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A vintage 1956 school was not built for a 21st century education.

Less than $3 a day.
No matter what town you live in, it will cost you less than a daily medium coffee at Dunkin’ Donuts to invest in our communities’ shared future.

 
 
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Think this is a maintenance problem?

These buildings were designed and constructed in the 1950s. They have far exceeded their life expectancy by any standard. The district’s maintenance team has worked wonders to keep antiquated equipment and systems chugging for decades. If these buildings hadn’t been well-maintained, they would have failed years ago. But we have no tricks left. Independent experts have determined these buildings are likely to fail in the next few years, and we won’t be able to resuscitate them.


The original 1956 electrical panels still exist juxtaposed next to new ones from 1994. Maintenance staff do not touch the 1956 switches; they would break and risk cutting off power to the original section of the high school.

The original 1956 electrical panels still exist juxtaposed next to new ones from 1994. Maintenance staff do not touch the 1956 switches; they would break and risk cutting off power to the original section of the high school.

These wires come in from under the street into a room protected by a metal vault. By any modern standards, they should be buried underground. This access to high-voltage wiring poses a huge risk and there’s no easy fix.

These wires come in from under the street into a room protected by a metal vault. By any modern standards, they should be buried underground. This access to high-voltage wiring poses a huge risk and there’s no easy fix.

The gigantic original 1956 boilers are still in place. They are incredibly delicate and inefficient, and precariously keep the school heated …. most of the time.

The gigantic original 1956 boilers are still in place. They are incredibly delicate and inefficient, and precariously keep the school heated …. most of the time.

Just one pair of a multitude of severely corroded pipes throughout the campus. There’s no way to make any repairs to the pipes without shutting off the entire system on a weekend.

Just one pair of a multitude of severely corroded pipes throughout the campus. There’s no way to make any repairs to the pipes without shutting off the entire system on a weekend.


The building is falling apart… you can’t use the sinks in the science hall because the water leaks into the computer labs below.
— "Pentucket Schools are Falling to Pieces," Pentucket Profile student newspaper
 

Quick Facts

 
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Electrical panels are loaded 100 percent, unable to handle an extra projector, let alone keep up with classroom technology. The Apparatus Room —  the hub for the school’s electrical and heating systems — has steam and water pipes positioned in proximity to the main electrical panel, which is a substantial safety concern but reflects the Band-Aid upgrades and fixes that the facilities team has been forced to make to keep the systems functioning over 60-plus years.

 

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There's not a single lab anywhere on campus that can handle modern science needs. The newest science classrooms at the high school date back to 1995 (almost 25 years old). Classroom lab stations are constructed with units that combine water, gas and electricity.  Some of these components are no longer functional. The classrooms do not have ventilation hoods, posing a safety risk.  The number of lab stations is insufficient.  There are only two lab stations and each can accommodate three students.  There are usually about 22 students in a class. 

 

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Refs halt basketball games to wipe up pooling water from faulty pipes overhead that can't be fixed. This condition represents an ongoing — and embarrassing — hazard during games and events. On the field, visiting sports teams mock our players about the condition of their school. Mortified students report back to parents about opponents calling the school “a dump” or “shack.” They will endure additional embarrassment this year with caution tape blocking off game spectators from football field bleachers, which have been deemed unsafe.

 
The obsolete facility and systems are in imminent danger of potential failure and put the high school beyond the scope of regular practices identified in the Pentucket Facilities Plan.
— Pentucket Regional School District MSBA Statement of Interest
 
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The high school’s plumbing infrastructure has been described as “vintage,” “obsolete” and “deficient.” The water main most recently broke in 2015, forcing the closure of the school. It also broke the prior April and again seven years earlier. The main, located 18 feet under the school, has caused water pressure intense enough to threaten the school’s foundation. The 2015 break flooded the nurse’s office, main corridor, auditorium and cafeteria. The plumbing system continues to be vulnerable today. It’s a problem that puts students at risk of losing a week or more of class time when flooding, safety concerns and repairs force closure of the building.

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Antiquated equipment throughout the building’s plumbing, electrical and heating systems is so old that it’s cost-prohibitive and fiscally irresponsible to fix. Many component’s of the high school’s heating system date back to the 1950s. Improvements require the replacement of the heating system rather than individual components.

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Wifi accessibility is spotty at best. It's not a connectivity issue. The sprawling building layout and concrete walls of the 1950s was not designed with Internet access in mind. Internet access is necessary for classroom technology, such as Smart Boards, which are typical learning tools in today’s classrooms.

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The Pentucket Sachems are unable to host many championship games on home turf that require use of the gymnasium. That's because the gym is too small for larger crowds, according to present-day standards. There's not enough room at the sidelines to accommodate adequate bleacher seating. Outside on the football field, the bleachers are presently cut off from any parents or fans with yellow hazard tape, due to unsafe conditions.

 

Interested in the solution?

 

Take a Tour

Follow the district's facilities manager on an in-depth tour of the high school's plumbing, electrical and structural challenges. This video is available to the public on the school district's website.