The Barrow County School System will seek roughly $1.2 million in state funding for renovations planned for next summer at Bramlett, Kennedy and Yargo elementary schools.

The county school board on Tuesday, Sept. 7, approved applying for funds for the projects through the Georgia Department of Education’s fiscal year 2023 capital outlay program budget, the amount of which will be subject to the General Assembly’s approval and the governor’s signature. If the amounts are fully approved, that would pay for roughly a third of the anticipated $3 million cost for the three buildings, Joe Perno, the district’s assistant superintendent for operations, said.

The projects will primarily focus on renovations and modifications of the addition wings at the three schools, which Perno said are 20 years old and in need of HVAC system and building finish upgrades.

The work is expected to be completed over the summer prior to the 2022-23 academic year, Perno said.

OTHER BUSINESS

In other business Tuesday, the board:

•heard from Jennifer Houston, assistant superintendent for business services, that the district brought in a monthly record $1.48 million in ELOST receipts for August.

•approved several technology purchases, including 250 Clear Touch interactive panels in the amount of $987,857 from TechOptics of Winder, along with the authorization to purchase an additional 100 panels this fiscal year at a cap of $395,143. The board also approved a maximum of $45,000 for low voltage data cabling from TechOptics of Winder and $70,800 for the Lightspeed web filtering solution from sole-source provider Howard Technology Solutions. The board also agreed to extend the ITS department’s emergency purchases cap from $200,000 to $250,000, though technology director John St. Clair said there weren’t currently any immediate needs.

•approved using FQS Commercial Cleaning Company to provide custodial workers, along with the workers Primero Staffing is providing. Perno said the district is struggling to find custodians amid the pandemic. The anticipated cost of the labor through FQS for the remainder of the fiscal year is $430,000, he said.

•accepted $428,309 in federal and state grant monies to support various career, technology and agricultural education (CTAE) programs across the district.

•approved increasing the district’s yearly funding contribution to the Piedmont Regional Library System from $90,200 to $105,000.

•approved paying up to $80,000 to Kevin Raczynski and Associates for the facilitation of site-based professional learning at Auburn Elementary, Bear Creek Middle, Russell Middle and Yargo Elementary. Raczynski, who has worked with Auburn and Russell in the past and done work for more than 55 school districts, will be leading an effort to provide professional learning to teachers on writing instruction and assessment of writing, according to a district staff report. The contract is for a minimum of 225 hours of on-site professional learning and support, as well as “off-site preparation and analysis to inform future school visits.”

•approved the payment of $53,835.12 for the purchase of a Hand2Mind Daily Math Fluency kit for each district classroom grades K-5.

•recognized the 2021-22 Teachers of the Year, including systemwide winner Logan Morris of Russell Middle School.

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