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August 29, 2013

Salem schools gear up for year of construction

Schools are in session, with major construction ahead

(Continued)

A third building, Haigh School, will see $369,000 in work over the next year. The district’s three other elementary schools were renovated a few years ago.

Plans are now in the works for a $75 million overhaul of Salem High School and its Center for Career and Technical Education. A proposal could go before voters as early as March.

Once those projects are complete, the district intends to renovate Woodbury School.

But tonight, the school district’s focus is keeping parents and their children informed about the changes to expect this year, while alleviating any concerns about safety in a virtual construction zone.

Excavators will arrive in mid-September and sections of the schools will be closed off while construction takes place, Delahanty said.

They will be shifted from one part of the school to another. Several classes will be taught in the gymnasiums, he said.

“We will move kids and staff around,” he said.

New additions at both school will be under construction until about March, Delahanty said. Once those are complete, the work will shift to the rest of the school, he said.

“Areas will be cordoned off next to the construction zone,” he said. “Kids will be moved into the new facility once it’s constructed.”

In some places where the floor tiles were removed, including reading areas, rugs were put down to cover up the concrete, Delahanty said.

Delahanty, Fisk principal George Murray and Parrill said there have been no major concerns about the projects, just some questions. Parents saw the bare floors when dropping off their children yesterday, they said.

“They supported the (school renovation) bond and are ready for the construction to start,” Murray said. “Kids will be safe and learning will be taking place.”

He said they are prepared to cope with a year’s worth of construction

“It will cause some challenges,” Murray said. “We have a good plan in place.”

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