Archive for Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Summer projects on tap in district

May 16, 2007

The Tonganoxie High School athletics department will have about $90,000 in renovations made this summer.

The school board unanimously approved several projects at Monday's meeting, including renovating the THS multipurpose building/weight room and visitor locker room for $30,000, renovating the former junior high football field into high school soccer practice/middle school game facility ($15,000); purchasing two regulation size wrestling mats for official matches ($14,000); repairing fence at the THS football field ($3,000); constructing a sidewalk and driveway to the storage building north of Beatty Field ($2,800).

At the multipurpose center, THS activities director Brandon Parker said the plans call for taking out a wall that divides the former wrestling room and weight room to expand the weight room, as well as expand the current, and undersized, girls locker room.

The building also has a substantially larger boys locker room, complete with a coach's office that is used for physical education classes and by athletics teams.

Board member Leana Leslie said she would prefer that students not have to trudge down to the multipurpose facility north of Beatty Field for PE classes.

"I think everyone would be for an adequate-size weight facility on campus if it were possible," Parker said. "But right now, there's just no place."

The wrestling mats, meanwhile, will be much easier to move in and out of the gymnasium for gameday matches. Parker said the mats can be broken down into sections and only require two people to carry them.

"Two people can take six sections out real quick," Parker said.

Last year, the school borrowed mats from Eudora and Bonner Springs for THS wrestling events.

"That about killed all of us to load those things in and out in the snow and sleet and all that good stuff," Parker said.

When asked about moving the mats from the wrestling room, which is west of the THS gymnasium above the new athletics and PE locker rooms, to the gym for matches, Parker said it's not feasible, judging what it took to get the mats upstairs in the first place.

"We about lost some lightweight kids," Parker said with a laugh, referring to the hassle in moving the mats to the wrestling room."

Board member Bob DeHoff also said the mats wouldn't be suitable for varsity use.

"Half of them are shot anyway," DeHoff said. "You wouldn't want to compete on them anyway."

As for the other improvements, the fence north of the football field needs to be replaced due to wear and tear from fans leaning on it. And, the muddied area around the storage building, which is a high traffic area during track meets, prompted the move to improve that area.

At the middle school, a $9,000 football practice facility will be constructed, while the parking lot at the THS west campus will be resurfaced for $50,000. Also at THS, a dust remover at the industrial arts room must be replaced for $8,000.

And, the final project as part of the school's $25.3 million bond issue that was passed in November 2004 will be the final renovations at the elementary school for $1.5 million.

Board member Ron Moore was not at the meeting.

Fall, winter coaches rehired

All coaches at THS for fall and springs sports will be back roaming the sidelines next school year.

The board unanimously approved contracts for the coaches in those sports, while coaches at Tonganoxie Middle School for the entire 2007-08 season have been granted additional one-year contracts as well. The hirings were made official after executive session that lasted nearly 90 minutes total to discuss personnel.

For more from Monday's meeting, including additional personnel decisions, see an upcoming edition of The Mirror

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