Atchison Elementary School is 22 years old, and some maintenance needs may need to be tackled sooner rather than later, school district leaders and guests learned on Monday.
Atchison Public Schools USD 409 Board of Education members also heard reports about the current functions and activities happening for pupils this school year in the facility.
District Maintenance Director Jay Robinson, Principal Nichole Honeywell and Principal Heather Renk, AES administrators, guided the group through the building, and pointed out areas with the most potential risks for costly repairs or replacements.
The first stop was the shiny wooden floor in the gym. Robinson said the floor has not been sanded since it was installed when the building was constructed. Although it remains in very good condition to withstand the use from about 850 pupils on a daily basis there are some signs of wear and tear starting to emerge like unevenness from some bumps in the surface, Robinson said. The floor is annually seal-coated as part of its standard summer maintenance.
Two sandings are all that gym floors will withstand in the life of the floor, Robinson said. He compared it to the Atchison High School gym floor that received its second sanding within the past few years.
The next stop was in the cafeteria where Robinson recommended elimination of carpet in the lunchroom cafeteria. The first was a solid piece of carpet that was replaced with individual carpet tiles. Carpets are more difficult to refresh and clean for sanitary purposes, Robinson said.
Technology Director Donna Noll said the AES facility supports 631 technology devices. Of these some are dying like the 90 promethium board purchase years with grant money in several years previous. Televisions in the classroom equipped with VCRs are obsolete and not compatible with the modern technology devices. Noll and Robinson recommended leaders make some decisions concerning these items.
Other expensive items to be ready to address when the time comes are roof replacement and the rooftop air conditioning units with seven compressors possibly in the $16,000 to $17,000 cost range.
“The roof has held up well,” Robinson said, “but it is showing signs
There are drainage problems in the parking lot because it was built atop springs. It has been resurfaced before. The resurface will be its third, and when the time comes Robinson recommended an upgrade to the lighting.
Honeywell, Renk and Lisa Pierce reported on the SOAR family model implemented at AES it is in its second year, and has an emphasis on behaviors as well as academics in the classroom. SOAR encourages instills the youngsters to show integrity, own your learning, accept responsibility, respect yourself and others.
They agreed SOAR implemented in the 2018-19 school year has to this point had a positive outcome. In comparison, there were 842 documented behavior office referrals during the 2017-18 schoolyear. In its initial year of implementation the behavior-referrals decreased to 377 in comparison to the previous year. A recent teacher survey indicated the classroom behaviors have improved about 75 percent since implementation of SOAR.
Beth Clark, a 4-year member of the AES Site Council said the after parents have been more aggressive in their attempts to be informed. The parents have are asking more questions and an AES newsletter has been implemented this schoolyear.
Concerning other matters, board members:
Heard a report from Superintendent Renee Scott that enrollment is up by about 36 student this year, and that she expects to make her decisions concerning school day cancellations due to bad weather by between 5:30 a.m. to 6 a.m.
Convened in executive session for 20 minutes. After public session resumed board members approved the following personnel action: Accepted resignations from Kaytlynne Norris and McKenzie Dunn, paraducators: LuAnn Kaveler — English language arts teacher at AHS, effective the end of the school year for retirement purposes; and Sarah Tschauder — spring lunch supervisor at AHS.
Approved recommendations for employment, Kayla Ross, Brandy Ashworth, Alexandria Denton and Caralyne Servaes, all paraeducators; Alex Zanatta, student council coordinator, and Trish Bateman – assistant girls’ basketball coach, both at Atchison Middle School.