Schenectady County

Schalmont school projects nearing completion

When Schalmont students return to school next month, they’ll find warmer classrooms, modern bathroom

When Schalmont students return to school next month, they’ll find warmer classrooms, modern bathrooms and the absence of a repugnant smell that has lingered for years in the middle school gymnasium.

The district’s $9.7 million capital project is well under way and expected to wrap up on schedule. Business Administrator Mark Kellett said construction work throughout the campus should finish before classes begin in September, save for the installation of new classroom windows.

“The project is on time and within budget, which is a real plus,” he said Friday. “We’re halfway through the summer construction season and expect to have the buildings ready for occupancy by the time classes start.”

In October 2007, Schalmont voters narrowly approved the project, which relies on a 28 percent district contribution. The project is primarily funded with state EXCEL and building aid but also relies on rental income generated from the former Schonowe school and a slight increase in the tax levy.

Most of the work is being done on the original 1957 wing of the high school. So far, crews have replaced the gym’s lighting with more energy-efficient fixtures and paved a gravel lot near the athletic fields. Drainage and paving work on the main entryway is coming along.

Work continues on the weathered and stained exterior of the building, the leaky roof over the original wing and a cafeteria reconstruction project. The building’s 52-year-old bathrooms are also getting an overhaul.

The second-floor classrooms and main lobby will both receive new flooring, ceiling tiles and lighting. The old steam boilers are to be replaced with centralized heating systems.

At the middle school, workers have installed a new gym floor and are finishing it. The old floor suffered from moisture that caused cracks and buckling, in addition to a rather unpleasant musty smell students would often joke about.

“That’s famous over at the middle school,” Kellett said.

New classroom windows will be installed during the fall, which will periodically disrupt some classes. Kellett said the entire project shouldn’t have much of an impact on programs.

This summer’s project will also clear the way for the district’s administrative offices to move from a building outside the Rotterdam Corporate Park to a wing of the high school, thereby saving about $15,000 per year. Kellett said the offices will be in two classrooms and the adjoining hallway by November.

“We were able to take over a dead end, so to speak,” he said.

Categories: News

Leave a Reply