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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

South Putnam resolves roofing issues

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The South Putnam School Board held its monthly meeting Monday evening, in which the board heard updates on maintenance issues along with a Central Elementary report from Debbie Steffy.

Maintenance Supervisor Jim Samsel came before the board to discuss the roofing projects, which were recently completed.

Work was completed on both South Putnam High School along with Central Elmentary, which totaled about 43,500 square feet between the two buildings. A total of 121,000 square feet has been redone within the last year.

"Those roofs were going bad and the warranty had not expired yet," explained Superintendent Bruce Bernhardt. "So, Dow Chemical and BASF (the companies who worked on the roofs before) did a deal with us where they paid two-thirds of the cost and we paid one third. We basically got the roof redone for $1 a square foot and they gave us a new warranty. That's why we jumped in and did all this."

There are three areas left at the high school that will need to be redone within the coming year, totaling 31,000 square feet. These areas include such parts as the aquaculture lab and the cafeteria.

"Everything is in good shape going into the winter. I don't foresee having any major problems on the roofs this year," explained Samsel. "We are in very good shape."

Insulated Roofing once again did all work. The corporation received a new warranty on the roofing work that was done, which will last for 14 years.

Samsel also informed the board that the next major project would be addressing the high school walls, which have seen bricks falling off of them in recent months.

The corporation recently had architects Schmidt and Associates come look at the walls in hope of finding a way to repair the walls, which continue to have brick deteriorating. It is expected that the architect firm will have a presentation for the board at next month's meeting.

The board decided that the Reelsville Elementary sewer system would be shut down at the end of the month. The board had previously agreed to keep the system on until the Reelsville Volunteer Fire Department, the Youth League and the township came to an agreement for a new finger system to be installed.

"We want to do it at the end of the month if it's not decided," said Bernhardt. "We will start mothballing the treatment facility at the end of the month."

At the time of the meeting, it was not known if an agreement had been made on the finger system. However, the original deadline for the new system to be in place has already passed.

Central Elementary Principal Debbie Steffy updated the board on the status of the recent transformation of the school and its students, after Reelsville Elementary closed at the end of the 2012 school year.

"I feel like we had a really good smooth start to the year," said Steffy. "Our motto this year has been, 'we are a team but together everyone accomplishes more.' We've combined two schools and two staffs together and if you come and you visit us, you will see that everything is running pretty smooth right now."

There are currently 21 certified staff with enrollment being 364, which is up about 110 students. Class sizes are around 20 students per teacher, which is up from 17.8 last year.

"There have been a lot of adjustments for everyone," said Steffy. "The building was ready for the move in June. Our staff was really ready on the first day of school."

One big change besides the increase of students is the lunch shift schedule, which now includes three lunch shifts. A new grade of students comes in every 15 minutes, however each grade still has a 30-minute lunch.

"This was a big adjustment for everybody, but this has worked for us," said Steffy. "The kids are getting good at punching in their lunch numbers, which is a big deal."

Transportation is also a major factor. As expected with transferring buses, in the beginning students had a bit of a struggle. Students have gotten the hang of it now.

In the morning, all buses arrive between 8:05-8:20 a.m., which they all unload into the gym or the cafeteria for breakfast.

In the afternoon there are nine buses, three of which are used as transfer buses to the high school.

"It works out OK," said Steffy. "Our students are used to it now."

The parking lines for the buses have recently been redone. This has been a major improvement to what was previously there as buses had a hard time getting in and out of the parking lot safely.

The one major issue that Steffy is looking to be addressed is the bathrooms. Although, students and staff now have a schedule set, there are still sometimes lines.

"We really need restrooms on the west side of the school," said Steffy. "There are times when you'll walk out there and you will see them standing and waiting. It's not ideal."

Finally, the board gave approval for the following items: adoption of the 2013 budget, CPF and school bus replacement plans, resolutions, CPF notice of adoption, permission to advertise for appropriations from the rainy day fund, classified insurance benefits and the surplus equipment.

The items, which have been left at Reelsville Elementary, will soon be itemized and put up for auction. If items are left behind they will be disposed of in the proper way.

The following resignations were approved during Monday night's meeting, Nellie Hayes as a high school instructional assistant and Lil Turner of Central Elementary Food Service.

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