Construction Continues at Numerous ECISD Schools

by Victor Lopez
NewsWest 9

ODESSA--There's still a lot to get done before classes start, August 24th.  It's part of a school bond passed back in 2001.

"There are no guarantees, on any bond project, that they'll be done by the beginning of the year or the end of the school year," Mike Adkins, Communications Director for ECISD, said.

It's a project, stretching out over eight years, with an estimated total price tag of about $100 million.

"What we have are nine schools that are currently in some phase of the bond construction.  This again, from the bond package that was passed in 2001," Adkins explained.

Campuses will be seeing improvements in heating and air conditioning, plumbing and electrical systems, as well as kitchen and cafeteria renovations.

According to Adkins, "It varies a little bit from campus to campus, but those are the major things."

Sights like chairs stacked along the halls are common on campuses all over the district, as they get ready for the first day of school.  But something to look forward to on certain campuses will be their brand new multipurpose rooms.

"It's not just for a gym.  It's also for any community members that are needing it, churches that may need it or anything else," Cindy Harbour, Principal at San Jacinto Elementary, said.

Campuses like San Jacinto and Zavala not only get the new multi-purpose room, but also new music rooms, science labs, even office space.  Everything geared to enhance the learing experience, but how do you maintain it, while the construction is going on?

Harbour, who's campus has been under construction for over a year, explains, "It's really a team effort between the administrators, the faculty and the construction crew.  Making sure the procedures that would cause the most distraction, would be done after school, at night or before school began."

Not all projects will be done by the first day of school.  But finally, after all this time, there is light at the end of the tunnel. "We are looking at, by the time we hit Christmas break, having all bond construction complete, which will be very exciting because it's been a long haul,"  Adkins said.

NewsWest 9 also asked if we can expect anymore construction around ECISD, any time soon?  Adkins replied, "There will always be some construction projects that go on, that aren't tied to a bond or something like that.  Once we get these particular projects done, we will have a little bit of quiet time, while we consider what might need to come next."