BOE stalled on new school projects

Published 12:04 am Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Andalusia Board of Education has neither accepted nor rejected bids for additions at Andalusia High School and Andalusia Elementary School.

Bullard-Cook Inc. of Montgomery submitted the lowest bid for the projects, but their bid was higher than the system had budgeted for the projects. The bids were opened in March.

Last month, Superintendent Ted Watson told board members that the architect was working with the builder to see if costs could be reduced. Monday night, he said that process is still ongoing.

“We have kicked around everything,” Watson said, adding that he has worked with the architect and builder to determine ways to cut costs, even considering taking out the “hard space,” rooms that also double as storm shelters.

“We have to move on this fairly quickly,” Watson said. “But we have to make it work out so that our dollars, everything stacks up financially.”

The additions were designed with the shelter areas in hopes that there would be FEMA grant money with which to pay for them.

“We anxiously await award of a FEMA grant that’s out there,” Watson said. “Hopefully before too long, we can move forward.”

In other business, the board:

• Accepted the retirement resignations of Louise Anderson, math teacher at AHS; Bonnie Cagle, special ed paraprofessional at AHS; and Carolyn Johnson, part-time cafeteria manager at AHS.

• Hired Karen Piland as a child nutrition food service worker at AES.

• Transferred Retha Daniels to AMS as a child nutrition food service assistant manager.

• Hired Brooke Blair as an administrative assistant in the central office. Blair, who currently works in the state department of education, will take on many of the current duties of assistant superintendent Bob Harry, who plans to retire this summer.