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Ryan Berlin July 18, 2018 -
Maintenance & Operations
K-12 schools are at a crossroads. Maintenance and engineering managers in these facilities constantly are asked do more with less to maintain HVAC, roofing, and plumbing systems, as well as improve security — an essential component as attacks on schools continue. One school’s investment in deferred maintenance and security is a reminder of the size of the challenge managers face. Deerfield (Ill.) High School will spend nearly $1.3 million on security improvements and mechanical systems and in other areas of its campus before the 2018-2019 term, according to the Chicago Tribune. Ken Williams, one of Deerfield’s assistant principals, says that when Quest Food Management Services takes over the cafeteria duties, the kitchen will be redone to allow for the preparation of fresh offerings each day. He said Quest will make and fund those improvements. Besides kitchen renovations, the district also will improve the school’s internal communications system and HVAC system and perform other capital projects, says John Fuhrer, the district’s facilities coordinator. The renovation to the mechanical systems will cost $1 million, while improvements to the public address system will be $250,000, Fuhrer says, adding that the district will spend largest amount on the HVAC system upgrade. Williams says that as the school expanded, three separate HVAC systems operated throughout the building. Now there will be one. “The air quality will be better,” Williams said. “It will be more energy efficient.” This Quick Read was submitted by Ryan Berlin, managing editor of Facility Maintenance Decisions.