In an effort to demonstrate the need of renovation at the elementary school level, Reberger led the group through classrooms, the kitchen, cafeteria and the media center of the school. He led a similar tour of Meridian Elementary School earlier in the month.
Currently, East Side faces many challenges concerning space.
The school moved from two to three lunch periods to be able to accommodate all of the students. East Side's enrollment is currently near 300 students.
The cafeteria is the size of one-and-a-half classrooms, and the kitchen has no storage.
Food is kept in an outdoor walk-in freezer or in the space converted from the old stage in the gym.
This means gym equipment is stored on moving racks and in the teachers' lounge.
Lack of storage is a common theme in the building. Students keep their coats and cold weather gear in garbage bags hanging from coat racks because there is no divided space for them to keep their belongings.
Chairs used in music class are stored in a hallway and in the computer lab. The audio/visual room and the health room are converted closets.
Classroom space is also at a premium. Along with the outdoor modulars, the speech room and original computer lab have been converted to regular classrooms.
Speech is now held one day a week in the art room, and the computer lab is now adjacent to the library.
The art room was originally in the part of the building where classrooms have bathrooms within the room. In its current location, there is no sink in the art room for cleaning brushes or hands.
Ray and Reberger also pointed out that the gym also doubles as the music room. They described the chaos of having the Christmas program at a nearby church this year.
Kids got ready in the gym, and then were guided across the street to the church to perform. Ray said it is difficult to get the entire student body into the gym, not including staff and parents.
Small renovations have been made to the building since it was built in the 1950s. In the 1980s, the library and three classrooms were added to the building.
In 1991, the corporation did a window replacement and air conditioning was installed in 2001.
Reberger said the current roof was put on in 1986, and is on its last legs. He added that his staff has been patching the roof, and re-roofed part of the gym, but is holding off on completely redoing the entire thing until a firm decision is made on the building project.
Members of the tour group expressed concern over safety and security, especially relating to the proximity to United States 40.
The group also expressed concern about class sizes and the ability of the building to remain functional even after a possible renovation.
Several members of the faculty were on hand during the tour, and were able to explain the multiple functions and purposes of each room.
Reberger said, at the Political Forum held last week, that the tours were intended to answer questions about the two school buildings considered most in need, Meridian and East Side.