WOODSFIELD - Some of the questions lingering about the new schools in the Switzerland of Ohio Local School District were answered Wednesday night when progress was reported to the district's school board.
John Jeffers, construction manager for the projects, was on hand to give those in attendance an update on the progress of several new school buildings being built in the district. The school board in April voted and agreed to build a new and smaller Skyvue. As of right now, architects are in the process of designing the new school.
It was also at the same April meeting that the board agreed to combine River High School, Hannibal Elementary and Sardis Elementary schools into one building. Demolition of part of River High will begin after Memorial Day, and students should be moved into the new school by December. Until then, Dr. Vincent Monseau and the staff have worked out a way for all students to safely attend classes around the construction.
Work on the new Powhatan Elementary School, Jeffers said, is up and running, and the construction crews have been finishing up the second-floor deck, with corridors and plumbing.
"Considering everything we have been through up there, it's coming along," said Jeffers.
Finishing touches are being done at Woodsfield Elementary, Beallsville, and Monroe Central schools. Auction for the older schools serving those areas is planned June 2. These schools will be sold on the condition that the students will remain there until the new schools are finished; the Beallsville school already is completed. Switzerland of Ohio will be responsible for the upkeep of the school until then. There will be a separate auction for the furnishings as well.
"We are really excited about the buildings opening up," said Superintendent Larry Elliott. "In fact, we have a ceremony planned for the opening of Woodsfield Elementary and Monroe Central High School on June 23 at 11 a.m. It is open to the public."
In other news, River High School teacher and coach Tim Frye will be retiring, effective June 1. Frye has been in the educational system for 37 years, 35 of those years were spent at River. With the retirement of Dr. Monseau, Eddie Trifonoff, a current teacher at Swiss Hills and a RHS alumni, has been recommended for the position, and he was given a three-year contract.
George Richardson, who has served as the assistant superintendent for the last seven years, is retiring. Gil Ritchie was recommended for that post, and he also was given a three-year contract.
"Thank you for the opportunity to work here," said Richardson.
The board is currently working on updating the policy book to include policies on cell phones and bullying.
Van Dyne can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.