Flathead High School Principal Michele Paine was surveying an assortment of old, at times decrepit, tables and shelves destined to be tossed or recycled last week as she prepared for the start of the school year. With the school gearing up to unveil its multi-million-dollar remodel later this month, Paine had decisions to make.
“Education is famous for holding on to everything because you don’t know when you’ll get something new,” Paine said, adding that the school held an “ugly chair contest” featuring garish pieces from the 1960s and 1970s.
Indeed, it’s time to get rid of some of the dated furniture and décor to make room for the new. The remodel is funded through a $54 million bond package — $28.76 million for the high school district and $25.28 million for the elementary — approved by voters in 2016, and includes the removal of 27,500 square feet of aging infrastructure, construction of nearly 50,000 square feet of new space and completion of a laundry list of deferred maintenance and updates.