School Board awards capital project contracts Tuesday

With redistricting talks off the agenda, Williamsburg-James City County School Board’s Tuesday night meeting came in under an hour and a half.

Following a lengthy discussion at last week’s meeting, chairwoman Kyra Cook (Williamsburg) said the one-week gap between April meetings wasn’t enough for the administration to gather additional information requested by board members for rezoning discussions.

Talks about redrawing attendance zones ahead of the new middle school opening in 2018 will be on the May 2 agenda, she said. Tuesday’s meeting instead focused on approvals.

Three capital projects, already approved by the board in its fiscal year 2017 capital improvement plan, were on the agenda Tuesday.

The board voted unanimously to award BIRS, Inc. the contract for repairing Norge Elementary School’s roof, totaling $562,660 — about $9,000 under budget. The replacement is scheduled to be done before next school year.

Norge also needs a new HVAC system. Board members voted to unanimously award Warwick Mechanical the $3 million contact. Jim Kelly (JCC Jamestown) asked senior director of operation Marcellus Snipes if the bid came in under budget.

“The budget for this was 3,665,557, we have about 366,000 remaining,” Snipes said.

Another HVAC need was also approved Tuesday night. The board handed the task of replacing the main HVAC controls for all division buildings, to enable staff to control heating and cooling, to Centennial Contractors for $107,300 — about $700 under budget.

Students and teachers at the three middle schools will see a technology refresh next year including new lab desktops and monitors for students and laptops for teachers. The board approved the purchase from Electronic Systems Inc. for $337,250.

No discussion cropped up around the local special education plan, a report required by the Individuals with Disabilities Act which is part of the schools’ annual application for federal funding.

The federal funding only goes toward salary and benefits of special education teachers and aides. The board must approve the plan before it can be passed on to the state Department of Education, and finally the U.S. Department of Education.

The plan was approved unanimously.

The board also OK’ed a slew of resolutions — National Teacher Appreciation Week and School Nutrition Employee Week, both the first week of May, and National Nurse Day on May 10 — and gave the green light to Unity Christian Church of Virginia to use James River Elementary School space for Sunday morning service until other accommodations are organized.

The board’s next work session is scheduled for May 2, where they’ll pick up redistricting talks.

Williams can be reached by phone at 757-345-2341.

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