Dallas School District takes preliminary steps toward grade reconfiguration

By Eileen Godin - [email protected]
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DALLAS TWP. — Kindergarten classes will not be split between Dallas and Wycallis elementary schools for the 2018-19 school year, said Dallas Superintendent Thomas Duffy.

The decision marks a preliminary step to prepare for the grade reconfiguration that will occur when the Dallas Intermediate School is built and Dallas Elementary is demolished.

“All kindergarten students will be assigned to Wycallis Elementary,” Duffy said. “We have just enough space to accommodate them.”

“Will the class size be affected?” school board member Christine Swailes asked during a meeting this week.

Duffy assured the board that class sizes would remain at 18 to 20 students and the current faculty would be relocated to Wycallis.

First through fifth grades will still be housed in both Wycallis and Dallas Elementary for 2018-19, he noted.

Last year, the Dallas School Board began the process of designing a new building to replace the 46-year-old, prefabricated Dallas Elementary.

The project has received approvals from the Dallas Township Planning Commission and township supervisors, Duffy said.

Construction bids are being accepted until March 20, and they will be opened April 9, according to Duffy.

Construction will start in late April, weather permitting.

The proposed 57,371-square-foot building will be on Conyngham Avenue, next to Wycallis Elementary where the Cleary Soccer field is located in Dallas Township.

The two-floor school will house third, fourth and fifth grades. Wycallis, meanwhile, will contain kindergarten, first and second grades.

Construction is expected to finish in time for the 2019-2020 school year, Duffy said.

In other news, Duffy announced several ongoing safety updates that include:

• Hiring Contingency Management Consulting Group to conduct a vulnerability assessment and professional development analysis of the campus.

• Discussions with Pennsylvania State Police and the Dallas Township Police Department as well as increased police presence.

• Obtaining quotes for a protective glass coating for windows and doors.

• An internal review of the district’s perimeter security.

The next Dallas School Board meeting is set for 7 p.m. April 16 in the administration building.

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By Eileen Godin

[email protected]

Reach Eileen Godin at 570-991-6387 or on Twitter @TLNews.

Reach Eileen Godin at 570-991-6387 or on Twitter @TLNews.