GOING UP: A construction work scales the structure of a future science and technology building on the Santa Monica High School campus on Wednesday. The project is funded by money raised through Measure BB, a school bond that was approved by voters in 2006. (Photo by Daniel Archuleta)

In November 2006, voters passed a $268-million bond measure to modernize facilities throughout the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District.

And over the last nine years, funds from Measure BB have covered dramatic improvements at local schools.

The district used the money to repair and replace old equipment, improve seismic safety and upgrade science and technology capabilities with the goal of providing better learning environments for students.

The upgrades are detailed in a report that Charlie Yen, chair of the Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee, summarized during the Board of Education meeting Wednesday night.

Board president Laurie Lieberman said it’s the district’s responsibility to inform stakeholders of the progress, especially as SMMUSD begins rolling out additional facility and technological upgrades through the $385-million Measure ES that voters approved in 2012.

“We want people to know what we’re doing, that we’re on top of it, and we want them to see it,” she said. “It’s a confidence-builder. It’s really important.”

The district had spent $212.9 million in Measure BB money as of last June, according to the report, including $59.6 million in 2012-13 and $48.3 million the following school year. Figures for 2014-15 expenditures were not included.

As of mid-2014, among the highest-earning Measure BB vendors and contractors were Swinerton Builders ($31.3 million for construction), AT&T ($6.7 million for technology services), Daly Genik ($3.8 million for architectural design) and Parsons ($3.2 million for a variety of services).

Top priorities

The bulk of the funding went to the district’s three high schools as well as two Santa Monica middle schools and Edison Language Academy.

Santa Monica High School received $80.5 million for a variety of upgrades, including a new building scheduled to open this month that features 15 science labs, 18 classrooms and a computer lab. Parking, field and electrical upgrades are also on tap.

Edison was allocated $52.5 million for the construction of a new classroom building, library and cafeteria. The second phase of the project, which includes a preschool building and outdoor areas, is expected to be completed by November.

Malibu High School ($50.2 million) is in line to receive a new library, two computer labs, three science labs and four classrooms, according to the report. The school recently upgraded its fire alarm system.

Lincoln Middle School received $31.1 million for a two-story building with a new library, reading rooms, chorus room, book rooms and community spaces as well as several other instruction rooms and an outdoor performance area.

At John Adams Middle School, which was allocated $25.2 million, nine classrooms were replaced, art and administrative rooms were redone and the perimeter of the synthetic track was landscaped. The money also covers several other infrastructural improvements.

At Olympic High School, the district’s continuation campus, $8.7 million is going towards classrooms and a music room as well as modernization of the library, computer lab and science room.

Other projects

Some Measure BB money went towards safety and security projects. These included a new two-story building at Franklin Elementary School; new classrooms, reconfigured administrative offices and new gates at McKinley; and new classrooms and administrative and athletic improvements at Roosevelt.

At Santa Monica Alternative School House, crews installed a new pedestrian gate with audio and video capabilities and re-piped underground gas lines. Will Rogers Learning Community added new portable preschool structures and a courtyard entry and reconfigured its principal’s office.

Technological upgrades at numerous sites include wireless Internet access, LCD projector screens, interactive teaching boards and speakers.

Contact Jeff Goodman at 310-573-8351, jeff@www.smdp.com or on Twitter.

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