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Officials say Austintown school issues show need for new building



Published: Thu, January 30, 2014 @ 8:33 p.m.

Water soaks parts of Fitch High School

AUSTINTOWN FITCH HIGH school

Officials: Issues show need for new building

austintown

Issues with heating and cooling vents at Fitch High School led to five areas of flooding at the building — just a day after the board of education passed a resolution to have a bond issue on the May ballot for a new school.

“We have had issues in the past and we will have issues in the future, and this is one of the reasons why the board asked the community to pass a bond,” Superintendent Vince Colaluca said.

The first waterfall to burst from the ceiling happened about 9 a.m. in a hallway. Two other incidents occurred in the hallways and two more inside classrooms. No one was hurt.

“It happened in isolated areas,” high school Principal Chris Berni said. “We were able to shut down that part of the hallway and reroute the kids.”

The problem was with uni-vents, which are used for heating and cooling of the building, Berni explained.

“Because it has been so cold, everything has been frozen and today the temperature rose enough to create a thaw, so there was frozen water in the lines and that caused the lines to burst and the water just literally pours out of the uni-vents,” he said.

Some of the leaks occurred on the first floor and the top floor.

One that occurred on the second floor ceiling of a classroom trickled down into the cafeteria, but students had already finished their lunches.

“Our custodial team and maintenance are working together to clean it up,” Berni said. “ We are going to be here through the night on those five uni-vents.”

Western Reserve Mechanical is also helping with the cleanup and restoration.

Read more in Friday’s Vindicator.


Comments

1kurtw(758 comments)posted 2 months, 2 weeks ago

OK, I get it- because they've had a few roof leaks- it's now time for a new building- after all, the current building is over fourty years old- positively pre-historic. And now the taxpayers are expected to, again, collectively assume the "position" required for a male prostrate exam so they can be reamed out for more money.

The "Old Fitch" was built in 1917 and served admirably for over sixty years and newer buildings don't have nearly the same degree of rehab issues- lead and asbestos abatement and the like- as one from that era. The only conclusion I can draw is they just want a new building with added amenities and every time a maintenance issue with the current building comes up, it's "Hey, we need a new Building!"

Speaking for my self, if I'm asked to approve a levy to replace the current Fitch High Building- I will vote "No". The last time I had a roof leak in my house (as well as other maintenance issues)- I had the problem fixed: I didn't yell out "Hey I need a New House!" (On somebody elses' Dime).

P.S. I routinely vote "yes" for almost all other Levies that effect Austintown- Police, Fire, Library, Special Education, etc. etc. because they're important and I don't feel they're over funded.
Public Education- in my view- is over-funded: they have too much money in relation to the mediocre outcome of their efforts. There's no correlation- many studies have shown- between the amount of money spent per pupil and the quality of education delivered to that pupil. Any extra money just goes to fatten the wallets of the teaching establishment and, in my view, they get paid enough already- and the current Fitch Building looks pretty good to me.

I have a physical- including a prostrate exam- once a year. I don't expect to have to assume the "Position" in the Polling Booth to please a bunch of greedy "educators".

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2PCisnotcorrect(33 comments)posted 2 months, 2 weeks ago

Bend over Austintown, they did it to us in Niles, just wait, after the building is built they will put another levy on the ballot for maintenance on the building, if you can't afford to clean and maintain, you can't afford to build!!!! And wasn't it timely that there was a problem at Fitch right after they announce they want a new school, ROFLMAO.............enjoy

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3gdog4766(1252 comments)posted 2 months, 2 weeks ago

What!!!!! Spend tax dollars on infrastructure or education when there's some company needing a tax abatement to expand and not hire workers. Good lord what are we becoming commies? Tax dollars are meant for corporate America who do nothing for our citizenry not our citizens. You all should follow KaKasichs example when he slashed funding to our public school system to balance his state budget. Send your kids to expensive private academies on state money like KaKasich and Christie have done after gutting funding to schools.

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4AtownParent(558 comments)posted 2 months, 2 weeks ago

If they just maintained their buildings there would not be these issues. The BOE and Super can't be bothered to spend money on maintenance when it is so easy to use the open enrollment kids coming from Youngstown to convince the OSFC that we are an impoverished district and need 30 million to replace a school building.

Fun thing to note, the cost to replace the current Fitch with a new gym and to rehab the current gym (because they are not tearing it down) will be about 75 million. The cost to rehab it will be 45 million and the state is paying 30 million either way. Hmmmm, makes you wonder why they are pushing so bad for a new building when rehabbing it seems the way to go.

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5UNCOMMONSENSE(328 comments)posted 2 months, 2 weeks ago

They do not maintain the building for one reason, it takes money away from being spent on salaries and raises. The troubling fact is that the new building being constructed are not as well built as the old buildings. Given that, they will be back in 20 years rebuilding again.

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6kurtw(758 comments)posted 2 months, 2 weeks ago

@gdog re: politicians sending kids to private academies like "Kasich and Christie".

You mention two prominent Republicans but all Big-league politicians- of either party- have their kids educated privately while paying "lip-service" to the "value of Public Education, etc., etc., ad nauseam" (which, in the case of, Democrats, translates as "let's keep supporting the Teachers Union, our biggest Ally- along with Trial Lawyer's and Welfare Recipients) but, the major difference between the parties is that Republicans also support Vouchers and School Choice- which gives ordinary people the same privilege- to control their children's education- as the Elites.

Democrats consistently oppose vouchers and school choice- while their own elites- Barrack and Michelle, Bill and Hillary, Al and Tipper- have their kids educated privately. Do you think the Obama's send their kids into the Hellhole of Washington, DC Public schools? Of course not. But those same schools are good enough for the children of the Plebs- who elected them. What Monumental Hypocrites!

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7MPur1021240(15 comments)posted 2 months, 1 week ago

https://www.facebook.com/groups/atown...

I was told this a few years back by a retired Austintown Fitch teach, no preventative maintenance on the air handlers at the high school. Also, superintendent stated on the local news that warm water is run through the pipes in the winter, then how in the world does warm water freeze? You turned the heat off! This is out right fraud on the part of the schools system perpetrated against the citizens of Austintown. Does anyone remember that Austitown Schools needed a levy after building the new middle school because they supposedly could not afford to run the NEW school.

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