Education

Somers Readies Schools for Opening Day

0773011b32e63f4343fd_43254.JPG
The middle school library has new carpeting. Credits: Brian Marschhauser
dcd8c6cb0122315694ef_43253.JPG
The new chlorination system at Somers Intermediate School Credits: Brian Marschhauser
cce938ca1c22f14957c7_43256.JPG
The serving line is being replaced at Somers Intermediate School. Credits: Brian Marschhauser
0773011b32e63f4343fd_43254.JPG

SOMERS, N.Y. - It has been a busy—but productive—summer on the campuses of Somers schools, with numerous building upgrades and improvements under way throughout the district.

Crews are completing projects in all school buildings, including new solar panels at the middle and high schools. Installation of the panels by SolarCity began in mid-August and will take three to four weeks to complete, said Assistant Superintendent Ken Crowley. Once installed, the crews will move over to the high school and install solar panels there.

Robert Klick, supervisor of buildings and grounds, said it’s important for Somers to be a “trailblazer” and show the students that it’s possible to use alternative energy sources.

Sign Up for E-News

“It’s also an educational tool,” Klick said of the solar panels.

Another “big-ticket item,” as Crowley put it, is the installation of new cabling at the school buildings. The cables are intended to bolster Wi-Fi capability, Crowley said. The cabling is being done as part of New York State’s Smart Schools Bond. The bond was passed by voters statewide in November 2014 and provides public schools with about $2 billion in total funding to help with technological upgrades in infrastructure, new computers and security improvements. Somers submitted a plan and “received” about $700,000. But Crowley said the district won’t be seeing that money any time soon.

“There’s no mechanism yet for reimbursement of funds. We’re expending the funds on this project,” Crowley said. “We’re out a certain amount of dollars cash-flow wise on this thing, waiting for [the state] to get the reimbursement process set up.”

Crowley said he expects that project to be completed by Sept. 1, when schools open.

The district also put in new carpeting in the middle school library. This is the first time the library, converted from a gymnasium in 1998, has had its carpet replaced. The large undertaking was completed by packing all the library’s books into 1,200 boxes and removing them.

Carpeting is also being replaced in the “great rooms” at Somers Intermediate School. Great rooms are community spaces that are connected to classrooms. The carpeting, which Crowley said was “in great shape,” is original to the building, which was built more than 40 years ago.

Klick, however, said it was time to “modernize” the rooms.

“You want that warm and fuzzy feeling,” Klick said.

Also at Somers Intermediate School, the cafeteria serving line is being replaced. Crowley said the old serving line, also original to the school, was not equipped to handle new food requirements in schools. The new serving line is scheduled to be delivered this Saturday, which Crowley said is “cutting it close.” He said the new line should only take two days to install and should be ready when school opens.

Additionally, a new chlorination system to treat the intermediate school’s water supply has been installed. The district previously had ultraviolet (UV) systems to treat the water.

“Probably 10-12 years ago [the county health department] told us to get rid of the chlorination and go to the UV system,” Crowley said. “Now, they’re reversing that.”

Crowley said the district had hoped to begin work on new security vestibules at Primrose Elementary School and the middle school. However, bids for the project came in higher than budgeted. Crowley said he will discuss the issue with the Board of Education at its next meeting in September.

On top of all those projects, Klick said, the district also annually refurbishes several classrooms, waxes the gym floors and much more.

“In six short weeks, a lot happens every year,” he said.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Somers

Momma's birds fled the nest

This year I was late in setting up my deck. Call it procrastination, muggy weather or whatever excuse, I finally got to it last week. With help from son, George, we set up the outdoor dining table and chairs; he methodically placed the flower boxes on the railing: “they have to be evenly spaced!”

We did have a concern: what about the nest the sweet little birds had built under the ...

Be-bop near the train stop

Last Friday was such a nice day we decided to head down to Tarrytown and take in some jazz in Pierson Park for the Friday Evening Concert Series. If you’re in the mood for it, a little jazz can be just the thing. Much of it is instrumental, so you don’t even have to sing along. Every time I see a rock band these days, they start the song, get to the chorus and then stick the mic out ...

Semantic revision of history

The latest fiasco I’ve read about is the renaming of the “Laura Ingalls Wilder Award” to the “Children’s Literature Legacy Award.” Why? Because the renowned author of Little House On The Prairie portrayed Native Americans (American Indians) in stereotypical language.

I must inject a personal experience here. A great friend of mine many years ago was Red ...

You’ll Get a Kick out of Musical Classic ‘Anything Goes’

I’ve loved Broadway musicals since I was smaller than a piano bench. That’s one reason I enjoy writing about local productions in this space. The more people who go to musicals, the happier it makes me.

I didn’t realize how old-fashioned about musicals I could be, though, until my wife Elyse and I at long last saw “Wicked.” It only took us 15 years to get there.

The Adventures of Superdog

I was always very impressed that my dog could bark on command and come when I called his name, until I read in the newspaper about a dog that saved his owner’s life by calling 9-1-1. Apparently, when his owner had a seizure, the dog pushed a speed-dial button for 9-1-1, barked into the receiver for help, and then opened the door when the responders arrived.

Honestly, though, it’s ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_ac458cf35e59e7e799ad_postcard_bocceside

Tue, July 24, 1:00 PM

Yorktown Heights

BOCCE OPEN PLAY

Sports

Sat, July 28, 6:30 PM

Weil Preserve, North Salem

Jazz in the Meadow with Bill Evans

Arts & Entertainment Other

Carousel_image_ac458cf35e59e7e799ad_postcard_bocceside

Tue, July 31, 1:00 PM

Yorktown Heights

BOCCE OPEN PLAY

Sports