Stevens Point schools are receiving much needed upgrades

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PORTAGE COUNTY, Wis. (WSAW) -- Some much needed upgrades are under construction at schools in Stevens Point thanks to a $75 million referendum last November. It's all part of necessary improvements but it is affecting the school year. "A year of inconvenience for a permanent improvement and significant upgrade in our facilities," explained SPASH Principal Jon Vollendorf.

It's going to be harder to get to the field house at the Stevens Point Area Senior High this year. Right now it takes a temporary tunnel to get past what will be a new commons area thanks to nearly $13 million from the referendum. "The commons update speaks directly towards the need for more space for students at lunch, a more efficient way to serve a growing food service program and additional bathrooms for our field house during events," said Vollendorf.

The tech ed department is also getting an addition as well as upgrades to the heating and ventilation throughout the building. The security cameras and network will also be upgraded.

Plover-Whiting was another school that got $6.4 million. "The way our building is designed it has the office in the middle of the building so someone could be rung in by the office and then go three different ways none of which is the office," said Plover-Whiting Principal Carl Coffman.

The new addition will create a safe and secure entrance for the elementary school along with additional classroom and cafeteria space. "That will really make a for positive upgrade to our learning environment," said Coffman.

The projects may be a nuisance now but both principals say students and parents have been supportive. "People have been very patience so far and we are very thankful for that. We appreciate that and we are going to continue to rely on that as we continue with our projects this year," said Vollendorf.

Various other schools in the district will also be upgraded thanks to the referendum. All the projects are expected to be complete by the beginning of next school year.