SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Construction is underway on upgrades to Pacific Beach Middle School. The campus will get a new 2-story building, featuring 26 state-of-the-art classrooms, as part of a "Whole School Modernization" project.
Other aspects of the project include renovations to the existing cafeteria and library media enter, as well as a new HVAC system for the auditoriums and science classrooms.
"We'll have classrooms that represent 21st-century learning spaces," says SDUSD Facilities Communication Supervisor Samer Naji. "You're talking about flexible furniture so that the students and teachers can be creative with the way they use their spaces. You're talking about state of the art technology, voice amplification systems, smart boards that the teachers and students can all use."
The administration offices will also be moved to a different part of campus, creating a more easily identifiable entryway for visitors.
"Right now it's a large priority for the campus that we have a secure entry," says Naji. "This ensures that, during the day when kids are in class, there's only one way in and one way out of campus."
Security has been at the forefront of many SDUSD projects in the wake of school shootings across the country. District officials say they want to make sure all campuses only have a single entry for visitors. The new layout at PB Middle School will accomplish that goal.
The building opened in 1931. Over the years, upgrades and expansions brought it to its current 13.8-acre footprint.
Money for the project is coming from voter-approved Propositions S & Z.
As part of the renovation, the current two-story library & classroom building will be torn down. Demolition begins in July. The work will be done in two phases, so the school can keep enough classrooms on site to accommodate students.
Unfortunately, some of the murals on the current building will be lost in the demolition. The school's principal says they want to work with students and community members to design new murals for the new building.
In 2017, SDUSD completed work on a new joint-use athletic field at the Middle School. They also built new parking lots and student drop-off/pick-up areas.
San Diego Unified expects the latest project to be finished by the winter of 2021.
Full details of the projects can be found here.