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CUSD busy with 8 large construction projects
Ceres Unified School District is working to finish projects at eight of its campuses.

Assistant Superintendent of Business Services Fred Van Vleck provided an update this past week.

He also praised Ken Hines (director of transportation), Joe Kissee (director of maintenance) and Keith Gibson (assistant director of maintenance) for their hard work.

"We're well ahead of our deadlines to get them completed," Van Vleck said. "We did this without bringing in a bunch of additional staff. We tried to keep it internal as much as possible."

Ceres High School's new $5.4 million seven-classroom wing addition will open no later than December. It consists of three computer labs and four standard classrooms.

A two-story 16-classroom wing, slated to be completed by December or January, is being added between the multi-use and B buildings at Central Valley High School. The $10.7 million improvement will house 400 students in 11 classrooms and five science labs.

"It matches the existing architecture," Van Vleck said.

Argus High School's four-classroom, flex building has a completion date of December. The addition has operable walls and can be used for classrooms, assemblies and food service. Students will also see new landscaping.

Ceres Unified's third junior high school, named in honor of Cesar Chavez, opened its doors in August.

The $3 million gymnasium will be finished in the middle of December or early January. The state did not provide matching funds.

La Rosa Elementary School opened its new administration/library complex earlier this month and three-classroom kindergarten-preschool wing in August.

Don Pedro Elementary's office/preschool addition will be finished sometime between February and March. The school's new student drop-off area and staff parking lot have already been completed.

Virginia Parks Elementary's three-classroom, kindergarten-preschool addition was finished on Oct. 7.

Walter White Elementary's 14-classroom addition is scheduled to be completed by the first of the year. The new student drop-off area and parking lot will be done this summer.

In 2008, voters in Ceres Unified passed a $60 million bond issue. Those funds are being used to pay for the above-mentioned school improvements.

"We have a ton of other projects that are scheduled," Van Vleck said. "We could start building three new elementary schools this spring if the state sells bonds. It's 100 percent state funded."