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Wadsworth Schools

Opinions sought on replacement school in Wadsworth

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The Wadsworth City School District Board of Education has invited members of the community to express their opinions regarding the future of Central Intermediate School, at 151 Main St, Wadsworth. A special committee recommend the building, built in 1907, be replaced with a new structure. PHOTO PROVIDED

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WADSWORTH — The Wadsworth Board of Education is seeking community input on a committee’s recommendation to replace the 111-year-old Central Intermediate School.

There is an online survey and the district will host three public meetings for residents to voice their opinions on the Central Intermediate School Committee’s report.

“This is a very similar process that we have used for other communitywide-type decisions that have been before us,” board member Amanda Gordon said.

“As we have in the past, we have determined to attack it a couple different ways,” she said. “One is through those community forums we have scheduled, the other is the survey because not everyone can necessarily make it to a forum.”

The following meetings are scheduled at O.J. Work Auditorium at Central Intermediate, 151 Main St.:

  • 7 p.m. Tuesday Feb. 13;
  • 11a.m. Saturday Feb. 17;
  • 9:30 a.m. Thursday Feb. 22.

Michael Foore, a member of the committee, said during as November meeting that it would cost $21.5 million to bring the school up to 2017 standards, while the estimate to replace the structure, at 151 Main St., would cost an estimated $24 million dollars.

A contribution from the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission would bring the cost down to an estimated $15.1 million, he said.

The project is included in the district’s five-year strategic plan that runs through 2020, and Gordon said she does not believe it will take that long for the board to make a decision about the school.

“If we come to a decision earlier, we are going to make it,” she said. “We are very interested in keeping the process moving, but we don’t want to rush through anything either.”

Superintendent Andrew Hill said the meetings and survey are designed to give the school board a broader understanding of the community’s thoughts regarding the school.

“I think it is the hope that the board will be able to get a larger perspective on the committees’ recommendation from the community at large,” said Hill.

Due to the historical importance of Central Intermediate School, the committee also recommended preserving the building as community landmark for the city, most notably the O.J. Work Auditorium, while also relieving the school district of the costs and liability associated the building.

The committee was composed of nearly 40 community members including parents, faculty and representatives from downtown organizations who worked about a year researching their report.

The committee’s recommendation, committee meeting summaries, and all documents the committee reviewed as it formulated its recommendation can be viewed at: wadsworth.k12.oh.us/Content2/CIS%20Committee%20Updates.

Contact reporter Nathan Havenner at (330) 721-4050 or nhavenner@medina-gazette.com.



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