WHS to get $686,500 toward new roof

PARKERSBURG -Mike Winland, director of secondary schools for Wood County Schools, presented school system officials with recommendations of the communications/electronic devices policy.

“With practically every student possessing a mini-computer do we need to revise our cell phone policy,” he said.

Winland said officials’ recommendation is in line with the committee that met before the pilot program began. In January, the county’s three high schools and Jackson Middle School began testing the pilot policy, allowing students access to electronic devices during their lunch period, in designated areas and in classrooms for educational purposes.

Phones are not allowed to be used in hallways or corridors.

“It’s a reasonable approach,” board member Jim Fox said.

Board members questioned making changes surrounding the language related to insubordination for failing to surrender a phone. They also raised questions about school officials storing valuables for elementary students.

“It has been a hot topic,” Winland said. “We want to do what is best for students but make it work for adults as well.”

Board members took no action on the policy. It will be slated for approval at the board’s Aug. 22 meeting, the first day of school in Wood County.

Finance Director Connie Roberts detailed refunding escrow, the result of refinancing the 2005 bond. As a result the school system was refunded $2,413,089.82.

Roberts said that money must be placed back into the schools into things stipulated by the bond. She said the money will be put into some projects that were value-engineered out of the initial project. Those include:

Williamstown High School, $686,500 for roof replacement.

Parkersburg South High School, $251,845 for HVAC remodel; $150,000 for ceiling replacement; $248,200 for fieldhouse patio deck; $250,000 for gym bleachers; $14,4000 for chairs.

Parkersburg High School, $78,800 for annex fire protection and sprinkler system in the upstairs corridors and stairwells of the Mary Lou Hague Annex; $98,460 for remodeling the HVAC system in the main office.

Roberts said there is approximately $621,754.82 remaining for items.

Board members questioned Roberts about how much went to each school, and if additional items needed to be completed at PHS.

Fox said he thought South got $3 million more than PHS received in the bond. Officials inquired about replacing bleachers on the floor of the field house, possibly with retractable bleachers.

Board member Tim Yeater was absent. Tuesday marked his second consecutive absence from regular meetings.

Meanwhile, officials said it is “doubtful” Parkersburg High’s football team will play a home game at Stadium Field this season.

Members of the Wood County Board of Education were given an update on the project Tuesday. Board members also were provided with information on the proposed electronic communications policy and possible spending of refunded escrow money from the 2005 bond.

Ryan Taylor, president of Pickering Associates, told board members the Stadium Field project will run out of money by mid-August, leaving the stadium without stairs, front row bleachers or an Americans with Disabilities Act ramp, rendering the bleachers unusable.

There are six to eight weeks of work left to be done on the project and about $200,000 is needed, Taylor said.

If work was restarted on the bleachers by mid-August, the Big Reds could salvage their final two home games, he said.

“It is doubtful they will be playing (football) at PHS this season,” Taylor said.

Officials said the soccer teams could use the field without issue, as fans could surround the field inside the gate.

Superintendent Pat Law was asked if school officials had a plan for the football team’s scheduled home games. Law said option one was playing at Stadium Field.

Law said officials also are exploring playing at Marietta College, playing at the Erickson All-Sports Facility or playing all games away.