Featured News - Current News - Archived News - News Categories

Grand Island Board of Education: 2 dozen show up for second capital project hearing

Sat, Jan 5th 2019 07:00 am

By Larry Austin

Island Dispatch Editor

A small gathering of residents attended the second and final public hearing Thursday at Grand Island High School for a proposed $24 million capital project.

Following a capital project hearing a week earlier in which five people showed up, four of them representing the Grand Island Central School District, approximately 25 people attended a meeting Thursday in the professional development room of Grand Island High School.

Grand Island superintendent of schools Dr. Brian Graham made a presentation on the district’s $24 million capital project plan, which will be voted on in a referendum Jan. 8 in the GIHS foyer.

Graham addressed elements of the project such a safety and security improvements at Conner Middle School and Grand Island High School.

The improvements at the high school and middle school offices are designed in making main entrances similar to the experience at the elementary schools, Graham said.

In building a new office at the middle school, and swapping it with instructional space, the middle school actually gains more instructional space, Graham said.

Much of the safety and security designs came following an active shooter training drill that took place earlier last year, Graham said.

Residents were skeptical of some of the elements of the plan. Some objected to an estimated $8 million price tag for artificial athletic turf at the Ransom Road campus. Resident Jim Mulcahy preferred landscaping solutions to drainage problems that the turf fields would address. He said in his opinion a referendum on a capital project to build turf fields alone would fail.

Other big-ticket items in the proposal include air conditioning at the schools. Graham said Kaegebein Elementary has a large air-conditioned cool space for students in the event of a heat wave, but Huth Road Elementary School and Sidway Elementary School do not. He said the project does not propose putting air conditioning in every room, as he said is the case in the Lewiston-Porter and Sweet Home Districts, but would offer a large-scale respite study area.

Other elements of the project:

•Kaegebein Elementary School would get a new roof.

•The music wing for the high school and middle school was built without water access. The capital project would include building a unisex bathroom, which Graham called an engineering challenge.

•Work would be done to improve the acoustics in the high school auditorium.

Graham narrates a presentation on the project found on the district website at www.grandislandschools.org/Page/10920. The presentation is also available on YouTube.

comments powered by Disqus

Hometown News