systems. Although most library directors were working to bring their programs and facilities in line with the District’s FIT standards, large scale improvements District-wide would assist with bringing these facilities in line with the current District Vision.
Several elementary schools are well equipped with specific areas that allow for collaboration between small groups of students or between teachers/itinerant instructors and students. However, most facilities do not have these facilities. Improvements in these would allow for additional flexibility for instruction and more appropriate space for small group and individual instruction.
While there are outliers within the District that are using alternative furniture solutions, a majority of classrooms are equipped with inflexible, heavy furniture that inhibits group work in classrooms. Improvement in this area would allow for greater flexibility in instruction and collaboration between students.
Throughout the District, access to the wireless network was available at each facility. Reports of capacity issues for large scale access to the network was reported at several Elementary School. Existing inconsistences in instructional technology are being proactively addressed through the measured implementation of the District’s technology master plan.
Although all facilities have a secured entry, several facilities do not contain visitors upon admittance to the facility. Additional improvements to access control and surveillance are also recommended.
Summary - Educational Improvement Budgets
The following charts summarize the preliminary budget models for the improvements outlined under the Facilities Master Plan report. There are a few facilities that stand out for the extent of improvements outlined. Franklin and the other Middle Schools have identified significant educational facility needs in Science, Collaboration and other areas. Similarly, Sandburg, Washington and Whittier have identified significant organizational reconfigurations.
Further development of the cost model would be required to provide additional clarity and specificity as the design continues to develop. These approximations are given for baseline budgeting purposes only.
A few clarifications of the information shown on the District-wide Educational Improvements charts/graphs below:
Some improvement categories are embedded in the ‘other’ category; IE, the science lab expansions & renovations at Franklin. These improvements are included in a larger picture expansion & renovation project and are not able to be counted individually. Additional elements included under the ‘other’ category include building circulation reorganization, classroom modifications and other improvements that fall outside of the common observations.
Improvements that are enabling projects for the specific category improvement have been included along with the direct costs associated with the improvement; IE, the entrance improvements at Bower include the enabling projects of relocating special education classrooms.
The evaluation takes the basic budgeting information developed for educational improvements included in the Facilities Master Plan. It should be noted, however, that for both Wheaton North (WNHS) and Wheaton-Warrenville South High Schools (WWSHS), only the short term improvements are included. These include, at WWSHS replacement of bleachers and renovation of the LLC, and at WNHS, renovation/expansion of the Media Production Studio.