Construction Cost on Budget

The new Richard Carroll Elementary School construction project located on Highway 301 North of Bamberg is “still within the original $15 million dollar budget,” Dale Collier of Brownstone Construction Group and the owners representative told Bamberg School District One board members at their January meeting. Collier noted that if the project continues as planned, there may be some ”contingency funds” that may be able to be returned to the district. In bringing the District One board members “up to speed” on the new elementary school, Collier noted “a lot of major miles stones” have been passed including: “ Brick, block work and roofing complete, windows and doors installed as well as electrical transformer installed. Collier noted that the Bamberg Board of Public Works “has worked well” with us. Collier also noted that if the district had waited for the FEMA grant it would not have allowed for the roof to be on the building at this point. “We’re in the dry,” Collier said, adding that major exterior work is being done at the site along with highway construction.

Asked about security at the various work sites after the theft of some material from BEHS, Collier noted that a security person is now on site at night, and is “capable of defending himself.” As for work at Bamberg Ehrhardt Middle School he noted there was “little or no work” left to be done except for tile and work and work in the kitchen area which will be done in the summer. As for Bamberg Ehrhardt High School it was noted that construction there presented a “more difficult challenge” with the Office of School Facilities (OSF) sighting the kitchen for needing a ceiling. The Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and OSF will return Thursday to inspect the kitchen. It was noted that the cafeteria area and administration areas have been approved for occupancy. Collier noted that some of the major work at the high school is still on target to be completed by the end of January.

Also during the meeting Bamberg District One board members elected their new officers for 2012 school year with Rita Sease being voted in as Chairperson, Tony Duncan as Vice Chair and Chris Wallace Secretary.

Superintendent Schwarting thanked the Bamberg Police Department and SRO Corey Bamberg for the job they did in identifying the persons responsible for the theft of $10,000 worth of materials from the high school, calling the theft “an inside job” that was caught on camera.

In the financial report it was noted that the areas of data processing and technology were over spent, with district technology director Ricky Albertson working to try to get some e-rate funds back into the district.

In the public comments portion of the meeting retired school teacher Jasie Kinard started out by saying: “The district is doing a pretty good job.” She stated that her main concern was “teacher accountability.” She said that “teachers need to let parents know (about things like homework) adding, they (teachers) “cannot make up rules as you go.” “You must make sure parents know that teachers and students must be held accountable,” she said.

New board chair Rita Sease thanked outgoing chair Dr. Dale Padgett, who it was noted has served on the District One School Board for 23 years, for his service has chairman of the board: “Thank you for everything you have done for this district,” Sease said, adding that she was not trying to “walk in your shoes.” “I humbly take this position. Thank you for all your work.”