On November 6, the Oak Creek-Franklin community chose to shape the future of our community’s schools by voting to approve the 2018 referendum. We are sincerely grateful for the generous support from our community.
Although Safer at Home has kept kids from school for the remainder of the year, the Oak Creek-Franklin Joint School District has found a silver lining for the District. With construction season usually confined to June through August, the COVID-19 school closures allow construction teams to get a jump start on the work scheduled to begin this summer – while still adhering to CDC guidelines to curb the spread of COVID-19 and maintaining safe and healthy work environments.
As year two gets an early start – and work to create safe, comfortable learning spaces continues – many of the current projects in motion include infrastructure and educational updates across the district. Here is what to expect at each school in the coming months:
Oak Creek High School
In May, construction teams broke ground on the Performing Arts Education Center (PAEC) planned for the southeast corner of the high school campus. The PAEC addition will provide opportunities for students interested in various careers within the performing arts field, as well as designated spaces for OCHS students involved in Band, Choir, and Theater. It is also intended for use as a versatile community venue fit for many types of cultural performances, presentations, and meetings.
Extensive interior remodeling, aesthetically and functionally, will also begin this summer to improve the way education is delivered to High School students. These updates include the high-bay auto shop addition with five industry working height lifts (and storage) to create adequate ceiling height and space for the number of students in the program. This is the first step in expanding the Career and Technical Education classrooms and labs, next up will be culinary, metals, woods, and manufacturing spaces. By the time classes resume in the fall, LED lighting, commons expansion, and locker room updates are expected to be complete.
Edgewood & Meadowview Elementary Schools
The new gymnasiums at these two schools are complete and feature hardwood floors, dedicated entrances, and new ADA compliant bathrooms. Site work around the gyms continues and new parking lots at both schools will be completed this summer to improve traffic flow during student drop-off and pick-up, as well as increase parking capacity for special events.
Shepard Hills Elementary School
Since the majority of the new gymnasium interior is complete (painting, ceilings, flooring), installation of the wood floor is planned to start in May, along with exterior work that includes relocating the playground and adding a new parent drive for safe, easy access to parking lots. Remodeling of learning environments will also begin at Shepard Hills to add daylight in classrooms, replace wall partitions with solid walls, and refresh interior paint and finishes.
Carollton Elementary School
Excavation for the new gymnasium began here in early April and construction is scheduled to begin later this summer with expected completion in the Spring of 2021. The interior remodels this summer at Carollton are focused on ADA updates such as widening doorways and renovating restrooms for improved accessibility. A new visitor and handicap parking lot will also be added to the east side of the building.
Cedar Hills Elementary
Project work at this school is still in the early stages. While the design phase is nearing completion, preparations are being made to begin bidding projects this Summer so that construction can start in the Fall. Project work includes the new gymnasium, ADA updates and front entrance/main office security enhancements. Reconfiguring the main office will also provide more maker spaces for hands-on learning at this school.
Projects Wrapping Up
In addition to LED lighting upgrades at the high school being close to completion, the majority of work on the athletic fields is finished, other than some minor finishing work planned for this spring. The remaining work includes landscaping and exterior painting for the baseball and softball fields at East Middle School, as well as landscaping and seeding at the High School soccer field.
The wave of excitement continues to build for OCFJSD and the broader community as the long-range facilities vision funded by the November 2018 bond referendum surpasses its one-year mark. This year brings additional work on safety and security updates, infrastructure renewal and improved building accessibility to meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. As project work continues during the school year, great attention to detail has been given to ensure that construction does not disrupt learning.
By the Fall of 2021, new gymnasiums and dedicated cafeteria space at five elementary schools will be ready for use and resolve the scheduling conflicts between breakfast/lunch and physical education classes. These separate spaces allow for uninterrupted academics and improved physical education for students. In addition, it will prevent conflicts between lunch and physical education schedules. Read on for notable project highlights districtwide since the Fall 2019 update:
Edgewood, Meadowview and Shepard Hills Elementary Schools are nearing the completion of their gymnasium additions. All three schools will unveil their new gyms when students return to school in September of 2020.
Carollton Elementary School gym addition has entered the design phase. Construction is scheduled to begin in the Summer of 2020 and will be ready for use in the Fall of 2021.
Cedar Hills Elementary will start their gymnasium addition in Fall of 2020 and it will be ready for use in Fall of 2021.
Shepard Hills and Carolton Elementary are preparing for extensive interior remodeling in June. At Shepard Hills, modifying traffic circulation for student pick up/drop off will improve students' safety entering and leaving the building. Accessibility concerns will be addressed to ensure student restrooms are ADA compliant. In addition, new flexible learning spaces will be added to enhance students’ educational experiences and opportunities to collaborate, create and innovate. These areas are conducive to small groups, collaborative projects and make the classroom more engaging and open.
