NEWS

Greencastle-Antrim School Board decides to spend $1.1 million more for renovation projects

PAT FRIDGEN, Echo Pilot

The Greencastle-Antrim School Board approved an additional $1.1 million in improvements to campus buildings at the May 21 meeting. School directors Jim Winslow, Linda Farley, Mike Still, Eric Holtzman, Melinda Cordell, Ken Haines and Lura Hanks approved expenditures recommended by the Facilities Committee. Brian Hissong and Tracy Baer were absent.

The McClure Company has already begun its energy efficiency and capital projects, slated to last all summer. The extra jobs include the high school roof, $300,000; gymnasium floor, $335,000; panic notification system, $9,800; primary sprinkler replacement system, $198,000; primary fire alarm upgrade, $76,000; and high school  bathroom renovations, $206,000. The costs will be covered in the $9.9 million general obligation bond sale.

The board also heard from Questeq, the company hired in 2013 to modernize the district technology system. Jeffrey Main, chief executive officer for the Pittsburgh-based firm, highlighted the initial steps it undertook.

The school district was rife with issues in internet content filters, licensing, email, security, power, viruses and backup.

"We did a ton of things while still meeting the day to day needs of the teachers and staff," he said.

On-site director of technology Dwight Bard said two employees had been added to the department and the team had been busy. He created a five-year plan, and preventative maintenance would begin next fall. He also planned faculty professional development workshops so they could best utilize the technology.

Molly Moran, director of reading and federal programs, reported that G-ASD would receive $995,231 in KtO grants next year, its fourth year of participation. Also, the school was a finalist for a state literacy award, to be announced in June.