CATAWISSA RR - Southern Columbia officials said the district-wide energy improvements are moving forward, but cleaning up after them will take officials to the limit.

In his report at Monday's school board meeting, superintendent Paul Caputo gave an update on the project, saying that most of the equipment has been installed at the schools.

"It's all a matter of firing up the units for the ventilation," Caputo said Monday.

The scope of the work includes districtwide lighting, building "envelope" (the physical separators between the conditioned and unconditioned environment of a building) upgrades, plug-load management, upgrades to the heating and ventilation systems in all the district buildings and the repair and replacement or repairs of leaking roofs in each building.

The work is being done at a cost of $4,651,350, but the district expects to save approximately $6,271,972 in energy costs over the next 20 years. On an unanimous vote, the board approved a third payment to McClure Inc., the group doing the work, of $1,266,273,80.

"One benefit that we have seen is that we had an issue with the roof in one building where the worker's foot came right through the roof, so it was a problem that has been remedied," Caputo said.

The downside, they said, is that custodians are currently working 10-hour shifts to clean up the schools to have them ready for opening of the school year just two weeks away.

"We are going to do our best to have everything ready for the opening of school," the superintendent said.

Halfway there

Caputo also announced during his report that the district has collected more than $10,000 in fees for those in fall sports or activities under the new "pay-to-participate" policy.

"We have received about 220 responses from parents and about 17 waivers, so it is either about 210 or 237 that have responded," Caputo said.

The district implemented the policy in the hopes of raising $20,000 in revenue with the fee, which charges parents a $50 per student or $100 per family yearly fee to participate in sports or extracurricular activities.

Board member Joe Klebon said he wasn't sure that $20,000 total could be collected.

"A lot of the people who paid in the fall are three-sports athletes, so you might not collect the other $10,000 during the winter or spring sports seasons," he said.

In other business

- The board approved a 10-day agreement with Student Assistance Services to provide behavioral support services and evaluations to the district at a costs of $495 per day and mileage.

- In personnel notes, the board accepted the resignation of elementary teacher Bethany Varano; approved the hiring of Jarrod W. Dodson as a part-time second-shift custodian; Shawnee Robel as the high school nurse and David L. Fegley as middle school math teacher.

- The board approved the 2014-15 substitute teacher list and the list of advisors, support teachers, lead teachers, team leaders, tech lead teacher and band personnel.