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HMS 'on target' for Monday reopening, but prepares contingency plans

Published: Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014 10:23 a.m. CST • Updated: Tuesday, July 29, 2014 9:49 p.m. CST
Caption
(Bill Ackerman - backerman@shawmedia.com)
Joni Sherman (right), assistant principal at Clarendon Hills Middle School, directs Hinsdale Middle School students to their buses Jan. 23, after the first day of a split schedule at Clarendon Hills. The schedule continued through the end of this week.
Caption
(Bill Ackerman - backerman@shawmedia.com)
Hinsdale Middle School students head for buses Jan. 23 after the first day of a split schedule at Clarendon Hills Middle School. The schedule continued through the end of this week.

HINSDALE – Mold eradication continued to progress this week at Hinsdale Middle School with cleaning expected to be completed Saturday, air quality testing to be conducted Sunday and a tentative re-opening set for Monday.

"We're still on target for Sunday open house and then Monday resuming school, however, we won't have [air quality] results back we know until Sunday night, so we are having conversation on whether we should give it a day to let everyone know the result," Superintendent Renee Schuster said.

Bridget McGuiggan, District 181 director of communications, said Thursday morning that the school is still on pace to open Monday, but the district is asking families and staff to be prepared to be at either Hinsdale or Clarendon Hills Middle School on Monday.

"It's looking like we're on target, but it may work better to have staff have the time on Monday to get prepared and do the open house Monday night," McGuiggan said. "So far our best date is looking like open house Sunday, school Monday."

Edward Smith, project manager with SERVPRO, said at Monday's business meting that the company re-insulated and installed everything throughout the school.

"It equals to about two miles of drywall replacement," Smith said.

Gary Frisch, associate superintendent for business, said Monday the total cost of the project to date was $483,773.

Ductwork cleaning continued throughout the week before the building could be turned over to Integrity Energy Services so air samples could be taken.

"I believe you'll be holding class Monday morning in those rooms," Smith said at Monday's meeting.

Smith said once Hinsdale Middle School is re-opened, there is still some work that needs to be done, such as painting and re-applying baseboards. But that work will not affect students or staff as it will be completed after hours and on weekends, he said.

Split-schedule decision

Students and staff at Hinsdale and Clarendon Hills middle schools continued on a split schedule throughout the week, except on Monday and Tuesday, when school was canceled at all District 181 schools due to the extreme cold.

While Hinsdale is tentatively set to open Monday, the board did discuss how long the split schedule should continue if something unforeseen takes place.

"I think we need to move forward so the community knows there's a plan in place if the work isn't finished," said Jill Vorobiev, school board vice president.

After a discussion of possible options, the board directed administration to develop a plan to hold classes at National Louis University in Lisle should the work be delayed.

"If the community will tolerate students getting on a bus and going to National Lewis University, that is the recommendation," Schuster said.

Kevin Russell, director of curriculum, assessment and instruction, said there are 35 classrooms Hinsdale students could use at National Lewis University, but the cost would be $140 per day for each classroom.

The district would provide transportation to National Lewis University if that plan goes into effect, but this plan is only a contingency, according to the district.

The district will continue to inform the community on progress throughout the week, and updates will be posted to d181.org.

– – –

Open house

What: An open house for the community at Hinsdale Middle School

When: Tentatively planned for 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday – the district plans to confirm the date no later than Friday

Moreinfo: Visit d181.org for updates

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