Progress Moves Forward on Schools’ Construction Projects

Published 7:13 am Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Lot of construction equipment these days by Harlan Independent Schools, so the newspaper reached out to Superintendent Charles Morton for an update about the extensive progress that is being made in several key areas.

Morton said the school system is doing work on nearly all of its facilities. When complete, the investment is valued at more than $7,000,000 and comes on the heels of a $2,000,000 investment at Harlan Elementary School a year earlier.

“This significant investment by our Board of Education reflects a commitment to the longstanding academic mission of our district,” Morton said. “It provides our students, staff, and community with a space and environment that is safe and efficient to carry out the mission of providing the highest quality education possible. Having nice facilities are important and will allow our staff and students to continue to focus on the real magic that makes schools great, the work inside each classroom between teachers and students.”

This phase of the project started in the summer of 2021 and is expected to last through the summer of 2022 with a targeted completion date of August 2022. The project has extensive work taking place in Harlan Elementary and Harlan High School. Harlan Middle School has moderate work done limited to new LED lighting and ceilings in throughout the facility as well as a new HVAC system. The general contractor is Green Construction.

“To date, nearly every element of the project has some completion accomplished,” he said. “We are done with the work in Harlan Middle School as the HVAC, Lighting and ceiling work has been completed. We are still working on nearly every element of the above list in Harlan High and Harlan Elementary School, with varying degrees of completion.”

Morton praised the ongoing progress — an investment in the Green Dragons’ future.

“When complete, the main campus of academic spaces will have seen some of the most extensive renovation work in the history of the schools,” he said. “All of the primary systems within the facilities will be completely renovated and modernized (Heating/Cooling, Lighting, Roofing). I think the work be accomplished now will go a long way in helping grow the pride that our school community has in our district. This is a significant investment into the future of the next generation of Green Dragon students.”

The Elementary School project includes:
• New LED lighting for the entire building.
• New Restrooms
• New floor and ceiling tile
• Renovated Lighting and Sound system in the auditorium
• New Windows
• New Roof
• New gym floor
• Removal of all asbestos material
• Expanded Cafe Dining area with all new furniture
• New kitchen equipment
• New exterior Canopy at the entrance of the facility
• New HVAC System
At the High School:
• New LED lighting for the entire building
• Exterior Lighting
• New Restrooms
• New floor and ceiling tile
• New Roof
• New gym floor
• New gym bleachers
• New gym handrails
• New windows in the Gym
• Removal of all asbestos material
• New exterior Canopy at the entrance of the facility
• New Fire Alarm System
• New Data Wiring
• HVAC in the Gymnasium
• New covered canopy connecting the High School to the newly expanded Cafe located in the Elementary School
This covered canopy will span across Williams Street and provide student with a defined path into the renovated cafeteria.