AUGUSTA COUNTY -- A unanimous vote by a board of supervisors could mean major changes for county schools. These are changes some people wanted for close to 20 years.
The offices for the Augusta County Schools administration staff were never intended to be used this long. The buildings were part of a hospital system for veterans of World War II.
“They're getting to the point where repairs are costly. Roof replacements, heating and air conditioning replacements. A variety of things happen here on occasion because these buildings are old,” said Superintendent of Augusta County Schools Chuck Bishop.
“It gets a little bit drafty. We definitely feel some of the air. My office is towards the end of the building and you have the corridors which lead to the other buildings. The air comes through there pretty good,” said Kathy Redman, a personnel secretary for Augusta County Schools.
For the past 20 years, the school board has thought about a move to a new office building. Unfortunately, that move would cost several million dollars.
Recently, available space at the Augusta County Government Center can be had for a mere $200,000.
“We have two different pots of money. This would be a capital expenditure. It would not actually impact the operating side of the budget. Mr. Cofield and I will work through that and how we'll pay for that, for those improvements,” said Bishop.
The Government Center already houses the school district's pupil services and the IT department.
Only instructional services, central administration and the finance department are expected to move.
Transportation and maintenance are expected to stay in the old buildings for now.
“This will be a fraction of the cost. Even if it's not the ideal plan, it will certainly be better than what we already have.”
The move is not certain yet, but the school board will need to vote on it at its next meeting.
The office space will go back to the county if the move does happen. The land it's on is valued at several million dollars.
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