At the December 16 Montclair board meeting, Brian Fleischer, the district’s Chief Operations Officer, will announce that over $1 million in school facilities grants, funded by the New Jersey Department of Education (DOE) and disbursed through the New Jersey School Development Authority (SDA), were awarded to the district and will fund capital projects at all of the district’s schools.
This grant cycle’s funding supports capital projects categorized by the SDA as critical building upgrades, roof and window repairs, projects to correct code issues, Americans with Disabilities Act upgrades, security system needs, and hazardous material abatement. The grant funds cover 40% of the total estimated cost for each awarded project. Montclair last received monies from the DOE’s “Grant Program for School Facilities Projects in Regular Operating Districts” in 2009.
At Montclair High School (MHS) the district will be using these grant funds for projects to repair the amphitheater bridges, upgrade barrier-free ramps and entryways in multiple locations around the campus, renovate the men’s and women’s bathrooms near the cafeteria, and on upgrades to heating, ventilation and air conditioning equipment. Additionally, waterproofing to the masonry at the George Inness Annex will be done.
All of the Montclair Public Schools (MPS) will have security systems enhancements and window repairs. Other projects include roof repairs at Bradford and Edgemont elementary schools; heating, ventilation, and air conditioning upgrades at Glenfield Middle School, Renaissance at Rand Middle School, and Northeast and Watchung elementary schools; masonry waterproofing at Northeast School; field renovations at Bradford School to address drainage and erosion issues; and an oil tank removal project at Glenfield School.
Many of these projects have been in the district’s long-term capital plan, while some – such as security systems improvements – emerged after last year’s BOE budget cycle. Project scheduling varies, with the majority of work anticipated to be completed during summer 2014.