Looks can be deceiving.
Lincoln School — the oldest elementary campus in Manteca — still has the 1950s architectural look as you drive by on Yosemite Avenue.
But go through the front doors that aren’t the front doors anymore and a distinctive modern and spacious learning environment awaits you.
The main hallway that at one time could have been described as aged, dark and slightly dingy looks like a 21st century space. Flooring was removed allowing the concrete beneath to be polished to create the “industrial look” popular in many cutting edge modern building designs.
The old office that at one time had been expanded into the hallway was removed and converted into a classroom.
Classrooms have been remodeled from floor to ceiling and have new cabinetry and other touches.
Manteca Unified Deputy Superintendent Clark Burke noted that wherever conditions called for it walls were removed and wiring and such upgraded.
In short many classrooms that were built nearly 70 years ago have been reconfigured into 21st century learning spaces.
And while roughly six months of work remain in the overall Lincoln School modernization being funded from the $159 million Measure G bond, Principal Steve Anderson said staff and students already appreciate the significant improvements that have been made.
Anderson noted students are self-policing things like gum in order to keep the campus clean. Some teachers have opted to use a nearby quad instead of classrooms for the breakfast break. Not only are they taking advantage of the weather and upgrades to the quad, but they are doing it to keep rooms as clean as possible.
“They are showing a lot of pride,” Anderson said.
The bond work has added touches at Lincoln School that have been standard for decades at other Manteca Unified campuses such as kindergartens with their own bathrooms.
Lincoln is getting new classrooms to replace portables that are long past their expected 20-year life and are showing it. Other portables that will continue to be used as classrooms are having needed repairs made. Burke added that some portables originally targeted for removal are being kept at the various campuses such as Lincoln School for auxiliary programs such as Give Every Child a Chance tutoring space and clothes closets.
The biggest change at Lincoln School is the mew multi-purpose room targeted for completion in December along with a new office and expanded drop-off zone.
& security at Lincoln
The school is being reoriented from busy Yosemite Avenue to face Powers Avenue. At the same time on-campus flow patterns are being modified to enhance security and student safety.
The expected advantages of the reorientation include:
uexpanded unloading zones for buses as well as passenger cars.
ueliminating access from Yosemite Avenue for students and parents.
uimproving the safety of students who walk to school.
uenhanced school security since all traffic will be funneled past the new office adjacent to the multi-purpose room and the expanded drop-off zone.
Burke noted that work to allow use of a segment of the new drop-off zone that will ultimately be extended farther south along Powers Avenue as the multi-purpose room is completed was finished the day before students returned to school.
“We have always made it clear this was not just a summer project that bond-related work would need to continue through the school year,” Burke said.
Anderson pointed out that parents understand the situation. Lincoln School, which typically has 80 percent of its students walking to school on any given day, had an even higher number walking the first week as parents heeded the school’s request to do so if possible to reduce congestion issues centering on construction.
The new campus design will make the placement of new security cameras even more effective to further enhance student safety.
Stepped up planning
nears for next wave
of Measure G projects
And while Measure G did not include building classrooms that weren’t replacing portables, the district used every opportunity to repurpose space. At mist campuses having modernization work done it will include using computer labs for other purposes or else redoing space for conventional classrooms from areas such as at Golden West School that were once used for programs such as home economics and woodshop.
Burke said at Lincoln School the district saw the opportunity to use a room that originally housed a boiler and then a more modern heating and air conditioning mechanical system to be converted into a classroom by taking advantage of changing technology that allowed new units to be placed on the roof.
Several teachers Monday marveled at how the air conditioning system now works at Lincoln School.
Burke said heat and air systems are being replaced at campuses where such work is needed.
The Lincoln upgrade includes state-of-the-art thermostats that can be remotely controlled and programmed to maximize energy efficiency.
The five schools selected for the first wave of Measure G bond work costing $56.4 million were among the district’s oldest campuses that had the most rousing health and safety concerns. Besides Lincoln the other elementary campuses where work is now underway are Sequoia, Shasta, Golden West and Sequoia.
District staff is expected to recommend to the school board in the coming months to authorize work to start in earnest on plans for the next wave of projects that will include work at Neil Hafley, French Camp, and George McParland.
District Superintendent Jason Messer noted efforts are being made tot avoid having more than five campuses “torn up” at a time.