by Mark Boma
The Dwight High School Board of Education met Wednesday, March 9, at 6:00 p.m.
Casey Pullem, a representative from A & R Mechanical Contractors, was on hand to discuss ongoing problems with the heating system in the High School building. There were many times during the current heating season that areas of the building were not sufficiently warmed. It’s been determined the current heat pump system does not have enough capacity to meet necessary output when the temperature falls below 30 degrees. The two attic units heat only a portion of the building and are only able to create about half the necessary yield. The heating units were installed in the attic with the concept they would be able to gain efficiency from that location, but that has not been realized. This has resulted in cold sections of the school as well as the units being overworked and falling into disrepair.
A & R did not design the current heat pump system, although they installed and have been servicing it.
The Board discussed options which included replacement and upgrade. It was decided the first step would be to request an engineering study proposal from A & R. If that was approved, costs for options could be considered and potentially put out for bid. The intent is to have problems corrected before next winter. The study proposal would be addressed at a Special Board Meeting on March 30.
Principal Andy Pittenger reported that enrollment had dropped by four, down to a total of 220. Winter Ball had been held on February 26 and the Spring Musical was on March 4, 5, and 6. The annual Booster Bash was on March 12 and Spring Break will be March 21 through March 25.
Dillon Sarff was recognized for his second-place finish in the IHSA State Wrestling Tournament.
In the Superintendent’s Report, Dr. Jancek informed the Board that a new Driver’s Education vehicle would need to be purchased and that a 2020 Ford Explorer from DeLong Ford had been identified at an approximate cost of $37,000.
Jancek also told the Board that he would be submitting for a bilingual teacher’s license grant that would reimburse tuition for any teacher interested in obtaining certification. In addition, Jancek had received notice from Livingston County State’s Attorney Randy Yedinak that the individual responsible for damage to school grounds would be in court April 13. Restitution of $1,490 was expected.
The Board had discussion regarding an incident at the High School Musical. It was reported that one of the performers made an inappropriate and offensive comment while on stage during the Sunday matinee. The person involved was a last minute fill-in and was not a DTHS student or graduate. Jancek stated the administration was gathering more details but hoped the incident did not overshadow the great talent displayed by the DTHS Fine Arts students.
Consent agenda items were approved which affirmed Dan Edwards as Volunteer Track Coach and the resignation of Stephanie Flott as Class Sponsor. An update was given on the Blue Sky Solar Project which included projections on property tax estimates spread across its 35 year life span. Construction is now estimated to complete September of 2024 with a commitment to begin delivering power by the end of 2024.
Graduation ceremonies will be held Friday, May 27, and will once again be held outside, weather permitting. There were no speakers during Public Comments.
Present were Max Sulzberger, Paul Warner, Kevin Berta, Eric Scheuer, and Joel Sandeno. Tim Henson and Susan Legner were absent.