Improvements at Carolton include a new secure front entrance and main office, an additional visitor parking lot and updating student restrooms and upgrading building access to meet ADA compliance. Remodeling will also accommodate new learning spaces to support special education and language curriculum.
East Middle School will house new softball and baseball athletic fields. The dugouts and concession stands are up but exterior painting will have to wait for Spring. Field fencing will wrap up this winter and synthetic turf will be added in the Spring. Passersby will notice new asphalt and painting in the parking lots, as well as new sidewalks. The bleachers are ready to house our team and their fans! EMS will also be having an entire parking lot resurface this coming summer and the traffic, that was adjusted to accommodate construction this year, will be reverted back to its normal traffic patterns.
Oak Creek High School LED lighting project is 75% complete. In addition, the construction of a new competition soccer field will finish up this spring, with seeding. Because this field is being seeded, it takes approximately 1 year for the grass to establish. Get ready to cheer for the Knights as they play under the lights in Fall 2021!
Bids for two highly anticipated high school projects, the Performing Arts Education Center and the new Career & Technical Education (CTE) wing are set to be received and evaluated by the end of January 2020. The construction timeline is expected to begin in June 2020 and will be completed by the end of Summer 2021.
The expansion of CTE classrooms and labs will bolster curriculum in 5 distinct Pathways: Business & Marketing, Technical Education, Computer Science, Family and Consumer Science, and Health Science. Right-sizing those facilities and providing flexible working spaces will allow for greater flexibility in instruction.
The Oak Creek-Franklin Joint School District has made steady progress on facility improvements districtwide. Current updates address ADA shortcomings, enhanced safety and security features as well as the creation of flexible learning environments. The following recaps additional work completed since our December update:
Edgewood and Meadowview Elementary Schools gymnasium interior finishes are wrapping up and the athletic wood flooring installation starts soon. Due to required fire code egress routes, the gymnasiums are not able to be used until the sidewalks and final parking lot regrading can be completed this summer.
Shepard Hills Elementary gymnasium interior finishes are on-going. The new gymnasium will be ready for use at the beginning of the next school year in September.
Oak Creek High School LED lighting project is 75% complete. In addition, the construction of a new competition soccer field will finish up this spring with seeding.
East Middle School athletic fields featuring a new Varsity Baseball Field with lighting, JV Softball Field, concessions, parking, fencing, and lights for Varsity Softball will be completed this spring.
Construction continues to move forward at OCFSD. Here is a recap of what was wrapped up this past month and what lies ahead.
Edgewood and Meadowview Elementary Schools gym additions are well underway. Much of the exterior building work – shell, roofing, windows, exterior doors – is finished. The heating systems are operational and we are making headway on interior finishes. The Meadowview and Edgewood gyms will be a welcomed addition for the 2020-21 school year.
Shepard Hills Elementary School gym addition has the ball rolling with the completion of the precast walls. The roofing has already begun, with more exterior work planned for next summer here as well. Interior work is set to begin in early 2020.
The athletic field dugouts and concession stands are up and ready for interior finishes, but exterior painting will have to wait for Spring. Passerbys will notice new asphalt and painting in the parking lots, as well as new sidewalks. Field fencing will wrap up this winter and synthetic turf will be added in the Spring. Last, but certainly not least, the bleachers are ready to house our team and their supporters!
The LED lighting upgrades are complete at East and scheduled to begin at the High School in January. Shepard Hills, Carollton and Cedar Hills are the final buildings to receive LED lighting upgrades which will be completed with their interior work.
Bids for the high school projects – PAEC and Tech Ed -- are set to be received and evaluated by the end of January 2020 and construction is expected to begin in June 2020, then finish by the end of Summer 2021. To view the design and construction schedule for our districtwide projects visit ocfsd.org/referendum. Other projects on the horizon include:
- Carollton Elementary School interior remodel and gym addition will begin next Summer.
- Cedar Hills Elementary School gym project will begin in the Fall of 2020 with the interior remodel taking place in the Summer of 2021.
It has been a busy fall for construction at OCFSD, with numerous projects continuing Districtwide to help us build successful futures. The most visible work this fall includes the new gymnasiums at three of our elementary schools and athletic projects at East Middle School and Oak Creek High School. Below is a deeper dive into what's going on around the District:
Edgewood, Meadowview and Shepard Hills Elementary Schools gym additions are progressing. Exterior brick work is wrapping up at Edgewood and Meadowview, which allows the mechanical and electrical work to be done and prepares for interior finishes in these new spaces. The gym addition at Shepard Hills is also underway, with foundations in the ground and walls starting to go up.
