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Ringing Rocks Plans Take Another Step

Pottsgrove Middle School

Pottsgrove Middle School

POTTSTOWN PA – Decisions to seek proposals for renovation of Ringing Rocks Elementary School, and to decline a discussion about merging with Pottstown schools, were among actions taken Tuesday night (Feb. 10, 2009) in a meeting of the Pottsgrove School District Board of School Directors that lasted more than three hours.

Here’s an overview from the session, held at Pottsgrove Middle School:

  • Ringing Rocks moves ahead. Board members agreed to pay their architects to create three options for a limited refurbishment of the aging elementary school. They want drawings and somewhat in-depth prices on 1) a bare-bones repair project; 2) a renovation and expansion that includes room for full-day kindergarten classes and needed space for existing programs; and 3) an in-between choice. But they confirmed they would not pursue plans to expand Pottsgrove High School, add athletic fields, expand the district office, or add new space at Rocks for special education.
  • Thanks, but no thanks. The board unanimously asked its president, Michael Neiffer, to decline an overture from Pottstown school board President Robert Hartman to tentatively discuss the prospect of merging the two districts. Hartman’s bold invitation follows by less than a week a budget suggestion from Pennsylvania’s governor to cut the number of school districts in the state by 80 percent through forced consolidations.
  • Save That Cash I. The district will seek to refinance millions of dollars in bonds it issued during 2003, because interest rates are now significantly lower than five years ago. The move would save $199,400 in interest costs over coming years.
  • Save That Cash II. The board asked for substantial revisions to a 2009-2010 budget presentation on district buildings and facilities. The $2.2 million in proposed operating expenses came in 12.7 percent higher than last year. Shoot for an only 8-percent increase, directors told district administrators, and expect to get even less.
  • A little song and dance. Middle school students treated board members to a preview of their spring stage production, “High School Musical 2.” See ‘The Post’ video.

‘The Post’ will publish separate stories on these items tomorrow and during the remainder of this week.

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