BERLIN - While the school year starts today, school district Director of Business Operations Eva Gallupe says the high school renovation isn’t quite complete.
Being upgraded are the hood vents in the family and consumer sciences room, which do not filter grease-laden vapors.
Gallupe told the Board of Education recently that, because curriculum involves significant cooking and frying of meat, the hoods need to be upgraded to the Fire Marshal’s safety standards.
The district is also busy completing work on the heating and air conditioning system, said Gallupe.
Two units on the roof were malfunctioning, according to Gallupe, and in an effort to fix the problem, workers flushed the system.
One of the valves wasn’t closed properly, however, and the high school’s radio broadcast center was flooded. An insurance claim was filed and carpeting and equipment were recently installed, Gallupe said.
The heating and air conditioning system works fine when the building is vacant, Gallupe said, and now awaits today’s start of school, when students fill and heat up the building. Final adjustments will be done then.
Recently completed was a renovation to the high school auditorium, which added wall paneling in the hallway, painted some of the top seats and added the wording “Where a voice can be heard,’”over display cases, to dress up the entrance and make it stand out, as it did before the renovation.
The A-Gym and Hall of Fame received tweaks as well. Display cases in the A-Gym, where the high school basketball team plays, and the Hall of Fame were upgraded with new wood and paint.
A center area was also created in the Hall of Fame, where students who go above and beyond their regular responsibilities will be honored, said Gallupe.
The display changes weren’t originally part of the high school renovation project because they would put it over budget, but as the project nears completion, the Public Building Commission decided the displays should be upgraded to keep in line with the rest of the school.
At the request of Board of Education member Jeffrey Cugno, Tom Smith of Gilbane Building Co., the construction management firm for the project, will be appearing at either the board meeting to give a status report.
The project was budgeted at $84 million, having passed at referendum in 2011 at $69 million and having received a $15 million extension in 2013.
Board of Education meetings begin at 7 p.m. and are held in the school board conference room, 238 Kensington Road.
Charles Paullin can be reached at 860-801-5074 or firstname.lastname@example.org.