McKeesport Area delaying McClure opening until Monday
Most of the approximately 3,850 McKeesport Area School District students are in their last day of summer vacation.
School opens Thursday at the high school, Founders Hall Middle School and Centennial, George Washington and White Oak elementary schools.
That covers kindergarten through third grade, most fourth-graders and seventh through 12th grades.
Several hundred students, including the remaining fourth-graders and all of the district's fifth- and sixth-graders will get a couple more days off, as MASD elected to delay the opening of a newly expanded Francis McClure Intermediate School in White Oak until Monday.
"The classrooms would have been available (Thursday)," said construction manager Gerald Tedesco. "But the superintendent thought it would be better just to give a couple extra days to the kids, to complete some odds and ends."
Tedesco reiterated what superintendent Dr. Timothy M. Gabauer told the McKeesport Area school board last week. As Gabauer reiterated on Tuesday, the district has put in enough time so that all students will meet state requirements for class attendance.
"We've got more than the necessary student hours," Gabauer said Tuesday as he visited McClure.
McClure eventually will have kindergarten through third grade in the wing built on the eastern side of the original intermediate school. The other part of the expansion is a community room on the other side of the original building that will be completed later this fall.
It is getting fourth-graders now because George Washington only can accommodate K-3. Centennial and White Oak will have K-4 classes.
"We have a more consistent distribution of the students (this fall)," Gabauer said.
Tedesco's company, Pennsylvania Project Management, is overseeing the work that will take place over the next several years on three elementary-intermediate complexes.
The next one, the new Cornell complex in McKeesport's Seventh Ward, is slated for student occupancy in the fall of 2013. The third one is likely to be built along the border between the city's Twelfth Ward and White Oak.
Not everything will be done at McClure even with a Monday opening date.
A stairwell with Terraza steps is being installed that will provide access to the second floor in the new portion of the McClure complex.
"We're going to have the first floor open and functional," Gabauer said.
Tedesco said a new playground and parking lot, as well as the second floor of the new wing, should be completed later this fall.
Work also still has to be done in the weeks ahead in the older portion of the McClure complex on a geothermal heating system.
Tedesco said it will allow the school to utilize a year-round 55-degree ground temperature, for naturally-cool classrooms in hotter months. Heat pumps need only raise that temperature by 15 degrees for colder months.
The outdoor siding also isn't done. Tedesco said a problem at the manufacturer with the treating of steel needed for that siding led to a backlog of orders.
Other MASD changes in the coming year include:
• A new assistant principal at McClure. Thomas R. Knight is moving from a similar role at Founders Hall to work with principal Pamela Gordon.
• Paul A. Sebelia giving up his role as roaming assistant principal at the three elementary schools to replace Knight as Founders Hall assistant.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.