By Amanda McBain ’18
New additions will be popping up around the school throughout the rest of the year and the following one. The school has made new purchases ensured to be beneficial to both students and staff members.
“The ultimate goal is to make some updates aesthetically so that the school looks as good as the education we provide,” said Assistant Principal of Organization, Mr. Alan Stack.
This year the school will be receiving new smart boards with corresponding computers, air conditioners for 25 to 30 classrooms on the third and fourth floors, computers for the annex library classroom and administrative offices, new furniture for the first floor offices and Chrome books.
“The offices on the first floor will be getting new computers because they usually receive the old ones from classrooms,” said Mr. Stack.
To find out what the departments need, they had to create their own wish list. Efforts were then made by the administration to provide each department with those necessary items.
“This list included new musical instruments, chemicals and other science supplies, books for math and social studies, chart paper, white boards, etc.,” said Mr. Stack.
A lot of the money used to pay for these additions came from Resolution A, a city grant from the school’s Councilman, Jumaane Williams. The city funds the grant and then the Councilman’s office divides the money across different places.
“We receive a budget at the beginning of the year that has to cover all operating expenses within the school and the number one expense is staff, which takes almost all of our money. The little bit that’s left is known as OTPS, Other Than Personnel Spending and that goes towards file cabinets, chairs, desks, etc.,” said Mr. Stack.
Since the school had most of the students expected to come this year come, a larger percentage than they usually get, they had what’s known as an attrition, in which the school predicts a number and it loses some. So the school sets aside money knowing that it was going to exist, but they ended up getting back some of what was set aside and then they carefully planned everything to maximize every single dollar.
Student interests were also targeted in the purchases of new P.E. equipment, desks for AP testing, art supplies, and headsets for ESL students.
The school has received mixed responses from students about the purchases, with some appreciating the new additions and others longing for better materials.
“Using laptops in the classroom makes it easier to access websites to work on assignments in class or for group work when we need to work on a project,” said Rawran Elkhauly ’18.
Rachel Qui ’18 said, “I would like to see new purchases of textbooks. These items have been around for a time, and some need an update.”
Within the next year Mr. Stack hopes to have the second floor and auditorium electrically wired for air conditioning, convert all blackboards to whiteboards, and continue to improve classroom tables and chairs.
“It’s all about modernization and bringing the school into the now,” said Mr. Stack.
New purchases are coming into the building everyday, such as desks for the dean’s office arriving on May 9 and Chromebooks arriving on May 22. While the school expects the orders to arrive by June 30, air conditioners won’t be installed until summer vacation.