ACS getting schools ready for first day
By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor
ALABASTER – While some school teachers and personnel get a break during the summer months, Alabaster City Schools Operations Coordinator Dr. Jeff Atkins hasn’t slowed down during the past few months.
After students finished their classes in May, Atkins and other ACS personnel began the process of getting the school buildings ready for the upcoming school year.
For the past several weeks, crews have been working to strip and wax the tile floors in Creek View Elementary School, Meadow View Elementary School, Thompson Intermediate School, Thompson Sixth Grade Center, Thompson Middle School and Thompson High School.
“We have painted some in every school building,” Atkins said during a July 21 interview.
ACS also is working to upgrade multiple school playground facilities, and is planning to place new pea gravel and mulch around the facilities, Atkins said. The school system also is planning to place new turf down at the “boundless” special-needs-inclusive playground at TMS, he said.
Atkins said ACS recently updated basketball goals at CVES and at TSGC, and performed HVAC maintenance to ensure the systems are ready for the first day of school in August.
In September 2014, the Alabaster Board of Education voted to issue $120 million in bonds to help fund a new 2,000-student high school building off Thompson Road, and to help fund upgrades at the city’s existing school buildings.
Once construction begins on the new high school, ACS is preparing to move forward on several significant renovation projects, Atkins said.
Long-term plans include re-roofing the aging TIS building and also installing a new roof at CVES, which opened in 1992. Pans also call for eventually adding more paved parking at CVES and paving the current gravel parking lot next to the THS baseball field off Thompson Road.
Once the city’s new high school is opened, the ACS central office likely will move into the current TIS building, the current TMS building will become TIS and the current THS building will become TMS.
Atkins said the current THS building will require significant renovations to accommodate middle school students after the new high school building opens in the fall of 2017.