Board of Education Vice President Scott Cincotta takes a seat on a recently unveiled Scherrer Cares Buddy Bench placed in Union Grove Elementary School’s new courtyard during a dedication ceremony Saturday. The new courtyard was made possible through a referendum passed by voters and includes multiple other projects. (Photo by Jason Arndt)

More than 60% of voters backed school upgrades

By Jason Arndt


Union Grove Elementary School District officials unveiled facility improvements authorized through a referendum passed by voters last November at a dedication ceremony on Saturday.

The nearly $8 million referendum addressed aging infrastructure, added flexible learning spaces, including more classrooms, expanded the cafeteria to better accommodate students, upgraded technology, improved the parking lot as well as creating a new outdoor courtyard.

Assistant Principal Tom Hansen, master of ceremonies, told parents and officials in attendance the improvements would not have been possible without a supportive community.

“Union Grove Elementary is proud to have a partnership with a community that understands and values the importance of education in supporting our young people in their journey towards adulthood and citizenship,” he said.

“This referendum has supported our goal to continue to provide a quality education here at Union Grove Elementary and continue to strive not just to meet education expectations, but to exceed them.”

More than 60 percent of residents voted in favor of the referendum, district officials said, adding the community was surveyed on school needs in February 2018.

The district contracted with Milwaukee-based Plunkett Raysich Architects to design the building while Scherrer Construction, of Burlington, oversaw the projects.

Hansen, also a former student at the school, said the projects started in March.

The projects, according to school officials, are between 95 to 98 percent finished, with exception to a few loose items.

According to Scott Katterhagen, building and grounds supervisor, officials are waiting on some lockers as well as some heating and ventilation supplies.

“We had a 12-week lean time on the lockers. It was a very aggressive construction project, so some of the lean times were just too long to get it done by September,” he said. “We had a 30-week lean time on some HVAC stuff, so we are doing that at Christmas, but by the first of the year, everything should be wrapped up.”

To read the entire story see the Sept. 27 edition of the Westine Report.