ES board approves advertising bids for elementary remodel

Friday, April 12, 2019

By Kelby Newcomb

The Eureka Springs School Board voted Monday to approve advertising bids for the elementary remodel project once plans are approved by the state.

Josh Siebert, architect with Modus Studio, said the renovation will focus on some of the most trafficked areas in the school, such as the entrance, the hallways and the cafeteria and multipurpose area.

“We’ve done that in our designs through updated finishes and bold graphics,” he said. “We’ve tried to do it in a way that’s unique to this place. We want a new, modern and fresh look to this building.”

Siebert said the hallways will have art inspired by the Ozark landscape, the natural springs and the historic downtown area of Eureka Springs.

“We have earmarked those three subject matters in the different hallways,” he said. “As you walk around, you’re going to have graphics as they would relate to the Ozark mountain range, downtown and the natural springs.”

Siebert continued, “It becomes a teaching story to the students who will be occupying the space. For the acoustics in the cafeteria, the idea is that we bring in the downtown context of the buildings into the acoustical panel treatment around the sides.”

For the outside of the building, he said, the studio worked on designing the entryway to make a statement.

“We wanted to do something unique,” he said. “We generated a concept with a sign that can be lit up at night and pulls in the school colors. The color starts to pull you in as you walk into the space.”

Siebert said the drawings for the renovation are almost finished.

“We have one more site visit to do to clarify some structural integrity of the existing facility,” he said.

Once the plans are approved by the state, he said, the plan is to bid the project out in May and get it under construction as soon as school gets out. The goal, he said, is to have it finished by August before the students come back from summer break.

Also at the meeting, the board voted to approve the licensed and classified salary schedules for the 2019-20 school year and the licensed and classified personnel policies.

Superintendent Bryan Pruitt said the district will be adding two personal days to both the license and classified personnel policies.

“Right now, you get two personal days a year, which you can accumulate up to four,” he said. “So what we’ll do is you can now accumulate up to six. It comes from your sick days. It’s not like the school is going to give you two free personal days.”

For classified personnel policy, Pruitt said, the district is also adding a sick bank leave.

“Employees can pool those sick days and use those as needed,” he said.

He said a committee selected by the personnel policy committee (PPC) will have to approve requests to use sick days from the sick bank leave. He said it is designed to help staff members manage serious issues that require them to miss several days.

The board then voted to approve extending the PCMI Substitute Agreement, commonly known as WillSub, by one year. Pruitt said the price is the same as last year.

The board also voted to transfer $309,427 from the Operating Fund to the 3200 Fund, which is a secondary building fund.

The board’s next regular meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Monday, May 13, in the Administration Building.

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