Renovations at Grant Foreman Elementary could be completed by April, said Muskogee Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Lance Crawley.
Crawley updated the Muskogee Board of Education on new construction and major building renovations at the board’s regular meeting on Tuesday. According to a chart presented at the meeting, Grant Foreman remodeling is set to be finished April 1.
“Grant Foreman is coming along just fantastic right now,” Crawley said before the meeting.
All Grant Foreman’s windows, even the colored blocks, are being replaced, Crawley said. There also is new paint throughout the building, exterior fencing around the playground. Each classroom has interactive TVs and whiteboard, he said.
Sadler Arts Academy students will move to Grant Foreman while work is done at Sadler during the 2022-2023 school year.
Work also is progressing on the new Muskogee High School field house, football stadium and press box. According to Crawley’s chart, the stadium and press box are to be finished by August. The field house could be finished by December.
Crawley said some people have asked about white structural steel surrounding the field house. He said the steel is not the final exterior.
“That’s actually the interior,” he said. “There’s actually four layers that will go on: Metal, insulation, sheathing and either EIFS or brick.”
EIFS, or External Insulation and Finishing System, is like a stucco, Crawley said.
Sadler Arts Academy will get a complete interior remodel, Crawley said.
“We’re not adding square footage there, we’re just taking what’s there with all new electrical, all new heat and air, all new plumbing,” Crawley said. “Every classroom will get a new teaching wall with whiteboards and interactive TV, all new carpet, new classroom furniture.”
Original bond issue plans for Sadler included additional classrooms as well as a building upgrade. However the cost of building materials and construction rose extensively during the COVID 19 pandemic and afterward, Crawley said.
“We can’t be put in a position where we will reject our bids,” he said.
Work on Sadler is expected to begin in July and be completed in August of 2023, Crawley said.
“We are redesigning the structure of the classrooms that are there,” Crawley said. “In an old building like that, who knows when all those remodels took place? It wasn’t used as efficiently as it could be for students and teachers.”
Parts of the old gym will be converted into an alumni center for Manual Training High School students, he said. Sadler originally was Manual Training High School, built in 1951.
Bids on MHS work are to be opened April 12 or April 19, Crawley said. Upgrades at MHS, originally budgeted for $7 million, include complete remodeling of the fine arts area, including a larger band room.
“It will add about another third to the existing space,” he said. “And we are redoing the entire front area of building B to make that the main entrance,” he said. Completion is expected in December of 2023.
Final decisions on Irving Elementary School, the 6th and 7th Grade Academy at Ben Franklin and the Early Childhood Center have not been announced.