NORTH SALEM, N.Y. - The North Salem Board of Education confirmed good news about the dehumidification project at Pequenakonck Elementary School at its meeting Wednesday, May 20.

Director of Buildings, Grounds, and Transportation John Sierverding confirmed that because school buildings are closed, all of the inside work on the project can be completed early.

“This morning we had a facilities construction meeting for the PQ dehumidification project and we have some milestones set in place,” Sierverding said. “At this point I can give you the broad brushstrokes as far as the dates, but as you well know, there’s a lot of pieces in this, but I think we’re in a good place because we can start much earlier than anticipated.”

Sign Up for North Salem Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

In August 2018, PQ was nearly forced to delay the start of school due to a mold problem that covered about 20 percent of surfaces at the facility. 

Though the air conditioning was on all summer at the school, a number of factors had caused the mold: a wet and warm August and a lack of activity at the school when it was closed for two weeks for septic work. There also was work being done on the school’s roof when only metal sheets covered the building. It’s possible that condensation formed on the metal because of the differences in temperatures inside and outside.

The inside work is expected to begin in early June and is estimated to take about four weeks.

New rooftop dehumidification units are expected to be installed in mid-August, with one to two days of crane work to place them on the roof. 

“We’ll keep our fingers crossed,” Sierverding said about the anticipated delivery of the units.

He also said the library has already been cleared for the contractor, Southeast, to begin work.

Superintendent Dr. Ken Freeston confirmed that the district is expecting the project to be finished by the start of school and there would be no interruptions in instruction.

To our Beloved Community: During this crisis, we can’t continue to operate entirely as we have been doing when we are only earning a fraction of our previous advertising revenue and still have to pay 100 percent of our payroll. Without that payroll, we would be unable to serve the community with the news and important information you have come to expect. If you feel that we’ve made a positive difference in your town, we ask that you send us a contribution to keep your community newspaper alive and strong by pressing on our PayPal button HERE.