Together We Can, Together We Will, Build a Brighter Future

Superintendent's Weekly Message: Progress on Facility Master Plan

Dec. 14, 2022

Dear Hollister High School parents, students, staff and community:

As the calendar year comes to a close, it’s a good time to reflect on the progress San Benito High School District continues to make on its Facility Master Plan.

“We continue to provide a campus that is a safe, clean and inviting space,” said Kristy Bettencourt, the district’s Maintenance, Operations and Transportation manager.

Solar Projects

The ground mount and CTE Building roof mount solar projects on the southwest side of campus are expected to be completed by the end of December or early in January, after which we’ll await PG&E connecting it to the electric grid so the district can begin experiencing additional energy savings as part of the second phase of the district’s energy efficiency program. To date, the Phase 1 Solar PV Project above the Baler Alley parking lot have saved the district nearly $2 million in energy costs.

Maintenance, Operations and Transportation Building

The 7,400-square-foot Maintenance, Operations and Transportation Building south of the Science and Robotics Building along the River Parkway is nearing completion. This project coincides with the construction of a new transportation shop, warehouse and 16,000-square-foot district vehicle parking area and covered bus area that will move those operations away from the center of campus.

“It has been great pulling the buses away from the center of the campus,” Ms. Bettencourt said. “The ingress and egress for the buses and district vehicles is now much more controlled. The new student loading zone is also in a safer area.” The completion of this project ensures that the heart of campus will be much safer and less congested for years to come.

New Portable Classrooms

The seven new portable classrooms added to the east side of campus are in use this semester, helping us deal with a growing student population that has approached 3,500 this year.

“The landscaping around the buildings looks amazing and was done in-house,” noted Ms. Bettencourt. “A special feature was the trellis that houses a wisteria vine. This vine is 25 years old! The benches that surround this vine were also designed and built by the maintenance team. This is another great accomplishment from our talented team.” 

HVAC and Energy Management System

The VAPA, Science and Robotics and CTE buildings have all been added to our existing energy management system, as have the ASB Building, the weight and wrestling rooms and the pool and stadium locker rooms. This allows for the efficient and cost-effective operation of heating and cooling systems throughout the entire campus.

Soil Clean-up At Old CTE Building

Abatement and demolition of the old and vacant CTE Building, located near the corner of Nash Road and West Street, is moving through final state approvals, with demolition expected to begin after the end of the current semester. This area is the site of a proposed Student Union/Cafeteria Facility, which would greatly expand our food service options for students in a centralized location on campus. The demolition process should take about four weeks, according to Ms. Bettencourt, who noted that the old building will be ground up and used as fill material for asphalt pavement at the existing location.

Future Projects

Design is underway for a new bleachers, press box and sound system at the Ray Barragan Softball Stadium. We greatly appreciate the ongoing support of the Barragan Family, whose previous donations funded many of the features of the stadium, including the lights and will cover the costs of the future improvements, expected to be implemented after this Spring softball season.

Ms. Bettencourt and her crew are working on an additional outdoor learning environment that she says “will have some different features than what is currently on our campus,” so we’re looking forward to providing more information about that soon.

Also, in the works is a new restroom facility on the south side of campus and a field house planned for near the multipurpose field.

Looking Ahead

We appreciate the ongoing support of our community, along with our staff, faculty and administration, as we work to provide the safest, most modern, and efficient campus possible. This team approach, supported by the District Board of Trustees, has created a campus about which we can all be proud. It is yet another reason why every day is a great day to be a Baler!


San Benito High School District Superintendent Dr. Shawn Tennenbaum

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San Benito High School District, 1220 Monterey St. Hollister, CA 95023