Shenandoah school’s capital improvement plan submitted

Urgent funding is required for buses and modular classrooms over the next five years for Shenandoah County public schools.

The division’s Capital Improvement Plan was submitted to the Shenandoah County Board of Supervisors and was presented at last week’s School Board meeting.

Cynthia Page, director of finance for Shenandoah County Public Schools, said the Capital Improvement Plan is a five-year plan, from 2016-2021, that is designed to be a “strategic, proactive planning document for implementing capital improvement.”

She noted, “The replacement of buses and other vehicles is a multi-year project which is ranked as urgent, and the placement of modular classrooms at our school facilities is anticipated to be a three-year project, and it is also ranked urgent.”

The original plan requested budget was $4,381,568. However, the sudden failure of Central High School’s boilers forced an unexpected cost as the boilers were in need of replacement. Currently, there are replacement boilers in the school until the new ones arrive this winter.

Page said Central High has two options for funding the new boilers.

“We can ask the county for additional funding for this project, as it was unexpected. If that source is not available, we will have to delay other projects we had scheduled for this year,” she said.

According to Page, the boilers request has been removed from the Capital Improvement Plan as it is a need that must be met before that plan is approved. The estimated cost for the boilers of $195,000 has been removed from that budget.

“However, because boilers at Strasburg and Stonewall Jackson are the same as the boilers at Central that failed, we advanced them in our (Capital Improvement Plan) document and are requesting funds to replace them next year, which increases next year’s request by a total of $195,000. The draft request for next year is $4,576,568,” Page said.

This request for next year represents the original request, minus the Central High School boiler, but adds the boilers at Strasburg and Stonewall Jackson High Schools.

Other items marked as urgent in the Capital Improvement Plan include:

• Lights at the Strasburg High School baseball and softball fields

• Unit ventilators at W.W. Robinson Elementary

• Boiler at Sandy Hook Elementary

• Roofing at Sandy Hook Elementary and Strasburg High School 90s wing

“Our ability to undertake any of these projects is dependent upon funding from the Board of Supervisors,” Page added.

Page said the School Board will vote on the proposed Capital Improvement Plan budget in November, and then it goes to the supervisors. “We generally find out from them in April how much they will fund,” she said.

“The plan is updated each year as we become aware of new projects that must be accomplished, or as we become aware of changes in conditions of our assets,” Page added.

Page said the projects listed in the Capital Improvement Plan are ranked based on six criteria, which are:

• Impact on student learning

• Impact on health and safety

• Asset condition

• Planning time needed

• Level of service provided

• Energy efficiency

 Contact staff writer Kaley Toy at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or ktoy@nvdaily.com