Locker Room Weight Room Petition Campaign

Superintendent Thurmond makes surprise visit to Construction Committee meeting

We had an unexpected visitor at our meeting this morning (Jan. 29, 2015).  Our superintendent came to see us!  He announced that he supports a $1,000,000 increase in our SPLOST allotment in order to renovate the locker rooms.  He also complimented our committee on our approach in asking for the money.  He thinks other schools should learn from us!  We were respectful, factual, appreciative, and sincere--exactly the approach that works well with the BOE and Superintendent.  He said that when he asked Williams and Jambro to see if we were painting an accurate picture, they reported back that we were.  Now, they are recommending that Druid Hills Middle and Sequoia Middle have the same high school-to-middle school renovations in SPLOST V.  

Everyone who has written to the BOE and Thurmond, talked with them, spoken at a BOE meeting, created videos, taken pictures, toured other schools, and advocated tirelessly for this project should feel proud.  This is a huge accomplishment.  Remember, we were told last year that there was no way we could have the locker room project included in SPLOST IV.  Now, thanks to your efforts, it is happening.  I realize that it is not going to be the 2.3 million overhaul that we originally wanted, but it is also not the 300,000 band-aid that they originally wanted.  They are developing a new $1,000,000 design (not the economy version and not the Cadillac version--something in between) that will address our concerns regarding safety, line-of-sight, and priority for the instructional/PE spaces.  

Mr. Jambro presented a document and it outlines (in words, not graphics) the basic idea of what will be included.  The weight room will not be part of the locker rooms, but it WILL be renovated (including new equipment).  

 

Locker Room and Weight Room project scope

January 29, 2015

Thank you to the HMS community for your support on the locker room/weight room issue. At Monday's Board of Education meeting, Henderson's speakers were amazing! Many thanks to Richmond Fourmy, Danielle Goselin, Laura Morse, Walker Scott, Sharon Robinson, Mark Speece, and Lori Cora. Special thanks to our student speakers, Gabby Goselin and Kayla Hatfield, who gave amazing speeches to the BOE. For those who were unable to watch or attend the meeting, it will be replayed on Channel 24. Be sure to catch our amazing speakers on TV, and be sure to thank them when you see them in person! Or watch online!

How can you help?

Let your voice be heard!

Tell the School Board you want them to renovate these unsafe and deplorable locker rooms and weight room.

Sign our Petition!

 

 

Do you have an expertise?

Are you a building inspector? Are you an attorney with knowledge of Title 9? Are you a Construction Project Manager?  If you have expertise in any of these areas, please contact the Henderson SPLOST Construction Committee. We need your help and advice.

Have you ever seen the locker rooms and weight room at Henderson Middle School?

Take our 2-minute Tour!  Watch it on YouTube:

Did you know they will not be updated in the upcoming construction?

The Henderson Middle School Council has already sent a letter to the School Board, Superintendent and Director of Operations.  We  have shared several photos with them and outlined our request for funding to renovate the locker rooms and weight room.

Dear DeKalb County Board of Education,

We are requesting additional funding for the Henderson Middle School locker rooms and weight room.

  • The locker rooms and weight room remain today as they were originally constructed as a high school in 1967.
  • The Locker Rooms are used daily by 1,500 middle school students.
  • Most of the Locker Room space is wasted on empty equipment storage and showers that are not used.
  • In the girls' locker room, there are only two small changing areas for roughly 45 girls each, per PE class – significantly less space than the boys' changing space in their locker room, which raises a Title IX violation.
  • Locker rooms entrance ways and exits do not meet Life Safety codes.
  • Each poorly lit locker room has only one small entrance to with no sight line from an adult.
  • Locker rooms have extremely limited visibility and poor ventilation. The lighting is poor and the rooms are dark and dank.
  • Children with physical disabilities have difficulty accessing the locker rooms and those in wheelchairs have no access to the locker rooms which brings up serious ADA violations.
  • Students currently use the weight room daily for classroom instruction as well as extra-curricular sports.
  • The weight room has multiple benches where bare wood is exposed because the vinyl covering has aged and ripped.
  • The weight room equipment is old and does not have any safety protection provided with new equipment.
  • The weight equipment is in disrepair – with failed bearings and pulleys, loose and incorrect fasteners and worn cables.
  • The weight room mirrors, installed randomly around the room rather than on adjacent panels along a wall, are broken – with exposed edges.
  • The weight room walls have several electrical outlets with exposed wiring, posing a serious electrocution hazard.

In consideration of the life-safety issues, code violations and Title IX violations, we request the School Board allocate funds to renovate the locker rooms and weight room.   A redesign and renovation during upcoming construction would make more for safe, efficient locker rooms and reclaim much-needed space for storage/offices/instructional workspace. The Henderson Middle School Community has expressed a specific and urgent interest in this matter.

Background History: The locker rooms have been listed as a priority for our students for quite some time, but unfortunately they have been removed from the list of work items from the impending SPLOST IV work that is to commence this winter at Henderson.  The HMS Construction Committee and our parent constituents have repeatedly lobbied for additional funds to repair the rooms, but to date we have not received an approval.  We are very grateful for the additional $500,000 that we received for the Media Center, and we are asking for additional funds for the weight and locker rooms, not because we are greedy, but because we are appalled that our children must be subjected to such an outdated and unsafe space.

 

Check out our student production of "Henderson Horrors"  - it's scary!