TIPP CITY — The Tipp City school district held the first in a series of community engagement meetings to discuss the district’s facility needs.
Director of Services Gary Pfister outlined recently completed and ongoing improvement projects and how they’re funded, as well as new construction funding possibilities, preliminary plans for a new facility and took several questions.
The district has been working on a list of projects at both the middle school and at L.T. Ball Intermediate School funded by permanent improvement levy dollars.
Completed work at L.T. Ball includes the installation of a new chiller, boilers, hot water, fire alarm system, exterior lights and LED gym lights, as well as roof work, the overhaul of the building’s air handlers and the removal of the music room risers. Ongoing projects include new doors, HVAC work, internet upgrades, and additional security cameras.
At the middle school, completed projects include new electrical switchgear, a new HVAC system and a new HVAC unit for the gym, a new fire alarm system and master clock system, additional exterior lights, new LED lighting throughout the school, roof work, gym floor refinishing, and the replacement of all exterior doors and windows. The replacement of all curtain walls, the PA system, door access controls, classroom doors and internet upgrades are underway.
“There’s a lot of life in this building,” Pfister said. “The bones of the building are very good.”
Preliminary plans for a new facility involve the construction of new classrooms, kitchen, staff spaces and more connected to the existing L.T. Ball building, Pfister said. That site would then house the pre-kindergarten through fifth grade students in the district.
In September, the board of education voted to abandon plans for building a new school facility at the Broadway site and move forward in planning for an addition to L.T. Ball. A bond issue to fund a new school at the Broadway site was rejected by voters.
The district intends to participate in the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission’s (OFCC) Expedited Local Partnership Program (ELPP). The program enables districts to move ahead with portions of their facilities projects and be reimbursed for part of the cost.
“We can move forward now knowing the state is going to fund us later when our number comes up,” Pfister said. “I’m going to guesstimate our number will be up in anywhere from three to five years.”
Going forward, the district plans to complete OFCC documentation, continue holding engagement meetings to gather community input and prepare for a future bond levy.
Reach Cecilia Fox at firstname.lastname@example.org.