School Finance 615

2017 Summer Projects at SAS

The start of the summer holidays means the start of the busiest time of year for our facilities team. Over the sixty-one work days (including Sundays) of the 2017 summer break, eighty-one different projects will be completed across the divisions. Over eighty contracted workers and fifteen construction vehicles will be employed in renovating, replacing, maintaining, painting, cleaning, and otherwise upgrading our SAS facilities.

Summer projects are typically those that would cause significant disruption for students and teachers. Each project request was evaluated in terms of safety and maintenance requirements, program needs, costs, and intangibles such as aesthetics and product branding. A competitive bidding process was initiated for all work packages. The limited time frame for these projects means that safety, quality, and efficiency are the facilities team's main priorities.

Major Projects

Major projects are coordinated through our ten-year asset management plan. 2017 major summer projects include the creation of a high school student life center, upgrades to outdoor athletic facilities, and our pathfinder projects.

Our high school counseling program will move into two departments next year. College Counseling will be situated in the current office, which will be lightly renovated to accommodate our seven college counselors and a conference room. Personal and Academic Counseling (PAC) will occupy the new student life center, located just across the hall. The student life center will accommodate our five PAC counselors, dean of students, and psychologist, and will include areas where students can study, socialize, and hold club meetings. Amenities such as a kitchen corner and foosball table will encourage students to relax and unwind. "We envision the student life center as the living room for the high school," says Dean of Students Sue Nesbitt.

Outdoors, several of our athletic facilities are due for surface renewals. We will replace the rubberized stadium track, refresh the grass stadium field, and replace the artificial turf on the south and softball fields. The rooftop tennis courts will be resurfaced and waterproofed. The elementary pool will also undergo repairs.

We are excited about this summer's pathfinder projects, through which we will start aligning classroom environments with our increasingly inquiry-based, collaborative, and interdisciplinary approach to learning. For a more detailed explanation, please read on here. Four pathfinder projects are planned for this summer:

  • Several kindergarten classrooms will be converted into learning hubs, flexible spaces that support varied teaching and learning styles. Each hub will accommodate two teachers and their classes (students coming from our ELC will already be used to this approach). Different hub areas will host different activities, supported by moveable, multifunctional new furniture.
  • Our new Chinese immersion program will take over two lightly renovated kindergarten classrooms. A moveable wall and new furniture will give our two immersion teachers flexibility to adapt teaching styles to student needs.
  • In the middle school, sixth grade's A-side classrooms will be transformed into a large-scale hub that will include learning studios, breakout rooms, a grand commons room, and a science/maker studio.
  • In the high school, the Center of Innovation will be renovated to better support the Catalyst program. The new space will have quiet work areas, makerspaces, a STEM lab, and group meeting areas. It will also accommodate larger functions, our innovators-in-residence program, on-demand use by other classes, displays of student work, and support for independent projects.

2017 Summer Projects (SAS-managed and contractor-managed)

Smaller Projects

Projects by division

  • Upgrade ELC playground, including new child-friendly garden shed
  • Improve road safety and plantings at ELC drop-off
  • Refresh Grade 3 classrooms
  • Install safety gantry at ES parking lot
  • Renovate HS activities office
  • Renovate HS chorus room
  • Renew HS dance room floor
  • Install viewing panels in performance spaces' acoustic doors
  • Create two new HS classrooms for those replaced by Student Life Center

School-wide and central administration projects

  • Install main guard house extension unit
  • Improve sidewalk and plantings at main gate
  • Resurface campus roads
  • Replace electrical transformer and switchgear
  • Replace IT capital equipment
  • Continue multi-year air-conditioning system upgrade
  • Continue multi-year CCTV security system upgrade
  • Renovate selected central administration offices

Our summer work period allows us to carry out cyclical and one-off repair and replacement projects as we manage our aging SAS facilities purposefully and efficiently. In this way, SAS acts as a responsible steward of our financial and physical resources. Students will return to fresh, safe, and reliable buildings and facilities that are evolving with our program needs. We thank you in advance for your patience and support as we complete our summer projects. Please click here for our summer 2017 campus access guidelines.

If you have any questions or concerns related to construction or campus access, please email Anthony Wong, Director of Facilities and Services, at If you have comments, questions, and suggestions for future finance articles, please send them to We look forward to hearing from you.