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Various items approved at U-46 board meeting

By Seth Hancock
  The Board of Education in School District U-46 unanimously approved of $1.3 million in expenditure items at its meeting on Monday, June 3.
  Included was one item that was presented and voted on in the same evening which breaches the normal protocol of presenting an item at a meeting and voting on it at the following meeting.
  That item was a $426,000 expenditure, from the operations and maintenance fund, with Celtic Environmental Co. for a paint removal project at Streamwood High School using chemical stripper. The proposal states that lead paint was found in areas of the school with this project being done on the third floor with further phases planned in future years.
  “The walls in the corridors, restrooms, and stairwells have been painted numerous times, but the condition has deteriorated,” the proposal states. “The layers of paint beneath the top coat have worn away and look unsightly.”
  Board member Melissa Owens asked why the vote was needed that evening to which Sheila Downs, director of plant operations, said: “We put this out originally to bid two months ago. We were doing a different version. We were originally trying to do abrasive blasting, and we only got one vendor and we were told that they weren’t certain that that would be the most effective and that they weren’t confident in that method for this.”
  Downs said the district removed the bid to research alternative options to the chemical stripper but decided that was the best option.
  There was only one bid and Owens asked: “Is this a process that’s not well known?”
  “No, this is a very common practice,” Downs said. “We were hoping to look at other alternative practices.”
  Downs added: “Chemical is not always the most environmentally green option, so we were really trying to look at other greener options. But we ended up landing back on chemical peel because really, it’s going to be the most effective, and there’s so many layers of paint.”
  Sue Kerr, the board’s president, asked if there were any concerns with the timing and being able to complete the project before the start of the 2019-2020 school year. Bruce Phelps, senior business official, said there’s a penalty to the company of “$500 a day if they don’t complete it on time,” and Downs said the district will go out to bid earlier for future phases.
  Board member Veronica Noland asked if this was “unique to Streamwood,” and Downs said it was “very bad right now” at Streamwood but she hasn’t seen that at other schools.
  The remaining expenditure items totaling $841,030 were all approved under the consent agenda.
  One of the items is $173,838 to the Boys and Girls Club which will be paid for by the nation’s taxpayers through Title I funds going towards eight weeks of summer camp for 125 students deemed “low-income” or “at-risk” based on being in a Title I designated school.
  Coming from the education fund was a three-year contract renewal costing $175,000 (a $23,000 increase) with Futures in Rehabilitation Management, Inc. for criminal background checks for personnel, a two-year contract renewal costing $64,458 (up $233) with HERO by Schoolmint for student behavior tracking and $40,000 to renew membership with the lobbyist group Illinois Association of School Boards.
  Four items to be paid for from the operations and maintenance fund were approved including $168,337 with Rogers Flooring, Inc. for carpet tile and VCT floor installation as well as some moisture mitigation at 10 district schools, $138,497 with Stalker Sports Floors for gym floor sanding and finishing at Bartlett and South Elgin high schools and two asbestos abatement projects with Cove Remediation at Bartlett’s Eastview Middle School ($45,000) and Elgin’s McKinley Elementary School ($35,900).
  The board also unanimously approved $7.7 million in itemized bills and a personnel report and workers’ compensation cases which included one new position.
  Also approved was the physical education exemptions terms and conditions for the 2019-2020 school year, a resolution for the display and public hearing for the Fiscal Year 2020 Northern Kane County Regional Vocational System (NKCRVS) budget and a U-46 retirement committee charter.
  The NKCRVS budget was presented on June 17 showing $1.8 million in revenues and expenditures. A public hearing will be held on July 15, and a final vote is scheduled for Aug. 12.




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