📅01 February 2013
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By Patrick Lujan

Students from Oceanview Middle School take part in the ribbon cutting ceremony of the reopening of their gym after almost 12 years of it being deemed unsafe. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Students from Oceanview Middle School take part in the ribbon cutting ceremony of the reopening of their gym after almost 12 years of it being deemed unsafe. (photo by Jesse Castro)

After almost 12 years of being closed due to earthquake damage, the Oceanview Middle School gymnasium doors are finally open once again.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony took place Friday morning at the southern school as Guam Department of Education officials, island dignitaries and the school children were on hand for the event.

“I want to thank all the students and their families of Oceanview Middle School for their patience through the years,” GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez said. “What a wonderful moment to celebrate the return of this gym and to finally make Oceanview whole again. I’m looking forward to seeing our kids compete and hold home court advantage in the months and years ahead!”

The gym was deemed unsafe and was forced to close in 2001 due to damaged sustained by an earthquake. Estimated costs to repair that damages at that time was $50,000, according to school principal Lynda Hernandez-Avilla.

“It’s been a long struggle with first trying to find out whether FEMA was going to fund the renovations.  Then, later gotten word that we won’t be funded because the gym did not have typhoon insurance,” she said.

The total cost for repair almost 12 years later is between $850,000-$900,000.

The new version does come with two new classrooms, a new floor, brand new bleachers and scoreboard.
The student body were still utilizing the locker rooms up until 2009 when it was then deemed unsafe as well.  Since then, students used regular classrooms to change for PE classes and only wiped up with baby wipes or changed clothes with no showers or locker rooms. Students would use the field or hallways for PE classes depending on the weather.
“No more dividing the students for a presentation, ceremony, or assembly because there’s no place to have it because we have our gym back!,” exclaimed Hernandez-Avilla. “No more cancellations of any activity because it’s raining. We have our gym back!”


1959: opened as Agat/Santa Rita Jr. High School

1982: became Agat/Santa Rita High School, later Oceanview High School

1997: became Oceanview Middle School





OMS Principal Lynda Hernandez-Avilla greets everyone in attendance during the opening remarks for the school’s gym ribbon cutting ceremony. (photo by Jesse Castro)


Lt. Governor Ray Tenorio addresses the students of Oceanview Middle School. (photo by Jesse Castro)


Superintendent of Education Jon Fernandez is happy to see the enthusiasm coming from the students of OMS. (photo by Jesse Castro)


Education dignitaries join together in officially cutting the ceremonial ribbon. (photo by Jesse Castro)



Southern High School Honor Guard presented the colors to the students of OMS. (photo by Jesse Castro)


OMS student body lead their classmates in reciting the DOE Vision, OMS Vision, OMS Mission, ESLRs, and ESRBs. From left President Joni Tudela, Secretary Dasha Cruz, Treasurer Dan Geolingo, Public Relations Officer Isabel Herrera, and Vice President Karen Palomo. (photo by Jesse Castro)


OMS Cultural Dancers led by Saina Lujan bless the newly renovated gym with a traditional Chamorro chant. (photo by Jesse Castro)


GDOE Assistant Superintendent Rob Malay, Superintendent Jon Fernandez and Lt. Governor Ray Tenorio applaud during the ceremony. (photo by Jesse Castro)


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