New Providence Schools Expected to Open on Schedule Despite Construction

Donna O’Leary (left), Sharon Licari and Laura De Nicola Credits: Marianne Ivers

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – The official opening of schools remains Sep. 6 despite ongoing construction, Superintendent David Miceli said at the Thursday, Aug. 24 Board of Education (BOE) meeting. The majority of the work has been completed; however small details and finishing touches will continue on after the start of school. Any issues related to the construction will be communicated to parents prior to Labor Day weekend.

Business Administrator James Testa provided an update of the construction school by school. The two small instructional rooms at the Salt Brook School will be completed next week. The upper level room will be completed by the end of September. The boilers will also be installed during September. Testa noted that boilers are not needed until Oct. 15. The STEM-room will also be ready by the opening day at Salt Brook.

At the high school/middle school approximately 90 percent of the roof work has been completed. The roof is expected to be completed by the start of school as the crew will be working continuously, including weekends. However, the metal borders of the roof will be installed in September during weekends. The solar panels that have been stored during the construction will be put back on in September, Testa said.

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The target day for the new HS/MS media center is Sep. 20. The lab room, next to the media center, as well as the STEM wing will be ready by Sep.6. Approximately 75 percent of the middle school gym floor has been completed. It will be “fully finished” by Aug. 31, Testa explained. The locker rooms are also “pretty much done, except the floors.”

At the Allen W. Roberts School instructional rooms will be done by next week. Since the Allen W. Roberts School had the least amount of construction all summer programs were held there. The new teachers training is also taking place at the Roberts School.

Testa noted that the security vestibule work is delayed in all schools as the district is waiting for the delivery of the frames. The main focus for the district is to have all facilities usable by the start of the school year. The finishing touches and remaining work will be scheduled so that it does not disturb classroom activities. The principals at each school will decide which work can be completed during the school day and which work has to be done at night or weekends.

The work that is being done looks great,” Miceli said noting the challenges for coordinating the projects with five different contractors and multiple subcontractors.

With regard to other news the board approved several new hires. Sharon Licari, a long time substitute teacher in the district, was hired as a full time teacher at the Allen W. Roberts School. Laura De Nicola was appointed as the teacher for Italian language at the high school. Donna O’Leary, who has worked as a substitute teacher in the district for five years, was appointed to a secretarial position at the central office.

Additionally the board discussed the board goals for 2017-2018 school year.

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