BOARD OF EDUCATION Officials discuss plans for new building's roof

A 12th-grader was honored for never missing a day of high school.
YOUNGSTOWN -- Later this year, a new Paul C. Bunn Elementary School will be built from the ground up.
But it was the roof of the new school that was on the minds of Youngstown Board of Education members Tuesday night.
During the open caucus portion of their meeting Tuesday, board members opted to fit the building with a combination sloped and flat roof. The flat section would sit over the gym with a sloped roof over the rest of the facility.
Some board members were concerned about equipping new district schools with flat roofs because of problems with leaking and having no place for snow or water to go. The section of roof over the new school's gym would have a drainage system to remove water, as well as structured steel to withstand the weight of snow, the board was told.
The base bid for the roof came in at $1,100,214, which would be paid for by the Ohio School Facilities Commission, board member Shelley Murray said.
The cost of the roofing project is estimated at $1,143,500; the board will discuss where to come up with the additional $43,286, Superintendent Wendy Webb said.
The Paul C. Bunn Elementary School at 1825 Sequoya Drive will probably be razed this summer. The new $9.3 million building, which will be built in the same area, is slated to open in fall 2006, Webb said.
Recognizing achievement
During the regular meeting, Webb presented a recognition to Jarrod Garcia, a senior at Chaney High School, for four years of perfect attendance. There were 595 district pupils who had perfect attendance this year, she added.
Several district bus drivers were honored for their safety record and for having participated in an annual Road-e-o program last month. The event features an obstacle course in which drivers have to take a bus down a road that gradually gets narrower without knocking over any cones. They also have to back their vehicle into an alley that's about 12 inches wider than the bus, explained Steve Ambrosio, the district's chief of transportation.
The program also includes a written portion that tests the drivers on rules of the road and various laws pertaining to them, Ambrosio said.
This year's competition was May 7 at the Trumbull County Technical Center in Warren. Two of the honored drivers also participated in the state Road-e-o competition in Columbus, Ambrosio added.
The purpose of the event is to increase drivers' skills while giving them something more to aspire to, he said.
Announcements and praise
In other business:
UThe board heard about the success of a special-needs preschool program set up in several district schools. The program is in line with state proficiency standards and is designed to help children ages 3 to 5 prepare for kindergarten. About 248 preschool children were served this year.
U Webb announced a mentoring program pairing 200 adults with pupils who will be freshmen this fall. The teens would have a one-on-one match with an adult who would help them succeed academically, she said.
Webb also praised students in the Class of 2005 who graduated from The Rayen School, Woodrow Wilson and Chaney high schools.
"Our kids are going to college in greater numbers," she said. "I'm asking the community to believe in them. Failure in the Youngstown city schools is no longer an option."

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