Schools get sprucing-up for new year

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Dominic Moore prepares the floor of a classroom at Camden Primary School for waxing, Thursday. Camden school officials said there has been a special focus this summer on getting Grandy Primary ready for the new school year, noting it's been 15 years or more since the school received a proper face-lift. Interior walls throughout the school have been painted and the trim has been repainted from a cranberry color to blue. In addition, windows have been re-sealed and classrooms are getting new cabinets.


By Reggie Ponder
Staff Writer

Friday, August 17, 2018

CAMDEN — Area school districts have been busy this summer getting facilities ready for the arrival of students in just over a week.

In Camden County, Grandy Primary School has received special attention this summer — and Principal Timothy Lazar couldn’t be more pleased.

“They have done a lot this year — a well-needed face-lift,” Lazar said.

Lazar said he appreciates the work district maintenance staff have completed at Grandy over the summer and can’t wait for students to arrive and see how bright and nice their school looks.

Larry Lawrence, chief operating officer for the Camden County Schools, agreed the maintenance staff have done an excellent job.

“We’re proud of them,” Lawrence said. “I have a very dedicated staff.”

There has been a special focus on Grandy this summer, Lawrence said, explaining that the school “needed some refreshing.”

It had been 15 years or more since Grandy had gotten that kind of facelift, according to Lawrence. Interior walls throughout the school have been painted and the trim has been repainted from a cranberry color to blue, which is the school color.

Windows have been re-sealed. Classrooms are getting new cabinets. The replacement of tile throughout the school will continue into the school year because there just has not been enough time this summer to complete that project, Lawrence said.

Also in Camden this summer, about $40,000 has been spent on painting at Camden County High School, Camden Intermediate School and Camden Middle School, Lawrence said.

The ramps at Camden Middle School were redone, replacing their rubber surface with a material used in truck bed-liners.

Radio equipment at Grandy Primary, Camden Intermediate and Camden Middle has been upgraded so that law enforcement officers and other emergency responders will be able to use their radios throughout the buildings. The cost of the radio upgrade was about $85,000 and funded by the county.

Some exterior lighting at Camden Intermediate School was replaced with energy-efficient lighting. In addition, the exterior walls of all school buildings have been pressure washed.

Matthew Mullins, maintenance director for the Currituck County Schools, said about $600,000 in work has been done this summer in the district’s schools using capital outlay funding and other local funding.

The work in Currituck has included interior and exterior painting, carpet and tile work, door-access controls to enhance security at all schools, gymnasium repairs, roofing, playground fencing, weather-proofing, refreshing of playground mulch, and pressure washing all schools.

Currituck also installed attic insulation at Moyock Elementary, cleaned carpets at all schools, completed electrical repairs and made preparations for adding pre-K classrooms at Central Elementary and W.T. Griggs Elementary.

Heating and cooling system replacements and repairs also were completed at W.T. Griggs, Currituck County High School, Knotts Island,  Moyock Elementary and Moyock Middle School.

Mullins praised Currituck’s maintenance staff as “self-motivated, independent technicians” who get work done seamlessly.

In the Elizabeth City-Pasquotank Public Schools, officials are awaiting approval from the N.C. Department of Public Instruction on the design of a new heating and cooling system for Northside Elementary School, which is expected to cost between $1.5 million and $2 million. Work on that project could begin soon after DPI approves the design.

ECPPS has used $5,595 in local funding to replace the fire control panel at River Road Middle School. Also at RRMS, the oil-fired furnace has been removed and replaced with a gas-fired water heater, using $23,400 in state funds.

The Safe Schools Foundation has funded the installation of additional security cameras at elementary and middle schools.

At Elizabeth City Middle School, $4,872 in local funding has been used to replace the burglar alarm system.

Plans by ECPPS to restore sections of roofing at Northeastern High School, H.L. Trigg Community School and Pasquotank Elementary School have been delayed by rainy weather this summer. The new plan is to complete the work as soon as possible. Local funding in the amount of $294,458 has been set aside for the roofing restoration work.

The track at Northeastern High School has been resurfaced with $208,331 in local funds.

Heating and cooling units at Northeastern High School and Central Elementary School have been replaced. The total cost was $55,000 and came from local funds. ECPPS also used $23,250 in local funds to install a breezeway at Central.

The front entrance to J.C. Sawyer Elementary School has been made more secure. That project is being completed using $21,950 in local funds. Work on window replacement and roofing at Sheep-Harney Elementary School is being completed with $529,310 in local funds.