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School Board approves planning document

July 02, 1997

By KERRY LYNN FRALEY

Staff Writer

The Washington County Board of Education on Tuesday night approved a planning document outlining the condition of every school building, projected enrollments through 2006 and needed capital improvement projects.

There were no surprises in the amended facilities master plan, which has to be updated and filed with the state every summer, said Dennis McGee, director of facilities management for the school system.

The 52-page document lays the groundwork for the capital improvements plan the system will put together this fall, McGee said.

It also gives state officials an idea of what projects the school system will submit for state funding, he said.

"It helps the state and Board of Education communicate on the status of the schools," McGee said.

The plan has three main components: an inventory of all school facilities, including dimensions, enrollment, capacity and a rating of its physical condition; past and projected enrollment figures for each grade at each school; and a summary of school needs.

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Looking at the information as a package helps school officials prioritize capital improvement needs to align with anticipated funding from the state and county, McGee said.

The first phase of renovations to the South Hagerstown High School campus, including the Alternative School, will take priority for major renovation money in the next year, or possibly two years, he said.

Other pressing needs include renovating Clear Spring and Williamsport elementary schools and replacing expensive mechanical equipment like the chiller at E. Russell Hicks and a boiler at Boonsboro High School.

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