Alabaster BOE moves forward with TIS roof repair

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

The Alabaster Board of Education took a step toward repairing the roof on one of the city’s oldest school buildings during an April 8 meeting at the Alabaster Municipal Annex.

During the meeting, the School Board voted to hire the Hoover-based Lathan and Associates firm to provide architectural services for the Thompson Intermediate School roof repair project.

“This will be the first of several projects going forward,” Leon Barkan, the vice president of the Volkert engineering company, told the School Board. “We will look at several options on that (Thompson Intermediate) building.”

The School Board hired the Volkert company in 2012 to conduct an assessment of Alabaster’s six school buildings. During a Jan. 22 meeting, Barkan outlined the condition of the buildings, and said Thompson Intermediate and the Thompson Sixth Grade Center were in need of the most attention.

Barkan recommended the Alabaster School Board repair or replace the Thompson Intermediate roof, which he said is prone to leaks.

Barkan also said crews are preparing to replace the locks on all Alabaster school building doors in preparation for Alabaster’s pending separation from the Shelby County School System.

In other business, the School Board:

-Heard an update from Board Attorney Carl Johnson on the search for a permanent school superintendent. The board recently received 16 applications for the position, four of which were from current school superintendents, Johnson said.

“It’s not too early for us to get down to the earnest business of narrowing the field,” Johnson told the School Board.

Alabaster Interim School Superintendent Dr. Phillip Hammonds – whose term will expire on June 30 – encouraged the School Board members to interview their top superintendent candidates in April and make their selection in early May to ensure a “smooth transition” after he steps down.

-Agreed to allow children of non-Alabaster residents employed by the Alabaster school system to attend Alabaster schools after the city finalizes its separation from Shelby County Schools.

The children must reapply to attend Alabaster schools each year, and must reside with their Alabaster school employee parent.

“I think this will be a very positive step for our employees,” Hammonds said. “So many other districts provide this for their employees, and I think it’s important we mirror that.”