Board disagrees on school site

One board member says the school already should be under construction.



WARREN — With one new school location yet to be determined for the district, information about possible sites for the building has stirred up some tension among board members.

Michael McCarroll, a project manager, presented the board and community members information regarding the McGuffey school on Tod Avenue or a site on Parkman Road at an open work session of the school board Tuesday at the YWCA on North Park Avenue.

The Parkman site is 17 acres, has one point of entrance, and has wetlands that needed to be mitigated in order to start building. That mitigation would cause a six-month construction delay, McCarroll said.

McGuffey is 11 acres and has two entrances and does not have any mitigation costs.

Board members are in disagreement about which is the best site, and members argued about what could have been done and what should be done.

Some members believe the information presented is still incomplete.

Board member Nedra Bowen favors the Parkman site and believes the mitigation could already have been completed and the school could have been under construction.

“We have been sitting on this for more than a year,” she added.

An Ohio School Facilities Commission report indicated that because of decreasing enrollment in the district, the initial five new schools proposed had to be dropped to four K-8 schools.

Ed Bolino, board president, said with the information he now has on the two sites, he chose McGuffey, but he still wants more information before the board can make a final decision.

“My concern is we pick the best site for the taxpayers,” he said.

Sign on Parkman Road

Bowen said there had been a sign in front of the Parkman Road site for two years saying that there will be a new school there.

“That’s what we promised the people,” Bowen said.

Bill Schurman, construction manager, told the board that he will move forward on any site the board selects. If the board chooses the Parkman site he said, the first step there is to mitigate the land.

Bowen said the curve on Tod Avenue by the McGuffey site is dangerous and can cause problems for buses.

Business District Manager Mark Donnelly said there were a few problems with buses in the past at the McGuffey site but nothing serious.

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