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Pierce Downer school reveals expansion

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013 5:00 p.m. CDT
Caption
(Matthew Piechalak)
Media Specialist Lucy El-Badawi reads a book to a kindergarten class in the newly-renovated Learning Resource Center at Pierce Downer Elementary School, 1436 Grant St. in Downers Grove on Monday, Sept. 30, 2013. The school recently finished an expansion project which included the addition of three classrooms, and renovations to the library and teacher's lounge. Matthew Piechalak – mpiechalak@shawmedia.com
Caption
(Matthew Piechalak)
Floor to ceiling glass windows allow a look into new classrooms at Pierce Downer Elementary School, 1436 Grant St. in Downers Grove on Monday, Sept. 30, 2013. The school recently finished an expansion project which included the addition of three classrooms, and renovations to the library and teacher's lounge. Matthew Piechalak – mpiechalak@shawmedia.com
Caption
(Matthew Piechalak)
First grade teacher Katie Popovich shows her students how to log into iPad Minis in a new classroom at Pierce Downer Elementary School, 1436 Grant St. in Downers Grove on Monday, Sept. 30, 2013. The school recently finished an expansion project which included the addition of three classrooms, and renovations to the library and teacher's lounge. Matthew Piechalak – mpiechalak@shawmedia.com

DOWNERS GROVE – Pierce Downer Elementary School students and staff were greeted by more classroom space this school year and a renovated library, staff lounge and office space.

School District 58 spent about $1.5 million to address overcrowding issues at the school by adding classrooms to the northwest wing of the building, along with a dedicated art and music room. Previously it was the only school in the district not to already have that.

The school also gained space for small-group instruction, such as special education classes, for instance, or reading labs.

The district spent about $95,000 to renovate the library, teacher’s lounge and office space at the school. The project moved a wall in the library, turning what was two small spaces into one large space big enough for an entire class. It will reorganized the teachers’ lounge and a small office area to make the space more usable.

Both projects were spurred in part by a district-wide assessment of all facilities last year.

The study helped officials identify close to $40 million in spending priorities, and near the top of the list was overcrowding at Pierce Downer.

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