Owner Representative, Joe Hackleroad, reported that the 75,000-square foot addition is complete at the July 10, 2017 meeting of the Bethel Board of Education.  The school has their temporary occupancy permit. He noted that he is not completely satisfied with the finish on the terrazzo tile; however, the finish was completed according to the specifications from the architect. Hackleroad is working with Shook to see if they can find a product that can be used to reseal the tile for a shinier finish.

The construction crew also discovered that there are places in the front of the building in which the soil is bad and unable to bear the weight needed to handle traffic. The first step to increase the soil strength will be to add lime to solidify the soil, which he hopes will be sufficient to handle the weight of the traffic.

Hackleroad also reported that the remodeling of the middle school started on July 10, 2017. Although he doesn’t expect the renovation to be completed by the beginning of the school year, his goal is to have the heavy work completed by then to minimize disruptions during school hours. He added that the elementary playground will not be completed by the beginning of the school year either.

Hackleroad reported that the several places in the rear parking lot had cracked and needed to be replaced. He said, “With a parking area this large it is not unusual for some cracking to occur. When the final asphalt coat is put on, the problem areas will be fixed.

Superintendent Virginia Potter reported that in addition to the new construction project, the district has some smaller renovations being performed this summer. She noted that the networking for the entire building has been completed. In addition, work is being done on the outside basketball court and pathways. The new merry-go-round has been purchased. In addition, the elementary office and clinic are being renovated and two more classrooms for the elementary and middle school are being added.

The elementary library is being moved to the old elementary cafeteria, new carpet is being laid in the kindergarten wing, and the tuck points on the south side of the elementary building are being upgraded.

Potter also updated the BOE on open enrollment for the 2017/2018 school year. There are no spaces available for open enrollment in grades one through three. Kindergarten, fourth and fifth grades have waiting lists. A final determination will be made after August 10, 2017. For grades six through twelve, 34 open enrollment students are returning. The district added 17 new students in those grades.

Potter also announced the school will hold a 100-year celebration and dedication of the new building on September 8 and 9, 2017. More details will be available as the plans for the celebration is finalized.

In public comments, Scott Lawson was asked about the background of the new Athletic Director Chris Reese. He said, “He will be making $65,000. I would like to know what qualifications he brings that justify that salary.” Potter reported, “He comes to us from Cedarville University. He has over 20 years of experience at three universities. He has also worked as a teacher. In addition, we added 30 additional days to his contract because we thought that with all clinics and practices held during the summer we needed the AD on site.”

Lawson also said, “I heard that when you are interviewing perspective teachers you are asking them not to coach for three years, I think we should hire people who want to teach and be with kids. I’m concerned that we might be missing some great teachers and coaches if we restrict them from coaching for three years.”

Natalie Donahue requested that the BOE try to find funding for a school resource officer. She said, “We need to find the money for a school resource officer and if we can’t we need to tap into community resources who are qualified and willing to volunteer to act in that role.”

In regular business, the BOE appointed Joe Solch as the delegate and Brian Moore as the alternate to the annual business meeting held at the Capital Conference November 12 through the14, 2017.

The next meeting of the Bethel BOE is scheduled for August 14, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. in the Auditorium.