ACS approves bid to move into new high school
By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor
ALABASTER – The Alabaster Board of Education took another step toward opening the city’s new high school in January, after it awarded a bid to a company to move items from the current Thompson High School to the new school.
School Board members voted unanimously during their Nov. 13 meeting to award several bids tied to the new school, which Alabaster School Superintendent Dr. Wayne Vickers said will open to students after the Christmas break on Jan. 4.
Among the bids was a $67,500 bid to the Lambert Transfer and Storage company to move items from the old school to the new one while students are out for the Christmas break in December.
“It’s a very exciting time. We are looking forward to an on-time move,” Vickers said. “It’s not like moving into a new home, it’s like moving your entire neighborhood.”
When the new high school opens to students, it will be on a portion of 300 Board of Education-owned acres between the two roadways. The front entrance to the school campus will be off Thompson Road, while the back entrance will be off Kent Dairy Road.
The school originally was set to open to students at the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year, but the opening was delayed due to a delay in bidding out the first phase of the project in 2015.
Also during the Nov. 13 meeting, the School Board approved a $49,000 bid to purchase an ambulance simulator for the school’s health science classes, a $28,000 bid to purchase ice makers for the school, a $28,310 bid to purchase appliances throughout the school and a $23,980 bid to purchase equipment for the school’s sensory room.
When it is completed, the new school will have room for more than 2,000 students, will have 103 instructional classrooms – 21 of which will be labs – a 1,070-seat auditorium, an 85-seat theater, a 32,269-square-foot career academy and a 50-seat lecture hall.
The new school’s cafeteria will see a major upgrade from the cafeteria at the current Thompson High School, as the new lunchroom will seat about 600 students at once, up from the 400-seat capacity of the current facility. Vickers said the kitchen will be designed to handle the increased student capacity, as the kitchen at the current school was only designed to serve 800 students.
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