The Nodaway-Holt R-VII School Board discussed remodeling the 1938 structure or building a new wing onto the school during its regular meeting on December 18.
Members of the facility planning team were in attendance. The team has compiled a list of items that are a priority to fix including either a boiler repair or a new heating system, new roofs, tuckpointing, bathroom and kitchen updates and more.
The high school boiler is not working properly, leaving some areas of the school at 60 degrees and others at 90 degrees. The roofs on both buildings have also seen several leaks and are not in good condition. These repairs will be necessary in the next couple of years.
The school board discussed asking voters to continue the existing temporary operating levy of 89¢ per $100 of assessed valuation to pay for the looming expenses. The levy is set to expire in 2018. If extended, the new expiration date would be 2037. It will not increase taxes.
Superintendent Jeff Blackford presented the school board with two options gathered from two different contract and design companies. One option is to make all the necessary repairs to the school, including updating the bathrooms, kitchen and technology.
The second option is to demolish the 1938 school structure and build a new building in its place. The new building would include seven classrooms, an administrative office and two new bathrooms for approximately 10,000 square feet.
The lowest estimate for repairing the existing building was $2,947,950 and the lowest estimate for a new addition was $2,989,553.75, an approximately $41,600 difference.
There was lots of discussion about the savings in utility costs and future potential repairs. There was also talk about the possibility of consolidating in the future and how that would impact the decision.
There was no formal vote, however, the general consensus was that replacing the 1938 building with a new build would be the best choice. Blackford will begin contacting designers and contractors for more accurate bids. The board will approve ballot language and make an official decision at the January meeting or possibly during a special meeting held sooner. If approved, the ballot question will be placed on the April 2018 ballot.
The school board approved the bus contract with the Apple Bus Company beginning August 1, 2018. All charges are per bus, per day. The charge for the regular bus routes is $228.82, $182 for the career center route and $228.92 for the special education and early childhood route. Activity trips are a minimum of $35 per trip plus 98¢ per mile and also includes $11.44 per hour for the driver.
The resignation of Kyle Blackford was accepted.
Elementary Principal Rita Carroll stated in her report that there was a new fourth grade student, bringing the elementary up to 99 students. The fourth, fifth and sixth grade students were working on several service projects including cleaning at the Maitland Museum and organizing toys during the toy drive at The Shed in Mound City, a location that gives assistance to those in need and other projects.
High School Principal Sean Emerson stated in his report that the Upward Bound partnership had been renewed and five students were selected to participate in the program with an additional student on the waiting list. The students will receive weekly tutoring sessions, a six-week course at Northwest in the summer and other assistance. The booster club donated money which was used to purchase gift cards to reward students with good attendance.
Seven high school students have put together a dance team and will begin performing at games in February.