Trousdale County’s School Board approved nearly $800,000 in building upgrades to the elementary and middle schools during its July 15 meeting.
Bids of $452,154 for repair of the elementary school roof and $352,000 for replacement of windows at the middle school were unanimously accepted by the board.
A moisture analysis of the elementary roof found seven spots where water was seeping through the roof, which has spray foam with a rubber coating, according to Director of Schools Clint Satterfield.
“Surprisingly, the roof was not in as bad shape as we anticipated,” Satterfield said while noting the current roof was 12 years old.
While the School Board had budgeted $250,000 toward the roof repair, the lowest bid came in much higher at over $450,000. Satterfield said the company had agreed to honor that bid over a two-year span, allowing for part of the work to be done this year at the $250,000 estimate and the remainder once the next fiscal year begins in July 2022.
“For $250,000 they’ll take care of all the wet spots and repair those, and then put new surface over about half of the school,” Satterfield said. “Even the wet spots in the non-addressed areas this year will be repaired.”
The school district has consulted with the state comptroller’s office, which said a multi-year arrangement was acceptable without being rebid provided the company was willing.
The first phase of the project will cover the kindergarten wing, the second-grade wing and part of the third-grade wing, Satterfield said.
The replacement of the middle school windows will be done using federal COVID-19 relief funds and will not cost county taxpayers any money.
“I feel good about it; this is something we can afford,” Satterfield noted.
School Board members also chose to keep the current mask policy in place for the start of the 2021-22 school year. Masks will be optional for all staff and students, whether on the bus or inside the building.
“Back in May, we modified our mask policy so that students in summer learning camps could wear a mask if they wished; students wishing not to didn’t have to. That is still our current policy,” School Board Chairman Johnny Kerr said. “It’s satisfying to be able to tell (parents) it’s back to normal.”
Visitors to all school buildings will be asked to wear masks if they have not been vaccinated against COVID-19. Satterfield said the schools will not check vaccination cards and that parents are trusted to tell the truth.
“It is a layer of protection for our staff and students should someone be coming in,” Satterfield said.
Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or email@example.com.