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  • Fairbury News staff

PC outlines summer work

Plenty of summer maintenance work is planned in the Prairie Central school district this year.

Superintendent Paula Crane detailed summer plans to members of the Prairie Central Board of Education during the group’s regular May meeting Thursday evening in the PCHS library.

The high school has HVAC items which need to be addressed while the gym heat steam system needs work. Painting will take place in the English hallway and science lab sinks will be fixed.

Junior High projects will include outdoor security lights, floor tile work in the hallways and door work. At the Upper Elementary in Forrest, the library is asking for blinds and boiler needs will be addressed.

“The boiler supply pumps need maintenance,” explained Crane.

Prairie Central Elementary work will include replacing a steamer gas line in the kitchen area, exhaust fan re-wiring and mulching. At Prairie Central Primary East in Chatsworth, steam line traps need repairs and new valves are needed for toilet shut-offs.

“The gym needs some attention,” Crane said.

There is bad news when it comes to Prairie Central Primary West in Chenoa as the boiler sprung a leak. Gym lights need bulbs at PCPW and grant money is possible by using LED bulbs.

“As you know, it is really dim in that gym.”

Gym fans are not all working and grip strips will be added to the stairs. A teacher workroom will be moved to the second floor. The ceiling in the custodial hall once again needs to be repaired, according to Crane.

The school district is still looking for someone to do summer mowing work and an ad will likely be taken out to advertise for the position. District leaders met with agriculture and industrial technology teachers along with the architect to come up with ideas for the ag shop building addition.

Crane’s legislative update included decent news for schools. A grant was approved for Prairie Central in the past but the district never received the money so PC gets high priority if funds become available.

“It doesn’t take effect unless there’s actually money appropriated,” noted Crane.

When it comes to education funding, there is additional money expected for tier schools and the district is on tier two.

High school choir director Todd Cheek appeared before the board regarding permission for an upcoming band and choir trip to Disney World. They plan to fly as there is roughly a $225 difference between flying and riding a bus.

“You actually gain park time when you fly,” said Cheek.

The trip is slated for late May through early June 2023 with both the band and choir performing and participating in workshops. Students are conducting fundraisers to keep the costs down and the fundraisers have continued despite COVID. Students will be staying about 15 minutes away from Disney property.

“We’ll probably still have to take the trailer down there too with instruments and suitcases,” added Cheek. “That way we don’t lose anything.”

Everyone hopes to get on the same flight.

“Sounds like a good time,” said board president Mark Slagel.

Board members authorized the trip for May 31-June 3, 2023.

Crane discussed an amended budget proposal with transportation changes. More money needs to be added into the budget for salaries, fuel, maintenance and software. The district wants to make routes more efficient giving kids shorter rides. Revenue was better than expected due to money coming from grants.

Handbook changes were approved for PCHS, PCJH and grades 1-6. Hoods will not be allowed as they lead to difficulty identifying students but hats are allowed. The rules could change if there are any disruptions.

In other action, the Prairie Central Board of Education:

-Approved membership with the Greater Livingston County Economic Development Council.

-Allowed an overnight trip request from high school track for the state meet in Charleston.

-Renewed junior high membership in the Illinois Elementary School Association.

-Approved coach stipends for boys freshman basketball, freshman volleyball and freshman football.

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