DeKalb – Tyler Elementary School will get a $3.5 million renovation this summer after DeKalb School District 428 board members unanimously approved the project during their meeting Tuesday night.
Board members awarded a contract to Nicholas and Associates, a Mount Prospect based company, for the renovations. In addition to the renovation contract, the board awarded a contract to Midwest Service Group for asbestos removal from the school at 1021 Alden Circle.
District officials had discussed renovations to the school for more than a year before awarding the bid for the renovation Tuesday. Tyler Elementary was built in the 1960s and is the only school in the district without a secure entrance or doors to classrooms, Facility Operations Manager Tammy Carson said.
Renovations will start this summer and conclude by the time students arrive for school next year, Carson said.
Nicholas and Associates will replace floors, upgrade lighting, secure entrances, add classroom and support space and complete other improvements.
“This will basically be an entire gutting of the building,” Carson said after the meeting.
Tyler Elementary Principal Andria Mitchell was one of many in the audience to let out a loud cheer after the approval. Mitchell has been the principal at the school for five years.
“I’ve often felt the building doesn’t really reflect us and the pride we have in our school,” Mitchell said. “I think this is really going to be an expression that we love our building, our students, our parents and just show the pride we have.”
Mitchell said of all the impending changes to the school, she’s most anticipating student reactions.
“I’m most looking forward to the kids walking into the school on the first day and thinking, ‘Wow, this is for us,’ “ Mitchell said.
In addition to the costs of the renovation, the board approved a $390,038 contingency fund.
Of the total project cost, $3 million will be funded using a $21 million construction grant the district received. The remaining amount will come from the district’s operations and maintenance budget.
“Congratulations to Tyler, it’s been long overdue,” board President Tracy Williams said after the vote.