Ringgold Middle School said to be safe
Ringgold Middle School continues to shift because of pyrite beneath the building.
But the former Finley Middle School is safe to house students for the upcoming school year.
That was the assessment of Brian Chandler, structural engineer for Whitney, Bailey, Cox and Magnani, who has been monitoring the building for years.
He spoke Wednesday during the Ringgold School Board meeting.
The building has been shifting for years.
The board has been at odds over whether to build a new middle school or renovate the shuttered Donora and Monongahela elementary centers to serve that purpose. Directors aligned with the new construction option won overwhelmingly in the primary election in May.
Still, the district is waiting for the state to reinstate PlanCon. An acronym for Planning and Construction Workbook, it is a formula used when a district seeks reimbursement for a portion of costs for a major building construction project.
But for now, the Finleyville-based school is safe, Chandler said.
The board Wednesday approved a five-year contract for Whitney, Bailey, Cox and Magnani to continue monitoring the school. The company will monitor the building three times a year over the next two school years and twice in each of the last three years.
It will receive $5,000 each time the building is monitored in the first three years and $6,000 each in the final two years.
The extra monitoring will determine if cold and snow affect the building's stability.
Chandler was also authorized to check the building's condition by accessing a crawl space beneath it, at a cost not to exceed $3,500.
In other building-related matters, the board:
• Agreed to pay Keystone Waterproofing $48,973.54 for masonry repair work at the high school.
• Agreed to pay Whitney, Bailey, Cox and Magnani $4,752 for previous monitoring at the middle school.
• Agreed to pay R&B Mechanical Inc. $28,748.34 for a dehumidification project at the high school.
Meanwhile, the board agreed to establish the position of dean of discipline for the middle school.
It also agreed to hire:
• Laura DiCelo as a social studies teacher at the middle school, at a salary of $35,000.
• Megan Foxwell, biology-chemistry high school teacher, $36,200.
• Andrew Koller, high school French teacher, $42,258.
• Kurt Olinger, high school physical education/social studies teacher, $34,000.
• Shelly Fine, third grade teacher at Ringgold Elementary School South, $38,500.
• Lori Farnsworth, elementary assistant principal, $70,000.
• Gregory Locy, high school assistant principal, $70,000.
Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or firstname.lastname@example.org.