Board weighs repairs at Bradford|
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
By Jeff Corcino Staff Writer
The Clearfield Area School District Board of School Directors last night discussed its options for repairs/renovations to the Bradford Township Elementary School Building.
The support structure under the oldest section of the Bradford Township Elementary School is in poor condition and in need of repair and the board needs to decide which direction it wants to take with the repairs.
Last month, J. Greer Hayden, president of HHSDR of Sharon, the district's architect, presented three possible options for repairing the structure. The options ranged from the most basic repairs at a cost of $293,000, repairing the structure and replacing its floors and mechanical systems at a cost of $555,000, to demolishing the old section and constructing a new addition at a cost of $857,000.
He also gave a fourth option of demolishing the old section and constructing a new addition as well as completely renovating the entire school at a cost of $6.1 million. This option has the best chance of receiving zero-interest financing from the federal government based on the point system it uses to judge projects, Hayden said.
Rick Bunning, director of buildings and grounds, said the district has to make a decision soon on what direction it wants to take with the repairs so they can be started this summer. At the very least, he said, the district would have to make the needed structural repairs this summer.
Bunning said if the district plans to keep the school open it will have to be renovated because many of its mechanical and heating systems are old, corroded, outdated and inefficient and need to be replaced, and other items like its windows, need to be replaced as well.
He also said the building's electrical system has reached its limits and needs to be upgraded as well.
Board President Dave Glass said he is in favor of doing the minimum required repairs for now until the feasibility study committee makes its recommendations on which the direction the school district should take with its buildings.
The feasibility study committee is charged with studying the findings of HHSDR's feasibility study and making recommendations on which direction the district should take.
Board member Larry Putt agreed but said the utmost importance must be placed on the safety of the students and staff in the building. Bunning said he is closely monitoring the safety of the building and said it doesn't pose a safety risk at the moment but said something will need to be done this summer to ensure doesn't become a safety hazard.
Superintendent Dr. Richard Makin also said he believes a decision has to be made soon so repairs can begin this summer but said the board does have some time to decide on which direction it wants to take.
The board also discussed the composition of the feasibility study committee.
Currently there are 21 members of the new committee, but board member Philip Carr said he believed the former feasibility study committee was too heavily weighted with district staff and wants people who are in the construction, architecture and engineering fields on the board, someone from the state Department of Transportation as well as representatives from the municipalities in the district.
It was determined that there are currently two people on the board who work at PennDOT, and to keep the committee from becoming too large, Glass asked if Carr would ask two or three people in the construction/engineering/architectural fields to serve.
The board also discussed whether it should give each municipality its own representative or, in an effort to keep the board from getting too large, have the municipalities decide among themselves to send two or three people to represent all of them. However, no determination was made last night on which option the board should pursue.
The district originally formed a feasibility study committee in 2008 to study the results of a feasibility study performed the architectural firm of Crabtree, Rohrbaugh & Associates of Hollidaysburg, which recommended the middle school be closed and a new wing constructed at the high school for the seventh and eighth grades.
However, the district asked HHSDR to perform a study to get a second opinion on the matter and have a new feasibility study committee to study the results. HHSDR also recommended the middle school be closed.
In other business:
- Makin said the district has formed a committee to draft a policy of when teams should travel to sporting events in the event of inclement weather.
Currently the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association gives little guidance other than to say if a team doesn't make the trip it forfeits the competition, Makin said.
Makin said the committee is charged with coming up with a compromise that balances the safety of district students with the importance of having its student athletes compete in these competitions.
This issue came to a head recently last week when the Clearfield wrestling team had a meet in Clarion during a snowstorm.
Makin said district staff handled the situation very well. He said they decided to travel to the meet but made every effort possible to ensure the safety of the students. He also said Athletic Director Jon Mikesell called him with regular updates on what was happening.
- the administration recommended the following appointments: Sonya Knepp, special education assistant at the middle school for 4½ hours a day, 180 days a year; Jacqueline Peters, substitute elementary teacher; Amy Daub, substitute classroom assistant, clerical, custodian/cleaner and cafeteria worker; Elbert Donnell, substitute custodial/maintenance worker; Nicole Dell'Antonio, substitute teacher; Janet Lukens, substitute classroom assistant, clerical, custodial and cafeteria worker at Bradford Elementary; Scott Boyle, temporary bus ramp supervisor at the high school for the second semester; Mel McConnell, temporary cafeteria supervisor at the high school, second semester only; John Jacob, head track and field coach; Justin Hazelton, temporary health teacher at the high school, second semester only.