Education & Youth

State awards $50,000 maintenance grants to two school districts that serve Harvey families

Harvey School District 152 and South Holland School District 151 were among 600 first round applicants.

File photo. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic
File photo. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

The state awarded $3 million in maintenance grants to school districts statewide, including two that serve families in Harvey.

Harvey School District 152 and South Holland School District 151 were both awarded $50,000 for maintenance projects through the first round of the School Maintenance Program.

Project proposals are typically geared toward emergency projects following a disaster, energy conservation, remodeling existing buildings for health or safety reasons, or upgrades to building infrastructure like plumbing, heating, ventilation, or air conditioning.

There were over 600 total first round applicants.

What remains to be determined is how both districts will use the funds—whether upgrades will be made to a single school, multiple schools, and for what purpose, as outlined by the program.

There are six schools served by District 152, all of which are in Harvey.

There are four schools served by District 151, one located in Harvey, two in South Holland, and another in Phoenix.

“Funds must be used exclusively for the maintenance or upkeep of educational buildings, but applicants are given the freedom to submit projects that involve multiple types of work for a single building or a single type of improvement for several buildings,” state education officials said in a news release.

The program requires all grantees to match state awarded funding and complete the project within two years from the time funds are dispersed. They must also submit quarterly reports to the state tracking their progress.

“By investing in our educational infrastructure, we set Illinois students up for success,”said Governor JB Pritzker in a statement.“Our state’s youth spend a majority of their days inside school buildings. It is our duty to make sure those facilities are safe, clean, well-lit, and adequately ventilated. With this funding, our children will learn and grow in sustainable, healthy environments—as they deserve.”

“Each and every student in Illinois deserves access to safe and healthy facilities that support their well-being and academic growth," said State Superintendent of Education Dr. Carmen I. Ayala in a statement. “School districts across the state have significant facilities needs. We learned from the pandemic how important ventilation is to preventing the spread of disease. These grants can help schools make necessary upgrades to make buildings safer, healthier, and more energy efficient so they save taxpayer dollars in the long run.”

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