When school's out for summer, the New Albany High School campus will get an upgrade.
The New Albany-Plain Local school board approved $1.5 million in roof work for the high school beginning May 30, the day after the school year ends, said Superintendent Michael Sawyers.
The construction will continue for five weeks, focusing on shingles for five buildings on the high school campus, Sawyers said. The gymnasium will receive a new metal roof.
"We jumped on the roofs right away," he said.
The district has a variety of projects slated for 2018, not the least of which are such facility upgrades as the roof work and a focus on students' mental health and well-being.
The district's "Well-being Initiative" for students is synonymous with its work to achieve the best academic and developmental outcomes for each student, district spokesman Patrick Gallaway. District leaders work to enhance school culture and students' well-being to provide a framework for learning and growth, he said.
The continued examination of the well-being program" are important, Sawyers said.
"I don't think it's limited to just mental health," he said.
The Well-being Initiative has been going on for about a year after a group of community leaders and district officials launched it to support local students, Gallaway said.
The district has performed an audit to identify gaps in well-being education and determined that the greatest need exists at the primary level, for students in grades pre-kindergarten through 3, Sawyers said.
Similarly, from March to May, students will learn the R Factor response-and-outcome training popularized by the Focus 3 organization, he said. The R Factor is based on the formula that an event and one's response to it create an outcome.
The goal is to help give students the tools to advance as learners and adults, Sawyers said.
New Albany Primary School assistant principal Andy Roeth said the training outfits students with strategies for handling situations as they progress through their day and teaches them to make decisions.
"It changes your way of thinking," he said.
Meanwhile, the summer roof work at the high school is the beginning of a $2.6 million investment there, Sawyers said. Included in that total is $1.1 million slated for 2019 for a metal roof at the natatorium, the weight room building and a building adjacent to the gym.
The roofs at the high school campus are more than 20 years old and improvements to them are vital, Gallaway said.
The work has been made possible by the five-year, 1.25-mill permanent-improvements levy local voters approved in November.
The levy will generate approximately $1.2 million annually for five years, Sawyers said.
District leaders also have committed to drawing $1.3 million annually from the general-revenue fund for capital-asset repairs and replacements.
According to district estimates, $12.7 million is needed over five years for capital improvements. The district already spends an average of $1.3 million per year from the general-revenue fund on capital improvements, but to meet all needs, an average of $2.5 annually would need to be spent, leaders have said.
Other improvements slated for this year include technology infrastructure for network enhancements and upgrades to the district's security cameras, Sawyers said.
The district also is conducting an audit to determine what repairs and upgrades are necessary for heating-and-cooling equipment, Sawyers said.