When students and staff at La Rosa Elementary School return from Winter Break, they could find themselves under newly repaired roofs.
On Wednesday, November 19, the Temple City Board of Education voted to begin the bidding process for renovation of the roofs at La Rosa. District officials note that the repairs could begin during the Winter Break, a time when students are not in school for two weeks.
The School Board was asked to authorize the bidding process for both La Rosa Elementary and Cloverly Elementary on Wednesday night. The “roofing” project was estimated to cost around $330,000.
Because of fiscal tightening at the state level, the School Board debated whether to open the bidding process to both schools. Board members ultimately prioritized La Rosa Elementary over Cloverly Elementary.
Cloverly Elementary, as well as other schools do not need to worry though. School Board President Joe Walker promised that contracts to amend the roofs at other Temple City Unified School District (TCUSD) schools will occur “very soon.”
“These roofs are in desperate need of replacement,” warned Dale Shaffer, Director of Maintenance and Operations, at the previous School Board meeting.
Shaffer pushed hard for the School Board to fix the roofs of the schools during Winter Break when it seemed like the California budget crisis would convince the Board of Education not to act. TCUSD is expected to lose a minimum of $1.8 million dollars from the state.
The Temple City School Board became aware of the roofing issue at District schools on November 12.
District officials stated that existing roofs, especially at La Rosa Elementary, Cloverly Elementary, and Temple City High School, where the problems are the most severe, had accumulated eighteen to twenty years worth of damage. Age and a poor flat design had created conditions such as excessive “ponding.”
“While maintenance may not be very glamorous, it is a vital part of the functions of the District” commented Joe Walker in an e-mail to the Temple City Voice. “If we have unsafe buildings with water leaking inside, how can teachers teach and students learn?”
School Board Clerk Matt Smith, who was absent on Wednesday, had also stressed the importance at a previous School Board meeting. “Roofing must be a major focal point for [the District] Facility Master Plan” declared Smith.
Despite a proposed spending cut on education by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger of $2 to $4 billion dollars, the “roofing” project will move forward.
“The funds for these repairs will come from a budget we have set aside for this purpose” noted Walker.
On a separate item, School Board members stated a quarter of the computers of each school would be upgraded each year. The upgrades include specially made $3000 Macintosh computers for the special education program. In addition, document cameras will soon be replacing the old overheads used in many classrooms.
This article was written by Chris Du. It was published in the Temple City Voice on November 26, 2008.