School Pride Restores Needles High School in California

NBC continues to travel around the country renovating America’s schools on their hit show School Pride. This week, the team headed to a high school in California that was in need of a lot of restoration work.

Comparable to previous episodes, Former Miss USA and Designer Susie Castillo, Comedian Kim Whitley, Political Journalist Jacob Soboroff and Team Leader and Voice Over Host Tom Stroup come together to spearhead the restoration project of the school.

Built in 1903, Needles High School has been a generational school. Students told viewers that the school was the same high school their siblings, parents and grandparents all attended.

The school had cracked flooring, broken ceiling tiles, blinds and windows, molding carpet, dirt flooring in the courtyard, open electrical wiring, outdated learning equipment, no insulation, and in a town where the temperature can reach over 115 degrees: limited air conditioning.

Home of the Mustangs, Needles’ football team wins championships on fields that are ridden with holes and dead grass. For a small town that doesn’t even have a movie theatre, football games provide social gatherings for the town, and, thus, generate a lot of school pride.

Needles is known for its trade school and vocational classes as many of the students graduate and work within the town’s electrical and mechanics industries. Many of the show’s volunteers were alumni of the school and craftsmen by trade, which greatly contributed to a faster and more productive restoration process. This was essential because Needles is located in the Mojave Desert and violent sandstorms disrupted the restoration process that occurred from August 13 to August 19, 2010.

The School Pride team and 2,500 volunteers, with the help of Brutoco, a local construction company, renovated the athletics field, the courtyard, entrance, auto shop, and shop class. The team also built a new student entertainment lounge that will provide the students a place to socialize, outside of the football games.

Projects this large often need financial support, therefore, once again, in true NBC fashion, there was product placement Nucor, Wal-Mart, Wilsonart, Lyon, Sagus, Microsoft, On Star and Home Depot. Whitley felt that the unbearable heat, combined with the popular football team, called for a healthy concession stand built for the athletic department, which Wal-Mart stocked with smoothies, fruit, vegetables, and other healthy snacks. Wal-Mart also donated citrus trees to provide shade, future produce for the concession stands and an opportunity for students to cultivate any agricultural interests they might have.

The night of the restoration project’s reveal the Mustangs football team had a big game that they, of course, won.








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