School board approves rezoning proposal and air conditioning bid

Monday, March 12, 2012 | 9:51 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — The Columbia School Board voted unanimously Monday to approve a rezoning proposal for Parkade Elementary School and a new bid for an air conditioning system for Two Mile Prairie Elementary School.

What happened:

  • The board approved the proposal that would rezone 76 students, who currently attend Alpha Hart Lewis Elementary School, to Parkade for the 2012-13 school year.

    Peter Stiepleman, assistant superintendent for elementary education, said Alpha Hart Lewis would have had a projected enrollment of 730 students for the 2012-13 school year, and the approved rezoning would give Parkade a higher projected enrollment of about 450. The move will help reduce crowding at Alpha Hart Lewis.

  • The board also voted to approve an air conditioning bid for Two Mile Prairie. Bids had been proposed and approved for other district schools at the board's Feb. 13 meeting. Although they approved the other bids, the board was concerned about the cost efficiency of the bid for Two Mile Prairie at the previous meeting, and decided to reopen the process for new bids for the school before Monday's meeting.

    The bid was awarded to J. Louis Crum Corporation, a mechanical contractor that has worked with the district before, and amounted $830,000, according to the meeting agenda.
  • The board also voted to approve budget amendments for this year. Amendments included an increase in funding for various district projects, such as the MAC Scholars conference, mowing at Battle High School and summer heating and cooling projects that were previously approved by the board.

Other items discussed:

  • The board heard a presentation on the potential transformation of Ridgeway Elementary School into a small autonomous school, where Ridgeway would be given more freedom regarding its budget, staffing and other measures. Ridgeway principal Ben Tilley said he would like to propose a completed plan to the board in the spring. 
  • An update on the progress of the 2010 bond issue was presented to the board. According to the presentation, Battle High School's construction is 65 percent complete.

    Nick Boren, deputy superintendent, said during the presentation that the board is expected to finalize the purchase of land for a new elementary school on July 2. The design of the building would begin in summer 2012. The school is expected to open in August 2015, and its projected budget is $15 million.

What's next:

The next board work session will be at 7:30 a.m March 22 at West Junior High School, 401 Clinkscales Rd.

— Missourian reporter Allie Hinga contributed to this report.

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