The Sandy Tab: A $300,000 Bill for Board of Ed and Saturday Classes at School 5

School 5

PATERSON, NJ - School 5 likely will have classes this Saturday to make up for the extra day it lost during the post-Sandy power outage.

School district officials said last night they were awaiting consent from the teachers' union before making the Saturday classes official. While the rest of the district reopened on November 7, School 5 had to remain closed that one extra day because it had not regained power.

The whole district ended up losing three school days to the storm - a number that would have been higher had the cancelation of the teachers' convention last week not allowed officials to eliminate three off-days that had been set aside for that event.

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At Wednesday night's Board of Education workshop meeting, state-appointed superintendent Donnie Evans said he wanted to make up those three lost days as soon as possible, especially because the winter still loomed ahead. "We don't know what that's going to bring,'' he said.

Meanwhile, the school district on Wednesday disclosed that it had spent $300,000 on emergency contracts as a result of super-storm Sandy. Two items represented the bulk of that expense, according to Chris Sapara-Grant, the district's executive director of facilities.

In anticipation of the storm, the district hired a company to remove all furnishings from the first floor of School 4 to prevent them from being damaged in possible floods, Sapara-Grant said. During Irene, that school suffered substantial flooding and most of the furnishings there now are new, he said. The furnishings were stored in trailers and returned to the school once the flooding did not materialize.

The second major cost was for the rental of a refrigerated trailer to store food from the district's warehouse at 200 Sheridan Avenue, which was without power for days, officials said.



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