BLAINE - Blaine High School science classes will no longer have to compete for lab space next fall, as the building is set to get a nearly $1.9 million remodel over the summer.
The Blaine School Board this week approved a $1.87 million bid from Laurel-based Roosendaal-Honcoop Construction to modernize the building.
Construction is expected to start in June and be done before classes start again in fall, Superintendent Ron Spanjer said. The new science building will use the same shell as the current building but will have more labs so classes no longer have to compete for space.
The building currently has one large lab that has to be shared and two adjoining classrooms, in addition to two traditional, tiered lecture halls that don't get much use because their setup doesn't accommodate group work. Once the project is complete, the building will have four classes with labs, a lecture space and a strictly lab space.
The remodel also will replace some long-outdated technology.
The bid includes an additional $194,200 to renovate life skills classrooms in the middle and high schools. The classes currently take place in a converted former locker room next to the middle school gym. That room has a lot of small spaces and wasn't considered a permanent option when it was created, Spanjer said. The remodel will convert one classroom in the middle school and one in the high school to use for life skills students, who have special educational needs.
The projects are being paid for by a $3 million bond passed by district voters in February 2012, after a larger bond to update the whole high school failed in 2011.