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Carlynton construction projects nearing end as school year begins

| Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

Carlynton students will have a late start to this school year to make time to complete a variety of remodeling projects started this summer.

New secure entrances were added to both Carnegie and Crafton elementary schools, projects that have been on the agenda for the district since it began remodeling. Visitors now will have to check in at the office window before they enter the main school building.

Carnegie Elementary has been undergoing façade renovations since classes let out in June. The façade includes new windows and a new porch entrance that is canopied and wheelchair accessible. That work is ongoing, but officials expect it to be done by the start of school Sept. 2. Classes typically start before Labor Day.

District officials have been working with Carnegie-based KMA Design to create a brand standard. The new logo, which will be used across the district, will feature a green-and-gold design with a cougar.

District spokeswoman Michale Herrmann said the logo will be revealed when school starts.

The school district upgraded technology since June with the purchase of 172 new laptops to replace aging ones in the mobile laptop carts. Software will be upgraded on the old laptops, and they will be used elsewhere in the district.

There will be a new mobile Kindle Fire cart at the high school filled with 20 Kindle Fires donated by the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation. New iPads have been added to the district's iPad carts.

• Chartiers Valley will place an emphasis on writing in the coming school year.

“The district is embracing a K-12 Writing Across the Curriculum initiative that will focus on writing as a tool for thinking, discovering and communicating,” said district communications director Kara Droney.

Teachers will work to incorporate different types of writing within grade levels and classes, and students will focus on how to write for specific audiences, when to cite evidence and how to structure various genres of writing.

Over the summer, the district remodeled the high school library into the Middle School/High School Digital Media Center.

“The renovation will incorporate a Barnes & Noble meets Google playground atmosphere, to provide an environment that stimulates young minds and fosters creativity with its bright, dynamic color scheme,” Droney said.

The center will have an open floor plan, a television and gaming area, and open classroom area. Droney said the hope is to bring a coffeehouse feel to the center and incorporate student readings and gallery showings.

New food and nutrition options will be available for CV students. The Char Bucks Internet Café will offer new smart snacks adhering to the new federal guidelines and new breakfast items, such as whole-grain pancakes, waffles and breakfast tacos.

The first day of school is Aug. 21.

Megan Guza is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5810 or mguza@tribweb.com.

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