Inglewood Unified has received $10 million from the Los Angeles World Airports to reimburse costs soundproofing schools, including Oak Street Elementary. Pictured (l to r): Inglewood Unified Chief Business Official Christine Dacanay, Environmental Programs Group Program Manager South Insulation Program Raha Azarmehr, Inglewood Unified County Administrator Dr. Erika Torres and Inglewood Unified Executive Director of Facilities Herlinda Bazan.

Inglewood Unified on Nov. 14 received the first $10 million installment from the Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) to mitigate the impact of airplane noise on students, part of a $44 million program launched in 2015 to improve schools along Los Angeles International Airport flight paths.

In October, the Board of Airport Commissioners approved a total of $30 million to sound insulate three schools by early 2021. The money will reimburse the District for improvements underway at Woodworth-Monroe TK-8 Magnet Academy and Oak Street Elementary School in addition to upcoming projects at Morningside High School.

“This infusion of funding is a welcome addition to Inglewood Unified’s multi-faceted program of school improvement,” County Administrator Dr. Erika Torres said. “Inglewood Unified is investing deeply in creating high quality learning environments that will ensure our students have the tools they need to succeed. These improvements will go a long way toward achieving these goals.”

Projects include replacing heating, ventilation and air condition (HVAC) systems, installing exterior windows, replacing exterior doors, upgrading ceilings with sound-reducing insulation as well as related plumbing and electrical upgrades. The work is expected to achieve interior noise levels at or below 45 decibels – the volume of a quiet conversation – boost natural light in classrooms and cut energy costs.

“Los Angeles World Airports believes our partnership with Inglewood Unified will help to ensure a positive learning environment for students and teachers, which benefits the entire community,” LAWA Chief Environmental and Sustainability Officer Samantha Bricker said. “Our soundproofing programs for residents and schools in Inglewood demonstrate LAWA’s commitment to be a good neighbor and partner with adjacent communities. ”

Inglewood Unified’s first project was at Beulah Payne Elementary School, where improvements were made to seven classrooms and a multi-purpose room. LAWA and the District celebrated completion of the $2.8 million project in 2018.

The Woodworth-Monroe project, which is set to be completed in the next few months, allots $17.7 million for 63 classrooms, a library and a multi-purpose room. Oak Street School, which is expected to be completed in December 2020, includes 21 classrooms and a library. Improvements are expected to cost $4.8 million. Morningside High targets 62 classrooms, a library and an auditorium. Improvements are expected to cost $17.4 million and be completed in early 2021.

The District is developing a timeline for a Child Development Center project that will span eight classrooms and cost about $1.5 million. This project will be considered in the future based on funding availability.

Some of the projects coincide with other improvements funded through Measure GG, a 2012 bond measure that generated $90 million for Inglewood Unified facility repairs and upgrades. These include a new modular classroom building at Woodworth-Monroe, new playgrounds and the planned renovation of an aging science building at Morningside High.

“Our vision for Inglewood Unified is one of steady and significant improvement – not only in our facilities, but in all our efforts to assist our students in achieving success here, in higher education and in their careers,” Torres said. “These facilities improvements are an important element in achieving that vision.”