School board approves maintenance plan

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer

School board members unanimously approved the implementation of a facilities master and maintenance plan at Tuesday’s school board meeting.

Architectural Research Consultants, Inc. will begin assessing schools in the district in the next 2-3 weeks, school officials said.

They will look at everything from doorframes to lightbulbs, officials said. The cost of the designing the plan — $133,600 — will be covered by Senate Bill 9 federal funds.
The master plan will make applying for state funding a lot easier, said Rhonda Seidenwurm, superintendent of Clovis municipal schools.

“This is the firm that does most of the plans in the state. It is a reputable firm,” Seidenwurm said.

She said schools are more likely to receive state grants for improvement projects if they are backed by a master plan. The firm will look closely at problematic issues specific to individual schools so that preventive maintenance measures can be taken, Seidenwurm said.

“(The state is) pushing for preventive maintenance schedules so they can prevent major maintenance later.

“When they consider awarding (grants to districts), the first question (state officials) ask is ‘do they have a maintenance plan?’ If we ask for a (building) permit, they could say ‘no’ if we don’t have a plan,” said Gene Beiker, director of operations of Clovis schools.

School board member Lora Harlan expressed concerns that the plan will take away some decision-making capacities of the board.

“My question is, why do we have to do this in the first place? Does it leave the door open to micromanage?” Harlan asked.

Beiker and other officials said the master plan will not strip the board of its power to approve or suggest local projects, such as the removal of trees at Marshall Junior High School or the repatching of a roof.

“We have input and they will build (the plan) around that input,” Beiker said.

Also at Tuesday’s meeting:
• The Oct. 25 and Nov. 8 school board meetings were canceled and rescheduled for Nov. 1 and Nov. 15.

• Deputy Superintendent Ladona Clayton discussed the K-12 science curriculum. She presented a timeline for the adoption of the new science curriculum. That timeline can be viewed at the school administration office on 1009 Main St.

“Parents are always welcome to join us (in the curriculum adoption process),” Clayton said.