Mann and Whittier schools in Oak Park will undergo renovation this summer to create secured entrances for each building, District 97 has announced.

These are the final two schools in the district to receive new entrances. Last year, Irving and Longfellow schools had their entrances relocated. The district planned on doing one secured entrance this summer and another one in 2013 but decided on doing both this year, said Therese O’Neill, the district’s assistant superintendent for finance and operations.

The projects were discussed at the Feb. 14, school board meeting and are expected to be approved later this month. The district is poised to hire Vengar Construction Corp, based in Countryside, to work on both schools at a cost of roughly $1.3 million.

“These are projects that are born from our five-year capital plan…and have been reviewed by FAC (the district’s Financial Advisory Committee),” O’Neill said.

Whittier, 715 N. Harvey Ave., this summer is also slated to receive air-conditioning in its auditorium. Holmes and Irving are the other two schools in the district without air-conditioned auditoriums, O’Neill noted, but no work is planned this summer for those schools.

The Whittier auditorium was not initially budgeted for this year, O’Neill said, but the district decided to do the project this summer along with the secured entrance. The project, estimated a roughly $176,000, is slated to be done by Northbrook-based F.E. Moran, pending board approval.

“Recognizing that we were going to close Whittier this summer — and try to minimize closing the school back-to-back years — FAC recommended that we take that as a second bid,” O’Neill said. “And, if funding was available, then it might be wise to do this project in concert with the secured entrance.”

Mann School is located at 921 N. Kenilworth Ave.

The board is scheduled to vote on each project on Feb. 28.

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