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Meeting for the first time since approving its proposed 2018-19 budget on February 1, the Board of Education discussed the Newtown High School auditorium renovation project, snow days, and the ongoing search for a superintendent at its meeting on February 6.
Interim Superintendent of Schools Dr Lorrie Rodrigue asked the school board for its support of a decision to not rent out the high school auditorium this summer to allow time for follow-up work on the recently completed renovation.
“We would like to utilize the summer to paint the floor of the auditorium and continue with any maintenance as needed,” said Dr Rodrigue. “Therefore, we would like to refrain from renting the space this summer.”
Dr Rodrigue said time would also be spent over the summer to further train staff to use the new equipment installed during the renovation.
“In addition, the issue of rentals and fees has come up,” said Dr Rodrigue, adding that the summer would also give the school board time to revise its policy and fees for renting the facility.
School board members generally expressed being upset that the renovation work was not completed during the course of the project and the impact of not being able to rent the space this summer; but members also shared support for the plan to finalize work in the space.
According to Dr Rodrigue, the largest part of the work will be painting the floor, which will take about three weeks.
During her Superintendent’s Report, Dr Rodrigue also updated the board on school cancellations so far this school year. As of February 6, Dr Rodrigue said the district had used four snow days, and it had six snow days to use before days would be taken away from the scheduled break in April. School was canceled the following day, February 7.
Sharing that she has also been asked about graduation dates, Dr Rodrigue said graduation dates will be set by the board at its first scheduled meeting in April.
Board of Education Chair Michelle Embree Ku also updated the board during her Chair Report on the work of the Superintendent Search Committee. She said the committee is interviewing candidates, and out of respect for the candidates, those interviews are not open to the public for information.