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School board members tour the new staff training room at the intermediate school Aug. 6. The room is on the south side of the building. It will have its own entrance.

Upgrades to greet students and staff
By Chris Strunk
Last Updated: August 10, 2018

Students and staff will be greeted by a host of changes when they start school later this month.

As part of the 2016 bond issue, every building in the Valley Center school district except for the high school received some sort of upgrade. Many improvements like plumbing and electrical are buried. Some are out front and bright like the new electronic displays at each school.

School starts Aug. 23 for grades one through seven, nine and new students and 24 for everyone.

The school board on Aug. 6 toured Wheatland and West elementaries and the intermediate school to see some of those improvements, such as new furniture, carpet, paint and expanded rooms.

"I can't wait to see the students' and staff's reaction when they walk into the buildings," Superintendent Cory Gibson said.

Board members also toured the new maintenance facility that was constructed north of the intermediate school.

It was the only free-standing new building in the 2016 bond issue.

The 6,800-square-foot building houses a large work space and parking garage as well as common office area for workers and a separate office for the facilities director, Dan Gentry. The department has three grounds maintenance and four facility maintenance employees.

"We'll put every square foot to use, for sure," Gentry said. " It's very, very nice and we're very blessed to have it."

The facility cost the district about $840,000.

It replaces a crumbling shed on South Park and a barn near the baseball fields behind the intermediate school.

In a separate but related matter, the school board gave district staff the go-ahead to begin preparing the former maintenance and bus property for sale.

In other infrastructure news, the board agreed to put on hold a project to replace the driveway in the back of the middle school. Instead, it will repair some parts that appeared to have been damaged by heavy traffic during construction.





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