• Preparing for Return to School Fall 2021

    Posted by Kelcey Davis on 8/16/2021 2:00:00 PM

    The Facilities team has been preparing the campus for safe, in-person learning. Below is an update on the many projects that are completed, in progress, or set to begin in the future.

    Modernization Project: Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning (HVAC), Accessibility and Safety/Security Measures

    The upgrade and modernization of the HVAC systems in process. The contractor has prepared all of the classrooms for improved heating and ventilation and new air conditioning. The challenge is that most of the mechanical equipment is delayed due to supply chain issues. The rooms have been adjusted to prepare provide health protective ventilation on day one. The air conditioning systems will be installed this fall after hours and on weekends, as soon as the equipment is received.

    Part of this project was to improve accessibility. Restrooms, doors and walkways have been improved to meet the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. This goes along with the work maintenance has completed to enhance the restrooms.

    The improvements to the entrance are being manufactured at this time. This will shift the entrance with a taller fence line that will improve safety and allow the areas between the auditorium, office and hallways to be within the security perimeter. This improvement will be completed this fall.

     Access Control

    The portion of the Modernization Project to convert all campus access points (doors and gates) to card readers to control access has been delayed in part due to pandemic delays in materials for doors and door hardware. The project will be picked up and completed by the end of the summer, 2022, in time for the start of school.

    Security Cameras

    Security cameras have been fully installed, programmed and staff has been trained in the operation of the security system. Security cameras are located around the perimeter of the campus and outdoor areas. They will support increased safety and property management.

    PA/Clock Systems 

    The replacement of PA/Clock systems at Grant Elementary Schools is currently underway. The new PA/clock systems will be combined in a single set of hardware devices. This system provides improved paging functionality and a new ability to post text messages useful for daily updates and during emergencies.  Similar to other equipment, some of the devices that are critical to the completion of this project are suffering from longer lead times due to disruptions in the global supply chain. In order to reduce the overall impact to students and school staff, we are currently working on the installation of conduit, wiring and other related infrastructure. Once all the devices have arrived at the site, the team will work outside of normal school hours to complete their installations.

    The existing PA/Clock systems at Grant ES will remain functional until the new systems are complete and functional.

    New Mural at Grant

    There is a new mural on the south side of the cafeteria building, facing the playground.


    Brave Mural at Grant Elementary SChool


    We are in the process of replacing all of the old classroom furniture with new 21st century furniture that will support flexibility, allow for differing modes of learning and improve student engagement. Half of the furniture arrived and has been set up in the classrooms. The other half, including new student desks, are delayed due to supply chain issues. We anticipate receiving the new furniture by the end of September. Everything will be installed after hours as soon as possible.

    We are looking forward to a great start to the new school year!

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  • Campus Assessments Underway at Grant

    Posted by Kelcey Davis on 1/4/2021 8:00:00 AM

    We are in Phase 5 (detailed below) of our Campus Assessment process that is looking at potential improvements to elementary and middle schools in Santa Monica. The process aligns the instructional programs and school facilities to support student learning and prepare students for further education and future jobs. Meetings to include the community in ideation and planning were held in spring and fall of 2020

    What is a campus assessment? It is the a major step in planning changes to campuses and classrooms to align them with the district’s educational specifications, which were finalized in 2019. The district hired architects to assess nine Santa Monica elementary and middle school campuses. The assessments include taking deep look into how our campuses currently operate, looking at how they match the ed specs; imagining a future campus that brings the site up to the goals of the ed specs and determining first projects to be allocated funds from Measure SMS.

    The assessments are also guided by the district's sustainability plan.

    Here's how the assessment and planning cycle works:

    Phase 1: Architectural consultants were hired and began visiting campuses and documenting information such as current classroom space and how it aligns with future-projected needs.

    Phase 2: Based on what they found in Phase 1, architects created possible projects for each campus, ranging from new classroom buildings to outdoor learning gardens to on-site learning kitchens. These were presented to educators, staff and community members for feedback.

    Phase 3: Based on feedback and new information found during Phase 2, architects worked with district staff to refine their plans to include phasing, or a suggested order of projects (for instance, removing portables, relocating parking and then erecting a new classroom building). They also estimated costs for each possible project.

    Phase 4: In the fall of 2020, district staff and architects held more meetings with staff and educators and then once again with the community. 

    Phase 5: After ensuring alignment with educators and community input, district staff is working with the Santa Monica Facility District Advisory Committee to make project recommendations to the Board of Education, which would allocate Measure SMS funding and approve projects to move forward.

    Design would likely begin in January 2021 with construction scheduled to begin in 2022 and 2023 depending on the complexity, movement of the project through the Division of State Architects and ability to schedule the project. 


    The architect selected for Grant was Johnson Favaro.  To see what was discussed in the two community meetings, follow the links below:

    Spring Community Meeting:

    Grant Spring Presentation

    Fall Community Meeting:

    Grant Fall Presentation

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