YOUNGSTOWN Work nearly complete for elementary school
Pupils could begin moving into the new Williamson Elementary School later this year.
By SEAN BARRON
VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER
YOUNGSTOWN -- Construction is in the final stages for a new elementary school that will soon open in the district -- and work on several new schools is progressing on or ahead of schedule.
That was what board of education members heard at a special meeting Wednesday called to update them on school construction projects.
Tony Deniro, executive director of business affairs for the district, told the board that tile is being installed in the cafetorium of the new West Elementary School. Furniture and computers are being moved into the building, he said.
Work should wrap up this week on the $13 million, 97,000-square-foot school at 310 S. Schenley Ave. on the city's West Side. It is set to open Sept. 6 with about 600 to 650 pupils and a capacity for more than 800, Deniro added.
A dedication ceremony is slated for 2 p.m. Sept. 18 at West Elementary.
West will be the third new school to open in the district. Taft and Harding elementary schools opened last year.
Hosting new students
Also this fall, the Alpha School of Excellence for Boys and the Athena School of Excellence for Girls should be ready to receive seventh- and eighth-grade pupils, Deniro said. Both will get kids who attended Hillman Elementary School before it closed in June.
The Alpha School will be in the former Princeton School building on Hillman Avenue on the South Side. Plaster work and painting are being done there, Deniro said.
Athena will be in the former John White School building on the East Side.
It's undetermined when the new Williamson Elementary School on Youngstown's South Side will open, but construction should wrap up Nov. 9, ahead of schedule, Deniro noted. That would make it possible to move pupils into the building over the holidays, he predicted.
The school is being painted inside; lighting and plumbing fixtures will be added next week, he continued.
Walls are being built and the electrical, heating and air-conditioning work is under way at the new P. Ross Berry Middle School. The school, which will be near Mariner and Bryn Mawr avenues on the East Side, is about 30 percent finished, Deniro estimated. Its completion date is September 2006.
Other work in the district includes asbestos removal from the third floor of Choffin Career Center, Deniro said. Tile was taken out of classrooms on that floor and overhead work is being done, and tile as well as carpeting will be replaced in the resource room, he added.
Jackson Elementary School "is in good shape" to take pupils from Paul C. Bunn Elementary School this fall, Deniro said. Bunn, on Sequoya Drive, is slated for demolition and a new Bunn Elementary School will go up in the same area.
Deniro said he's pleased with how the construction is progressing.
"We have about one month before school starts and we're dotting all of our i's and crossing all of our t's," he said. "The buildings are looking good."