School Board appoints new member, discusses plans for middle school

By Josette Keelor

The Warren County School Board appointed a new board member at its meeting Thursday night.

C. Douglas Rosen will take the Shenandoah district seat left vacant by Kimberly Athey, who resigned from the position on Sept. 19.

Rosen, a resident of Warren County since 1983, wrote in an Oct. 1 letter of interest to the School Board that he retired from Valley Health Systems in 2006 as senior vice-president and before that was CEO of Warren Memorial Hospital for 10 years.

He has a masters degree from the Medical College of Virginia and has served positions at Virginia Baptist Hospital, Chesapeake General Hospital and Radford Community Hospital. His community involvement includes previous board membership in the Front Royal-Warren County Chamber of Commerce and past presidency of the Front Royal Rotary Club.

He and his wife Susan have two sons. He is expected to attend his first regular School Board meeting at 7 p.m. on Nov. 13.

Other meeting discussions included an approval of a custodial service contract for a sum of $2,798,901.30, which a meeting report said is covered in the current fiscal year by funds already budgeted for custodial services.

Discussion of plans for the new middle school will take place at a work session before the regular meeting on Nov. 25, and will include talks with building architects about changes made to the design in the last 12 months.

The meeting will offer a good estimate of how much the school will cost, said Melody Sheppard, assistant superintendent for administration. Plans will not include the proposed geo-thermal cooling and heating system that ended up being too expensive.

The board will not make a decision that night on whether or not to build the proposed add-on for an auditorium, Superintendent Pamela McInnis confirmed.

“That’s part of the design, is the add-on, it’s there,” McInnis said. “But that doesn’t say you’re going to build it.”

“The purpose will be, when you take a vote, to actually approve the design,” she told the board. “We can’t move forward with doing anything before you all approve the design.”

The alternative to the add-on will be a cafetorium, with a stage area in the cafeteria.

Plans to break ground on the school are set for spring of 2015, with construction anticipated to begin next summer.

The Board also voted Thursday to allow the Town of Front Royal access to the Leach Run Property via the dumpster area at Hilda J. Barbour Elementary School for the service of electrical lines and sanitary sewer lines.

At the Nov. 25 work session, the board will discuss the meeting schedule for the remainder of the year.

Contact staff writer Josette Keelor at 540-465-5137, ext. 176, or jkeelor@nvdaily.com