By Sterling McGinn
A tour and updates of the Career and Technical Education (CTE) room at Newberry High School opened the regular monthly meeting of the Tahquamenon Area Schools (TAS) Board of Education.
The meeting was held Monday, April 18 at 6 p.m. in the school library. All members of the board were present with only two members of the public in attendance.
After opening the meeting, the school board members and public adjourned to the CTE room of the high school, where instructor Linus Parr gave an update of the progress made to the program. This year, TAS offers Engadine and Newberry students two sections of Geometry in Construction and one section of CTE.
Though the shop wing will close when the high school does, updates to the area – including electrical work – were necessary immediately. “Ultimately, the safety of our students and for the staff is the utmost importance,” Price said.
The CTE program paid for the upgrades.
Parr said the department now has brand new saw stops and drill presses. “Most of your machines in here are all brand new and within a year old,” he said.
Usage of the machines increased when the old equipment was replaced. “More kids felt better with the new technologies,” Parr said. “They were not frustrated and fighting them.”
The old dust collector was removed, Parr said, and a smaller unit with the same horsepower was installed. The new piece of equipment was moved out of the room which houses a lot of the electrical components, so sawdust doesn’t collect around the electrical panels.
All equipment can be moved and rewired when the room is relocated in the future. “Everything was purchased with the idea of longevity,” Parr said.
Price said she has asked if the CTE rooms can eventually move to the first-floor science wing near the gymnasium. The high school science rooms would then be moved to the second floor of the elementary building if the plans are implemented. Construction of the school facility will begin in the summer of 2023. Large construction like this would need heavy equipment and rigging services. Therefore, they are taken into account for the budget.
In other news, the board accepted two letters of resignation from teachers that were relatively new to the district.
Special education teacher
Michael Leftwich has resigned effective immediately. In addition, 7-8th grade social studies teacher Alyssa Stehlin’s resigned effective August 31, 2022.
Price also gave an update on the school bond project. “We are working on the nuts-and-bolts pieces right now…where walls will be… and asking lots of questions.” She said she is working with the C.A.M.P. (health clinic) and Community Schools on their future locations within the facility.
The contract for the roof project has been signed and the crew is waiting for better weather to begin the process of the replacement.