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New Gym Addition, Computers on Way to Ludlow

An agreement between the Ludlow Board of Education and an architect was reached this week as the district moved closer to the construction of an addition to the high school gym.

Thw $150,000, 1900-sq. ft. addition will be drawn up by Robert Ehmet Hayes & Associates, an architecture firm based in Ft. Mitchell. The firm will be paid $27,000 for its effort.

"We would like to have the addition under roof before winter," Superintendent Mike Borchers said during the regular school board meeting Thursday.

As soon as the paperwork comes back from the state the project can go out for bids. Fencing around the property near the football stadium should be completed by the end of July. Another project, which is asphalt-paving of an area where the school buses are kept by the stadium, will go out for bid slightly earlier than the gym addition. The 10,000-sq. ft. parking area near the practice field will add an additional 33 parking spaces, and the buses could still be parked on the gravel area nearby.

The board listed 240 computer towers as surplus property because the district is revamping its computer system and leasing 136 new desktop computers and 80 new laptops for teachers. They are keeping the monitors and keyboards, and some of the newer computers. The new district technology coordinator, Chris Cornette, is in the process of getting the network and all the computers ready for the new school year.

Equipment from the kitchen was also declared surplus. The equipment consisted of a Weber cooking pot, a Hobart Steamer and oven and a Vulcan range will be gone after the summer lunches to make room for some long overdue new equipment so that the cafeteria can possibly have a cold line and hot line for food. A new tile floor will be installed before the new equipment comes in.

A district advisory team has been in place for two years already, and Thursday night the board authorized the payment of $500 apiece per year for the approximate 12 members, six from each building. "This is a way of acknowledging what they already do," said Borchers. "They are our best, our superstars, and they make our curriculum better as well as our schedules and professional growth, among other things."

Borchers also announced that Ludlow Independent Schools has been chosen as an outreach school district for Duke Energy. It has not yet been decided what improvements Duke will propose making, but there will be a meeting in a few months to determine that.

The first day back at school will be August 20, and before that seventh grade orientation will be August 11, while August 14 will be the day to pick up schedules, and August 18 will be Pantherfest. Then on August 21 there will be a tailgate party to celebrate the 1975 football team which won the state championship. There will be inflatables, face painting, cornhole and other fun things for people to do before the football game where the Panthers take on the Newport Wildcats.

Finally, the new digital reader board is up on the wall above the small teacher parking lot close to Elm Street. The new board is functional, and will compliment the older reader board on the other side of the campus.

Story & photo by Patrica A. Scheyer, RCN contributor