Wed07302014

Last updateWed, 19 Nov 2014 8pm

   2014 39.95 HSD w VIDor PH-Banner2-500-x-125

Middle school on hold at Beach

Superintendent says elementary trailers must take priority

Superintendent Donna Power opened her remarks at the Sept. 8 Colonial Beach School Board meeting with an urgent request regarding the three trailers at the elementary school.  According to Power the “condition of the three trailers at the top of the hill are deplorable” and pose health and safety hazards to students and staff who use the trailers.
Power strongly urged board members to table the approved plans for creating a separate middle school by using a leased “mod pod” building unit until next fiscal year and using the approximately $66,000 budgeted funds to replace the elementary trailer units.

“It is in the best interest and health of students and staff,” Power said.
Power further recommended the board approve an additional mod pod unit to be used to replace the existing school library, which is currently overcrowded and at capacity.  
The six-month cost to lease three mod pod units to replace the three trailers is $5,900 per month or a total of $53,864.  One-time installation cost is expected to total approximately $18,464. The approximate total money needed as presented by Power is $72,328.  This leaves a budget shortfall of approximately $6,500. If a mod pod unit is also leased to serve as a new 1,440 square foot library, the expected approximate unbudgeted costs could rise to $35,000.
Power further advised the board: “I would like to fundraise, even if it is only for the library by itself.”
The proposed timeline for replacement of the three trailers would have students in place in the new mod pod units after the Thanksgiving holiday. Power further noted that 150 students would have to be temporarily relocated from Oct. 1 through Thanksgiving and that she is looking at all options to effectively achieve a smooth transition for the students and staff.
The school board, with all members present, unanimously approved to table the plans to create a middle school and to replace the three trailers at the elementary school and to provide authorization to Power to begin fundraising efforts in order to secure a new mod pod unit to serve as the new library.
In other matters, the board agreed to join a school procurement system that uses online services to sell used furniture, books, and other items from school districts in Region 3. The board also agreed to provide notice to the public of any upcoming sales event.
Elementary School Principal Kevin Newman reported that Colonial Beach elementary was one of two schools in the district to make AYP for 2010. Currently there are 416 students enrolled with Grade 4 having the largest enrollment — 54 students.  Newman further reported that students and staff are responding very favorably to the newly instituted A/B block scheduling.
High School Principal Clint Runyan reported that the high school did not make AYP for 2010, but is expected to make AYP for 2011.  There were 171 students enrolled on the first day of school.  A new homework center program has begun at the library on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3–4 p.m. to assist students with homework and projects.

 Kathy Flanagan

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