Saline Area Schools unveil the newly renovated middle school gymnasium


Dr. Stephen Laatsch (Superintendent), Cheryl and Jim Hoeft (Community Members/Retired Educators/2015 Bond Committee Leaders), Rex Clary (Executive Director of Operations) at the ribbon cutting. photo courtesy of Saline Area Schools

Saline Area Schools celebrated the newly renovated gymnasium at Saline Middle School with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on October 27.

This was one of the last remaining projects from the previous bond passed by the voters of Saline.

The Sun Times News reached out to the school district to learn more about this project and the other work being done as the previous bond comes to a close and voters in the Saline school district look to decide on a new one in the November election.

Anna Britnell, Saline Area Schools (SAS) Executive Director of Communications and Community Relations, said this was a renovation project to Saline Middle School gymnasium that was included in the 2015 bond passed by the Saline voters.

Britnell said the upgraded space allows for enhanced instruction during physical education classes, through a more open floor plan, upgraded technology, and new equipment. For extracurricular participants (athletics, activities, Saline Community Education, and community groups), Britnell said the gym layout and new flooring allow for maximum, quality participation. They school district also foresees the space providing ample opportunity for external rentals and revenue generation.

A look at the middle school gym at the ribbon cutting. photo courtesy of Saline Area Schools

Britnell said this was one of the final projects from the previous bond and they still have a small number of projects to complete in the coming months.

The total cost of the new gym was around $1.3 million dollars to complete the renovation. The project took roughly five months from start to finish.

STN also asked Rex Clary, Director of Operations for SAS, about the gym project.

“I would like to thank the Saline Area School Leadership back in the 1960's when this facility was built,” Clary said. “Their forward thinking to build a space that could be used for many educational and community activities, still today in 2022, is amazing. “

In talking about the overall projects from the 2015 bond, Clary said this past summer's projects at the middle school also included new high efficiency boilers and hot water heater along with $2.3 million of roofing across the district.

Pleasant Ridge got a new standing seam steel roof while Woodland Meadows, Pleasant Ridge, Heritage and a portion of Liberty received new flat roofs.

The total dollars spent on projects this summer was about $5 million.

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