Dr. Manno's Bedford Central Brief, Edition #3, Summer 2016
SPECIAL EDITION INCLUDING IMPORTANT UPDATE ABOUT WEST PATENT ELEMENTARY SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION
West Patent Elementary School Construction Update
As part of the third year of the District's capital project, construction this summer at WPES included:
Adding two STEM rooms
Replacing certain windows
Replacing lighting throughout the building
Prior to the June 27th planned beginning of the project, non-friable asbestos was discovered on some ceiling tiles. Non-friable means the material was not airborne nor did it pose any danger; however, it needed to be removed.
On July 1, 2016, the BoE declared an emergency to execute the asbestos abatement.
The construction schedule was reworked to account for the abatement, and therefore, the construction started later than planned.
The abatement did not go according to schedule. It was completed on August 7th.
The District worked closely with its asbestos consultant to ensure that the building is asbestos free.
Due to the abatement taking longer than anticipated, the District took action to accelerate the construction schedule.
The construction schedule as it now stands, if all goes as planned, would allow teachers into the building as early as Monday, August 29th to set up classrooms for instruction.
Students are scheduled to return to school on Thursday, September 1st.
This leaves teachers with minimal time to set up their classrooms.
What does this mean?
What has the district done, and what are we doing about this?
What are the scenarios?
Scenario #2: Up to 7 school days delay in the start of school for students - In this case, the teachers would NOT be able to have access to their classrooms by Monday, August 29th. Delays in construction and the ability to move furniture, supplies, and materials into the classrooms could cause West Patent students only to be delayed in their school start. Our construction management firm indicates that a 1-4 day delay is the most likely scenario. However, it is not out of the realm of possibility, depending on how the project progresses, that the delay under this scenario could be up to 7 school days. See make-up schedule below.
Scenario #3: Up to several weeks delay in access to WPES for staff and students - While our construction management firm believes this scenario is unlikely, we needed to explore it. In this case, the teachers would NOT be able to have access to their classrooms by Monday, August 29th, and the teachers and students would not have access to WPES for several weeks. In this case, West Patent students would be dispersed most likely by grade level to Bedford Hills Elementary School, Bedford Village Elementary School, and Pound Ridge Elementary School. Again, based on the information we have right now, this scenario is unlikely. However, we must be responsible and plan for a worst case scenario. If this were necessary, much more detailed action planning would be required and would involve stakeholders. More information would be distributed to families with great detail.
What happens next?
We are cautiously optimistic that we are facing either an on-time school opening for West Patent Elementary staff and students, or more likely a delay of 1-4 days.
If West Patent needs to be delayed, here is the schedule of make-up days.
September 2nd --> made up on October 28th, Half Day for students
These are subject to change based on additional research on NYSED school attendance requirements. A final schedule will be published in the next Supt's Scoop:
September 6th --> made up on February 24th
September 7th --> made up on February 23rd
September 8th --> made up on February 22nd
September 9th --> made up on February 21st
September 12th --> made up on April 17th
- Any student absence on a make-up day will be an excused absence.
- The October and March half days were intended for parent-teacher conferences with no school for elementary children. The teachers would accommodate conferences during other times to ensure parents have an opportunity for their conferences.
- The District is working with providers at this time to explore options for child care on days in which WPES might be closed in September.
A final note from Dr. Manno and the Board of Education
- Start the school year for the students in a positive and normal manner.
- Keep families informed of the status and progress along the way.
- Involve stakeholders, and listen to and consider input.
Please do not hesitate to reach out to Dr. Manno at email@example.com with comments or questions. He would be happy to hear from you.