Renovations are underway throughout the Glen Cove School District. From a brand new auditorium in the high school to high-filtration water fountain systems throughout the high, middle, and elementary schools, Superintendent Maria Rianna has taken charge in the implementation of these improvements.
“We are attempting to achieve a five-year building improvement project.” Rianna said. “We constantly look at things that need to be attended to, to ensure a safe and supportive learning environment for our students.”
Changes in the auditorium
The high school’s auditorium was the original auditorium from when the school was built in 1908. The seats were broken, ripped apart, and the fabric covering then had been torn. “There were even reports of people falling through the seats,” said Rianna. “So when we reached out to Sen. Carl Marcellino, he got really involved because he understood the need for this renovation.”
The district officials refer to this renovation as a “face lift;” not a complete demolition, but a vast improvement in the chairs and carpeting as well as new sound and lighting systems.
“We are doing a lot of the work ourselves,” said Rianna. “Our own staff in combination with outside vendors has cut back on costs.”
The auditorium renovation was funded through two capitol grants totaling $300,000 from Marcellino, coupled with $177,000 from the district.
“As a former school teacher, I am well aware of the importance of the arts in education,” said Marcellino. “The arts have shown to improve student performance across all disciplines and in fact it can be the driving force behind a lot of students love for school. I am pleased to be able to help the Glen Cove School District in these important endeavors.”
The district expects the auditorium to be completed by the start of the 2017 school year.
Improving drinking fountains
Another improvement that the district is pursuing is installing new water fountains with filtration systems in each building. “Due to the concern over the lead testing and just overall use of an old fashioned water fountain, we felt that the filtered water would allow students to be able to drink water without any concern,” said Rianna. While the district did not test positive for lead, the new systems are replacing the original fountains that were installed when the buildings were first constructed.
“Every building will be getting a minimum of two new water systems,” said Rianna. In April, each building had one new fountain and filter system installed, and the plan is to install a second one in all the elementary schools and the middle school before the start of the 2017 school year. There are already two at the high school. “Ultimately, we would like to have all of the old water fountains replaced with these new ones,” Rianna added.
The cost for the water fountains will be approximately $800 a piece, and are being paid for through district funding.
Rianna said the new fountains will also encourage students to bring in their own reusable water bottles as the dispensing system will be easier than a traditional fountain.