Troy 30-C students discover building upgrades as they return to school  Improvements include enhanced classroom technology, playground replacement

Students and staff at Troy Community School District 30-C schools saw several upgrades of their buildings as they returned to school this year.

Troy Shorewood Elementary School, the district’s oldest school, built in the 1950s, realized vinyl plank flooring over the summer. Troy Facilities and Operations Director Ben Hettel said the new flooring is a notable and cost-effective upgrade from the original VCT tile. The cost of maintaining the no-wax flooring, he explained, will be significantly less.

“We used to spend a large part of the summers stripping and waxing the floors with several coats,” Hettel said.

The school also got a fresh coat of paint throughout, and classrooms received new technology boards and marker boards to replace the chalkboards, long out of use.

“The teachers have shared how much brighter their rooms feel, and this has been rejuvenating for them,” Troy Shorewood Principal Sherri Blanchette said. “Teachers are feeling a sense of pride in their new workspaces, and students love the welcoming feel of their new learning spaces.”

Hettel described the renovations at Shorewood as, “Herculean,” and gives kudos to his staff.

“They emptied the whole building in two days,” he said, “then put everything back together when construction was finished six weeks later.”

Troy Shorewood also got new lockers along the hallways.

Also, along with Troy Cronin Elementary School, Shorewood began the school year with a new playground, ADA-accessible with poured-in-place rubber surfaces that Hettel said is one of the safest playground materials and has a long life expectancy. Hettel said the district is also pleased that children in the Troy community can also enjoy the equipment when school hours are not in session.

Also over the summer, each of Troy’s seven schools and other buildings received LED lighting fixtures that replaced fluorescent bulbs. The LEDs are cleaner and more efficient with better quality, Hettel explained, and will save the district an approximate $108,000/year. Fewer maintenance hours will be required for upkeep of the LED fixtures, as well.

“It’s also easier on the eyes than fluorescent,” Hettel added. “It’s a more even light, and dimming is available when projection boards are used and in other situations.

The Troy Middle School Learning Resource Center also received upgrades over the summer.

“I personally want to thank the school board and Superintendent Dr. Koehl for their commitment to and support of these projects,” Hettel added. “Their vision continues to ensure that our buildings have the best facilities for our students and our staff.”