Stillwater News Press

Local News

August 12, 2012

Stillwater school officials plan to keep school sites safe

STILLWATER, Okla. — School officials say construction of a new school adjacent to Will Rogers Elementary will not be a hazard to students when school resumes Aug. 20.

“It’s very secure,” said John Anders, grounds and operations manager for Stillwater Public Schools. “But safety is everybody responsibility, teachers, construction workers, even students. Everyone has to be conscious of it.”

Anders said a 6-foot chain link fence separates the construction site from the school.

“You can’t traverse from the school to the job site without going through a gate that is very well monitored,” Anders said. “There will be some noise issues. There might be a little dust and we’ll have to be sure to change the air filters in the air conditioners a little more often.”

Will Rogers Principal Cherron Ukpaka said drop off and pick up of students will be restricted to Washington Street on the west side of the school.

Ukpaka said she is coordinating with Lambert Construction, the contractor for the project, about testing schedules and other activities in which loud construction work would be detrimental to the students.

A temporary playground has been built on the west side of the school. Assistant Superintendent Jim Ryan said that each week, students will be bused to local playgrounds and parks.

Ryan said an observation area will be constructed this fall for students to watch the ongoing construction.

“The kids are really going to get a kick out of watching the construction,” Ryan said. “They are going to see the school rise out of the ground this fall.”

The construction of new school buildings for Will Rogers Elementary and Highland Park Elementary is expected to be completed in fall 2013, said Ryan.

“There’s still a lot to do. Highland Park looks to be a few weeks ahead of Will Rogers right now,” Ryan said. “They are erecting steel and pouring concrete floors.”

With school set to begin Aug. 20, Anders and his crew have been working to put the finishing touches on projects and overall building maintenance.

 

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