By Fall 2020, all three of these schools will have separate gymnasiums and cafeterias to accommodate the scheduling needs for lunch and physical education classes, as well as literacy and math blocks. These separated spaces allow for uninterrupted academics and improved physical education for all our students.
East Middle School and Oak Creek High School athletic projects are well underway, with the bulk of the work completed this fall. Loads of dirt have been moved, large retention ponds are dug and parking lots are ready to be paved at East and OCHS.
Since most of the underground work is complete and ballfield fences have been installed at East Middle School, the above ground work is now in the works. Roofs and walls for the concession stand and dugouts are up, allowing the interior work to proceed. Bleachers at the Varsity Baseball and Varsity Softball fields are being installed and sod and cool-season grass seed were installed mid-October to take advantage of moderate temperatures and help get fields established before winter – and ready for use next Spring!
Construction of the new competition soccer field on the high school campus has begun and is expected to be completed by Fall 2020 – lights and all.
LED lighting upgrades continue across the District to increase energy efficiency and help save on energy costs. LED updates are 100% complete at Deerfield, Edgewood and Meadowview Elementary Schools and 95% finished at East Middle School. Next on the list for lighting upgrades is the high school, which is scheduled to begin in January 2020.
Planning for next Summer's construction work has already begun! Some of the projects next in line include:
Oak Creek High School is in the design phase, with construction scheduled to begin in Summer 2020. This construction project includes the highly-anticipated, Performing Arts Education Center and improved technical education wing at OCHS.
The Carollton and Cedar Hills Elementary Schools gym additions are also in design and scheduled to begin construction next summer as well.
Numerous construction projects in our District continue to move forward. The progress on our gymnasium additions at Meadowview and Edgewood Elementary Schools includes finished walls at both schools. Meadowview's gym is a little farther along and has the roof on and exterior brick is going up. Edgewood's gym roof is currently going on and the exterior brick will start soon. Both gymnasiums are scheduled for completion during the Summer of 2020.
LED lighting upgrades continue across the district and are 100% complete at Deerfield Elementary School and 95% finished at East Middle School. LED lighting can boost focus, assist in concentration, improve overall mood and behavior in students and offers energy savings to the district.
The athletics project has officially begun, with loads of dirt moved, large retention ponds dug and grading for the new fields and parking lots underway at both OCHS and East. Underground storm water and main piping are complete at both sites as well, and underground electrical has begun. Above ground, work is ongoing to install ballfield fences at East Middle School.
Once completed, these upgrades will help our District provide inspiring learning environments for OCFSD students to excel and succeed in. The projects next in line include:
- Shepard Hills gymnasium addition, which is scheduled to start in mid-October
- Synthetic turf for baseball and softball fields at East, starting in early October
Meadowview gym walls going up.
Ballfield fencing going up at East MS.
This summer the District took its first steps toward building the vision created by our community and as the new school year quickly approaches, work on the projects from this summer is quickly coming to an end. Some of the most noticeable project highlights from this first phase include:
Edgewood & Meadowview Elementary Schools interior updates are already wrapping up. Staff and students will return to a remodeled main office area and renovated classrooms – many with fresh paint and new flooring, ceilings, sinks, and cabinetry. Both schools also underwent Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) upgrades this summer to improve accessibility to classrooms, bathrooms, and sidewalks.
New parking at Meadowview (with improved traffic flow) will be ready for use at the beginning of this school year, however, work on the new gym additions at these two schools will continue through the school year. Concrete foundations are in place, walls are going up and the gymnasiums are scheduled for completion during the summer of 2020.
Deerfield Elementary School interior remodeling will be finished this month and provide more educational support spaces for students in the upcoming school year. Exterior improvements to the main parking lot and traffic circulation are also scheduled to be completed before school starts.
East Middle School safety and security updates – including new security doors in corridors for building compartmentalization and protective fencing around classroom courtyards – will be done this summer.
West Middle School interior remodeling is finishing up this summer to create additional small group breakout spaces in the Library, as well as flexible spaces for large group instruction. Staff and students will return to a remodeled main office and refreshed classrooms/hallways – many with fresh paint, new flooring, and ceilings. Like East, new security doors were also added in corridors for security compartmentalization.
Additionally, these school buildings received LED lighting updates to gain energy efficiencies and improve student focus and concentration in learning environments.
The preliminary schedule below outlines the design phase, bidding phase, and construction phase for the projects at each location.
- Performing Arts Education Center
- Deerfield Elementary
- West Middle School
- Edgewood Elementary
- Meadowview Elementary
- Athletic Fields
- Shepard Hills Elementary