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Move to new Springfield school delayed

4/18/2013 - South Side Leader
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By Maria Lindsay

Project behind due to vibration issues in new building

LAKEMORE — The move to a new $42 million school under construction on Canton Road for seventh through 12th-graders in the Springfield Local School District has been delayed as officials work to find a solution to floor vibration issues discovered last month.

Springfield Superintendent William Stauffer made the announcement about the delayed move at the April 16 Board of Education meeting. Stauffer explained the vibration issue involves a slight movement of the floors when walking over them in 24 classrooms on the second floor of both the high school and middle school wings. He stressed the matter was a “comfort” issue and not a safety matter.

“Contrary to rumors, the walls are not caving in and the wings [middle and high school] do not need to be torn down,” said Stauffer.

Stauffer told the board that “several fixes” have been tried to address the vibration issue, and they “worked to varying degrees.” He also said there has been no “satisfactory” fix, and they are continuing to consult with architects and engineers on the matter.

“We are not sure what the fix is at this point, but we are not going to accept an inferior product,” said Stauffer. “Accepting the building as is could cause problems [in the future].”

Fixing the floor vibration issue will cause a delay in moving students from the current high school and middle school to the new building, according to Stauffer. He also said he did not know how long that delay would be.

Initially, students from the high school and Spring Hill Junior High were scheduled to move into the new building Sept. 4. Stauffer said fixing the vibration problem will mean high school students will not need to get out of the current building by May 30 because the demolition of that building has also been delayed pending the fix at the new building.

Stauffer said the focus is now on completing the fixes in the high school wing first in order to move those students out of the current building. Stauffer added building closing events planned at the current high school also are on hold.

In other business at the meeting, the board approved:

  • the retirement resignations of: Roosevelt Elementary Principal Lucille Brown, effective June 28; and teachers Michael Maletich, Dawn Henry and Dodi Zbuka, who also has been serving as district librarian, effective June 1;
  • the resignation of bus driver and cafeteria employee Charlotte Bunner, effective Feb. 15; and cafeteria employee Karen Harris, effective March 28;
  • the hiring of Lynn Oliver as a six-and-a-half-hour teaching assistant at Roosevelt Elementary and Jennifer Ray as a two-hour cafeteria worker at the high school;
  • three-year administrative contracts for Shaun Morgan as high school assistant principal and Kevin Vaughn as athletic director/high school dean of students; and
  • one-year limited contracts for 26 people.

The board met in executive session for 30 minutes shortly after the opening of the meeting to discuss personnel matters, but no decisions were made.

The next regular board meeting will take place May 21 at 6 p.m. at Roosevelt Elementary, 3110 Farmdale Ave.

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