Construction work is on schedule, the moves between buildings re coming together and Central Valley School Superintendent Cosimo Tangorra, Jr. expects things will be ready when the school year begins in September at the newly merged school district.
“Everything’s coming together quite fine,” Tangorra said when contacted Monday afternoon. “I anticipate that the flood, although it set us back, isn’t going to delay any of our plans.”
The ground floor of Jarvis Middle School in Mohawk was damaged in the late June flooding that struck several local communities. The library, gymnasium and technology room were affected.
While the fact that both the Ilion and Mohawk school districts were in the middle of capital projects when the merger was approved might look at first like a disadvantage, Tangorra said, it has actually turned out to be an advantage.
The work at Central Valley Academy is part of capital projects approved by Ilion voters several years ago. The projects focus on safety, energy efficiency and improvements in technology.
The project includes improvements to wiring and communications infrastructure, new flooring, energy efficient lighting and windows, driveway work, new office space, drainage and improvements to the baseball field, an access walk to the lower student parking lot, resurfacing gym floors and a facelift to the media center.
As far as the new school colors being reflected in the school buildings, Tangorra said, the focus has mostly been on neutralizing the color scheme at the high school.
“That’s our first order of priority. By the time school starts, we’ll have a Central Valley school district.”
New athletic uniforms are coming in for fall sports and the district will be advertising for uniforms for winter and spring sports teams as well, he said.
These will include new Central Valley uniforms for all levels of athletics, not just the varsity teams, according to Tangorra.
“We had a number of transition teams for different areas and there was a strong recommendation for that team that we get new uniforms for all of our athletes to promote the new district,” he said.
Central Valley Central School District students in grades 4-11 voted in May, choosing “Thunder” as the newly merged district’s mascot and light blue, navy blue and white with a gold accent as the district’s colors.
Asked if school officials had run into anything unanticipated in their preparations, Tangorra replied, “Not really. The advantage we have is that we’ve been in the throes of a reorganization study for so many years. We’ve had time for planning and thinking.”
At Jarvis Middle School, he said, the district is hiring the last group of people needed to complete the staff.
Student desks and chairs were arriving at the middle school Tuesday and boxes of books and materials were being moved into classrooms.
Page 2 of 2 - “It’s a wonderful challenge,” said Middle School Principal Melissa Hoskey. She expressed her appreciation for the efforts of the school custodial staff for taking on the extra work involved in the transition. Hoskey noted there is no air conditioning running, even in the school office. A large fan was running there to keep the air moving.
The village Municipal Commission got the power up and running after the late June flood, but asked customers to run electricity only for the essentials and to avoid running air conditioners.
The new district is taking steps to ease the transition not only for students, but for their families as well, with a series of family orientation evenings during August.
“We want families who are new to the buildings to get to see them and get a feel for them,” said Tangorra. “Granted we are in the middle of a capital project, but they can go inside and wander around, both students and parents, and put their minds at ease.
“We want everyone to be excited, not anxious,” he added.
The orientation evenings are scheduled as follows:
Fisher Elementary (866-4851), Cafeteria
• Grades K-4 at 6-7 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 6
• Grades K-4 at 6-7 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 13
Barringer Road Elementary (894-8420), Cafeteria
• Grades K-4 at 6-7 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 5
• Grades K-4 at 6-7 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 12
Jarvis Middle School (866-2620), Auditorium
• Grade 5 at 6-7 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 8
• Grade 6 at 7:30-8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 8
• Grade 7 at 6-7 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 14
• Grade 8 at 7:30-8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 14
Central Valley Academy (895-7471), Large Group Instruction Room
• Grades 10 and 12 at 6 p.m. on Wednesday Aug. 15
• Grades 9 and 11 at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 21
For more information, parents may call their child’s school.