Facilities projects focus on CAM Academy relocation, student security

Aug. 15, 2022

While students enjoy their summer vacations, Battle Ground Public Schools maintenance and facilities crews have been hard at work on safety, maintenance and capital projects. Much of that activity has centered around the Lewisville campus, where CAM Academy will be relocated. The school’s leased building was sold by its owner last year, necessitating the move.

school classroom

Classrooms are coming together again in the old Lewisville Intermediate building

The district has been remodeling the Lewisville campus to provide a temporary location for CAM students until permanent, modular buildings can be constructed on site. Lewisville will provide 18 classrooms along with office space, a cafeteria and a library. Crews have also replaced miles of wiring and plumbing and installed new sinks, toilets, lighting and other fixtures, along with fresh paint, exterior improvements and much more. The district received state approval to temporarily use Lewisville for students, as the campus was retired from student use when the district received state funds to replace the school with Chief Umtuch. The delivery of permanent, modular buildings has been delayed by supply chain issues.

“This has been a challenge, to be sure, but we’re excited that CAM Academy students will have this new home,” said Kevin Jolma, the district’s Executive Director of Facilities and Operations. “The improvements we’re making to the Lewisville building will also extend its usefulness to the district even after CAM students move into their permanent space.”

The district’s goal now is to have the first modular installed and ready for CAM students after winter break. It will contain 10 classrooms, including three science labs. A total of three modular buildings will be installed east of the Lewisville building prior to the start of the 2023-24 school year. There will also be improvements to site lighting, drainage, sanitary sewer and parking. New sports fields, fencing, and other enhancements are also planned for the property and land northwest of District Stadium at Battle Ground High School.

Construction costs for the relocation of CAM Academy are funded through the use of School Impact fees paid by new development. The district will also realize cost savings of more than $500,000 annually by no longer having to lease space for the program.

Security upgrades continue

Captain Strong Primary

A new, more secure entrance is slated for construction at Captain Strong Primary over winter break

Battle Ground Public Schools and the district’s Board of Directors remain committed to ensuring students can learn in a safe and supportive environment. Following an independent security review commissioned by the district a few years ago, the Board committed to investing in the principles of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design. The assessment  included recommendations to enhance school buildings from the outside to the inside.

Since then, the district has trimmed hedges and other vegetation to improve visibility and line of sight on campuses, and gates and fencing have been replaced or added at every campus to limit public access during school hours. 

The next phase happening this school year will be to address entrance security. The district is set to accept bids on projects to install double-door entries at Captain Strong and Glenwood Heights primary schools. The enhanced entries, slated to be completed over winter break, will ensure visitors check in with the main office before accessing the interior of the schools. Other security enhancements, including new audio/visual entry systems, will be installed, starting with primary campuses, after hours during the school year.

“We’re thankful to the community for supporting the recent replacement Educational Programs and Operations levy to help fund these vital upgrades and keep our students safe,” said Superintendent Denny Waters. “Local levies are critical when it comes to keeping our buildings safe, functional and attractive.”

play structure

Students at Amboy Middle School can enjoy a covered play area this school year

Other projects

In addition to the CAM Academy relocation and security projects, crews have been working to complete a new covered play area at Amboy Middle School. This summer also marked completion of a two-year project to replace over five acres of carpeting inside Battle Ground High School. New carpeting was also installed in the classrooms of a modular building on the Captain Strong Primary campus and on the stage at Maple Grove Primary. Covered walkways at Prairie High School are also being repaired. Crews completed sandblasting and painting the exterior of Tukes Valley schools, and work is slated to begin soon on a fresh coating for part of the Daybreak campus roof. 

Regular maintenance has allowed the district to extend the usefulness of a number of buildings beyond their expected lifespans. The district also seeks to contract work with local companies, meaning local levy dollars help to support jobs and businesses within Battle Ground.

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