Albert Lea school board OKs plan to upgrade buildings

Published 10:16 am Wednesday, July 23, 2014

By Jacob Tellers

The Albert Lea school board approved a five-year capital plan to repair and upgrade schools.

The board discussed and voted on the measure during its meeting Monday. The plan includes heating and cooling upgrades, masonry restoration, completion of roof restorations and pavement repairs.

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Director of Facilities Steven Anderson said Halverson Elementary School will get heating and cooling upgrades in the 2014-2015 academic year, while Lakeview Elementary will get them in 2014-2015 and 2015-2016.

Parking lot repairs will get underway at Halverson Elementary School in 2015-2016 and are scheduled for Lakeview and Sibley elementary schools and Southwest Middle School in 2018-2019.

Much of the parking lot work will involve the complete reconstruction of lots, rather than patching cracks, Anderson said.

Exterior work will be done at Hawthorne Elementary School in 2015-2016 and Halverson Elementary School in 2016-2017.

The total facilities capital for the next five years has been set at $2,886,740. Health and safety costs are set at $1,138,017.

Anderson also noted in his presentation that there had been very few instances of vandalism on school grounds over the summer.

In other business, the school board:

• Discussed an agreement to allow Kim Meyer to be assigned to a combined high school and Albert Lea Learning Center teaching position for the 2014-2015 school year. This is a position normally given to teachers with the least seniority, unless an agreement between the school board and education association is reached. The motion passed.

• Approved coaching stipends for Knowledge Bowl, robotics and supermileage.

The board also approved an increase in stipends for the 2014-2015 year for coaches and advisers for dance team, golf, tennis, Link Crew, mock trial and mock trial assistant positions.

• Approved joining the Minnesota Insurance Scholastic Trust, a self-funded insurance and excess insurance casualty and property pool, which would save the district an estimated $18,000 per year.