Staff editorial: Renovations needed at PHS


Mandy Edwards, Editor-in-Chief

   Poway High School was the first official high school in the district, and it definitely has wear and tear from its six decades. It was built in 1960 and has been standing strong ever since, for the most part. There are some facilities on campus that are in major need of renovation to improve students’ learning.
PUSD gets fundings from the state that is then distributed between the 39 schools in the area. The money is not split up evenly, but more by which school needs it the most. For example, earlier this year, Rancho Bernardo had no air conditioning during the months of school and was on minimum days until the problem was fixed. RB needed the money for new AC school-wide to continue learning, so they were prioritized over other schools at the time.
For a large project, the process of renovating is long and complicated according to Assistant Principal overseeing facilities, Mike Gizzo. The state oversees all that schools do and projects must go through the facilities department to ensure that the correct laws and regulations are being met. Smaller renovations, like the bathroom murals, can be funded by our generous community, the Poway High Foundation, and PTA.
On campus, the main impact on students’ learning is the gym/athletic room used for PE and after-school sports. There are many leaks in the ceilings as well as cracks and mold in the floors. The district is aware and has already started renovations such as replacing lights and fixing some of the leaks. According to Gizzo, this will be a long process until future students will see a final product.
Since COVID, it seems that the lockers on campus have become more of ancient art than actual storage space. As of right now, lockers are available for anybody and may be checked out from school security. The lockers that are not in use have been zip-tied to avoid vandalism and painted to add color to the campus. We wish lockers could be brought back but in a bigger form. The lockers we have now are just too small to fit more than one binder. Students would benefit from a larger locker that could fit after-school practice equipment and extra jackets.
Some things on campus do not need total renovations but minor fixes. In the water fountains, for example, the water pressure is low, making it unsanitary because students have to put their mouths so close to the fountain. Small things like this can be fixed by custodians on campus after they are notified of a problem, according to Gizzo.
Although much needs to be fixed, there have been recent additions to campus that many students like, such as the window covers on doors in the D building. Students can expect to see all of the doors done by the end of this year. This project has been a long time in the making and adds to the overall aesthetic, as well as security, of our campus.
Gizzo said his overall goal is to provide a comfortable environment for students to maximize their learning. The district and Gizzo have big plans for the future of Poway High that include modernizing the campus and adding solar-charged picnic tables where students could charge their phones and laptops.