Water problem, roof work, athletic supplies among topics at WBA board meeting

By Mark Guydish - [email protected]
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PLAINS TWP. — While sports consolidation dominated Tuesday’s Wilkes-Barre Area School Board meeting, the board took action on a variety of issues, many involving maintenance.

Michael Krzywicki of Apollo Group Inc., the district project manager, reported a water infiltration problem at GAR Memorial High School that initially could not be traced until the heavy rains earlier that day. Krzywicki said it was not a leak in the roof, but appeared to be a “scupper box,” or large container intended to control water drainage, that was overflowing in heavy rains and spilling over, seeping through masonry and migrating to inner ceiling. He said the addition of a second drain pipe should resolve the problem.

Krzywicki also reported roof replacement over the Kistler Elementary School pool that started April 23 has been hampered by the rainy weather, but should take about eight weeks.

The board also:

• Approved multiple purchases from five vendors totaling $28,042 for fall sports supplies.

• Approved a change order for a contract with Geo-Science Engineering and Testing LLC for work on the proposed new consolidated high school site in Plains Township. The contract had called for test drilling to go down 550 feet, but the distance was extended to 985 feet at an added cost of $18,902.

• Approved an agreement with Mark J. Sobeck Roof Consultants to conduct a survey and report on the district’s 12 buildings at a cost of $9,060, as well as inspection of the Kistler pool roof at $2,925 and a consult on the roof of the administration building on South Main Street in Wilkes-Barre for $675. The district has been plagued for years with leaky roofs at multiple buildings, often blamed on lack of maintenance.

• Authorized Apollo Group Inc. and the four firms contracted as the district “design team” to prepare the bid requests for preliminary site work and erosion/sedimentation controls as needed at the site for the new high school.

• Approved the purchase and installation of flooring for the GAR shop room from Mastercraft Sports Flooring in Lima, Pa., at a cost of $35,000.

Arts academy

After the meeting, Superintendent Brian Costello offered an update on plans to begin a performing arts academy housed in GAR, saying they had over 100 applicants from the district and several from outside the district. He said he is contacting the districts those students are from, and it will be largely up to them to work out the details of how a student could attend the Wilkes-Barre academy.

“It would be like the Vo-Tech,” Costello said, referring to the Wilkes-Barre Area Career and Technical Center, which takes students for half a day to teach job skills. Five member districts that send students there have an agreement on costs and management of the CTC, essentially paying a per-pupil fee.

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By Mark Guydish

[email protected]

Reach Mark Guydish at 570-991-6112 or on Twitter @TLMarkGuydish

Reach Mark Guydish at 570-991-6112 or on Twitter @TLMarkGuydish