Board approves $350k loan for Chelsea High

By KATIE MCDOWELL / Lifestyles Editor

The Shelby County Board of Education approved a motion to allow Chelsea High School to borrow $350,000 to upgrade the school’s athletic facilities.

Gary McCombs, assistant superintendent of finance, said the M&F Bank loan has a fixed interest rate of 4.69 percent over 15 years.

“It’s pretty much your basic loan that will hopefully upgrade their athletic facilities for capital outlay purposes,” he said. “The school will be responsible for making the payments.”

The loan was first presented to the board by Chelsea High School principal Jay Peoples during a Sept. 16 meeting. Peoples said the improvement and expansion of the athletics facilities was necessary due to the “explosive growth” at the school.

CHS has received donations from several groups to assist in the expansion. Peoples said the loan would be paid with $100 annual donations from student-athlete families – a repayment method the school used to repay a previous loan for school improvements.

The loan will be used to make a variety of improvements to the school’s athletic facilities, including a small locker room and additional restroom facility at the far end of the complex, covered dugouts and additional practice field for soccer, covered hitting facilities for softball and baseball, floor refurbishing and PA upgrade for the gymnasium and new mats for the wrestling team.

In other business, Shelby County School facilities coordinator Randy Reeves also said the construction of the new Calera Middle School is going well.

“We feel confident about completing it and opening the school next fall,” he said.

The board’s next regular meeting is Thursday, Nov. 16 at 6 p.m. at the Central Office in Columbiana.