Charlottesville School Board Lays Out Plans for Elementary School Modernizations

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at Charlottesville School Board meeting at Charlottesville School Board meeting

Charlottesville elementary schools could be seeing improvements to infrastructure as early as summer 2018.

The School Board met Thursday night to learn more about proposed modernization plans.

Charlottesville City Schools hired VMDO architects in 2016 to come up with a plan for improvements for each school. Thursday, the board focused on renovating the city's elementary schools, which haven't seen major renovations in 50 years.

Four of the six elementary schools said they valued improvements to common areas before classrooms. The current five-year capital improvements plan estimates that the renovations will cost $1 million each year for the next five years.

The facilities improvement and planning committee knows that this money is not enough to make all of the necessary changes, but they think improving the 20 fourth grade classrooms first is the best idea.

"You want to start at the highest grade in a building because it gives all the students something to aspire to and it also avoids that experience where kids come and have a year of experience in a really modern classroom and then the next year they go back to a more traditional classroom in the same building,” Kim Powell, assistant superintendent, said.

The next step for the school board is to reassess the schools' priorities in upgrading common areas versus classrooms.

The modernization plans are set to be an action item on the school board's agenda in December. If approved, Clark Elementary, will likely be the first school to see renovations as early as summer of 2018. 

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