VIDEO: $30 Million in ARRA Funds For Schools On Tap

279

Guam – American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Funds used for upgrades and repairs to Guam’s public schools could be on the way.

The Department of Education facility maintenance manager Billy cruz says for the past two months Sodexo, an off island contractor has been assessing and inspecting Guam’s Public schools to determine improvement projects slated with use of ARRA funds. According to Cruz, there will be over $30 million dollars in ARRA funds available for the first phase for school improvement projects, which could cover at least 10 schools.

Cruz believes Sodexo will have their evaluation of all the island schools completed by the end of next week.  He says once Sodexo’s report is finalized, they will be able to get an overall view of how to prioritize the improvements projects for all the schools. Once that happens, A local architectural and engineering firm , Coeval Design Partners, will be responsible for repair and renovations at the island’s public schools.

Cruz says, “For now it would be premature to see which school would come first but feels there are three schools that may need the most work done to its facilities. We were looking at the three schools down in the south which is Southern HS, Ocean View Middle School and Inajaran Middle School. That’s basically what we are looking at first.”

According to Cruz,  Southern High School needs to have its auditorium, gymnasium, and swimming pool repaired.  In addition to Southern, Ocean View and Inajaran, Cruz  adds that ARRA funds will be used to make upgrades and repairs to all the schools.

Cruz says, “We want to look at upgrading the electrical , we are looking at fixing the roof leaks and some of the other infrastructure within the school that we encounter on a daily basis that needs to be maintained.”

Billy Cruz says the schools are also looking at various situations when it comes to rats and termites. Right now we currently have everything under control.

But at Ordot Chalan Pago Elementary School, there are other types of animals that need to be removed…Cows.

Ordot Chalan Pago Elementary School Principal Rebecca Perez says, “We have been working with the mayor to have the cows removed from our school grounds. I do believe that the past administrator gave the cow’s owners permission to be here, but we are going a head to correct that measure.”

Perez says the cows were not harmful to the children because they were tied up in the back and helped their vegetation in the back. But she says the assessment team wants them off the school property. The cows owners removed them Thursday afternoon.