O’Neal outlines facilities plans
The Red Oak School Board took its first steps towards facilities planning and capital improvements at the regular meeting July 11.
At the July 27 meeting, the board unanimously approved awarding services for facilities assessment and long-range planning to Alley Poyner Macchietto Architecture. Architect Daric O’Neal, representing Alley Poyner Macchietto, was on hand at the July 11 meeting to discuss the details of the upcoming facilities assessments and the master facilities planning process. O’Neal started out by expressing his appreciation to the board for the selection of Alley Poyner Macchietto for the test.
“I am appreciative you chose to hire us to conduct this assessment and master plan for you. We’re proud of the work we’ve done here, and we’re glad to have the opportunity to continue,” O’Neal said.
The entire process is slated to take up to five months to complete. O’Neal said there were key target dates coming up over the next month to begin the process.
“Starting the week of July 18, we will begin some 3D scanning of the school buildings, and we’ll have an architect down here doing those scans which will be presented to the board at a later date,” explained O’Neal.
On July 20, O’Neal said they would begin condition assessment walkthroughs with their entire team, including representatives from Boyd Jones and Building Crafts. The initial walkthroughs are slated for Inman Elementary, the Red Oak Early Childhood Center, Red Oak Jr./Sr. High School, and activities buildings. During the week of Aug. 1, those walkthroughs will take place at the Webster and Bancroft buildings and the district’s central office.
Over the next five months, O’Neal said he was planning to update the board once per month on the progress being made on the assessment.
O’Neal shared with the board a timeline of how the district had gotten to this phase, and shared the next steps in the assessment process.
“We’ll want to see your enrollment numbers this fall after class starts. We do a simple calculation of square footage, number of students, and how many square feet you get per student in your facilties. Our target is always 200 square feet per student when you’re looking at a K-12 grade facility,” commented O’Neal. “We identified critical repairs, costs for those, optional repair items on all of the facilities, and throughout this process, we’re going to be going through all of the facilities again, and create a very similar list of dollars, quotes, and priorities for you, and arrive at implementation scenarios for the district moving forward,” said O’Neal.
After school begins, plans call for user group meetings with administrators, teachers, and community members on the best use of the Webster and Bancroft buildings, and student and parent surverys will also be issued.
Superintendent Ron Lorenz requested input from the school’s Student Improvement Advisory Committee as they went through the process.
“They’ll probably be involved in the community meetings anyway, but we’ve had a lot of conversations about facilities and those kinds of issues, and I’m hoping we could find a way to blend those meetings so those members can continue to feel like they’re part of the process,” Lorenz said.
O’Neal told the board they they could involve any groups or individuals needed as part of the process.
The board also approved a resolution transferring up to $15,000 from the district’s general fund to the activity fund to purchase protective and safety equipment, per Iowa Code.
Also approved was the renewal of a Microsoft licensing agreement for the district, including Microsoft 365 licensing and server licensing, and approved the renewal of Brightly software for the district.