East gets needed upgrades, repairs


Photo by McKenzie Gandy

The old hot water heaters which heat different areas of the school were recently replaced with improved ones. “The new HVAC system requires additional hot water heaters and the existing hot water heaters were old and needed to be replaced,” Rippe said.

East will receive repairs and replacements to the roof, water heater, and auditorium as the Bellevue Public Schools Board of Education decided at the end of last year.

On December 9, the Bellevue Public School Board of Education unanimously agreed to accept bids from Ray Martin Company for replacements of the school’s water heater and from Mejia Roofing for roof replacements in the auditorium entrance.

“It’s always nice to get new things and sometimes it’s hard for school districts to get the funds together to make these things happen, so I feel very thankful that we’re able to get these updates to our facility,” theatrer director Joseph Hamik said.

The Board of Education decided to approve of these projects, which will be paid for through the bond. The specific projects of the new roofing and water heaters are planned to happen in the near future.

“The hot water heaters are currently being replaced and should be done shortly,” Superintendent Jeff Rippe said. “The roof will be replaced when the weather permits it to be replaced.”

The repairs and replacements are needed because the new HVAC  system required more water heaters and the old water heaters were in need of replacement. The roof replacements are needed because of age.

“The reason East needs improvements is for the fact that the school is just getting old,” head custodian John Dengel said. “Not only old, but the building just gets a lot of wear and tear. Things wear out; they become obsolete and then need to be upgraded.”

Other repairs and replacements are already completed. The auditorium has a new sound system, curtains and choir risers. There are also new projection systems and the television screens that were added in the beginning of the school year.

“The new improvements have been just fantastic. The new HVAC in itself has satisfied the majority of the people in the building,” Dengel said. “The consistency and reliability is a godsend. The new improvements to the pool were well overdue.”

More improvements are expected in the future, the roof in the entrance of the auditorium. In addition to the new roofing, a concert shell will be added to the stage so it is also going to be resurfaced.

“It’s great to see improvements being made to the auditorium and the school. I’m excited to see the end product when it’s all finished,” Hamik said.