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New Bond Projects Reach Milestones

New Classrooms, Joint-Use Improvements Reach Milestones in San Diego Coastal Communities
Posted on 05/20/2021
La Jolla Elementary School New Classroom Building Rendering

New Classrooms, Joint-Use Improvements Reach Milestones in San Diego Coastal Communities

May 20, 2021

SAN DIEGO - Preparations are underway to add state-of-the art facilities and other campus wide improvements at three schools in La Jolla and University City.

At La Jolla Elementary School (LJES), construction crews have started demolishing dated portables and installing temporary student classrooms at the school’s upper field to make way for a modern new classroom building.

Once demolition is completed, construction will begin on a new two-story classroom and student services facility that will create a secure main campus entryway along Girard Avenue. The new facility will include new classrooms and an engineering and robotics maker space to boost Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) learning.

LJES Principal Stephanie Hasselbrink said these enhancements will complement the school’s already stellar academic program. In 2016, LJES became a National Blue Ribbon School, and in 2018, it became a California Distinguished School.

“These new facilities will really support our students' academic achievements and enrichment opportunities, while also bringing our special community closer together,” Hasselbrink said.

Watch: San Diego Unified Presents a Coastal Transformation

Additional improvements at LJES include modernization of existing classrooms and student and food services facilities, along with an expanded parking lot with a drop-off and pick-up area.

South of La Jolla Elementary, La Jolla High School (LJHS) recently completed its Whole Site Modernization project that includes a secure campus entryway, new classroom science labs, and other campus wide renovations.

La Jolla High School EntranceLa Jolla High School Signage

New Front Entrance Signage at La Jolla High

LJHS’s existing library and media center, building 200, now serves as a secure entrance. Located at the corner of Draper Avenue and Westbourne Street, the new entrance features new gates and fencing that were designed to be both functional and decorative . The existing classroom building, 800A, was also converted into classroom science labs to enhance the school’s Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) learning.

La Jolla High Science Lab

New Science Lab at La Jolla High 

The Whole Site Modernization follows many accolades for LJHS. Not only has LJHS been named a top high school by the US News and World Report, it has also been recognized as a California Distinguished School, an Achievement via Individual Determination (AVID) School of Distinction, and the first public high school west of the Mississippi to earn a chapter in the Cum Laude Society.

“We are proud of our student and staff achievements and we are even more excited to bring them these new facilities with improvements that will only inspire them to work harder,” said Chuck Podhorsky, La Jolla High School Principal.

La Jolla High New Girls Locker Room

Newly Renovated Girls Locker Room at La Jolla High 

Additional improvements at LJHS included remodeling of: the existing science building and labs, renovated walkways, the food services area, girls’ locker rooms and restrooms in the cafeteria and classroom building 500. New Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) units were also installed in spaces previously without it, and upgraded in classrooms and spaces that had existing HVAC units.

“The effectiveness of a school is related to its instructional environment and quality of its facilities,” said Dr. Mike McQuary, District C Board of Education Trustee. “Now is the time for the construction of these new facilities that will better serve the students, staff, and neighboring communities.”

Head Northeast to Radcliffe Drive, and construction of a new pool, outdoor pavilion, and aquatic center is underway at Standley Middle School. When completed, the joint-use facility will be open to the school during school hours and to the community when school is not in session. Additional features include a pool amenities building with outdoor showers, changing rooms, and restrooms.

Standley Middle JUI Improvements Renderings

Renderings of Future Joint-Use Pool and Aquatics Center at Standley Middle 
Meanwhile, Standley neighbor Spreckels Elementary anticipates construction of its new two-story classroom facility and joint-use grass playfield to begin this fall. Renovations at Spreckels Elementary include construction of a new student pick-up/drop-off area and additional off-street parking, creation of a secure and controlled visitor entry point, and major upgrades to the existing classroom, multi-purpose, and administration buildings. The new field at Spreckels Elementary will include a walking/running path and new hard court play areas.

“My predecessor Dr. John Lee Evans advocated for the Standley Middle School pool so that our teachers could enhance P.E. classes and teach students the fundamentals of swimming,” said Sabrina Bazzo, who took over as District A Board of Education Trustee in December 2020. “The great thing is that this pool, and the joint-use facilities, will be open to other nearby schools, as well as the neighboring community. So it’s a win-win for all.”

Once the Standley and Spreckels projects are complete, a modernization of Standley Middle School will begin.

The Standley joint-use improvements are anticipated to be completed this fall, with the Spreckels and La Jolla Elementary Whole Site Modernizations poised to be complete in 2024.

Bond-funded work also continues across the city at district schools in City Heights, Clairemont, and Colina Del Sol.

San Diego Unified’s capital projects are funded by San Diego Unified’s Propositions S, Z and Measure YY, which are local bond measures approved by San Diego voters to repair, renovate and revitalize neighborhood schools. In addition to renovation and replacement, bond projects include classroom technology, facilities to support College, Career and Technical Education, classroom air conditioning, safety and security upgrades, and other facilities improvements at traditional and public charter schools throughout San Diego Unified.

Related Links:
Three Schools See Construction Milestones

Media Contact:
Jamie Ries, Facilities Communication Liaison, [email protected].