The Yuma School District-1 Board of Education received an update on its $32 million expansion/renovation project, which is focused on the Yuma High School campus, during its regular monthly meeting Monday night.
Board President Dan Ross, and board members Lindsey Galles and Duane Brown were in attendance, while Kim Langely participated remotely. Thomas Holtorf was absent.
Chad Rayl with owner’s representative Project One provided most of the update, with Superintendent Dianna Chrisman also interjecting input from time to time.
Rayl said the new wing, which is being used, is going through some “punch list” items. The vo-ag educational shop still needs one more electrical inspection being put to use. He said installation of the welding booths have been delayed, but are expected to be done by next week. The final electrical inspection then will be done.
There are about 3-1/2 months of work left to be done on the renovation of the “old” part of the school. Rayl said there are more than 100 people working on the renovation each day.
The transportation building on the west side of the YHS campus is nearing demolition.
Due to asbestos abatement, the exterior of the building has been totally enclosed with plastic sheeting. Extensive scaffolding has been installed inside so the walls can be taken down while keeping the roof intact. The roof then will be taken down. It will take about two weeks to get it all down.
The concrete has been poured in the south parking lot. The board was told the asphalt paving will be done within the next two weeks.
Temporary furniture is being used in many areas of the high school. When the actual permanent furniture arrives, the temporary furniture will be used throughout the district’s other locations.
The board was told that the district now has more then $400,000 left on contingency, and Neenan Archistruction has $269,000 remaining in contingency. That means there will be more discussion about how that money can be used on “wish list” items, which still have to be within the “scope” of the project.
Chrisman told the board that Neenan has been working well with the district in trying to get several classrooms in the renovated area ready for occupancy by the start of the spring semester. She explained that the district cannot use the NJC Yuma campus classrooms after this semester, and overall the project will not be done until the end of January, thus the necessity of getting some classrooms opened up earlier.
Yuma-1 is using its own General Fund moneyt to install a new storage building and ticket booth at the north side of the outdoor sports complex. Chrisman said the district is taking requests for proposals soon on that project, and it taking its time to get it done correctly rather than rushing it.
Galles requested that board members receive more-frequent updates so they can have better communication with the public about what is happening. She was told that can be done.
Chrisman told the board that the annual audit was completed recently, and the plan is for the auditor to give its report to the board in November.
She reported that the district was up to four COVID-19 cases as of this past Monday, with two being staff members. She stressed she was not making a political statement when she reported that vaccinations helped avert quarantine situations. Chrisman said cases are impacting schools south of Yuma, and that the trend was it was moving this way.
If cases increase in Yuma, Chrisman said the district is considering reducing visitors to the schools, as well as extend the “symptom free” time period from 24 hours to 48 hours before returning to school.
She stressed there is no intent on requiring masks in the Yuma schools, but anyone who choses to, can do so without any harassment from anyone else. Plus, the schools are not doing contact tracing like last year, so the district is putting out generic warnings when someone might be exposed, and leaving it to families to respond as they see appropriate.
The board approved a donation of $335 from the Yuma Community Foundation to YHS Cheer, and a $350 donation from First FarmBank to football concessions.
The Consent Calendar also included approval of recommended personnel decisions: Cliff Evett, maintenance; Angel Chavez, cook; Connor Morton, YMS para; Brittany Cowen, YHS para; Shannon Harrington, YHS para; Sarah Leifheit, 5/6 science/social studies; Brendy Allen, YMS assistant wrestling coach; Brooks Alvarez, YMS volunteer wrestling coach; Shay Northrup, eighth grade head volleyball coach; Rory Lynch, summer weight room supervisor; Dave Sheffield, summer weight room supervisor; Laura Elena Martinez, YMS cashier; Lorna Winkler, YHS para; Dani Crossland, board of education secretary/purchasing agent; and Kory Wakefield and Christine Daugherty, YHS Cheer.
The board also approved the second and final reading of five policy updates, the YHS Handbook, and the district’s assessment calendar for the 2021-22 school year.