We Did It! New Buildings And Facilities For Our Schools
A real education requires good classrooms, libraries and facilities. After pushing to include windward projects in the state budget, we received funding for upgrades at most of our local schools.
Lanikai Elementary Now Energy Independent
Unlike other public schools, Lanikai Elementary is a Charter School. This means that is has to pay it’s own costs – including electricity. We decided to set aside $500,000 in the state budget to purchase a solar photo-voltaic rooftop array for the school. The goal is to make the school net-zero, that is, it will produce as much energy as it consumes over a year, and will save big as conventional energy prices continue to rise in the future. Every dollar the school doesn’t have to spend on electricity, it can spend in the classroom teaching our students. “The system is already showing promise to supply from 80-100% of the schools total energy usage. Our savings per month will be approximately $5000, or $166 per day,” said School Director Ed Noh.
Kailua High School Gets New Science And Microbiology Building
Kailua High School will be receiving a brand new science building and several research labs. This will not be your normal science classroom – it will be two stories of technologically advanced science labs, classrooms, and indoor/outdoor aquaculture and microbiology research facilities. The idea is that our students won’t just be taught science, but will be immersed within it. Just as Castle High School is known for its outstanding Drama Department – perhaps with further investment and renovation, Kailua High School can become known for its state-of-the-art science programs and facilities. We appropriated $8,000,000 to pay for the new facility, which will allow students to learn the fundamentals of science using state-of-art equipment in a new learning space.
New Windward Community College Library and Media Center
I was proud to attend the groundbreaking (above right) for Windward Community College’s new energy-efficient and technology-integrated library and media center. We set aside funding to build a brand new library for our students pursuing advanced degrees. The current library was too small to house the growing print and media collections, and the building needed much repair.
The new 69,000 square-foot, three-level library will contain breakout spaces in common areas for collaborative learning, an electronic classroom, new media lab, and a Hawaiian Collection Room. UH President M.R.C. Greenwood called it “a wonderful new building — modern, innovative, energy-efficient and truly a representation of the 21st century.” I hope to see our students make use of the new building and look forward to the next big project I can help with at WCC.
Funding for other schools includes:
Blanche Pope Elementary School New Perimeter Fence $150,000
Boys & Girls Club/Kailua Intermediate School New Athletics Wing $1,500,000
Enchanted Lake Elementary Covered Walkway $30,000
Kaelepulu Elementary Replace Walkway $175,000